Apply for Certification as a Municipal Police Officer

New cadets, former federal or military police, and returning police officers can seek certification as a municipal police officer in Pennsylvania.

Criteria for seeking certification

New Cadet

Successfully complete a Pennsylvania basic police training course approved by the Commission. Individuals who have not previously satisfied the basic training requirements for certification will be required to attend an approved municipal police training course at a certified police academy. More information about the basic training program is available on the Basic Police Officer Training page.

Training Waiver

Individuals with prior federal, military, or out-of-state law enforcement training AND employment may be eligible for training waivers as authorized in 53 Pa.C.S. § 2164 (15). More information on eligibility criteria and the application process are available on the Federal Law Enforcement and Military Police Officers and the Waivers for Training pages.

Returning Police Officer

Individuals who were previously a Commission-certified police officer and left that position in good standing. Requires proof of previous municipal police certification. 


Individuals who have satisfied the minimum training standards may apply to take the state certification examination by completing an application in the Training and Certification System (TACS). Failure to supply required supporting documents will result in delay/denial of your application. Select from available test dates/locations and select "MPO Certification Exam" when creating the application in TACS. 

Study guide and additional resources

The Commission staff has produced a study guide for individuals planning to take the state certification exam. In addition, the study guides provided below are additional resources that applicants will find helpful when preparing.


Municipal Police Officers are certified by the MPOETC when they meet the criteria listed below.

  • Meet Basic Training Requirements
  • Successfully complete Certification Exam
  • Meet Certification Qualifications (for employment)
  • Employed by a Police Department

For more information

Questions about municipal police officer certification can be emailed to the Certification and Administration unit at