How the police constable degree apprenticeship equips you for the future

Published on 10 February 2021
National Apprenticeship Week 2021: Advice on the PCDA
Case study
3 mins watch
PC Summer Smith

The police constable degree apprenticeship can help you grow your confidence in a variety of ways, especially by gaining support from your team who understand the challenge of studying while working as an officer.

Three officers from Nottinghamshire Police share some top tips on what you can expect from the PCDA.

'I really enjoyed my time with my tutor,' says PC Summer Smith. 'She gave me feedback when I needed it.' Summer used this in a positive way by developing her understanding about when to take the lead on jobs. 'I changed from then on, and that's when my confidence started to really pick up.'

You will spend longer in police training school when studying the PCDA, explains PC George Staton, but it's designed to equip you well for what comes next. 'The first job you go to, you're shaking, you're nervous – but I think once you get started you do feel ready for it,' he says. 'It's good, it sort of refreshes you a little bit. Y'know, I can do this – it gives you that bit of self-belief and confidence.'

PC Toby Roberts says that independent patrol status – where during your tutorship period in a division you go to lots of different jobs by yourself – helps you to focus on your own judgement, build your experience and learn more about policing.

Make sure that at the end of the day, you reflect on what you've been to. Talk to people. Tell them if you're not okay after a job, make sure you speak to them and then you'll be fine.

PC Toby Roberts

Watch our video for a full range of PCDA advice from Summer, Toby and George. 

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.