Once offered a position, peace officer recruits must attend the Department of Public Safety Basic Training Academy.  We invite all citizens and interested applicants to learn more about the DPS Basic Training Academy:


What to expect at the Academy

The DPS Basic Training Academy is conducted at the Camp Dodge military facility located in Johnston, Iowa.

During the twenty (20) week academy, all training materials, meals, and lodging are furnished at no cost to the recruits.  Recruits receive a salary during academy training.  Subjects studied during the Academy include such topics as laws of arrest, search and seizure, defensive tactics, arrest techniques, precision driving, firearms, emergency management services, criminal law, physical fitness and motor vehicle law.

The academy runs from 8:00 AM Monday morning until approximately 5:00 PM on Friday afternoon. Recruits are required to stay on complex Monday through Friday but may go home on the weekends.

Upon graduation from the DPS Academy, each officer will complete at least 70 working days of field training for the Iowa State Patrol Trooper 2’s who work from various District Offices around the state; 30 working days of field training for the Iowa State Patrol Trooper 1’s who work from Post 16 (Capitol Complex in Des Moines); or up to 12 months of field training for the Department’s Special Agent positions who work statewide.

GI Benefits for On-The-Job Training

The Department of Public Safety’s Basic Training Academy is approved by the State of Iowa for G.I. Bill benefits under the on-the-job-training program.  This benefit is extended to National Guard members and Reservists also.



* Tell the truth.
* Do your best, no matter how trivial the task.
* Choose the hard right over the easy wrong.
* Look out for the group before you look out for yourself.
* Don’t whine or make excuses.
* Judge others by their actions and not their race.
* Pay close attention to detail.
* Undertake every task expediently.
* Be performance oriented for both quality and quantity of work.

DPS Academy Core Values

INTEGRITY: Uprightness of character and soundness of moral principle, absolute truthfulness and honesty.

A value characterized by the freedom from prejudice or favoritism.

RESPECT: A value that denotes national pride and a high regard for all citizens, the Constitution, and authority of office.

HONESTY: Honesty means being trustworthy and sincere in accordance with experience and facts. Lying, cheating, stealing, or the appearance of impropriety is unacceptable to the profession of law enforcement.

COURAGE: Courage is control under adversity or fear and the ability to do what is right.

COMPASSION: A value that is inherent to understanding or sympathy for victims or another’s suffering.


The objective of the Department of Public Safety Basic Academy is to develop well trained, self disciplined, vocationally competent peace officers of a superior caliber, who are mentally mature, physically sound, and emotionally stable.                  

To accomplish this objective, an intensified training program has been developed which is designed to challenge individual capabilities in each of these areas. Although classified by some as a modified stress program, it is stress with a purpose. All activities are designed to mold the individual into a highly trained and well qualified peace officer.

Few recruits or officers are superior in every phase of the training program. However, standards have been established which are attainable. The program is under constant review and revision, in a progression striving for improvement.

The Basic Academy may be classified into two broad general categories – mental and physical. Although the mental area primarily relates to academic pursuits, it also challenges individual alertness, emotional stability, and the desire for the job. The physical area emphasizes such activities as defensive tactics, physical training, and military drill and is designed to test the general physical condition, agility, endurance, and psychological effect of such strains on the individual. The military atmosphere of the training academy has proven successful in shaping good peace officers, and it is by design and for a purpose that selected stress type tactics are employed.

All training and/or discipline is expressly designed to produce a highly trained and well qualified peace officer, capable of functioning alone or as a member of a team. All DPS Basic Academy staff members, both permanent and temporary, have these goals uppermost in their minds.

Recruits are individually and continually evaluated by members of the Basic Academy staff, using standardized criteria and measuring devices. A detailed profile is formed of each candidate in order to objectively appraise individual qualities and performance. Deliberate efforts are made to identify instructor/trainee personality differences which may exist, so that measures may be taken to minimize these in the rating process.

Throughout the program, the DPS Academy’s Vision, Philosophy, and Core Values are emphasized. These character traits are considered to be essential requirements for a peace officer. During the academy, ongoing evaluations of each Recruit are made in these areas, and violations thereof, may constitute grounds for immediate dismissal.

As individual Recruits are evaluated, and a total profile emerges, the final decision is based on a very simple stated question, with a very complex formula of rationale: “Will he/she make a good state peace officer?” The positives are weighed against the negatives, and the decision is made.

Now Hiring


There are so many ways to help the community and be a part of a great team here at Iowa DPS. Explore the opportunities we have to offer in a professional career.


Sworn Officer Positions

Our next DPS Basic Academy (sworn officer) application process will open on January 19, 2024. Applications for the DPS academy process will be available at that time.

We will be accepting applications for currently certified police officers until September 11th.

To apply for a sworn officer position, please complete the link below.

Peace Officer Candidate (Non-Sworn)

State Capitol Complex – applications are now closed.

Civilian Positions

If you are interested in working with Iowa DPS in a civilian role, please visit the link below.