Selection Process

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Application Screening

After the application process closes, applications are reviewed for completeness and accuracy and to ensure candidates meet minimum requirements. Candidates are also screened and prioritized based on numerous criteria, including:

  • Education beyond high school;
  • Prior law enforcement experience;
  • Public service experience;
  • Prior military experience.

Phone Interview

Candidates selected from the screening process will be interviewed by phone.


After the screening process and phone interview, successful candidates will be invited to participate in the hiring week. Candidates must successfully pass each portion below before moving on in the process.


Written Testing

  • The test takes a total of 75 minutes and is made up of four separately timed sections. The mathematics, reading comprehension and grammar sections are multiple-choice and true or false questions. The incident report writing section requires answers written in complete sentences.
  • Failure to meet the minimum passing score eliminates a candidate from the selection process.

Physical Abilities Test

  • The physical abilities test used is the Montana Physical Abilities Test (MPAT). The MPAT test measures the strength, flexibility and endurance law enforcement officers need to perform the essential functions of their positions.
  • Video example of the MPAT
  • Failure to complete the MPAT in 6:30 eliminates a candidate from the selection process.

Oral Board Interview

  • Candidates must satisfactorily complete a structured interview before a panel involving questions related to being a Bozeman Police officer.
  • Results from all candidate interviews will be ranked to determine which candidates continue in the process.

Chief's Oral Interview

  • Candidates must satisfactorily complete a structured interview with members of the Bozeman Police Department command staff.
  • Results from all candidate interviews will be ranked to determine which candidates continue in the process.

Candidates continuing past this portion will be given a conditional job offer, contingent on completing the rest of the process.


Psychological Evaluation

Selected applicants must complete and pass an extensive psychological evaluation and personality testing.

Background Investigation

Selected applicants must pass an extensive background investigation which includes, at a minimum:

  • criminal history records check
  • driving records history check
  • previous employer reference checks
  • credit check
  • fingerprint check
  • verification of application materials and qualifications

Physical Examination

Selected applicants must pass an extensive physical examination, which includes the following tests and requirements:

  • Review of medical history
  • Vital Signs
  • Complete physical examination
  • Vision tests: (corrected/uncorrected; near/far; Farnsworth D-15; peripheral; depth perception; Ishihara)
    • Corrected distant vision minimum must be 20/40 in each eye and 20/20 binocularly.
    • Corrected near vision of no less than 20/40 in the better eye.
    • Uncorrected distant vision with glasses or hard contacts should be 20/100 binocularly.
    • Successful long-term soft contact lens wearers shall not be subject to the uncorrected criteria. Lens wearers require a letter from an optometrist or ophthalmologist stating that they have been a successful wearer for at least 12 months.
  • Hearing tests:
    • Hearing Thresholds: no greater than 25 dB average or less loss in each ear at frequencies of 500, 1000, 2000 and 3000 Hz.
    • Symmetrical Hearing: no greater than 15 dB average variation at frequencies of 500, 1000 and 2000 Hz and no more than 30 dB average variation at frequencies of 3000, 4000 and 6000 Hz.
  • Spirometry test.
  • Resting EKG.
  • One view chest x-ray with radiologist read.
  • VO2 Submax treadmill test (and possibly a Stress Echocardiogram, based on cardiac risk stratification).
  • Health screen panel, to include CBC, fasting lipids, metabolic panel, uric acid, TSH, iron.