Border Patrol Agent: Overview of the Hiring Process
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So you have finally made the decision to keep America safe. You want to become a border patrol agent.
What do you do?
First of all, make sure that you know what you are getting into. Learn all you can about the job, the
responsibilities involved as well as the minimum requirements you need in order to become a border
patrol agent. The physical rigors involved are taxing, to say the least, so you have to be sure that you are
fit and healthy to tackle them head on. There will also be academic requirements-especially in the field
of law and the Spanish language-that need to be hurdled while you are interning at the Border Patrol
Academy, so make sure that you have a good grasp about these things or at least willing to learn about
them. Should you wish to speak with someone knowledgeable about the process, you can find a border
patrol agent at the CBP website who can answer any questions you may have.
Next, register for the written test at the CBP.gov website. If there is a current hiring for the border
patrol agent position, the website will be accepting applications 24 hours of everyday. The Office of
Personnel Management will evaluate your application and if you meet the minimum requirements, you
will be given a schedule for a written test.
Third, once you are accepted for the written test, you will have to register and schedule it online so that
you can print your test admission notice that tells you where and when you will take it. The system will
give you a User ID and password which allows you to reprint your admission notice, download and print
a study guide or choose another exam schedule.
Now, the written test to become a border patrol agent is a three-part exam composed of logical
reasoning, Spanish language test or an Artificial Language Test that evaluates your ability to learn
Spanish if you don't speak it yet and an assessment of job-related experiences and achievements. The
exam itself is 4 ｽ hours long and is similar to the SATs. Thus, it requires preparation on your part. You
can download study guides and sample tests for logical reasoning on the CBP website. Alternatively,
there are also study guides you can purchase over the Internet which condenses all the important
information so you can review with ease. Results of the exam generally come by mail within 4 to 6
weeks after you take the exam.
If you pass the exam, the next step is to wait for an email which will give you more details regarding
the forms you need to submit, your oral interview, medical exam, fitness test, drug test, background
investigation, and the second physical fitness test. You will have to comply with all these requirements
before you can be given a firm employment offer as a border patrol agent.
The structured oral interview which will be conducted by three members of The Oral Board is a pass/
fail interview. It is not a technical knowledge interview but a situational type of interview that will
assess your decision-making capabilities, emotional maturity, interpersonal skills and cooperativeness/
sensitivity to the needs of others. Once you have aced this part and have complied with all other requirements, your name will be placed on a list and as vacancies become available, you will be given a
firm offer of employment to become a border patrol agent.