Be ready for the challenge

The National Probation Service is a dynamic, challenging and rewarding place to work. Here, you’ll apply your knowledge to a vital cause, and work with a wide range of people to do so.

Before applying, we recommend taking the time to explore the site and learn more about what we do. Rather than degree titles or extensive experience, the most important thing we look for in each application is the necessary drive to deliver our service. We’ll want to see that you understand and welcome the kind of challenges this unique career path can offer – and you’ll also need the information provided to complete your application fully.

Are you eligible?

The programme includes completing an RQF Level 6 academic programme (equivalent to the last part of an honours degree) alongside a Level 5 vocational qualification.

To apply, you will need a recognised Level 5 qualification or above, such as an honours degree, a foundation degree, a diploma of higher education, a Level 5 vocational qualification or a higher apprenticeship. A full list of Level 5 and Level 5 equivalent qualifications can be found here.

It doesn’t matter what subject your Level 5 qualification is in – you will still be eligible to apply for the programme. If successful, your previous education will be assessed and the correct length of the programme will be offered to you.

If it is decided that you should be placed on the 21 month programme, you’ll need to complete the following 4 required knowledge modules within the first 6 months of the course, followed by a 15 month PQiP qualification:

  • The Criminal Justice System
  • Understanding Crime and Criminal Behaviour
  • Penal Policy and the Punishment of Offenders
  • Rehabilitation of Offenders

Or, if your existing qualification includes 3 or more of the above knowledge modules, you may be eligible to begin the 15 month PQiP qualification right away. The Divisional Training Manager, your line manager and your practice tutor will ensure that you are placed on the correct length programme.  Once started they will provide ongoing support and guidance to ensure you complete the course successfully.

You will also need relevant experience of working with challenging individuals whose lives are in crisis and who display challenging behaviour. This can be gained through either paid or voluntary work in any agency that involves working with the kind of challenging behaviour we see from offenders.

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