Detective/Police Officer

Alexa Cano Period 10

My career

I want to be a Detective. I chose this as my career because It's something I've always found interesting. I don't see myself doing anything else. I made my final decision when I first started watching Law and Order SVU. I could see myself doing something like that.

Career Details


  • Supervise and coordinate the investigation of criminal cases, offering guidance and expertise to investigators, and ensuring that procedures are conducted in accordance with laws and regulations.
  • Maintain logs, prepare reports, and direct the preparation, handling, and maintenance of departmental records.
  • Explain police operations to subordinates to assist them in performing their job duties.
  • Cooperate with court personnel and officials from other law enforcement agencies and testify in court as necessary.
  • Review contents of written orders to ensure adherence to legal requirements.
  • Investigate and resolve personnel problems within the organization and charges of misconduct against staff.
  • Direct collection, preparation, and handling of evidence and personal property of prisoners.
  • Inform personnel of changes in regulations and policies, implications of new or amended laws, and new techniques of police work.
  • Train staff in proper police work procedures
  • Monitor and evaluate the job performance of subordinates, and authorize promotions and transfers
Average hours/working schedule

  • Detectives usually work 40 hours a week. They might have much more than that with overtime though.
Working Location(s)

  • A big city with a lot of things going on.
Salary/Wage potential

  • $37.45 hourly, $77,890 annually

Education Needed

To be a detective you need a high school diploma, a Associate's degree,and a Bachelor's degree.

Skills required

Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Management of Personnel Resources — Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.

Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others.

Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Learning Strategies — Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.

Job outlook/Growth

Employment of police and detectives is expected to grow by 7 percent from 2010 to 2020, slower than the average for all occupations. Continued demand for public safety will lead to new openings for officers in local departments.

Advancement Opportunities or Related Jobs

Some related jobs: Private detectives, Investigators, Firefighters, Correctional Officer, Security Guard, Probation Officers, Correctional Treatment Specialists, SWAT team or a NARC.