Recruit Officer Standards

The Recruit Officer Performance Evaluation is the final product of the overall Recruit Officer performance evaluation system and is based on the behavioral and performance information that Police Academy Instructors and Supervisors have compiled and recorded during the many months of recruit training. One principal purpose of the evaluation is to identify the strengths and weaknesses of each recruit and pass that information along to their respective commands upon graduating the Police Academy.

In addition to rating a recruit's academic skills, practical skills, physical fitness & abilities, recruits are also evaluated in 11 behavioral dimensions. The following information should give you a better understanding of what attributes are expected from a Recruit Officer to become a successful Police Officer.

Appearance / Professional Image

Recruit Officers' appearance and uniforms must be neat and conform to the standards outlined in Department procedures.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Adherence to Police Academy guidelines pertaining to hair (beard, mustache, etc.), adornments (earrings, jewelry, etc.), and makeup
  • Attentiveness to personal hygiene and comportment
  • Degree of professional demeanor
  • Adherence to Police Academy guidelines requiring uniforms to be clean and neatly pressed; shoes shined; and other equipment properly maintained

Communication Skills

This is the ability to effectively transfer information or ideas to other people, either in writing or by speaking. It involves the ability to use words appropriately as well as to construct these words or phrases together into meaningful sentences and paragraphs.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Use of vocabulary
  • Understanding of the rules of proper grammar and the ability to correctly construct sentences and paragraphs
  • Ability to write clearly and legibly without spelling errors
  • Listening ability

Comprehension Skills

This is the ability to understand written or spoken language in the context in which it is meant to be grasped. It involves being able to hear or read a description of an event and understand what actually transpired or what the speaker /writer wanted to get across.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Ability to listen to what others say and extract relevant information
  • Ability to read a sentence or paragraph and understand what the writer intended the reader to know
  • Ability to follow written and/or oral instructions /commands


This is the ability to control one's actions and behavior and adapt accordingly in any given situation. It involves being able to successfully complete the transition from civilian to police officer by faithfully adhering to the Academy's rules, procedures and guidelines.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Behavior in and out of class
  • Response by student to being reprimanded or corrected by instructor
  • Preparedness for class or other events (car-stop workshop, outdoor range, equipment section, etc.)
  • Punctuality
  • Student officer's disciplinary record

Problem Recognition

This is the ability to identify the existence of a problem and grasp the source, nature, and key elements of a problem.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Does student officer recognize weaknesses in classroom or gym and work to confront them through tutoring, exercise etc.
  • In role play situations does student officer recognize problems when confronted
  • In practical assessment and role- play exercises does the student officer recognize when to stop and question individual, when to frisk


This is the student officer's overall state of mind, outlook toward the job and demeanor while attending the Police Academy. It involves a number of factors which also affect and determine other behavioral performance dimensions.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Is the student officer cooperative
  • Does the student officer truly want to be a police officer
  • Respectfulness towards peers, instructors and supervisors
  • Does the student officer appear disgruntled/disinterested

Judgement / Decision Making

This is the ability to correctly arrive at a proper solution whether by intuition, reason, or induction or deduction. The ability to recognize the significant factors in a decision-making situation, not luck or chance, is the guiding principle in sound judgment.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Information gathering skills prior to making a decision
  • Ability to properly prioritize problems and organize time according to the relative importance of the problem at hand
  • Soundness and consistency of conclusions reached
  • Effect of past bad decisions on current judgment
  • Ability to support a decision once reached
  • Ability to reach conclusions/decisions under stress

Police Ethics

This is the ability to conform to Department policies and guidelines according to a sense of principle, duty and moral obligation regarding conduct. It involves strict personal honesty and trustworthiness.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Reports observed and/or suspected incidents of corruption
  • Attitude towards Department anti-corruption units (IAB, Borough Investigations Unit, etc.)
  • Specific incidents that might adversely reflect the student officer's integrity (i.e. cheating, lying, etc.)

Interpersonal Skills

This is the ability to get along with peers, instructors, supervisors and others. It includes being able to interact professionally, regardless of the social standing, ethnic background, culture; gender, sexual orientation or religion of other people.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Ability to be receptive to, and considerate of conflicting points of view
  • Does the student officer truly want to be a police officer
  • Leadership ability
  • Response by classmates to the student officer's actions and statements
  • Use of profanity or inappropriate language in class or when interacting with others
  • Existence and nature of observed interactions and friendships/relationships with other students in the class
  • Use of language or display of behavior indicating existence of stereotypes toward certain groups

Drive / Initiative

This is the ability to follow through with a plan or task without prompting and/or supervision. It involves a willing desire to perform even the most tedious tasks and assignments.

Criteria To Consider:

  • Preparedness and punctuality of work
  • Tutoring attendance
  • Class participation
  • Motivation

Reasoning Ability

This is the ability to employ and apply general rules or regulations to specific cases or to proceed from principles to logical conclusions. Does the student officer display the ability to find a rule or concept which fits a given situation? Does the student officer demonstrate the ability to group facts to properly investigate a problem or the ability to interpret information received from victims, witnesses and suspects?

Criteria To Consider:

  • Can the student officer distinguish between categories of offenses or quality of life situations (e.g. burglary or trespass, assault or harassment)
  • In role-play scenarios can the student officer distinguish when to draw a weapon, when to use it
  • In role-play scenarios can the student officer distinguish when to make an arrest, or issue summons