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Academy VS On The Job Experience

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  • Academy VS On The Job Experience

    I live in central Florida and I'm hoping to get into the Jan.2010 academy for law enforcement officer training. I will be sponsoring myself. My question is, do you think the training that one receives in the academy is pretty close to what they will use on the job. Do most academy's provide a pretty good foundation for the job ? I heard that most depts. will have their own mini academy and training once your hired. Would appreciate any info on this.

  • #2
    The academy will give you the necessary tools to take the test to be certified in the state. 20 years ago when I went thru the academy, 4 months worth of training was enough to get you the state certification.
    The city of Hialeah and Miami, were like that. My Miami Dade class had about 3 trainees from Hialeah. It was funny because halfway thru the academy, they graduated, and we ended up having to salute someone who just yesterday was another trainee like me.

    Depending on the department you go to apply, you'll almost always, be trained in extra stuff. Nowadays, most departments will train you in extra stuff in order to better prepare you to do your job. It all depends on how rounded your department wants their cops to be. Here in Miami Dade, I believe the academy runs about 34 weeks.

    Usually, you start training to get you certified first, then comes the fluff.

    Do your research, depending on where you apply, they might just look at you as another applicant (albeit, of known quantity-because you already have the minimums of what it takes) and have to take the academy all over.

    Hope this helped.
    Last edited by gcopter; 09-07-2009, 05:36 PM.

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    • #3
      Thank you for your info gcopter. I just wanted to ask you, when you said they may look at me as just another applicant and I may have to do the academy all over again, did you mean the college academy or the depts academy ?

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      • #4
        valsgoal1 ,depends on the department that will hire you.

        Some departments have what is called "lateral transfer". In essence, a lateral is someone who is already state certified AND has sworn experience.

        Others, will scoop you up, with nothing more than your state certification, and just have you go thru a mini academy so you'll learn how to do things "their way". And others will just grin and say you have to go thru the whole thing, just as if you were another green recruit.


        If you go to a "department" academy it means that you will be hired by a police department. You wear the uniform and patch of your prospective department. There is a sense of cohesion / belonging, whereas "college" refers to, people self sponsoring to become certified as law enforcement officers. You go to classes in civilian clothes, there is no affiliation to a particular department. Either way, you are learning what you need to become a cop.

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        • #5
          Thanks again gcopter for your info !!

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          • #6
            The academy is nothing like what you're gonna do out on the road. The academy teaches you the bare minimum, and its pretty much enough to get you killed. You will learn from your FTO's and supervisors.

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            • #7
              I'm GA certified but any academy will give you the fundementals of what you will need to start real training on the street.
              The scariest day of your life will be the first day you ride solo and handle your first call or traffic stop.
              Your head will be so full of information you'll be second guessing every word out of your mouth. It gets easier over time but you should always maintain a certain level of manageable fear.
              Due to the Juvenile bickering and annoying trolling committed by members of this forum I have started an igore list. If your name is listed below I can't see you.

              CityCopDC, Fire Moose, Carbonfiberfoot, Damiansolomon

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              • #8
                Thanks so much for the replies. They have been really helpful.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by gcopter View Post
                  The academy will give you the necessary tools to take the test to be certified in the state.
                  That's about the best way to sum up the academies down here. All that many of the academies are good for in Florida is getting you certifiable. Most of the academies that are run by colleges rather than agencies are very heavy on academics and spend a lot less time on things like street tactics than they should. Even a lot of the academics aren't really that helpful once you get out on the streets.

                  Just understand that a large portion of what is taught in the academy is state mandated for either liability or political purposes. Do you really need a 40 hour block on ethics to tell you that it's wrong to racially profile people or steal property from a deceased person? Do you need an eight hour block on protecting archaeological sites? The control of curriculum of the academies down here has been overtaken mainly by criminology professors (CMS was a prime example of this) and it has become less practical.

                  Understand that you'll learn most of what you need to be a cop when you get to your agency, and that graduating (even at the top of the class) from the academy doesn't mean that you will pass field training. They are two VERY different things, and this is even more true if you went to a college rather than an agency academy.

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                  • #10
                    There are some things in the academy that you will not learn on FTO at all like first aid/first responder(good to know how to save someone's life bc it could be your FTO's), defensive tactics, and firearms.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Pete12 View Post
                      There are some things in the academy that you will not learn on FTO at all like first aid/first responder(good to know how to save someone's life bc it could be your FTO's), defensive tactics, and firearms.
                      Florida used to actually teach a genuine First Responder curriculum in the academy and recruits were certified as First Responders when they graduated, but the state reduced the amount of training hours for that particular block and developed their own first aid curriculum instead. Now an academy recruit can't even be certified as a First Responder because they have not received the proper training.

                      Two of the local college academies have done away with Red Man drills during DT training because of people getting hurt. I've heard of other academies in the state doing the same thing. This is a joke, and DT is a joke without actual force-on-force training. Having a partner stand there and comply or slightly pull away to demonstrate active resistance is not realistic training.

                      The state mandated firearms training is basically a joke. It consists almost entirely of standing on a firing line and shooting at a stationary target. There are no combat drills or courses mandated, there are no group tactics, and there's a very limited amount of low light training. Firearms training might be helpful for someone who has trouble shooting a gun, however the type of training in the academy offers very little practical applications on the street.

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                      • #12
                        I understand that firearms is very limited, but one normally does not participate in active shooter training or any other tactical training while on FTO. The only firearms training completed by almost all trainees is from the academy until post FTO. After FTO it is encouraged to go to such classes.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Delta_V View Post
                          Florida used to actually teach a genuine First Responder curriculum in the academy and recruits were certified as First Responders when they graduated, but the state reduced the amount of training hours for that particular block and developed their own first aid curriculum instead. Now an academy recruit can't even be certified as a First Responder because they have not received the proper training.

                          Two of the local college academies have done away with Red Man drills during DT training because of people getting hurt. I've heard of other academies in the state doing the same thing. This is a joke, and DT is a joke without actual force-on-force training. Having a partner stand there and comply or slightly pull away to demonstrate active resistance is not realistic training.

                          The state mandated firearms training is basically a joke. It consists almost entirely of standing on a firing line and shooting at a stationary target. There are no combat drills or courses mandated, there are no group tactics, and there's a very limited amount of low light training. Firearms training might be helpful for someone who has trouble shooting a gun, however the type of training in the academy offers very little practical applications on the street.

                          i can agree with this...it is a very honest and realistic observation, albeit opinionated, but i can agree with it...

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