NPPF Step 2 Legal Examination

Officers from England and Wales forces can be assessed for suitability for promotion through the NPPF process or the National Police Promotion Framework (NPPF). This page refers to the NPPF Step Two Legal Examination.

November 2014 Update

For an updated position with regards to the implementation of the National Police Promotion Framework, and the framework as a whole, please see the NPPF webpage.

Please note: where any documents available on this page refer to the NPIA, this now relates to the College of Policing.

Rules and Syllabus

2017 Rules and Syllabus : This is the latest version please disregard any previous versions.  

Amendment of NPPF Step Two Rules and Syllabus February 2017 - Section 19 Extenuating Circumstances and Unscheduled Incidents

Syllabus Update 1 Amendments to the Sergeants and Inspectors' 2017 exam syllabus surrounding the 2017 Crime Manual. Section 1.6.18: Intoxicating Substances. 

Syllabus Update 2 Updates to the Sergeants’ and Inspectors' 2017 exam syllabus surrounding the PACE (1984) Codes of Practice C, D and H. 

Syllabus Update 3 Amendments to the Inspectors' 2017 exam syllabus surrounding the Policing and Crime Act 2017

Upcoming examinations

  • Sergeants: 13 March 2018
  • Inspectors: 03 October 2017

Do you want to help develop the NPPF Step 2 Legal Examinations?

The Selection and Assessment team at the College of Policing are conducting research into the current syllabus for the NPPF Step 2 Sergeants’ and Inspectors’ examinations to ensure it is supporting forces in identifying individuals ready to undertake the next step of the NPPF. This research will inform the structure and content of the NPPF Step 2 examinations to ensure they are a fair and valid measure.

We are seeking assistance from currently serving substantive, acting and temporary sergeants and inspectors as well as serving officers or staff who have current supervisory responsibility for sergeants and/or inspectors.

In order to take part in this research, please follow the relevant link below:

For officers or staff wising to complete the sergeants’ survey:  Sergeants Survey
For officers or staff wishing to complete the inspectors’ survey: Inspectors Survey

The surveys are open until the 16th June 2017.

For further information on this research:  Do you want to help develop the NPPF Step 2 Legal Examinations? - Take our survey now!

The assessment process

The examination consists of 150 multiple-choice questions over a three-hour period. Questions used in the examination are prepared by trained writers who have extensive policing experience and knowledge of the relevant legislation. During the development period, all questions are extensively quality-assured by a team of internal and independent experts.

How to apply

For information on how to apply, please refer to the 2017 Rules and Syllabus document.

Candidate guidance

The following resources are provided to help you prepare for the NPPF Step 2 Legal Examination:

2017 Rules and Syllabus - This booklet contains the rules for the National Police Promotion Framework, and the syllabus for the qualifying NPPF Step 2 Legal Examination for promotion to the ranks of Sergeant and Inspector to be conducted from January 2017.

Candidate Information Booklet - This booklet provides general information on the NPPF Step 2 Legal Examination.

Sergeants' Subject Area List - This document provides the Subject Area List for which candidates were tested during the last Sergeants' NPPF Step 2 Legal Examination.*

Inspectors' Subject Area List - This document provides the Subject Area List for which candidates were tested during the last Inspectors' NPPF Step 2 Legal Examination.*

* The Subject Area Lists are only a general guide to the type of topics that have been tested in the past, and are not an indication of the content of any future examinations.

If you have a query, please read the FAQs first and/or contact your Force Examinations Officer (FEO). If you have a specific query that cannot be resolved either by the FAQs or your FEO, email the College's Selection and Assessment Unit at

Entry forms

Candidates are required to keep a photocopy of their entry form, and a record of the date the form was sent back to their force and for whose attention it was addressed - for forwarding on to the 2017 Rules and Syllabus College's Selection and Assessment Unit.

It is the candidate's responsibility to ensure, via their own force, that their completed entry form has been submitted and received by the College's Examinations and Assessment Unit by the closing date. Late entries will not be accepted under any circumstances.


Please note that if you withdraw from the NPPF Step 2 Legal Examination you cannot be reinstated under any circumstances.


For information on how to apply for Reasonable Adjustment arrangements, please refer to the   document and the Reasonable Adjustment Policy.

Results and feedback

Candidates will receive notification of their examination result following the NPPF Debrief Panel which authorises their release. Detailed performance feedback will then be released to candidates. The detailed feedback is aimed to maximise the amount of developmental information candidates gain from the examination process.

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