Date published: 15 November 2022 14:29

What is the minimum age to apply to become a police officer?

Candidates aged 17 and above may apply to become a police officer and may take up appointment on reaching the age of 18 or above, if successful.

Are there height restrictions?

No, there is no minimum or maximum height requirements

What qualifications do I need to hold to apply?

To apply for the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship (PCDA), you need to hold a Level 3 qualification (such as an A Level) or have relevant military experience (completed the minimum term of service, usually four years) and possess the ability to achieve a Level 6 degree qualification. Students may also be accepted onto the PCDA course, where they have proven experience that can be related to the programme, and can demonstrate the required level of skill and academic ability. Applicants without the course qualification entry requirements will need to provide further evidence to demonstrate that they have significant knowledge, skills and understanding required to successfully complete the programme.

Do I need a Level 2 in Maths & English?

Whilst it is desirable for our applicants to have a Level 2 qualification in Maths & English, we will consider a candidates previous skills and experience and their likely ability to reach this level by the end of the apprenticeship.

Do I need a driving licence to apply?

Ideally, you must have a full manual UK/EU licence at the time of application.  Applications will be accepted if you don’t have a full driving licence, however you will be expected to have taken and passed your test before appointment.

I have a criminal record, can I still apply?

Eligibility will depend on the nature and circumstances of the offence.  It is not possible to set out a full list of convictions that will preclude a person from becoming a police officer. Each case will be considered on its own merits, and if the offence is deemed sufficiently serious a person will be rejected irrespective of age at time of offending.  There may be circumstances where an individual does not fall within the criteria, but whose suspected involvement in crime, or criminal associations make an offer of employment inappropriate.

I have a motoring offence(s).  Can I still apply?

We will need to assess the motoring offences.  However, if you have more than six penalty points on your driving licence and / or two or more motoring offences within the three years prior to the application date you may not be eligible to apply to join as a student officer.

I am not a British citizen, can I still apply?

Yes.  If you are a foreign national or Commonwealth citizen you must have leave to enter or leave to remain in the UK for an indefinite period. Most EEA and Swiss Nationals have the right to reside in the UK and so will not need to demonstrate this.

Can I apply if I’m ex-military?

Yes, you can apply if you are ex-military, even if you have a pension.  You just need to be retired or be working through your re-settlement.

I have tattoos, will this stop me from applying to be a police officer?

No. All tattoos and piercings must be in line with South Yorkshire Police’s Appearance and Standards Policy. This policy has recently been relaxed to allow visible tattoos as long as they are not offensive or inappropriate.

Photos of any potentially visible tattoos will need to be sent in as part of the application process, and any which could be deemed inappropriate or cause offence will not be accepted.

We will require one distance photograph clearly showing where on the body area the tattoo is located and a second close up photograph that we can use to assess against our standards.

I have piercings, will this stop me becoming a police officer?

You must not have any facial or tongue piercings, or any piercings which could impede your ability to perform the role.