Police Officer - Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship (PCDA)

Police Officer
Police Constable
£26,177 (which includes a £2,000 South East living allowance)
Full Time

What you can expect from the PCDA

From day one of your training you are a warranted officer and, on successful completion of the programme and your probation, your learning will be accredited with a BSc (Hons) Professional Policing Practice.  

A three-year professional degree-level apprenticeship programme combining on-the-job practical learning and operational competence with academic learning. 

Year One: a blended learning programme delivered by TVP and Bucks New University with initial learning based at TVP’s Training College in Sulhamstead, Reading. You will then join your designated Local Policing Area (LPA) for a period of operational tutoring leading to Independent Patrol Status.

Year Two: builds on the first year of learning but with more operational focus including response, investigation, intelligence, community policing and roads policing.

Year Three: as part of your End Point Assessment you will complete an Evidence-Based Research Project and achieve Full Operational Competence. The research project has a practical policing purpose; demonstrating your learning, critical thinking and problem-solving skills.  



Starting salary £26,177 (inclusive of a £2,000 South-East living allowance).

Application process    

Typically the process from initial application through to start date can take six to nine months

  • Self-assessment form – all potential applicants must self-assess their eligibility prior to applying
  • Application including proof of eligibility (e.g. educational certificates, compliance with residency, tattoo policy etc.)
  • Assessment Centre
  • Interview
  • Provisional Offer
  • Pre-employment checks including fitness test, medical, references and vetting
  • Formal Offer including written confirmation of posting and start date


Eligibility – to apply for a role as a Police Officer via the PCDA you must:

  • Age - be at least 18 years of age
  • Citizenship - be a British or Commonwealth citizen or an EU/European Economic Area (EEA) national with leave to remain in the UK indefinitely. Applicants with restrictions will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • GCSE Education – All applicants must have passes in both English (Language or Literature) and Mathematics at GCSE/Level 2 (A*-C / 9-4) or equivalent (this is a requirement of the National Apprenticeship programme).   
  • Further Education/Experience - In addition to the GCSEs above, applicants must also have a minimum of one Level 3 qualification (A Level grade A-E or equivalent) OR relevant professional experience (which demonstrates the capability and confidence to study to degree level). The relevance of the ‘professional experience’, where suitability for study towards a degree is concerned, will be jointly assessed by Thames Valley Police and Bucks New University. This decision will take place prior to the offer of a place at an Assessment Centre.
  • Drivers Licence - have a full manual UK or EEA driving licence before receiving a formal offer of appointment
  • Criminal Record - not have served any period of imprisonment or youth detention. If you have a criminal record or conviction, it may lead to your application being rejected.  We will take into account factors including the date and nature of the offence, plus evidence of good character since the offence.
  • Health - be in good health and able to physically and mentally perform the duties of a Police Officer once appointed. By provisional offer of employment applicants must have a BMI range of between 18-30.
  • Personal - not have any piercings or tattoos which could cause offence
  • Previous application - not have applied unsuccessfully to any Home Office Force within the past six months
  • Location - live within 20 crow miles of two of our main police stations by formal offer of appointment.  Consideration may be given to those living within 20 miles of one police station and up to 30 miles of another.  A degree of flexibility is expected in terms of posting.



Police Officers and Police Staff have access to a fantastic range of benefits, dependant on role, location and length of service. To view a full list of our benefits please click here


All posts require a level of Police Vetting as per the National Vetting Code of Practice. The residency requirement is necessary to enable all applicants to be checked in an equitable manner. Thames Valley Police will allow applicants to apply who do not necessarily reach the criteria as long as they have proven UK residency and supporting evidence where necessary. Applications will be considered on a case by case basis.

Thames Valley Police serves diverse communities; to truly reflect this, we are keen to recruit people from Black, Asian and other minority backgrounds. We value the knowledge and experiences that individuals bring from different cultures and welcome any contributions that can enhance the services we deliver to the public.

We believe in investing in all of our people, and run tailored Positive Action Initiatives to support our colleagues from underrepresented backgrounds in their personal and professional development, ensuring everyone has a level playing field to succeed, progress and feel fulfilled in their careers.