Can You Pass This Practice Police Entrance Exam?



By: Todd Betzold

7 Min Quiz

Image: Colin Anderson Productions Pty Ltd / DigitalVision / Getty Images

About This Quiz

Growing up, a lot of boys and girls often dream of being a police officer. However, a career in law enforcement is not something that comes easy. There is schooling to be done and a police entrance exam to pass.

Crazily enough, there is no national standard qualifying exam to become a police officer in the United States. That means each department and agency decides what guidelines and what type of exam they want to use, as set by the state law enforcement commissions. Many states use an exam called the National Police Officer Selection Test, or POST.

The majority of tests consist of a written exam that assesses basic skills such as reading comprehension, memory, reasoning and mathematics. Other sections might be a physical abilities test, a psychological exam, a polygraph test or other options. Once you pass these exams, you are then placed on a list for consideration in the hiring process, which consists of interviews and more evaluations.

So, it's now time to test your knowledge! Can a cop accept a $100 tip from a bank manager after stopping a bank robber? You'll soon find out, but you'll also be tested on spelling, math and more! Start the test below!

An employee may use a government vehicle for personal business as long as they are on duty and not making a stop out of the direction of official travel. Which statement is true based on that information?

While all of the answers have some kind of truth to them, the last answer is the only one that is fully true. A government vehicle may not be used for personal business only. The employee has to be doing government business at the same time, otherwise it is restricted.


Which of these sentences is correctly written?

Both "I" and "me" are first-person singular pronouns. "I" is the subject pronoun, which means they are the one doing the action. "Me" is the object pronoun, which means they are the object of the action. That would mean "Agent Smith and I" is the correct response.


While on patrol, you pull over a driver suspected of a DUI, but notice the driver is a local city councilman. What do you do?

Even though the councilman is a public figure, that does not put him in a different light. He appears to be breaking the law, and you are hired to enforce that law.


When the police officer arrived at the scene of the accident, the driver appeared to be conscous. Which word in that sentence is spelled wrong?

The word spelled incorrectly is "conscous." The correct spelling is "conscious," as the "i" is often overlooked in this word. Being able to communicate clearly in writing is an important element of police work, and that includes spelling.


The Miranda v. Arizona ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court determined that warnings must be given to suspects who are not free to leave if they are being questioned about the specifics of a case. What does that ruling mean?

Miranda v. Arizona was ruled by the Supreme Court in 1966 and involved a migrant farm worker accused of rape. As we all know and have seen, the Miranda warnings must be read by cops now. The Fifth Amendment right against self incrimination requires law enforcement officials to advise a suspect interrogated in custody of their rights to remain silent and to obtain an attorney, at no charge if need be.


The owner of an appliance store gave the police a list of items stolen and their value: six Instant Pots ($100 each), three 42" televisions ($170 each), five 32" televisions ($120 each) and ten four-slice toasters ($400 total). What is the total value of the stolen merchandise?

The tricky part in this question is that the first three stolen items are listed at a price per item. The final stolen item gives us a total price of all the toasters. The total for each item would be $600 for Instant Pots, $510 for 42" televisions, $600 for 32" televisions and $400 for the toasters, which would all add up to $2,110.


While patrolling an area with a speed limit of 35 mph, you clock a truck going 58. How many miles per hour over the speed limit were they going?

The speed limit is posted at 35 miles per hour. The driver of the truck was going 58, which means they were driving 23 miles over the speed limit.


(52 + 11) / 7 = ?

You never know when those basic algebra skills will be needed when doing police work. For this one, you would add the numbers in the parentheses first. That gives you a total of 63, which then is divided by 7. That gives you the answer of 9.


After giving out a no parking zone ticket, the car's owner comes out and is furious about the ticket, crumbling it up and throwing it on the street. What do you do?

Whether you parked in the spot for two minutes or two days, you still violated the no parking zone law. A ticket was issued, so now you must respond to that ticket or the repercussions will be even worse.


To show their appreciation for stopping a bank robber, the bank manager gave the police officer $100. Is this acceptable?

Cops are not allowed to accept any kind of reward or tip while on duty. Stopping a bank robber is a normal job duty for a police offer, so no reward can be accepted.


Most police departments use the military system for stating the time of the day. Why is that?

Timing is very important, especially when it comes to criminal cases. Because of that, military time helps keep everything in order, with no confusion about if it was 3:00 in the morning or in the afternoon, since it would be 1500 hours if in the afternoon.


Before making an arrest, police needed PROOF that the person did it. Which word or phrase has the closest meaning to the capitalized word?

The definition of proof is evidence or an argument to establish that a statement is true or that something actually happened. It's right in the definition, so "evidence" has to be the right answer.


A robbery victim claimed they were on vacation from 12/12 at 3:00 p.m. to 12/16 at 10:00 p.m., and during that time, someone entered their home and took their property. What time did the victim discover the robbery?

Since the victim was gone during this time, there is only one time they could have discovered the robbery. They arrived home on 12/16 at 10:00 p.m., which is when they discovered their house had been robbed.


Chad was arrested and his bail was set at $500,000 with 10% cash needed to get out on bond. How much does Chad have to pay?

Chad has a $500,000 bond. He needs to pay 10% of that $500,000 in cash to get out. So, 10% of $500,000 would be $50,000. A bond or bail is a set amount of money that must be paid to secure your release from jail, as a security that you'll appear in court. If you don't show up, you forfeit the money you paid.


Heroin sells for $95,000 per kilogram, and a kilogram is equal to 2.2 pounds. How much would 11 pounds of heroin cost?

You have 11 pounds of heroin. You know the cost of heroin is measured in kilograms. There are 2.2 pounds in one kilogram, so you divide 11 by the 2.2 to get 5 total kilograms. You then multiply the 5 by the cost per kilogram, which is $95,000, and that gives you $475,000.


During the school year, Officer Stafford works as a D.A.R.E. officer teaching students the dangers of drugs and alcohol. He attends three schools every week for 35 weeks. How many total schools does he attend?

Multiplication is needed to solve this question. Officer Stafford attends 3 schools every week. He goes to these schools 35 weeks out of the year, so we multiply 3 by 35 to get 105.


After the break-in, the suspect was charged with LARCENY. Which word is closest in meaning to the capitalized word?

The definition of larceny is the theft of personal property. That means "theft" would be the word with the most similar meaning as larceny. While the dictionary definition is similar, in some states, theft and larceny are legally considered different crimes.


The chief of police was asked to step down after sexual harrassment charges were brought against him. Which word in that sentence is spelled wrong?

Sexual harassment is a hot-button issue right now. That means you should be able to spell it! There are two "s's" in the word, but only one "r." In the U.S., sexual harassment is legally considered a form of sex discrimination, which is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.


A truck skidded 5 feet 5 inches during an accident before making a complete stop. The accident report must be written in inches, so how many inches would you write?

There are 12 inches in a foot. We had 5 feet, so you multiply that by 12 to get 60 inches. Then you add in the remaining 5 inches, so it is a total of 65 inches.


A suspect left the scene of the crime at 3:20 p.m. and headed home while driving at a constant speed of 60 miles per hour. Their house is 35 miles from the scene of the crime, so when would they get home?

To start, the car is driving 60 miles per hour, which means it is going 1 mile every minute. To travel the 35 miles, that means they would need 35 minutes of driving. Add 35 minutes to the start time, and they would arrive home at 3:55 p.m.


After a robbery call, your field training officer (FTO) decides to take a case of soda from the store and said the store won't miss it. What do you do?

The FTO is not allowed to just take a case of soda or anything else from the store. You will want to report this situation to the officer's supervisor and let them handle it.


A police officer may have to place barricades on the road to warn drivers of dangerous conditions. Where would they need to do this?

While the other three answers can all make for dangerous driving conditions, they are not anything out of the norm for the road. A broken water main is a special circumstance and should be highlighted for drivers to know about.


The former sheriff was indited on charges of fraud, which shocked no one. Which word in the first sentence is spelled wrong?

"Indict" is a word that many people spell wrong. Since it sounds like "indite," people often spell it that way. However, the proper spelling here would be "indicted." If someone's been indicted, it means they've been formally accused of committing a crime.


Officer Rodgers gets 340 miles on a full tank of gas for her squad car. If the gas gauge shows one-quarter of a tank remaining, how many more miles can she drive before running out of gas?

The vehicle gets 340 miles for a full tank, and the tank is currently one-quarter (or one fourth) full. You would need to divide 340 by 4 to break it down into quarters. 340 divided by 4 is 85 miles, which is how far you can go before running out of gas.


Seth needs to print three copies of his 2,100-page thesis paper. The printer prints 6 pages per minute, so how many minutes will it take Seth to print all three copies?

The thesis paper is 2,100 pages long and Seth needs three copies printed, so he needs a total of 6,300 pages printed. Since the printer prints 6 pages per minute, that means it would take 1,050 minutes (that's 6,300 divided by 6) to print all 6,300 pages.


On Tuesday, a police officer filed the complaint coming from the secretery of the accounting firm. Which word is spelled wrong in that sentence?

Secretary can be a tricky word to spell. However, it is an "a" towards the end and not an "e" like in the question.


A police officer is told to distribute 35 radios among the 7 different squads. How many radios would each squad get?

The officer was asked to hand out a total of 35 radios. If the radios need to be distributed between 7 different squads, that means each squad would received 5 radios (35 divided by 7 is 5).


The president was pardoned, but that will not THWART the investigation. Which word or phrase has the closest meaning to the capitalized word?

The definition of "thwart" is to stop somebody from doing something. The definition of "hinder" is to create an obstruction or difficulty to delay someone or something. Very similar definitions, so that's why "hinder" is the right answer.


A curfew has been set at 10:30 p.m. for anyone under 17 years old. While on duty, you go into a local coffee shop at 11:30 p.m. on a Friday and find a group of teens under the age of 17 in the shop. What do you do?

Unless these teens were habitual offenders, the best option would be to bring them to the station and notify their parents. The parents would come pick up their children and everyone would be issued a warning, which would increase to fines and even possible jail time if the violations continued.


During the month of November, Officer Marshall issued 123 citations, Officer Smith issued 131, Officer Tripp issued 98 and Officer Tomlinson issued 76. What was the average number of citations handed out by these officers in November?

To get this answer, you would add together all of the citations handed out in November, which is a total of 428. Since 4 officers handed out those tickets, you would divide the total by 4 to get an average. That gives you the answer of 107.


A flower shop was robbed and 34 vases stolen, which had a total value of $1,020. What was the average cost of each vase?

The total cost of the vases stolen was $1,020. There were 34 vases stolen, so you would divide $1,020 by 34, and that would give you an average cost of $30 per vase.


A police officer is responsible for evacuating a dangerous area. In which situation would the police evacuate the area?

The bus station and bar are just busy, but not a dangerous situation. Since the accident is only minor, it is not a dangerous situation. However, a gas leak in a building is dangerous, and everyone would need to evacuate the building.


Choose the pattern below that matches this exactly: Z?! pJm$#QyYWS6SaU&=}\"53

For this one, the final answer is the exact match. The first answer changed the y's to z's in the middle. The second answer ended with a 2 and not a 3. The third one is missing the exclamation point in the third spot. Having a close attention to detail is an important skill for police officers.


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