Criminal Justice Training Center FAQs


How long is the course?
The daytime Corrections Academy is approximately 14 weeks long.  The classes generally meet Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 5 PM. 

The daytime Law Enforcement Academy is 22-26 weeks; nighttime Law Enforcement Academy is 32-36 weeks long.  The daytime schedule is typically Tuesday through Saturday from 7 AM to 5 PM. Nighttime classes are typically Monday through Thursday from 6 PM to 10 PM and Sundays from 7 AM to 6 PM. 
Exact schedules are set for the entire given semester and students are provided with that schedule at orientation.
When do classes begin?
We generally start new academy classes in the Fall (mid-August) and Spring (early January) semesters.
Is there a deadline for applications?
No, we take applications year-round, but candidates are admitted on a first come, first serve basis.
At which campus are classes held? Are there any online academy classes?
All academy classes are help at the Niceville Campus of NWFSC. There are no online classes, however all testing is done online through the college's D2L (Desire2Learn) system.
Can anyone register for academy classes?
No. The academies are Limited Access Programs which means that only those admitted to the program can register for the classes. We usually admit 24 students for each class.
How do I get started?
It's easy and much of it can be done online.

  • Step 1: Complete an application to NWFSC. You will be applying as a CREDIT student seeking an Associate's Degree or Certificate. Do not choose the Non-Credit Application. Make your Program of Study Selection: Correctional Officer Basic (5091) or Law Enforcement Officer Basic (5092). Request all transcripts (college and high school) be sent to NWFSC Admissions.
  • Step 2: Take the Florida Basic Abilities Test (FBAT). The cost is $38.50.
  • Step 3: Fill out NWFSC CJTC basic recruit application, including the FLDE and NWFSC Physical Assessment forms, supply supporting documentation, and deliver original application to Criminal Justice department.

NOTE: All applicants are subject to admission requirements as outlined in the NWFSC catalog.
Will I be able to get my Law Enforcement Officer or Corrections Officer certification after I finish the program?
Upon successful completion of CJTC Academy, students who meet all graduation requirements are eligible to take the State Officer Certification Exam (SOCE). The cost of that exam is $100.
Are there any prerequisites for the Academy?
There are no prerequisites, but you will need to take and pass the Florida Basic Abilities Test (FBAT). Passing scores are: Corrections Test (72 or better); Law Enforcement Test (79 or better).
How do I schedule a test date for the FBAT?
To sign up for the FBAT, click on this link:  The cost is $38.50.
What kind of questions are on the FBAT?
Each of the FBATs includes a measure of the same basic abilities but in different proportions as required for each of the two disciplines. The areas of measurement covered in the FBATs include written comprehension, written expression, oral expression, problem sensitivity, inductive reasoning, deductive reasoning, information ordering, spatial orientation, visualization, selective attention and flexibility of closure.

You can purchase an FBAT study guide at most bookstores or online. The FBAT is sometimes referred to as the CJBAT (Criminal justice Basic Abilities Test).
I took the FBAT at another facility. Can I use those scores?
You can use the passing score from another school or facility as long as the test was taken within four (4) years. You must obtain a copy of your scores to attach with your application.
Do I need a physical exam for the program? Can I use my personal doctor for the exam?
Yes. All candidates must have a physical exam. We have specific forms for the exam which must be used by all applicants. Forms are available with the Basic Recruit Application packet must be completed by a Medical Doctor (MD), Physician's Assistant (PA) or Nurse Practitioner (NP) of your choosing.
I was a military police officer. Do I need to complete the entire academy to be certified in Florida?
You may be eligible to do the Equivalency of Training program. Contact Gulf Coast State College at 850.747.3242 or  for details.
I am a certified Corrections or Law Enforcement officer in another state. Do I need to complete the entire academy to be certified in Florida?
You may be eligible to do the Equivalency of Training program. Contact Gulf Coast State College at 850.747.3242 or  for details.
Do I have to have a background check and fingerprints done?
Background checks and fingerprinting will be done on the first day of class. Please note that any evidence of a felony conviction or misdemeanor conviction involving perjury will result in immediate expulsion from the academy.
What is the cost of the academy?
The Law Enforcement Academy is approximately $3,600.00 and the Corrections Academy is approximately $2,200. See "Academy Cost" for details. Prices for equipment, student fees and tuition are subject to change.
I've submitted my application, now what?
Within six weeks of the start of classes, we will email you an acceptance letter. Upon receipt, you will have 5 business days to accept or decline your slot in writing. Shortly afterward, we will notify you of a mandatory academy orientation. Failure to attend orientation will result in loss of your slot in the class.
Are these degree programs?
The Law Enforcement Officer and Corrections Officer academies are certificate programs. However, some technical electives in the Criminal Justice Associate of Science degree may be substituted with credits earned through the academies. We encourage you to pursue this degree and will prepare an articulation agreement for you to get those credits upon passing the state exam.
Is financial aid available for the program?
You should contact the Financial Aid Office at 850-729-5390 or stop by in person. Financial Aid is located in the Student Services Center (SSC). We recommend that you explore your payment options as soon as possible. Delays with financial aid may prevent you from registering for classes. Visit the Financial Aid Website
Can I use my GI Bill for the program?
You should contact the Veterans Affairs Office at 850-729-5375 or stop by in person. Their office located in the Financial Aid Office of the Student Services Center (SSC). We recommend that you explore your benefit options as soon as possible.
Am I guaranteed a job upon completion of the academy?
No. The CJTC is not a placement agency. There are many agencies in the surrounding counties who are looking for quality students, and this particular profession is of high demand. Our goal is to assist students in accomplishing their goals. Successful students are very proactive. See our "helpful links" tab for various agency websites.