Being a police officer from your first day on the job with the PCDA

Published on 12 February 2021
National Apprenticeship Week 2021: working and learning
Case study
4 mins watch
PC Toby Roberts

The police constable degree apprenticeship helps you to pick up lots of theoretical knowledge from why people commit crimes to how to help victims – while also working on the job and covering different attachments across policing.

Three officers from Nottinghamshire Police tell us how the PCDA offers a mixture of dynamic practical training underpinned by key knowledge and learning.

I found the time with my tutor fantastic, I really enjoyed working with him. I really liked the way he policed and the service he gave to the public.

He taught me a lot of different methods of how to deal with certain situations and how to mainly remain calm in high-stress situations and remain composed.

PC Toby Roberts

PC Summer Smith's training on vulnerability equipped her well during her attachment to response. She says: 'It made me more aware of the kind of people I may come across and things that I need to look out for. 

'It's really important to the force that we appreciate people's vulnerabilities and that we understand them. When we go into jobs we're taking these vulnerabilities into consideration.'

PC George Staton tells us it's 'a big moment' when going out on independent patrol for the first time, but adds there is plenty of support on the PCDA. 'They'll be there to support you and sort of catch you if you fall or just add little bits in if needed, but that is where you learn because you've seen it. You've seen how it should be done,' he says.

Watch our video to find out more from Toby, Summer and George about how they enjoy working with their teams and thriving on the fast pace of the job while pursuing a degree in professional policing practice.

This video was recorded in early 2020 before the coronavirus pandemic.

More about the PCDA

Find out how you can take a degree while you work as a police officer – a route into policing that enables you to receive practical on-the-job learning alongside academic theory and knowledge while earning a wage.