How to Become a Police Officer in Texas

In Texas the process for becoming an active police officer heavily depends on the area you live in and wish to be employed. Although there are some statewide requirements that are the same regardless of the area (listed below) there are many police departments which have their own list of minimum requirements of applicants. Therefore, it is important that you check with the specific police department that you are hoping to apply to, to see if you fit the minimum requirements or what you still may need to do. Once you have checked to ensure you meet all of the basic requirements of the department then you may submit an application. After submitting the application you may or may not be called upon to attempt the hiring process. Step one would be to pass the written exam and preliminary interview. Next is the physical fitness test, board interview, background check and polygraph. If all these are passed then there are psychological tests, medical exam and a drug test. If everything is passed and the department offers you a position you would then be sent to initial entry training.

How to Become a Texas Officer

As stated above, each department in Texas may have its own additional requirements, however here are some of the basic requirements: legal US citizen, not a felon, clean record, driver’s license, and high school diploma or GED. Many areas of Texas require college credit depending on age. If a person is 21 for instance, they may only be required 45 hours, whereas a person who is 19 must have completed 60 credit hours. A person with years of military experience may need no college hours at all. Check with the department you wish to apply with and then find out their particular requirements.

Average Police Officer Salary in Texas

The average salary of a police officer in Texas is around 51,000 a year. Since Texas is so big, however, salaries can be drastically different from region to region or even city to city. If you want to know more about a specific region in Texas and the rate of pay check:

Law Enforcement Schooling programs in Texas

Many police departments in Texas require some college experience. Below is a list of some of the colleges and schools in Texas which offer law enforcement  or criminal justice degrees or related programs:

  • Alvin Community College

3110 Mustang Road, Alvin, TX 77511


  • Amarillo College

2201 South Washington Street, Amarillo, TX 79109


  • Angelo State University

2601 W Avenue North, San Angelo, TX 76909


  • Argosy University

5001 Lyndon B. Johnson Fwy., Farmers Branch, TX 75244


  • Austin Community College District

5930 Middle Fiskville Road, Austin, TX 78752


  • Brazosport College

500 College Drive, Lake Jackson, TX 77566


  • Central Texas College

6200 West Central Texas Expressway, Killeen, TX 76549


  • Coastal Bend College

3800 Charco Road, Beeville, TX 78102


  • College of the Mainland

1200 Amburn Road, Texas City, TX 77591


  • Concordia University Texas

11400 Concordia University Drive, Austin, TX 78726


  • Dallas County Community College District

Several Locations in Texas, 214-378-1824

  • Del Mar College

101 Baldwin Blvd., Corpus Christi, TX 78404


  • Grayson County College

3101 Grayson Drive, Denison, TX 75020


  • Hill College

112 Lamar Drive, Hillsboro, TX 76645


  • Howard College

1001 Birdwell Lane, Big Spring, TX 79720


  • Howard Payne University

1000 Fisk Street, Brownwood, TX 76801


  • Jarvis Christian College

US Hwy 80 E at PR 7631, Hawkins, TX 75765


  • Lamar State College-Orange

410 Front Street, Orange, TX 77630


  • Lamar University

4400 MLK Blvd., Beaumont, TX 77710


  • Lee College

200 Lee Drive, Baytown, TX 77520


  • McLennan Community College

1400 College Drive, Waco, TX 76708


  • Midland College

3600 N Garfield St, Midland, TX 79705


  • North Central Texas College

1525 West California Street. Gainesville, TX 76240


  • Odessa College

201 W University Blvd., Odessa, TX 79764


  • Our Lady of the Lake University

411 SW 24th Street, San Antonio, TX 78207


  • Palo Alto College

1400 W Villaret Blvd, San Antonio, TX 78224


  • Prairie View A&M University

FM 1098 Road & University Dr., Prairie View, TX 77446


  • Remington College

Fort Worth, TX / Garland, TX / Houston, TX- 800-323-8122

  • Sam Houston State University

1806 Avenue J, Huntsville, TX 77340


  • San Jacinto College

8060 Spencer Hwy., Pasadena, TX 77505


  • St Edward’s University

3001 S Congress Ave., Austin, TX 78704


  • Sul Ross State University

400 North Harrison, Alpine, TX 79832


  • Texas A & M International University

5201 University Blvd., Laredo, TX 78041


  • The University of Texas at Arlington

701 S Nedderman Drive, Arlington, TX 76019


  • The University of Texas at San Antonio

1 Utsa Circle, San Antonio, TX 78249


  • Tyler Junior College

1327 S Baxter Avenue, Tyler, TX 75701


  • University of Houston-Downtown

One Main Street, Houston, TX 77002


  • Weatherford College

225 Cllege Park Drive, Weatherford, TX 76086


  • West Texas A & M University

2501 4th Avenue, Canyon, TX 79016


  • Western Texas College

6200 College Drive, Snyder, TX 79549


  • Wiley College

711 Wiley Avenue, Marshall, TX 75670