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Criminal Justice Training Center FAQs

What is TCLEOSE?

TCLEOSE, the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officers Standards and Education, is the licensing agency for peace officers in the state of Texas. All peace officers in the state of Texas must be certified through TCLEOSE and comply with its standards.

How old do I have to be to enroll?

You must be 21 years of age to enroll.

Do I have to be a high school graduate to enroll?

TCLEOSE permits three options:

  1. A high school diploma; or
  2. A high school equivalency certificate (GED) or
  3. An honorable discharge from the armed forces of the United States after at least 24 months of active duty service.

Do I have to go through a criminal background check?

Yes, TCLEOSE requires a criminal background check through the National Crimes Record Center and Texas Crime Records Center. This process is conducted through Eastfield College and will take from 10 to 14 working days to complete. TCLEOSE will notify us about your status. If you are disqualified, you may contact the Department of Public Safety Records for further information.

What are the restrictions on a criminal background?

TCLEOSE and Eastfield College’s Criminal Justice Training Center restrict you from enrolling if you have had the following:

  • Conviction of a Class B misdemeanor within the past 10 years;
  • Conviction of a Class A misdemeanor or any felony; or
  • Class B misdemeanor or above still pending before the Grand Jury or court system.

I have a professional educational degree. Do I have to take the Basic Peace Officer course to be certified as a peace officer or can I test out of it?

Regardless of your educational background, you are required to successfully complete the Basic Peace Officer course and pass the TCLEOSE certification examination. Many professionals, including doctors, dentists, engineers and those with doctoral degrees, have completed the program. You cannot test out of the course.

What is the TCLEOSE state certification examination?

After finishing the Basic Peace Officer course, you are required to take and pass the certification examination with a minimum score of 70 percent. You have three chances to pass the examination. Should you not pass the test in three attempts, you must repeat the Basic Peace Officer course in order to sit for the state examination.

What is the exit examination?

The exit examination is a college-based process to prepare you for the state certification examination. When all phases of training have been completed successfully, you will receive a 20-hour review over all material in the Basic Peace Officer course. You will be tested each day over the previous day’s work. At the completion of the review week, you will take the 300-question exit examination. Under Eastfield College Criminal Justice Center’s rules, you must make a minimum 85 percent to be eligible to take the state exam.

What if I don’t pass the exit examination?

As with the state examination, you have three chances to take the exit examination. If you do not pass in three attempts, you have the option of receiving tutoring. When the instructor determines you are ready, you may have a fourth attempt on the exit examination.

I have a Texas state license (such as Jailer, CHL or Private Security license). Do I still have to go through a background check?

Yes, a background check is required by TCLEOSE and must have been conducted within the last six months.

Do I have to be a U.S. citizen?

Yes. U.S. citizenship may be documented by Social Security number, birth certificate or U.S. passport. Other documents may be considered and verified.

Do I have to have a sponsoring organization approve me before I begin this program?

No, provided you meet enrollment requirements. However, applying as a sponsored student does help with the screening process.

Do I have to take a reading or writing exam before enrolling?

Yes. However, if you can document college credit hours in English, you may be exempt from the examination. It is a good idea to make two or three copies of your college transcript to use as documentation in the screening process.

When are classes held?

Eastfield College’s Criminal Justice Training Center offers three different paths or options for the training.

  • Full-day daytime classes: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Half-day daytime classes: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to noon
  • Half-day evening classes: Monday through Friday, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.  

I was a licensed officer in another state but want to become licensed in Texas. What should I do?

Call the TCLEOSE office in Austin at 512-936-7700. You will have to take TCLEOSE course 1018 and will be advised of other requirements.

I have allowed my license to lapse. How do I get it reinstated?

Call the TCLEOSE office in Austin at 512-936-7700. They can advise you on what you will need to complete reinstatement.

Will I get college credit for the Basic Peace Officer training?

The Police Academy is administered through Eastfield College’s Social Science Division as a Continuing Education program and consists of noncredit courses that award continuing education units (CEUs). However, after you pass the state certification examination, you can apply for college credit through the college’s Criminal Justice credit program.

Contact Criminal Justice Program Coordinator Patrick Patterson at 972-860-7355 or Criminal Justice Training Center Program Coordinator Neal Wilson at 972-860-7689.

What should I buy before class?

Do not purchase anything before beginning class. The first class day is an orientation session, and you’ll be told what you need and when you will need it. We hope this will help you budget your education dollars and keep you from buying unnecessary items.