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Answering Common Oral Hiring Board Questions

Answering Common Oral Hiring Board Questions

Dr. Richard Weinblatt

5) Tell me about a weakness you have. What you need to do here is truthfully relate a weakness that in law enforcement circles is perceived actually as a virtue. For example, “I am a workaholic” or “I am sometimes too mission focused. I won’t give up until the job is done.” These might be problems if you were “interviewing” on a first date, but in the police world it is a nice fit.

We look for people whose weaknesses as perceived by the general population work in the challenging setting of policing in a democratic society. Someone that won’t stop until the mission is accomplished is thought of as being obsessive in the general population, but is heralded as a survivor and winner in the police field.

6) Legal elements. If you have graduated already from a basic law enforcement academy, you may be hit with this item, as well as number seven below. You may be asked to list the elements of commonly encountered criminal law statutes. Be familiar with the elements or components that comprise burglary, robbery, and other crimes that officers contend with.

7) Legal concepts. Be able to explain legal concepts. Be sure that you understand them and are not just regurgitating a definition from a textbook or statute book. For example, can you define the difference between reasonable suspicion and probable cause, as well as misdemeanor and felony.

8) Policing concepts. Be familiar with the policing concepts that drive your target agency. A read of their website (which hopefully is up to date) and materials in the lobby should clue you as to their approach. Are they community policing oriented? If so, they may ask you what community policing means to you. Understand their website’s interpretation, but personalize it in terms of what it means to you. Figure out if the agency is proactive or reactive in their approach to calls for police service.

An area that comes up in some oral boards concerns the use of deadly force. Be familiar with not only your area’s statutory requirements for the use of deadly force, but also think through the ethical and moral implications for yourself. By reflecting on this tragic but oftentimes present aspect of your chosen profession, you’ll be a more mature candidate for the post.

Expert Oral Board Guide
Get expert advice on how to prepare for and ace your oral board exam.

There are many more questions or statements that oral panels put out for applicants to respond to, including ethical situations. This column addressed some of the more common ones that you might encounter.

I have seen firsthand how practicing your responses to these oral panel situations have lead to dramatic improvement. While I don’t advocate a memorized approach, being familiar in general with how to respond will free you to have a compelling delivery that will captivate the panel members. It is at that point, that they will have a feel for your character and the sort of law enforcer that you can be for their agency. A good oral panel interview will help you to get that opportunity.

Other Resources From The Oral Board Mega-Guide:


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  • Picture_208_max50

    LPGIRL

    almost 6 years ago

    46 Comments

    Great advice well organized I will definitely take this into consideration for my oral interview next month. God Bless you!!!!!

  • S1509962333_30055001_6000_max50

    NYPD_Ret_Hwy

    almost 6 years ago

    250 Comments

    It's funny you mention Anderson. I interviewed for Altamonte in 89 and was hired immediately thereafter. They asked me questions - brevity, and I told them what they wanted to hear. HIRED! I left a few months later to return with the NYPD.

  • Jessica_max50

    JessicaDeputy

    almost 6 years ago

    68 Comments

    this is good advice, and i think that it will really help me when i go in for my Police Interview....i mean really...my cadet interview was hard for me.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    robmdn

    about 6 years ago

    2 Comments

    up yours

  • M3_max50

    martinmartinmt

    about 6 years ago

    2 Comments

    This is truly good advice with which I will ues, it reminds me of the reinlistment board when I was in the army, and the interviews I had to do, Thanks

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    dgurl_21

    about 6 years ago

    4 Comments

    Whoa, i accidentally hit the inappropriate button at the top of the page, I'm sorry!! I Read the tips! Really great. I was worried about a few things but after reading the article my mind is more at ease about everything thanks alot!

  • Imagejpeg_2_12_max50

    jenny2214

    about 6 years ago

    126 Comments

    Wow good stuff I will definately put this to work

  • Photo_user_banned_big

    Domincana

    about 6 years ago

    66 Comments

    Great tips that I will take with me to my oral interview when I am given the opportunity I will make sure to impress the panel and pass on to them the importance of what being LEO means to me.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    about 6 years ago

    this was great information. the first time i ever had a panel interview, which was for a corrections position over a year ago, i did aweful. this is great information to put to good use. thanks.

  • Tasha4_max50

    Tasha_Ragsdale

    about 6 years ago

    4 Comments

    I love the advice an can't wait to apply it in an interveiw. I was worried abot telling them I wanted to become a cop to bust meth. addicts and dealers but after reading this I don't beleive I will go on and tell them.

  • 025_max50

    LDYJSTC2008

    about 6 years ago

    130 Comments

    THANK YOU! I AM IN THE COP PROGRAM AT MY UNIVERISTY AND WILL BE GRADUATING SOON!! This will be most helpful! Thanks again!

  • Revan_max50

    Jophes

    about 6 years ago

    292 Comments

    All of this is great advice. I'm sure it will prove useful when I go to that interview.

  • Dcb2_max50

    seabeebu1

    about 6 years ago

    312 Comments

    Outstanding advice! Wish I would have read this before I interviewed for my job(s)... but you never know what the future holds! Good Job!

  • Photo_013009_004_max50

    lauramwood

    over 6 years ago

    50 Comments

    This is incredibly helpful!! Thank you so much!! This really helped boost my confidence!!

  • Da_photo_max50

    brianwharton

    over 6 years ago

    42 Comments

    AWESOME ADVICE. I will definitely use this information when Im am ready for my interview.

    Thank you!

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