Application and Eligibility Process
YOUR NEW CAREER
Becoming a special agent is a multi-step process designed to find individuals who will be successful in this career. Learn how to navigate the process here.
- Applicant Coordinators assist you through the process
- Stick with us, process can take more than a year
Special Agent Selection System
The Special Agent Selection System (SASS) is designed to identify applicants suited to become special agents. The application and clearance process is thorough and can be lengthy, but an Applicant Coordinator will help guide you through the entire process.
Create a profile in the applicant portal to apply, view jobs, and more!
You will be evaluated against our Core Competencies throughout the process. These eight specialized traits represent the knowledge, skills, and abilities that all of our employees are expected to cultivate and apply to their important work in fulfilling our mission.
CollaborationLiaise, demonstrate political savvy, show respect, share information
CommunicationPersuade, listen and interpret, speak clearly, write clearly
Flexibility and adaptabilityAdapt, manage change
InitiativeBe proactive, develop self, follow through
Interpersonal abilityEstablish rapport, be sensitive to differences, resolve and manage conflict, work with others
LeadershipMentor, direct, inspire, set strategic direction
Organizing and planningPlan, prioritize
Problem solving and judgmentIdentify problems and opportunities, make decisions, manage risks, accept responsibility, evaluate and analyze
Read about all our Core Competencies and how they are evaluated in our Core Competencies Guide.
The Evaluation phase consists of multiple tests and in-person reviews.
Phase I Test
The Phase I test is a computerized test within a proctored environment. This is a three-hour exam consisting of five assessments: Logic-Based Reasoning, Figural Reasoning, Personality Assessment, Preferences and Interests, and Situational Judgment. Once invited, you will have 21 days to schedule and complete your Phase I test. You will receive a notification if you passed within one hour of completing the test.
Meet and Greet
The Meet and Greet session is typically conducted by your processing field office (PFO). During this session, one or more evaluators will conduct an in-person review of your application and validate the information you submitted. Your information will then be evaluated to assess your competitiveness for Phase II.
Physical Fitness Test
After the Meet and Greet, you will need to pass the Physical Fitness Test (PFT) with a minimum score of nine points, with at least one point in three of the events and no less than a zero in any one event. A negative score in any of the four events is considered a failure.
Training doesn't stop there. You will be required to take the PFT again and achieve a minimum score within 120 days before you report to the BFTC.
For more information on the PFT, check out the Physical Requirements page and the PFT Training Guide download below.
Phase II Test
Phase II consists of a writing assessment and a structured interview conducted by a panel of three special agents.
You will receive your cumulative Phase II results within two weeks of completing both portions of the test.
Become a special agent
Our special agents have a range of backgrounds, education, and skill sets that collectively allow us to stay ahead of threats. Special agents are individuals with leadership abilities who are motivated to take on new challenges and set moral standards for their colleagues and teams.
Once you successfully complete and pass the Phase II Test and the PFT, you will be issued a Conditional Appointment Offer (CAO).
Hiring is contingent upon your successful completion of the remaining SASS components, including the polygraph examination test, medical evaluation, and background investigation.
Once you receive a CAO, you will need to complete a background investigation to obtain a Top-Secret Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) Clearance.
The background investigation includes a Personnel Security Interview (PSI), polygraph examination, drug test, fingerprinting, and medical examination. It also includes credit and arrest checks, interviews with associates and references, and verification of educational achievements.
What to Expect
The average background investigation takes approximately six months but can take 18 months or more depending on where you have lived, worked, and traveled.
In order to qualify for the BFTC, you must complete another PFT within 120 days of your scheduled arrival. Official employment as a special agent is contingent on completing the 16-week BFTC.
Basic Field Training Course
Each BFTC has a limited number of spots and is based on the needs of the FBI. Your BFTC may be scheduled three to six months out.
You must demonstrate physical readiness to perform duties so you must complete at least one PFT during BFTC. If you are unable to pass at least one PFT, you will be dismissed.
You will be assigned to one of the 56 field offices located across the country. You will generally not be assigned to the same location in which your application was processed.
What to Expect
The BFTC lasts 16 weeks and you will receive a Final Offer two to four weeks in advance of your class date.