The Vancouver Police Department follows the same recruitment policies as other police services in British Columbia, leveraging the JIBC, WCT, and Wonderlic to assess candidates across a broad range of criteria. To pass the Vancouver police test, you’ll need to prep as best possible for the various sections:
Tests to Know
These are the tests, examinations, and quizzes you can prepare for to some degree or another. While the VPD may prefer you ‘be yourself’ for some of these, there are certainly correct answers to be aware of—prep will improve your odds of successful imployment.
VPD Entrance Exam.
Written to test at a Grade 12 level, this assessment covers basic grammar, composition, spelling, mathematics, and comprehensive skills. You’ll also be expected to answer a few memory-testing questions and respond to a few short essay prompts. You won’t be using a calculator, and the test is handwritten, so the emphasis here is upon basic problem-solving. Poor grammar and spelling will result in point deductions, with a floor for passing at 60%.
To pass the entrance exam, you’ll want to brush up on your basic education. The VPD provides sample exams for your consideration, and you can use any number of well-designed practice tests to check your progress. The higher you score, the better, so push yourself as much as possible even if you’re already confident of a passing grade.
Integrity and Lifestyle Questionnaire.
This questionnaire is openly available for your consideration—there are no trick questions or hidden ‘gotchas’ to navigate. Careful consideration of how to best answer these questions honestly and fully will do you a great deal of good—omission of relevant details, even omission with no intent to deceive, can be a black mark against you and result in your rejection from consideration. Be honest, be thorough, and think carefully.
The physical portion of the Vancouver police test requires candidates to complete a 1.5 mile run in Stanley Park in under 12 minutes, and run the Police Officers Physical Abilities Test (POPAT) in under 4:15. You’ll also be subjected to a test of your grip strength and your ability to carry heavy weights as part of your assessment. To prepare for the physical test, you’ll want to emphasize cardio for overall fitness and to complete the 12 minute run. You’ll also want to work on the individual aspects of the POPAT: an agility run including running jumps, stairs, and bar jumping; a push/pull station; and a vault station. You can practice the POPAT at the official testing site without invitation, giving you an excellent way to prepare for the exam.
An assessment by a Recruiting Unit Detective intended to review your integrity, respect of diversity, community service bona fides, problem-solving skills, initiative, sense of responsibility, understanding of the role of policing, and why you are interested in joining the VPD. General interview practice, as well as studying current events and concerns of the VPD, may give you an edge on your assessment at this stage.
While the VPD officially recommends against training with groups familiar with Assessment Centre, as it may undermine the integrity of the roleplaying scenarios utilized in the test, you can still prepare for the assessment. It may benefit you to get familiar with roleplaying similar scenarios in a general sense, so that you might be more relaxed during your examination.
Much of what you did at your intake interview will continue to benefit you at this stage, but you’ll also need to write a personal autobiography and a list of 30 references. Taking your time to select quality references and develop an accurate, thorough, appealing autobiography can go a long way in helping you succeed at this stage.
Other sections to be ready for
You can’t really prepare for any of these aspects of your exam—just be fit, be honest, and hope you don’t have any red flags in your background or psych profile. Trying to lie or game these tests is difficult, extremely risky, and not recommended for anyone looking to succeed as a police candidate.
- Psych Test
- Medical Exam
- Background Investigation