What is the NPOST and Why It Matters: An Important Step Towards a Law Enforcement Career
The National Police Officer Selection Test (NPOST) is a test that checks if you’re ready to be a police officer. Many police departments in the United States use it.
The NPOST examines your reading, grammar, math, and report writing skills. These skills are very important if you want to be a good police officer.
Before you can join a police academy or training program, you usually need to pass the NPOST. This test helps find out who has the right mental skills for police work. Doing well on the NPOST can make a big difference in getting a job and starting a career in helping the community.
Which States Use the NPOST?
The NPOST is a popular examination for those seeking a career in law enforcement. This test is utilized by various states across the United States for their law enforcement recruitment. Iowa, Utah, and Wyoming have made the NPOST a mandatory statewide entry-level test for all law enforcement job applicants.
In addition to these three states, 25 State Associations of Chiefs of Police also use the NPOST in their recruitment process. These associations are based in the following states:
Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Minnesota, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Tennessee, Virginia, Wisconsin
If you are applying for a law enforcement job in any of these states, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the NPOST and prepare accordingly.
Understanding the NPOST: A Simple Guide to Scoring, Retakes, and Test Administration
Let’s break down the National Police Officer Selection Test (NPOST) to better understand its structure, how it’s scored, retake rules, and how the test is given. This will help make your testing experience smoother and improve your chances of success.
Exam Structure and Time:
The NPOST has four sections with 100 multiple-choice questions in total. You have 1.5 hours (90 minutes) to finish the test. The exam checks your reading, grammar, math, and incident report writing skills.
Scoring and Passing Scores:
Each question on the NPOST gives you one point, so the highest possible score is 100 points. The passing score depends on the rules set by the agency or police department giving the test. Usually, a score of 70% or more is passing, and a score of 80% or higher is considered very good. This means you’ll have a better chance of getting a job in law enforcement.
Test Administration and Rules:
The NPOST is given by authorized testing centers, which can be law enforcement agencies, police academies, or other testing facilities. It’s important to follow their rules, such as getting there on time, showing a valid ID, and not bringing any items that aren’t allowed, like electronic devices.
NPOST Test Sections and Topics
To prepare effectively for the National Police Officer Selection Test (NPOST), it is important to familiarize yourself with the different sections and topics covered in the exam. Here’s a straightforward breakdown of each section, its format, and a few sample questions.
The mathematics section measures your basic math skills, which are important for different parts of police work. This part of the exam has 20 multiple-choice questions on topics like addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, percentages, and word problems. These questions test your ability to do simple math and use math skills to solve problems. By improving your math skills, you can do well on this part of the test and show that you’re good at working with numbers and making calculations, which are important for a successful career in law enforcement.
If a patrol car travels 45 miles in 30 minutes, what is its average speed in miles per hour?
A) 30 mph
B) 45 mph
C) 60 mph
D) 90 mph
Correct Answer: C) 90 mph
To find the average speed in miles per hour, we need to convert the time from minutes to hours. Since there are 60 minutes in an hour, we can divide 30 by 60 to get 0.5 hours.
Next, we can use the formula:
Average speed = Distance / Time
We are given that the patrol car travels 45 miles in 0.5 hours. Therefore, the average speed is:
Average speed = 45 / 0.5 = 90 miles per hour
The correct answer is C) 90 mph, which is obtained by converting the result from miles per hour to the nearest option in the answer choices.
The Reading Comprehension section checks if you can understand and explain written information. In this part of the NPOST, you’ll find 25 multiple-choice questions about different passages you’ll read during the test. You’ll need to answer questions about the main points, details, and ideas from the passages. By practicing your reading skills, you’ll do better on this part of the test and show that you can understand important written information as a police officer.
Read the following passage and answer the question below:
“In order to maintain public safety, law enforcement officers often work closely with the community. This partnership helps build trust and fosters a positive relationship between the police and the people they serve. By engaging with the community, officers can better understand the concerns and needs of the residents, which allows them to address issues more effectively.”
Question: According to the passage, why is it important for law enforcement officers to work closely with the community?
A) To gather information for criminal investigations
B) To build trust and foster a positive relationship with the community
C) To recruit new officers from the community
D) To enforce stricter laws and regulations
Correct Answer: B) To build trust and foster a positive relationship with the community
The correct answer is B) To build trust and foster a positive relationship with the community. The passage explains that law enforcement officers work closely with the community to build trust and create a positive relationship. By doing so, they can better understand the concerns and needs of the residents, which allows them to address issues more effectively. The passage does not mention that officers work with the community to gather information for criminal investigations or to enforce stricter laws and regulations.
The Grammar section tests your knowledge of English grammar rules. This part of the test has 20 multiple-choice questions where you’ll need to find mistakes in sentences or pick the right word or phrase to finish a sentence. Learning about common grammar rules, punctuation, and how to build sentences will help you do well on this part of the test. Good grammar skills show that you can communicate well in writing, which is important for police officers when they write reports and other documents.\
Choose the sentence that is grammatically correct:
A) Me and my partner are working on a report.
B) My partner and I are working on a report.
C) Me and my partner is working on a report.
D) My partner and me are working on a report.
Correct Answer: B) My partner and I are working on a report.
The correct answer is B) My partner and I are working on a report. This sentence is grammatically correct because it uses the correct subject pronoun “I” instead of “me.” “I” is the subject of the sentence, which means it is the one performing the action, in this case, “working on a report.” “Me” is an object pronoun and is used when the subject is receiving the action, not performing it. Therefore, sentences A, C, and D are incorrect.
Incident Report Writing
The Incident Report Writing section tests your ability to write clear, short, and correct reports, which is an important skill for police officers. This part of the exam has 35 multiple-choice questions based on information about different incidents. You’ll need to pick the best way to finish a sentence, organize information, and share details correctly and clearly in a report. By practicing your report writing skills and understanding how important it is to be clear, organized, and accurate in your writing, you can do well on this part of the test. Being good at incident report writing is important because it shows that you can write about events, what you see, and evidence in a way that other people can understand easily, which is a big part of a police officer’s job.
Which of the following statements accurately conveys the information presented in the incident report?
Report excerpt: “On June 15th, 2022, at approximately 9:00 pm, officers were dispatched to the 500 block of Main Street in response to a reported disturbance. Upon arrival, officers observed a group of individuals arguing loudly in the street. Officers approached the group and attempted to disperse them. While speaking with the individuals, one person became increasingly agitated and began shouting obscenities. Officers attempted to calm the individual down but were unsuccessful. Due to the individual’s aggressive behavior, the officers took him into custody.”
A) A group of individuals were arguing loudly in the street. The officers arrived and dispersed them.
B) A person became agitated and began shouting obscenities. The officers arrested him.
C) The officers responded to a reported disturbance and encountered a group of individuals arguing loudly. They attempted to disperse the group but were unsuccessful with one individual. The individual was taken into custody due to his aggressive behavior.
D) The officers responded to a disturbance and arrested a group of individuals who were arguing loudly in the street.
Correct Answer: C) The officers responded to a reported disturbance and encountered a group of individuals arguing loudly. They attempted to disperse the group but were unsuccessful with one individual. The individual was taken into custody due to his aggressive behavior.
Option A is incorrect because it omits the details about officers attempting to disperse the group and the individual’s aggressive behavior.
Option B is incorrect because it only mentions the individual’s agitated behavior and does not provide any context about the situation or the officers’ actions.
Option D is incorrect because it incorrectly states that the officers arrested a group of individuals, whereas the report only mentions one individual being taken into custody.
Option C accurately conveys the information presented in the incident report. It provides a summary of the incident, including the officers’ response to the reported disturbance, their encounter with the group of individuals, their attempt to disperse the group, and their decision to take one individual into custody due to their aggressive behavior.
Familiarizing yourself with the format and content of each section will help you better prepare for the NPOST and increase your chances of achieving a high score.
Preparing for the NPOST: Boost Your Skills and Confidence
Although the NPOST covers many topics and tests basic skills, it’s possible to prepare for the exam and increase your chances of getting a high score. To do this, you’ll need to work on your vocabulary, math, and grammar skills, as well as your memory and critical thinking abilities.
There are several ways to prepare for the NPOST, and you should choose the method that works best for you.
One option is to use prep materials from Standard & Associates, Inc., the test developer. You can buy an Online POST Study Guide or an Online POST Practice Test. The study guide helps you understand the test format and timing, so you know what to expect on exam day. It also includes sample questions. The practice test allows you to experience the test before taking it, so you can see if you can answer all the questions within the time limit and have time to check your answers. When the test time is up, you’ll get immediate feedback on your responses, with explanations of incorrect answers to help you improve.
Another option is to find an online prep course. Several providers offer test prep packages for the NPOST, including practice tests, guides, tutorials, and explanations. One top-rated course is the NPOST Practice Test & Study Guide by Sgt. Godoy. This course features hundreds of practice questions and multimedia tutorials to help you ace the exam. It also offers tips for job searching in law enforcement and preparing for the selection process. A one-time fee gives you unlimited access to the course and 24/7 personalized support.