Study and pass the state trooper exam or highway patrol test.
What you need to know to make it through to the academy!
There are tens of thousands state troopers and highway patrol officers throughout
the United States – protecting local communities and enforcing traffic laws
highways and expressways alike.
Learn more about how you can become a state trooper!
To become a state trooper or highway patrol officer, candidates must pass
a rigorous selection process. Competition for places is currently high and
only the very best candidates will be considered.
Pass the PAT;
The physical abilities test (PAT) challenges the applicant’s physical strength and endurance capacity
The total exam time is typically 1.5 hours, though this depends on each state police department.
The state trooper exam tests an applicant’s ability at problem solving and logical reasoning; their ability to work things out when presented with a range of problems
It takes time to prepare for the PAT and candidates are recommended to train regularly for several months in advance of the test. Candidates are assessed on a pass/fail basis.
Candidates must have the mental strength to operate under the strenuous conditions that characterize day-to-day life as a law enforcement officer.
Each state trooper is evaluated on their character and suitability for the role of state trooper or highway patrol officer. This involves a series of tests and questions where the psychologist compares your answers to a set standard.
This informs the psychologist of how you think about problems and situations – and how you are likely to perform in real-life situations as a police officer.
Candidates who reach this stage of the process have already been given a conditional job offer.
Conditional, of course, on whether the candidate can pass both the background check and polygraph exam. These two tests complement one another, in that both seek to establish whether the candidate has been truthful – or not – throughout the entire selection process.
Candidates who have been found to be economical with the truth may have their job offer revoked.
Furthermore, candidate’s close relatives or other personnel, such as past colleagues, may also be briefly interviewed.
The final stage in the state trooper exam is the medical evaluation; a series of tests that establish whether you are physically capable of performing successfully as a state trooper or highway patrol officer.
These tests typically take place at least 1-month before academy is set to commence. Note that these tests include both physical and mental tests.
Past medical records may also be requested as part of this review process.
Candidates who pass the state trooper exam can
expect to earn (average salaries as of 2022-2023):