Candidate Selection Process

Minimum Police Applicant Qualifications

STEP 1: 

Qualified applicants will receive an email inviting them to the written test (POST) and the physical agility & fitness test.  Applicants will not be admitted to the testing without a photo ID.  

  • Police Officer Selection Test 

Applicants will take the National Police Officer Selection Test (POST) by Standards & Associates.  This is an entry-level test designed to measure basic skills – reading, writing, and arithmetic – that are important for successfully learning and performing an entry-level, law enforcement position.  The Post is a timed test (one hour and 15 minutes) divided into four sections – Arithmetic, Reading Comprehension, Grammar, and Incident Report Writing.  Study Guides for Applicants are available for $4 through Standards & Associates.


  • Physical Agility & Fitness Test 

Applicants must provide a signed consent waiver and medical release before you taking the physical agility and fitness test.  Covid-19 Exception: Should Applicant be unable to obtain a medical release, supporting documentation must be provided showing an attempt was made to schedule a doctor’s appointment (email correspondence etc.).

Candidates should wear comfortable workout clothing such as shorts or sweats, running shoes, and T-shirt for the physical agility and fitness test.  The test is based on the Virginia LAWFIT Work Performance Test and consists of various job related physical activities. These activities are set out in an obstacle course design and conducted continuously from start to finish.  This is a PASS/FAIL test and is used as an additional determining factor in evaluating you as an applicant.  The test must be completed within one minute and thirty-six seconds.  


  • Personal History Statement / Release Waivers / Personal Documents

Candidates will also receive an email with instructions to setup an on-line account to complete the Police Applicant Background Document packet that includes a Personal History Statement (PHS), Authorization for Release of Personal Records & Information Consent Form, Authorization, Waiver, and Release of Liability for Consumer Credit Report, and Authorization for Disclosure of Social Network Information.   Candidates will also be required to upload documents for the process of your background investigation if candidate is selected to proceed in the hiring process.  Please carefully read and follow all the on-line instructions.   Failure to do so will potentially delay your selection process.

STEP 2: Interview

Applicants who are selected to proceed in the process will participate in an oral panel interview with members of the Charlottesville Police Department to assess their qualifications for employment with our agency.  Applicants will be fingerprinted and photographed during this phase.


  • Driver’s License
  • Social Security Card
  • Passport
  • Vehicle Registration(s) for any vehicle owned or utilized by you
  • Proof of Citizenship / Naturalization documents (if born outside the US)
  • Proof of Permanent Resident Alien Status / Proof of Applying for Citizenship
  • High School / College / Trade School Diplomas – Transcripts
  • DD214 – Military Record of Separation (Long Form)
  • Selective Service Registration
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Separation / Divorce Decree(s) 
  • Any Governmental Licenses (Taxi, Liquor, Private Investigator, etc.)
  • Certificates of Attendance or Graduation from any Law Enforcement Academy
  • Official Copy, with raised seal, of your Birth Certificate
  • Medical Release Form to participate in Physical Agility & Fitness Test
  • Liability Release to participate in the Physical Agility Practice And/or Test

Interviews are scored and those ranked higher will move forward in the process

STEP 3: Background Investigation

The background investigation evaluates your personal history to determine if you meet the high standards and qualifications needed to serve the Charlottesville Community.  You must pass this phase to proceed to the next step of the selection process.  

STEP 4: Conditional Offer of Probationary Employment

The purpose of this agreement is to extend to the applicant a conditional offer of employment.  The applicant must complete additional steps and conditions before being approved for hire.  A final offer of employment will be extended to the applicant only after you have satisfied all the requirements established by the department.

The remaining qualification steps are required to become a probationary police officer.  These steps may not necessarily be completed in the order listed below.  

STEP 5: Polygraph Examination

Applicants will be given a polygraph examination (lie detector test) administered by a trained, licensed examiner.  The test will confirm information noted on the applicant’s Personal History Statement.

STEP 6: Psychological Examination

Applicants must pass a written exam and interview with a licensed psychologist

STEP 7: Medical Examination

Applicants will undergo a complete medical exam to determine if they have optimal health and fitness for the job demands.  This examination will include a drug screen test.

STEP 8: Final Job Offer

Additional Information

If you have an interest in employment opportunities with the Charlottesville Police Department, please email the Office of Professional Development or call 434-970-3372.