Police Officer Polygraph Test Techniques To Maximize Your Success
What Happens If You Fail A Polygraph Test For A Police Job?
When applying for law enforcement jobs, you have to pass several tests. The polygraph is one of them. Now you must be wondering what a polygraph test is and what it has to do with law enforcement. Well, We’re here to give you brief information about the topic and what type of questions you should expect during the test.
What Is A Police Polygraph Test?
When applying for law enforcement jobs, all candidates undergo a background check, polygraph tests a part of that selection process. The logic behind the test is to detect if the candidate is hiding something from the agency or not.
Polygraph, in other words, is known as a lie detector test which you must have seen in many movies. It is a machine attached to the applicant’s body which records the involuntary response to the police examiner’s questions.
It measures physiological data from respiratory, cardiovascular, and sweat gland systems. Any changes in the blood pressure, breathing, or perspiration indicates that the person might be feeling uncomfortable or laying.
Why Police Agencies Use Polygraph Tests?
The main aim of the police polygraph test is to make sure if the information that the candidate has provided during the police background check is authentic or not. Working in law enforcement agencies requires top security clearance; this is the reason why most of the agencies use the polygraph test.
The test is also conducted to check the honesty of the applicant. It is an essential requirement for candidates to be truthful to carry a gun and a badge.
Sample Questions From Law Enforcement Polygraph
When taking a polygraph test you will be asked two types of questions, relevant which are more specific and direct and the other type is irrelevant, they are broader questions used to serve as a control mechanism.
Irrelevant questions like, have you met with the president of the United States of America will be asked to control emotions. The body will react unconsciously to say ‘no’.
However, the next question might be more relevant ‘ have you ever deceived a family member who was always good to you?’ this type of question will make you think- hard and fast. The body will respond differently to that of the previous question.
How Police Polygraph Questions Work:
Several topics will be covered in a typical polygraph questionnaire.
- Shoplifting or theft of money or merchandise from employer
- Illegal drug trafficking or dealing
- Illegal drug or medication use, including steroids.
- Use of alcohol.
- Falsification or minimization in your requested information.
- Arrests for anything other than minor traffic violations.
- Commission of a crime that has not been detected.
- Concealment of anything in your background that would affect your chances for this position.
- Involvement in a physical fight with another person, including domestic violence.
- Use of excessive physical force against another person.
- Participation in any organized crime
- Payment or receipt of any bribes
- The list provided above contains the areas where the law enforcement officers will focus mainly. The aim is to give you the general idea of what standard police polygraph questions look like.
However, answering yes to any of the above questions may risk your chances of getting the job. It is recommended to stay calm and answer the questions honestly, as you already have provided the answer to all these questions in a background check.
How To Prepare For The Police Polygraph Test?
The police polygraph test is the most stressful exam for prospective law enforcement officers. It is quite apparent why it causes stress amongst the candidates, especially a few days before the test. That’s why it is crucial to prepare for the exam to increase your chances of getting the job.
Learn To Relax
The first and foremost thing is to relax your mind! Learn how to stay calm. It does not mean that you should lie to the examiner that will do you no good. Panicking about small misconduct and lying about it can decrease your chances of getting into the police.
The police examiners not only check the polygraph results but also pay attention to the body language of the candidate. They have a long experience of evaluating the applicants, so its recommended to not act smart with them and be who you are. The questions asked are one-word answers ‘yes’ or ‘no’. There is no need to move your body as it can cause extra alarms.
If you are honest, you will have a conviction in your answers. Clear your mind before entering the exam room. Clear minds have no ambiguity. More honest, you mean more chances of acceptance.
It is essential to follow the tactics and advice of the masters. There are courses available on the internet to master the polygraph test and reduce your chances of failure.
What Happens If You Fail A Polygraph Test For Police?
However, it is not 100% guaranteed that you will pass your polygraph test. Many candidates have failed their police polygraph test, but you should not lose your hope as the polygraph test is not the only option that law enforcement agencies use to check the applicants.
Many agencies use CVSA (computer voice stress analysis) which is an alternating method to check the truthfulness of the person. Although it is less common then polygraph; law enforcement agencies and other high profile agencies use it for pre-employment tests.
There is always a chance of getting into the law enforcement department, keeping the fact in mind that your honesty and integrity will take you two steps further.