Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) Test Online Preparation – 2021

Aptitude Employment Tests Prep

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) is the police force that serves the 1.8 million residents of Northern Ireland. If you want to help people while enjoying an exciting career, consider joining the PSNI.

The PSNI recruitment process includes several steps. You will need to complete the Initial Selection Test, which is described below. You will complete an assessment centre which consists of several different exercises.

If you pass the IST and assessment centre, you will undergo a medical evaluation and the Physical Competence Assessment (PCA). A drug test and vetting process come next. After you complete each of these stages, you will be asked to complete an online learning session.

All of the steps in the application process ensure that candidates are mentally and physically capable of succeeding at the job.

The PSNI looks for specific core competencies in candidates. They include the following:

  • Serving the public
  • Openness to change
  • Service delivery
  • Professionalism
  • Decision making
  • Working with others

Each of these competencies is crucial to success as a police officer.


What Is the Police Service of Northern Ireland Assessment?

There are two components of the assessment process to join the PSNI. The first is the Initial Selection Test (IST), which is a written aptitude test. The second is an assessment centre.

PSNI Initial Selection Test

If your application is successful and you meet the requirements for eligibility, you’ll be able to take the IST. You will receive a link through email that has instructions for completing the test at home. You will also need to submit an Applicant Agreement, which states that you are taking the test without assistance.

The test has two parts.

The first is a situational judgement test (SJT), which measures your decision-making skills. Each question describes a scenario at a fictional shopping centre. You will answer from the perspective of a Customer Support Officer.

For each question, there are five different responses to the described scenario. Your job is to indicate which response would be the most effective and which would be the least effective.

The second part of the IST is a verbal reasoning assessment. For each question, you will read a short text. You will then determine whether a statement is true, false, or if it’s impossible to say based on the information in the text. The written passages often relate to police work, but they may cover a variety of subjects.

PSNI Assessment Centre

The assessment centre includes three roleplay exercises, an interview, and a written test. The purpose of the activities is to determine if you exhibit the desired core competencies.

For each roleplay, you will have a few minutes to prepare using the provided instructions. You will then assume a particular role and interact with an actor. The scenarios often relate to the same shopping centre mentioned on the SJT portion of the IST. For example, you may play a constable who has been called to discuss an incident with a shop owner.

The interview is with a board of two to three people. There are two sections. During the first, the panel will ask you general questions about yourself and your reasons for applying. The second part of the interview is more closely related to the core competencies. You may need to recall specific situations and how you responded to them.

There are two written exercises, both of which involve writing a proposal document. The topic of the documents will relate to the same shopping centre as the roleplay exercises. The goal of the exercises is to assess your writing skills, such as grammar and spelling. Your ability to make a logical, persuasive argument is also measured.


How to Prepare for the PSNI Assessment?

Online study guides and practice tests are the most effective way to prepare for the IST. Timed practice assessments will be especially helpful, as the actual test has a time limit. Look for practice tests that prepare you specifically for the IST.

For the written exercises, there are example prompts online. Responding to them in writing will provide effective practice.

Enlist a friend to help you with preparing for the roleplays and interview. Have them ask you practice questions and provide feedback on your responses. The more practice you get, the more comfortable you will feel during the actual exercises.

Remember, an understanding of the core competencies is essential throughout the application process. Make sure you are familiar with each of them and how they apply to everyday situations.

Competition is fierce for open positions in the PSNI. IN 2018, from a pool of 1053 candidates, 193 were appointed to the force. Appropriate preparation is crucial for you to be one of the candidates that makes it through the hiring process.  Once you do, you’ll be ready to begin a rewarding new career. Good luck!