How to Become a Police Constable

To become a Police Constable you need a Certificate in Knowledge of Policing (CKP). Find out more about the journey to becoming a Police Constable.

The first step
in your training

Certificate in Knowledge of Policing (CKP) Content, Learning & Assessment


  • Purpose
    Met Police - Purpose

    The Certificate in Knowledge of Policing (CKP) is the essential qualification you need before you start your training with the Met.

    The CKP is such a vital first step in your training. It gives you a comprehensive grounding in policing and police law - and provides a seamless link into the Met's police training for new recruits.

    You also get a valuable insight into the critical decision-making skills required in frontline policing.

  • Providers
    Met Police - Providers

    You can undertake the CKP at any of a number of training providers approved by the College of Policing.

    Just contact the training provider of your choice for specific details such as costs, course dates and times - and to book your course.

    You'll find a list of approved training providers on the College of Policing website: www.college.police.uk.

  • Time Commitment
    Met Police - Time Commitment

    Obtaining the CKP requires around 300 total hours of study.

    80-100 hours are taught by an instructor in groups, usually at the College/Provider's site.

    You'll need to complete around 200-220 of self-study in your own time.

  • Duration
    Met Police - Duration

    There is flexibility over the course length, with many different full-time and part-time options. The length varies from provider to provider. In general, courses run from between 6-12 weeks.

    The majority of courses require 1 day a week instruction on site. Many providers do offer CKP classes at evenings or weekends to fit around your current job or other commitments.

    If you enrol on the CKP Trainee Placement Scheme, you will study for the CKP on a full-time basis, on-site, five days a week.

  • Learning & Teaching
    Met Police - Learning & Teaching

    CKP providers all have to deliver the same content, but exactly how they teach it is down to them. You should be able to compare different approaches by checking course details.

    Your teaching hours are likely to include presentations and a range of activities like group discussions, group exercises and role plays.

    You need the time and discipline to complete self-study and various e-learning exercises in your own time.

    CKP providers should provide the opportunity to undertake the CKP flexibly, for example at evenings, weekends, part-time, full-time. They are also responsible for ensuring that specific learning needs and reasonable adjustments are made.

    If you want to request a reasonable adjustment to the course and assessments, you will need to provide evidence of your disability to the CKP provider.

  • Assessment
    Met Police - Assessment

    The CKP is a respected national qualification that requires you to demonstrate what you've learned.

    You'll be assessed on various aspects of the law and police powers and responsibilities, as well as by assessing your decision-making.

    You'll need to pass a number of tests and there will also be closed book and open book assignments.

    There is no specified pass mark, the CKP is pass/fail.

    Once you've successfully completed the CKP, it's valid for 3 years. It is valid for 4 years if you have been working in a police-related environment, for example as a serving Special Constable, Police Community Support Officer or other member of Police Staff.

  • Content
    Met Police - Content

    The course content covers a range of topics to prepare you for police training. Everything from how to use police powers fairly - to supporting the victims of crime - to undertaking investigations.

    The content leads seamlessly into the Foundation Training for new Met recruits - that programme is designed to build directly on what you learn in the CKP.

    The CKP is delivered in 10 different modules. Providers have the flexibility to teach the modules in any order to provide the most effective way to develop your knowledge.


Please use the tool below to view the topics you will cover on the CKP.

  • Providing Initial Support to Victims and Witnesses

    Policing by consent

    Police ethics & professional standards

    Criminal Justics System/Law in England and Wales

    Human Rights Act 1998, Data protection and Freedom of Information

    Racially and Religiously aggravated crimes

  • Gathering and submitting information

    Management of Police Information

    5 x 5 x 5 grading system

    National intelligence Model

  • Providing an initial response to incidents

    Theft, Robbery, Burglary

    Aggravated vehicle taking

    Health and safety/risk assessment

    Sexual offences & Initial response to sexual crime

    Identification methods & Street identification

  • Arresting, detaining and reporting suspects

    Cautions, significant statements and relevant comments

    Powers of arrest and making an arrest

    Criminal Attempts Act 1981

    Custody procedures

    Misuse of Drug Act 1971

  • Conducting Investigations

    Investigative process & Crime solving methods

    Missing Persons

    Investigating child abuse

    Counter terrorism/bomb alerts

    Court awareness and giving evidence

  • Knowledge of interviewing victims and witnesses

    Conducting an interview

    Types of evidence

    Perjury

    Victim personal statement

    Domestic abuse & protection from harassment

  • Knowledge of interviewing suspects

    Unfairness/Oppressions

    Urgent interviews & Conduct of interviews

    Evidence of bad character

    Collision scene management

    Driver offences & Driving documentation

  • Knowledge of searching individuals

    History of stop and search

    PACE

    Other search powers

    Criminal damage

    Fraud

  • Knowledge of searching vehicles, premises and open spaces

    Drink driving

    Powers of entry

    Documentation

    Sudden Death

    Mental Illness

  • Managing conflict

    Assaults & Threat assessment

    Initial engagement strategy and tactical options

    Use of force legislation

    Personal safety, skills and equipment

    Public order & Breach of the peace

  • Providing Initial Support to Victims and Witnesses

    Policing by consent

    Police ethics & professional standards

    Criminal Justics System/Law in England and Wales

    Human Rights Act 1998, Data protection and Freedom of Information

    Racially and Religiously aggravated crimes

  • Gathering and submitting information

    Management of Police Information

    5 x 5 x 5 grading system

    National intelligence Model

  • Providing an initial response to incidents

    Theft, Robbery, Burglary

    Aggravated vehicle taking

    Health and safety/risk assessment

    Sexual offences & Initial response to sexual crime

    Identification methods & Street identification

  • Arresting, detaining and reporting suspects

    Cautions, significant statements and relevant comments

    Powers of arrest and making an arrest

    Criminal Attempts Act 1981

    Custody procedures

    Misuse of Drug Act 1971

  • Conducting Investigations

    Investigative process & Crime solving methods

    Missing Persons

    Investigating child abuse

    Counter terrorism/bomb alerts

    Court awareness and giving evidence

  • Knowledge of interviewing victims and witnesses

    Conducting an interview

    Types of evidence

    Perjury

    Victim personal statement

    Domestic abuse & protection from harassment

  • Knowledge of interviewing suspects

    Unfairness/Oppressions

    Urgent interviews & Conduct of interviews

    Evidence of bad character

    Collision scene management

    Driver offences & Driving documentation

  • Knowledge of searching individuals

    History of stop and search

    PACE

    Other search powers

    Criminal damage

    Fraud

  • Knowledge of searching vehicles, premises and open spaces

    Drink driving

    Powers of entry

    Documentation

    Sudden Death

    Mental Illness

  • Managing conflict

    Assaults & Threat assessment

    Initial engagement strategy and tactical options

    Use of force legislation

    Personal safety, skills and equipment

    Public order & Breach of the peace

Training & development

How you'll grow

We want you to have the best preparation possible for your future career as a police officer. So we've made sure that your initial training and experiences complements what you have learnt in the CKP.

Your first two years is a probationary period. This is the opportunity for you to develop the skills and experience it takes to become a fully-fledged Police Constable.

This diagram shows how your learning and development will continue from the CKP and throughout your probationary period.

Your journey from CKP to Met PC

  • STAGE 1 - CKP

    The foundation for your policing career and an essential first step in your training.

    Equips you with an understanding of policing and police law - and a recognised national qualification.

    Enables you to demonstrate some of the critical decision-making skills required for the job.

    What you'll learn about

    Using police powers in a fair and just way.

    Neighbourhood policing, and the social and community issues involved.

    How to respond to incidents and provide initial support to victims and witnesses.

    Searching premises and searching individuals - and taking part in planned policing operations.

    Interviewing witnesses and suspects - and supporting victims.

    How you'll learn

    300 hours of study including 80-100 hours taught.

    E-learning & self study.

    Presentations, group discussions, tasks & exercises, role plays.

    How you'll be assessed

    Tests.

    Open-book assignments.

    Closed-book assignments.

  • 2 year Probatory Period begins.

    STAGE 2 - Met Foundation Training - New Starters Course

    The 12 week foundation training that begins on your start date.

    Builds on the core knowledge gained in the CKP, compliments not duplicates the content.

    Puts the legislation you've learned into context, linking it to police powers and responsibilities.

    What you'll learn about.

    Protecting Officer Safety.

    Providing Emergency Life Support.

    Maintaining Public Order.

    Counter Terrorism.

    Dynamic Risk Assessment.

    Operating our IT systems.

    How you'll learn.

    Instructor training and presentations.

    Group/individual exercises and role play.

    Practical tasks that reinforce learning.

    How you'll be assessed.

    Observation of interactions and role-plays.

    Exams throughout to test knowledge.

    Reviews of written work and documentation.

  • STAGE 3 - Coached Patrol & Police Action Checklists

    The chance to put your CKP and Course training into practice.

    Experience real policing, on patrol alongside experienced officers.

    Demonstrate your new skills and knowledge in live situations.

    What you'll learn about.

    Interacting with the public.

    Participating in investigations.

    Dealing with reports and incidents.

    Filling out key documentation.

    How you'll learn.

    Coaching & mentoring.

    Observing experienced colleagues.

    Undertaking real police duties yourself.

    How you'll be assessed.

    Continuous supervision when you're on patrol.

    Assessment of your skills in real life situations.

  • STAGE 4 - Probationary Policing

    On concluding Coached Patrol successfully, your initial Met Foundation Training is complete.

    Start your role as a probationary officer in a borough police station.

    Prove that you have the talents to work on your own - and gain Independent Patrol Status.

    What you'll learn about.

    Playing a full Constable's role in responding to incidents and investigating crime.

    Working independently and using your initiative in policing situations.

    The full expectations and responsibilities of community policing.

    How you'll learn.

    Practical, hands-on experience of tackling crime in local communities.

    Coaching and following the example set by colleagues.

    Formal continuation training.

    How you'll be assessed.

    Continuous assessment of your performance in the role.

    The Student Officer Record of Competence, measuring attainments and ability.

    Performance Development Reviews with your supervisor at 6, 12 and 18 months.

  • Your Goal: Confirmation as a Police Constable

    Your final review takes place after 2 years as a probationer.

    Your Student Officer Record of Competence is assessed and a report is produced.

    Meet the standard and you will be confirmed as a Police Constable on appointment.


Probation - the insider's guide



  • "There's lots of work on the legislation, it's really important that the law sticks in your mind."

  • "It feels good when things click into place - when you learn how to apply the legislation and take the right decisions."

  • "You're eased gently into the role. We started with a traffic patrol - stopping drivers and talking to people."

  • "It feels good whenever you see an incident through. There's nothing quite like charging someone who has clearly committed a horrible crime."

  • "The first time I saw my reflection in a shop window, on patrol, I felt incredibly proud."

  • "Every day you're learning something new."

  • "There are good days and not so good days during probation. But it only takes one moment, one little experience to remind you exactly why you want
    to be a PC."

  • "When you're off duty, and you hear the police sirens in the distance, you feel a little tinge of pride."

  • "Even in the probationary period, you're given the opportunity to identify and set up an operation."

  • "I was pleasantly surprised at the courses you could do during probation. I've just completed the Police National Computer Training."

  • "You get to visit and learn about specialist teams, to help you think about your career direction after appointment."

  • "There can be lots of community engagement - going into schools, businesses, hotels. Meeting pillars of the community. Daunting at first, but fun when you're
    used to it."

  • "The more experienced officers are always there as a safety net - they ensure you don't get into danger."

  • "The first two or three times on patrol, you watch how your colleagues do things. Then they gradually let you take more control."

  • "You get to build up your record of dealing with different incidents. Missing persons, domestic abuse, theft etc."

  • "There's lots of work on the legislation, it's really important that the law sticks in your mind."

  • "It feels good when things click into place - when you learn how to apply the legislation and take the right decisions."

  • "You're eased gently into the role. We started with a traffic patrol - stopping drivers and talking to people."

  • "It feels good whenever you see an incident through. There's nothing quite like charging someone who has clearly committed a horrible crime."

  • "The first time I saw my reflection in a shop window, on patrol, I felt incredibly proud."

  • "Every day you're learning something new."

  • "There are good days and not so good days during probation. But it only takes one moment, one little experience to remind you exactly why you want
    to be a PC."

  • "When you're off duty, and you hear the police sirens in the distance, you feel a little tinge of pride."

  • "Even in the probationary period, you're given the opportunity to identify and set up an operation."

  • "I was pleasantly surprised at the courses you could do during probation. I've just completed the Police National Computer Training."

  • "You get to visit and learn about specialist teams, to help you think about your career direction after appointment."

  • "There can be lots of community engagement - going into schools, businesses, hotels. Meeting pillars of the community. Daunting at first, but fun when you're
    used to it."

  • "The more experienced officers are always there as a safety net - they ensure you don't get into danger."

  • "The first two or three times on patrol, you watch how your colleagues do things. Then they gradually let you take more control."

  • "You get to build up your record of dealing with different incidents. Missing persons, domestic abuse, theft etc."