Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship

What you need to know

1 Jun 2021

This programme is designed for applicants who do not already have a degree.

Those who hold a degree must not apply. There will be an opportunity to do so via the DHEP route in the future.

In the modern age, police officers undertake a complex role and operate at a degree level every day, so we are recognising the work we do with the appropriate level of qualification.

The qualifications directly relate to the role of a police officer and you will learn law, policy and procedure as well as a range of inter-personal, educational skills and importantly, operational skills that support your communities. You will be a police officer from day one, earning while you learn, and will spend three years as a student officer.

Police Officers talking to lady on pavementThe programme takes a blended approach to learning where your time will be spent between study and practical on-the-job training. You will be fully supported and the assessment of your learning is based on your role as a police officer.

Official logo for York St John University

We have partnered with York St John University (YSJ) to deliver the training of our student officers.

Upon successful completion of your training period you will achieve a BA (Hons) in Professional Policing Practice from YSJ.

More about the programme

Police Officers in classroom

It will be demanding as you will be an operational police officer working full shifts, but you will be supported in your studies. It is not delivered in a lecture/seminar style but is integrated into your police training and is more about workshops, group work, general teaching and inter-activity. All learning material will be available to you ‘24/7’ online.

You will be given 20% ‘off the job’ time to carry out your studies over the three years, and assessments are based on the role of a police officer. Yes, there will be some essays and examinations on law and policy, but it is so much more, including E-portfolios, Operational Policing Plans, Problem Solving, Presentations, Policy Reviews, Investigation Plans, Case studies and Evidenced-Based Policing projects.

You will undergo initial police training to prepare you for your operational role. Educational modules will be integrated into the initial programme and post tutor phase. 

Application Criteria

  • You must be of 17 years of age or over to apply and 18 years of age by time of appointment. There is no upper age limit for applying to the police service but please take into consideration that the normal retirement age is 60.
  • Ideally you should hold a full, valid manual EU/UK driving licence. If you do not currently hold a full manual UK/EU driving licence, you must be hold one by the end of year 1 from the date of your appointment. Please ensure you upload an image of the front of the driving licence (if applicable) at time of application.
  • Have a history of regular attendance during education or in employment.
  • Maintain a good level of fitness.
  • BMI of 30 or below. The NHS BMI calculator should assist you with calculating your BMI.    
  • Comply with our tattoo policy. Please ensure that you upload two image of all tattoos. One close image and at a distance to show where it is located.
  • Meet vetting requirements – this means having no criminal convictions (some minor offences may be considered on an individual basis).
  • Hold a Level 3 Qualification (Equivalent to 2 A levels – more information in the table below)* Proof of qualification is required at the time of application and an image of all relevant qualifications must be uploaded at the time of application. We are not able to accept predicted grades.

* If you have qualifications from outside the UK then please contact us before you apply so that we can make an individual assessment about whether you meet our application criteria, OR if you have served in the armed forces and have successfully completed the minimum term of service (usually four years) and have achieved an exemplary reference, please contact us before you apply so that we can make an individual assessment about whether you meet our application criteria.

A requirement to be eligible to apply for the PCDA route of a Student Police Officer is any level 3 qualification that is the equivalent to 2 x A Levels. It may be possible for certain qualifications to be grouped together if your highest level of qualification does not meet the level 3 requirement on its own. 

The below table may provide some further guidance on whether your qualification meets the requirement. Please note that this is just a guide for reference and is subject to change. Each qualification will be subject to eligibility checks at shortlisting.

List of qualifications and A Level equivalents

Employee benefits

  • Salary - Starting on £21,420. At 22 weeks, following initial training, increasing to £24,780. Reaching a salary of £41,130 after 7 years.
  • Shift pattern - As a patrol officer you will work four 12-hour shifts with four shifts off, providing you with a good work/life balance. Some specialist roles work different shift patterns. You should note that all shift patterns are subject to change. 
  • Unsociable hours - You will be paid an additional 10% per hourly rate for every hour you work between 8pm and 6am.
  • Pension scheme - We offer a contributory pension scheme which is based on a percentage of your pensionable pay. (12.44% at appointment).
  • Annual leave allowance - 22 days annual leave, increasing to 25 after 2 years at PC rank.
  • Bridge pass - This is provided if your usual place of duty is on the opposite side of the bridge to your home for use for journeys to and from work.
  • Staff Support - We are a disability confident employer and are committed to support our staff with all disabilities including dyslexia.
  • Staff support groups – The opportunity to join a number of staff support and engagement forums and have a say on matters that are important to you, from Women in Policing to The Forum.
  • Generous contractual sick pay arrangements.
  • Supportive maternity/paternity/shared parental leave provisions.
  • Range of Health and Wellbeing initiatives, including free access to our in-house gyms, Employee Assistance Programme and a range of other proactive health measures including cycle to work scheme.
  • Ongoing professional development.
  • A working environment that values diversity and inclusion.

Getting prepared

So here's a quick check list of what you will need to have to hand in preparation for the next time our window opens.

Getting prepared - a checklist of what you will need to have ready when the window opens