Police Exam Practice Test [2024]: Ace Your Law Enforcement Test
Shir Enzer

Shir, Civil Service Assessments Expert at JobTestPrep.

Have a question? Contact me at: ask_the_team@jobtestprep.com

Police Psychological Exam Questions

Psychological questions in this test measure diverse job-related behaviors and personality traits to pick the most suitable applicants to become police officers.

Others turn to me to lead them when making choices

Strongly Disagree 
Strongly Agree 
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

This statement measures assertiveness. 

Assertiveness is the ability to express opinions clearly and confidently and to carry out personal and professional goals in a decisive manner.

Very high scores indicate a tendency to dominance, domineering and even aggression, which can make it difficult to form working relationships with others.

Very low scores indicate a passive communication style and a tendency to avoid conflicts even at the expense of not achieving goals at work and compromising.

An average level of assertiveness is sufficient for most jobs and it is advisable to avoid significantly low scores as well as significantly high scores.

The right answer depends on the position you are applying for:

This statement measures assertiveness- the ability to express opinions clearly and confidently and to carry out personal and professional goals in a decisive manner.

Very high Assertiveness scores indicate a tendency to dominance, domineering, and even aggression, which can make it difficult to form working relationships with fellow officers and to take orders from superiors. However, it is highly desirable for detectives who are required to manage investigations and interview suspects, or for surgent and other superior positions that require supervising and leading police officers. Therefore:

  • For entry-level police officer positions- it is recommended to choose neutral-agree to show some level of assertiveness (as opposed to being passive).
  • For positions up the chain of command (detective, surgent, etc.)- it is recommended to choose strongly agree, to show you are assertive enough and able to lead.  

Almost every Police Department will ask you to complete a psychological test following the written exam. 
Learn more about the Police Psychological Exam and the examined qualities. 


Applying for the South Africa Police (SAP)? We are currently working on a new preparation kit! Reach out to learn more

Police Math Questions

Math questions test your ability to solve basic math drills and equations or word problems. A police officer may use math during almost every shift of their service- when calculating distance and speed in traffic-related situations, for example.

What is the value of X?

(3 + 2x)/5 = 17

A. 1
B. 7
C. 10
D. 41
E. 42 
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

(3 + 2x)/5 = 17 / Multiply each member by 5
3 + 2x = 85 / Subtract 3 from each side.
2x = 82 / Divide each side by 2.
x = 41

💡 Tip: As shown in their solutions, the best way to handle variables is to manipulate both sides of the equations to isolate the value you are looking for. You may perform identical basic arithmetic on both sides while keeping them equal in order to do this.


A train travels 90 miles in 15 minutes, how many miles does it travel in 2 hours?

A. 542
B. 720
C. 789
D. 800
E. 942
F. None of these
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

15 minutes are a 1/4 of an hour. To reach 2 hours from a 1/4 of an hour we need to multiply by 8. Because the time is multiplied by 8 we also multiply the distance traveled by 8:

90*8=720 miles- therefore, B is the correct option.

 Math questions can be difficult to handle if you haven't practiced in a while. To make sure you are well prepared, it is highly recommended to brush up on basic math skills like solving equations with one variable and calculating with no calculator. 


Some of the common civil service exams that include Math police questions are the CPCA test (Connecticut) and the NPOST (Alabama, Arkansas, Iowa, Montana and Utah and other police departments and law enforcement agencies).

Check out our Free Cognitive Ability Test and sharpen your cognitive skills.

Reasoning Skills Questions

The most common reasoning skills questions on police tests are deductive and inductive reasoning questions. These measure your ability to observe details, evaluate information, and make logical deductions based on given facts.

For example, try solving the following question: 

Read the paragraph below and answer the following question:

Properly photographing impressions of footwear at a crime scene is crucial to the investigation. Since there is only a slight difference between different shoe sizes, if the photographs are not taken at a 90° angle to the impression, then the true-size impression cannot be correctly produced. If an expert is to eventually compare an impression to an actual suspect's shoe, he must have correctly produced the true size of the impression.


From the information given above, it CANNOT be validly concluded that-

A. The Jeep ran a red light
B. The sedan ran a red light
C. The Jeep tried cutting off the sedan
D. The Jeep slipped on ice and slid into oncoming traffic
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

The correct answer is C.

When Officer Henry arrives at the scene he sees that the front of the Jeep is smashed in and the windshield is cracked. Based on this we can conclude the front of the Jeep collided into something else. Officer Henry also sees a large dent of the side of sedan and the other side is smashed into a pole. It is reasonable to conclude that the sedan was hit on the side and then slid and collided into the pole.

Let’s now examine each of the answer choices.

A) If the Jeep ran a red light, it is very plausible that it would have crashed headfirst into the side of a sedan that was going through a green light. This could have caused the sedan to slide into a pole and the Jeep to stop in the middle of the intersection.

B) If the sedan ran a red light, it is very plausible that a Jeep going through a green light could have crashed headfirst into the side of the sedan, causing it to slide into a pole.

C) If a Jeep tried cutting off a sedan, it is not likely that the front
of the Jeep would be damaged. The side of the Jeep would have hit the sedan.

D) If a Jeep and a sedan are both driving towards each other, and the Jeep slides ninety degrees into oncoming traffic, it may crash headfirst into the side of the sedan causing it to slide into a pole.


Some of the common police tests that include such questions are the MTA Test (NCJOSI II), the LEAB test (used in 50+ municipalities: Massachusetts, Nassau County, Connecticut, New Jersey, NYC, and more), and the CJBAT (Florida).

Check out our Polce Hiring Process dedicated page and gather relevant information for your test!

Writing Skills Questions

Writing skills questions test your vocabulary, grammar, spelling, and other written expression abilities.

One type of question that you may find is a fill-in. You will be given a sentence and must find the word that best completes it. This skill is critical since police officers have to fill out a police report regarding most incidents, which should be written as clearly as possible:

Find the answer that completes this sentence correctly.

____ claim that new lines of inquiry are being ____ . 

A. Investigations, purused
B. Investigators, pursued
C. investigations, pursue
D. investigators, purseud
E. None of these
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

The correct way to spell the sentence is: "Investigators claim that new lines of inquiry are being pursued.", which is answer B.

Incorrect Answers:

The first word must be capitalized, so you can eliminate C and D. Although A and B would have two different sentence meanings, A can be eliminated because "pursued'' is spelled incorrectly.


Another typical question is re-ordering given sentences:

Select the answer choice that represents the most appropriate and effective ordering of the following sentences:

1. This building will utilize less energy and resources while still being a state-of-the-art facility.
2. All future buildings are going to require this type of certification, and the aquarium is honored to be the first certified.
3. The department of parks and recreation opened its first aquarium in San Beach this week which will be LEED certified.
4. As a LEED-certified building, this aquarium will serve as a model for future buildings.

A. 3241
B. 3412
C. 3421
D. 3214
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer


3412 (B) Represents the best-organized paragraph. The first thing that should be done is to read all the sentences and see if you can easily identify the introduction, supporting or closing sentences.

Sentences 1 and 4 provide specific information, indicating that they are support sentences; while sentences 2 and 3 are very general and could be either introductions or closing sentences. So then you can eliminate an option that starts with 1 or 4 (none) or any option that ends with 1 or 4 (option 1, 3 and 4).

In this specific paragraph you should also notice all the choices start with sentence 3, so we automatically know what the introduction sentence is. Looking at all the options we also know that the second sentence is either 2 or 4. Sentence 4 provides new information, while sentence 2 is a conclusion, providing closure. Remember- a great paragraph introduces the idea (introduction sentences) then has 2-3 supporting the idea (supporting sentences) and then summarizes the information given (closing sentence).

Arranged correctly it should read:
The department of parks and recreation opened its first aquarium in San Beach this week which will be LEED certified. As a LEED-certified building, this aquarium will serve as a model to future buildings. This building will utilize less energy and resources while still being a state of the art facility. All future buildings are going to require this type of certification, and the aquarium is honored to be the first certified.

The correct answer is 3412.

💡 Tip
: It is crucial to pay attention to capitalization, spelling, and grammar when answering this part of the test, even if these subjects are not explicitly mentioned.


Since almost any police work requires the ability to communicate information clearly,  writing and language questions will likely appear on any police test. They are particularly dominant on the Police Record Specialist Test, which examines clerical abilities, and the MCOLES (Michigan) which focuses on reading and writing skills. 

CLOZE Questions

This section is unique to the PELLET B Test, used to select entry-level officers in most law enforcement agencies in California. It is considered the most difficult part of the exam, which is mainly focused on language skills.

In the following question, you must fill in the blank spaces with a word that makes sense in the context. The correct word should have the same number of letters as the number of dashes given.

The FBI was closing in on a suspect's house. Hoping to distract the agents, he threw a chair at the front window as the FBI closed in on him. The (1) _ _ _ _ _ _ shattered and a shard of (2) _ _ _ _ _ flew into Agent Peters’ eye. (3) _ _ _ was in excruciating pain but kept moving forward. She told the suspect he was under (4) _ _ _ _ _ _, put him into the (5) _ _ _ driven by her partner, and then allowed the paramedics to take her to the (6) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _. Agent Peters was treated and released a few hours later. While she was in the hospital, illegal weapons, drugs, and stolen diamonds were found on the suspect’s (7) _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _.

Click here to see the correct answers

1. The correct answer is “window”, which refers to the window in the sentence before.

2. The correct answer is “glass”, which completes the phrase “shard of glass”.

3. The correct answer is “She”, which refers to Agent Peters.

4. The correct answer is “arrest”, which completes the phrase "under arrest".

5. One of the correct answers is "car". Another possible answer is another three-letter vehicle, namely, “van”.

6. The correct answer is “hospital”, which is a logical destination for paramedics.

7. The correct answer is “property”.

Reading Comprehension Questions 

On reading comprehension questions you will be presented with text passages relating to police duty, and then asked to answer questions based on the provided information. No prior knowledge of law or law enforcement is needed to answer the questions.


For example:

Read the following passage to answer the question below:

Major websites have developed a new—and legal—technique to track users’ online activities, known as a ‘supercookie’, a powerful device capable of re-creating user profiles even after people delete the regular cookies and which is impossible for computer users to detect. While many companies have been criticized for selling private data online, some sites that use supercookies said supercookie tracking was inadvertent and they would cease using it. Some websites, which were notified that they had been using supercookies, announced Wednesday they would immediately investigate the technique. Knowing Web-browsing history can provide advertisers with information about people’s interests, locations and finances, Parliament has debated ways to protect consumer privacy.

Statement: There are certain privacy laws that protect the online activities of users.

A. True
B. False
C. Cannot Say
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer


We know that supercookies are legal, and we also know that Parliament has debated ways to protect consumer privacy. However, we cannot infer that there are any specific rules that restrict the use of information tracking technologies, nor rules that protect online user activities.

Therefore, The answer is Cannot Say.

Like writing skills questions, reading comprehension and other language-based questions are highly likey to appear on any police test. In particular, these questions form a major part of the NPOST.


Cognitive & Spatial Reasoning Questions 

Spatial orientation questions examine the ability to navigate based on a map or verbal instructions. Such questions are very common in police tests, as police officers must be able to direct the public and navigate public environments efficiently.

For example: 

A few reports came in about a suspicious-looking van parked outside a public playground. Upon arriving at the scene you discover that the van has moved and a passerby lets you know that “it was heading eastbound, and then turned right and I saw it turning left over there at the intersection”.

What should you report on your radio?
“The suspicious van is heading..”

A. South
B. West 
C. East 
D. North
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

The correct answer is C.
If the van was heading east and then turned right it means it was first going south, but then the second turn to the left had him facing east again.

💡 Tip:
  The best way to track compass directions is to memorize how each action changes the direction (for example, turning left when facing North turns you towards West). If you are allowed to use a pen and paper, sketching also helps.

The map below is a scheme of subway lines in the city.

Each line is marked by a different color and is associated with a different letter. Stations are numbered by their location on the line(s). The numbering of the stations progresses from the beginning of the line to its end. Lines always begin at the northernmost station, except for lines G and M which begin at the westernmost station. Codes associated with some of the stations have been written below them.

A station can have more than one code associated with it, as some stations have more than one line passing through them.

Police Exam Sample Questioin


Ms. Sol Aroches needs to commute from station M3 to station O3. Which of the following routes would be the least efficient (passes through the most stations)?

A. M3 → M2 → B8 → C3 → O3
B. M3 → C4 → O4 → O3
C. M3 → B10 → B5 → O3
D. M3 → M5 → O3
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

Note that you are asked to find the least efficient route- this means you must look for the answer with the most stations passed through.

The route that gets you from M3 to O3 in the most steps is route A.


Most law enforcement tests include a range of questions intended to evaluate spatial orientation skills. Among those are tests like the MTA police exam, the NCJOSI (National Criminal Justice Officer Selection Inventory), and the NYPD exam. 

Situational Judgment Questions

This section measures your ability to make decisions, work in a team, and display the virtues of a police officer. You will be presented with a situation you might encounter on the job as a police officer and asked to select responses according to the question. 

For example: 

Officer Harris is assigned to a traffic post in the city. While directing traffic, she notices a car with out-of-state license plates that is about to make an illegal U-turn. Officer Harris blows her whistle and signals the car to stop. She talks to the driver, informing him he was about to make a traffic violation, and then permits him to continue on his way without any sanction.

Officer Harris' response was:

A. Appropriate. She prevented the violation and used an officer's discretion, deciding not to issue a sanction.
B. Inappropriate. An officer must issue at the very least a citation or a warning for every violation.
C. Inappropriate. She should have waited for the driver to make the violation and then issued the citation.
D. Appropriate. The officer was assigned to direct traffic, and every minute she spends with this particular driver is keeping her from that duty.
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

Best response: A

Explanation: Officer Harris sees an out-of-state car about to commit a traffic violation. There are two key elements to this situation: the car is about to commit the violation but has not yet committed it, and the out-of-state license plates which imply the driver may not be familiar with local traffic regulations.
An officer should always use his or her discretion. In this situation, the violation can still be prevented. As your first priority is to maintain the public’s safety, preventing the violation is the best response. The officer’s decision not to sanction the driver comes from an understanding that it was probably an innocent mistake. Educating the driver about local regulations is more beneficial than sanctioning him in this situation. In addition, this response portrays the police in a good light, as it shows that police officers aim to help and protect the community’s safety, rather than write tickets whenever possible. Therefore, answer choice A is the correct response in this question.
Since officers should always use discretion in choosing their responses, answer choice B can be ruled out. Answer choice C is also incorrect. Protecting the lives of this and other drivers is of higher priority than assigning tickets. Answer choice D is incorrect as well as the officer is doing her job. Protecting drivers and preventing them from committing violations that may endanger them is part of traffic regulation duty.

💡 Tip: When answering SJT questions, instead of asking yourself "what would I do in this situation?", always ask yourself: "which option would the ideal police officer choose in this situation?" It is essential to distinguish between these two modes of thought, as the latter is more likely to help you pass this part of the test.

Situational Judgment tests are a vital part of the police officer selection process. They are often given as a second round of testing, but can also be included in the initial screening- like the CPCA, or the Frontline National Test (Arizona, California, Colorado, Illinois, Nevada, North Dakota, Oregon, Texas, or Washington). 

Practice for Your Specific Police Test 

As the police written exam of each state is chosen by a committee known as POST (Police Officer Standard and Training), each test might be assembled differently.  To be well prepared for your test, you should look for the test relevant to your position and state. These are the most common ones: 


If you are not sure which of the exams mentioned above you are going to get, no worries. You can focus on the standard police test sections and practice the most common questions:
Learn more about Standard Police Test Questions 

For an offline version of a police practice test, you can download our police exam pdf, updated for 2024.

Police Test FAQs 


How Can I Prepare For My Police Exam?
In preparation for the critical police officer position, you can consider utilizing our comprehensive study guide, which includes a free police practice test developed to mirror the diverse formats presented by law enforcement agencies across cities like Arizona and Pennsylvania. 
This practice exam emphasizes reading comprehension, writing skills, and critical thinking, essential for drafting coherent police reports and understanding complex legal statements. 
What Skills Do You Need To Be a Police Officer?

The following are some of the most critical characteristics that a police officer must have: 

  • Physical fitness is important
  • The ability to think critically 
  • Skills in problem-solving 
  • Ability to communicate efficiently 
  • Interpersonal skills 
  • Moral character 
How Many Shifts Do Police Officers Work?

There are three different shift times for 8 and 10-hour shifts. The first is referred to as the first shift or day shift. The second shift, swing shift, or mid-shift are all terms used to describe the second shift. Finally, there is the third shift, also known as night shift or graveyard shift hours. 

Do Police Officers Get Good Benefits?

Police Officers have excellent benefit packages. Medical, dental, and life care, as well as retirement plans, are common examples. Vacation, maternity leave, parental leave, and long-term disability pay are also available to employees. 

Additional Practice 

If you are looking for a different test
, or are not sure which test is relevant for your position, check out our Civil Service practice exam or contact us, and we'll do our best to ensure you get the most accurate preparation for your upcoming exam.



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