Police Assessment & What’s Involved?

If you’re applying to become a police officer in the United Kingdom, then you’ll face a complex and difficult process. There are many hurdles the prospective police officer will have to face and there are a lot of written and physical exercises required before you can even be sure of entry on to the Police Assessment courses. Here at Talking Blues, our aim is to ensure that you get the best start and we’ll breakdown whats involved in getting entry to the Police Force in the UK.


When applying for the police you’ll be looking at one of two UK police assessment centres, there are regular and the new Police Assessment centres. We have a number of online assessment courses available to help you in numerous cities around the UK, you can view our one day assessment courses here.

So, with the new assessment courses replacing the SEARCH courses, what can you expect from the Regular UK Police Assessment Centres?

The Regular UK Police Assessment Centre

This is the most common assessment centre course which is now mostly competency based having dispensed with numeracy and verbal competency testing from the old SEARCH courses. However, these are what the Police Force are looking for in recruits, so do please read on and make notes as and where you need to. This will form the fundamental skills of what is required by a UK Police Officer.

1. Situational Judgement Test

What is a Situational Judgement Test (SJT) used in police applications? In summary, a SJT is an assessment of your ability to make decisions in situations similar to that you will face as a police officer.

In this test you will be given a number of written scenarios on a screen, your job is to choose which you think would be the best response to each situation from the available multiple choice answers. So, take your time on this one and think what will be the best response to each situation as your judgement here will play an important role in whether you would be suitable as a police officer.

Below is a link to a mock test online, you can go through these questions at your leisure and we highly recommend you take the time out to do this as much as possible to get your brain trained into how the Police will do things in the line of duty.

Mock Test Link – Click here

2. Competency Based Interview Techniques

This will cover everything around the following:

  • We are emotionally aware
  • We take ownership
  • We are collaborative
  • We deliver, support and inspire
  • We analyse critically
  • We are innovative and open minded
  • The four values are Impartiality, Integrity, Public Service, and Transparency

Its so important to understand these values and keep them in mind when your’e going through the Police Assessment.

3. Written Exercises

Contrary to popular belief that being a police officer is chasing suspects and action 24/7 there is actually a lot of written briefs required, statements and writing ability needs to be good to gain entry to the Police Force. You will need to give descriptions of a policing or community problem that you will need resolve and you’ll need time to prepare and think about this process when you provide your answers.

Written exercises are very important when it comes to the overall police assessment so be sure to make sure you spend time learning these processes, you can however spend some time learning online and get yourself familiarised with the CVF here 

written exercises for joining the police

When it comes to Police Assessments in the UK Police, you’ll find that more and more will be online, this will be more about the pre-assessment to get you through to the final recruitment courses and is a way of the Police filtering out recruits that won’t be suitable for the Police Force. So, going forward you can expect that there will be a humanistic approach and that after COVID lockdown we will see more of these assessments being held in a face to face environment like many of our police recruitment courses were before the COVID lockdown.

It is much more cost effective for the the police assessment companies to do this online and maybe in the future this will be the new norm with future face to face courses being held for successful applicants. Virtual Assessment centres will be a thing of the future now, so once you have passed the virtual stage, you’ll be able and more equipped mentally to tackle the face to face assessments in the real world of day to day policing in the UK.