Entry Level Police Office Examination
San Francisco's Finest
Taking the exam to become a San Francisco Police Officer is simple and convenient, and involves several steps. First, go to the job announcement page and read all the material on the job. This will help you to be more successful in the process. Step 1 is completing your City application, and all the information you need to do that is on the job announcement page. Step 2 is registering to take the exam with the National Testing Network. You can view an orientation video about the exam on the job announcement page. The National Testing Network uses the FrontLine National examination, which consists of three components: a video-based human relations test, a reading ability test, and a written language ability test. Testing takes approximately 2 1/2 hours. Upon receipt of test scores from NTN, the City and County of San Francisco will notify candidates of their pass/fail status on this test component.
Please note that the NTN website provides a description of the test components and directions for scheduling a test for the San Francisco Police Department. The orientation video posted on the City’s job announcement page contains more information about the test, along with scenarios so you can get a feel for what the test will be like. The NTN website also offers a practice test for purchase with sample items.
Candidates that attain passing scores on the FrontLine National examination will go on to Step 3 and be notified to take a Physical Ability Test (PAT), a pass/fail examination. Candidates’ PAT test dates will be determined based on their FrontLine National test dates. Through a series of physical exercises, the PAT will assess physical abilities needed to perform essential police officer tasks and successfully complete academy training. These physical abilities include: muscular strength, muscular endurance, aerobic capacity, equilibrium, and abilities involving all-out effort. The PAT will assess a combination of these abilities.
Candidates will be notified of their pass/fail status on the PAT. Those that do not pass may request, no sooner than 6 months from their first attempt, another opportunity to re-take the PAT. Candidates will have a maximum of two opportunities to take the PAT during the two years after first taking the FrontLine National exam.
A description of the exercises that comprise the PAT will be made available at a later date on the Department of Human Resources website.
Candidates that attain passing scores on the PAT will be notified to take an Oral Interview (Step 4), which is also a pass/fail examination. Oral Interview test dates will be determined based on their PAT test dates. Candidates will be notified of their pass/fail status on the Oral Interview. The Oral Interview will assess interpersonal skills, problem solving, oral communication skills and abilities not tested by other examination components.
In accordance with Civil Service Commission Rule 211.15.1, candidates may appeal the administration of the examination components. All appeals must be filed in writing with the Department of Human Resources within five (5) calendar days of the administration of the examination component giving rise to the appeal. A day that the Department of Human Resources is closed shall not be counted as the fifth (5th) calendar day. Appeals shall be limited as defined in Rule 211.15.1
Last updated: 10/17/2014 1:43:35 PM