This credit program includes a nine hundred ten (910) hour Police Science class certified by the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) and administered by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department in collaboration with the Ventura County Community College District (Ventura College), as well as an eighty (80) hour orientation course (POSC V01A). POSC V01 is a basic training course required by POST for all new law enforcement officers in the state of California.
The Academy, called the Regular Basic Course (RBC), is presented in an intensive format; 5 days per week, 8 hours per day, for 24 weeks. Successful completion is mandatory for students interested in becoming peace officers. The state screening requirements for admission into the RBC are taking and passing a reading and writing ability test for entry into the RBC (scores will be used to determine if applicants are able to read and write at levels necessary to perform the job of Peace Officer), have attained the age of at least 18 years old, a physical examination, Department of Justice/Federal Bureau of Investigation fingerprint check and clearance, a valid California driver’s license with no restrictions, never have been convicted of a felony, and successfully passing the POST Physical Agility Test. The RBC is required by POST. It is found in the POST Training and Testing Specifications, Division 2 of Title 11 of the California Code of Regulations, and numerous California Penal Code (PC) and Government Code (GC) sections relating to POST and POST training requirements.
It is the mission (goal) of the RBC “to prepare entry level law enforcement trainees mentally, morally, emotionally and physically for entry into a field training program, assume the responsibilities, and execute the duties of a peace officer in society.”
The course of study for the RBC consists of 42 separate learning domains containing the minimum required foundational information for given subjects, each with a variety of educational goals and objectives, which include the ability to demonstrate the following measurable skills and abilities:
1. Discuss how leadership ethics and professionalism impact the daily work of a peace officer.
2. Identify the freedoms and rights afforded to individuals under the U.S. Constitution, and later amendments.
3. Recognize peace officers' responsibilities to enforce the law, including all levels of the law, using fair and impartial treatment.
4. Describe the direct and indirect victims of a crime, the techniques officers can use to help defuse a crisis situation for a victim of crime, and the potentially negative attitudes that peace officers may exhibit toward victims of crime.
5. Recall the statutory definition of crime; identify the elements common to all crimes; identify the elements required of an attempt to commit crime; discuss general, specific, and transferred intent crimes; and differentiate between criminal intent and criminal negligence.
6. Recognize a peace officer's responsibility for the safety of juveniles and the general public.
7. Explain the legal basis for requiring investigative reports, discuss the importance of taking notes in preparation for writing reports, summarize the primary questions that must be answered by an investigative report, and identify the fundamental content elements in investigative reports.
8. Discuss reasonable force as stated by law, explain the legal framework establishing a peace officer's authority during a legal arrest, identify the circumstances set forth in the California Penal Code when a peace officer has the authority to use force, and discuss the level of authority agency policies have regarding the use of force by a peace officer.
9. Discuss patrol strategies officers may employ to provide protection and service within their assigned areas of patrol, describe the three basic categories of vehicle pullovers, describe the inherent risks to officer safety that are associated with conducting a vehicle pullover, and demonstrate appropriate actions officers can take to maintain their own safety and the safety of others while conducting a vehicle pullover.
10. Describe the elements of a tactical approach to a crime in progress, explain the primary purposes for establishing crime scene perimeters, and demonstrate appropriate actions when conducting a search for suspects.
11. Explain the relevance of traffic enforcement to public safety and quality of life within a community and legally establish probable cause for accomplishing general law enforcement objectives; and demonstrate appropriate peace officer actions when managing a vehicle collision scene, including caring for injured and involved parties, protecting the collision scene, collecting and preserving evidence, distinguishing between different types of physical evidence which may be located at a collision scene, and recognizing the type of information they may provide.
12. Identify the goal of a criminal investigation, demonstrate actions peace officers may employ to preserve possible physical evidence at a crime scene, identify the primary purpose of the initial survey of a crime scene and the crime scene search, identify the purpose of collecting control/known samples, identify the primary reason for establishing a chain of custody record, and identify general guidelines for collecting and processing physical evidence which may be located at a crime scene.
13. Demonstrate principles of arrest and control, including awareness, balance, and control.
14. Demonstrate all procedures for the safe handling of all firearms while on and off duty, and state the four fundamental rules of firearms safety.
15. Identify the complexities of cultural diversity; demonstrate the skills necessary for identifying and responding to California's changing communities; define culture and cultural diversity; and describe personal, professional, and organizational benefits of valuing diversity within the community and law enforcement organizations.
Upon successful completion of the Basic Law Enforcement Academy program, students will receive a Certificate of Achievement. Once the RBC graduate has satisfactorily completed the employing agency’s probationary period, a Basic Certificate is awarded, as defined in Section 1011 of Title 11 of the California Code of Regulations, to currently full-time peace officers of a POST-participating agency who have satisfactorily completed the prerequisite Regular Basic Course requirements.
P.O.S.T. Academy Information
The P.O.S.T. Basic Law Enforcement Academy consists of two courses: the 80-hour Orientation for P.O.S.T. Regular and Modular Academy (POSC V01A); and the 910-hour Basic Law Enforcement Academy (POSC V01) certified by the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training. It is offered by the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department in collaboration with the Ventura County Community College District (Ventura College). POSC V01 is a basic training course required by POST for all new law enforcement officers in the state of California. It should be noted that students are required to take POSC V01A before POSC V01. For more information on these courses, please refer to the course descriptions in the VC Catalog.
Students interested in completing the Basic Law Enforcement Academy program must first enroll in and successfully complete POSC V01A. Enrollment in POSC V01A is contingent on the clearance of all enrollment requirements prior to the start of the course. Contact the Criminal Justice department at (805) 289-6430 with any questions regarding these procedures.
Applications will normally be accepted twice yearly. Admission is subject to available openings. All information and applicable forms can be found at
All applicants must: 1) be admitted students of Ventura College; 2) submit an Application for Enrollment packet and return the completed application packet to the Criminal Justice department; 3) fulfill all qualifying requirements as listed below.
Qualifying Requirements for California Peace Officers
Although these are not enrollment requirements for Ventura College, the State of California has established statutory requirements for peace officers. In addition, most departments have adopted higher standards for their selection of peace officers. The following is a summary of qualifications most departments will use in selecting peace officers. Keep in mind these requirements will vary from one agency to another and what may be a disqualifier for one department may be considered acceptable by another. You are encouraged to contact the Criminal Justice Department at Ventura College with any questions or concerns you may have.
1. CITIZENSHIP: You must be a citizen of the United States or a permanent resident alien who is eligible for and has applied for citizenship.
2. AGE: In California you must be at least 21 years of age at the date of appointment to be a police officer. In most cases you are better off not beginning a police academy program unless you are 21 or will be 21 years of age by the completion of the training. If you are under 21 you may want to consider working on an associate degree in law enforcement or becoming a reserve officer. If you have any questions regarding these programs you should contact the Criminal Justice Department at Ventura College.
3. CRIMINAL HISTORY: The following are automatic disqualifiers for a law enforcement officer. A fingerprint record is used for the purpose of criminal record search.
- A conviction of any federal or state felony
- A conviction of any offense in any other state that is considered a felony
- A charge of not guilty for reason of insanity for any felony
- An adjudication by a court to be mentally incompetent
- A conviction of any crime which would prohibit the possession of a concealable firearm
- Any conviction of a crime that requires registration (sex, arson, drugs, gangs)
- Any domestic violence related offense
- A conviction for drug use, sale, or distribution
- Any conviction of a significant theft related offense or pattern of theft related activity
- Any theft/larceny arrest or conviction
- Disorderly Conduct arrest or conviction
- A significant pattern of disorderly conduct arrest or other disruptive activity including crimes of moral turpitude
- Poor driving history (example: DUI within the last 3-5 years, reckless driving, hit & run, too many points)
- Any alcohol related offenses or history of alcohol problems
4. MORAL CHARACTER: All peace officers will be subject to character background investigations to determine their suitability for employment. Being of good character, honest, trustworthy, and reliable are of concern to law enforcement agencies. The lack of moral character will in most cases be cause for non-selection. If you have any questions, you are encouraged to contact the Criminal Justice Department for advisement.
5. PHYSICAL, EMOTIONAL, AND MENTAL CONDITION: You will be required to complete a medical and psychological examination. You should be free from any physical, emotional or mental condition which might adversely affect your ability to perform the duties of a peace officer. If you are uncertain as to any condition you have or may have had, contact the Criminal Justice Department for further information.
Enrollment Clearance Requirements
Students interested in completing the Basic Law Enforcement Academy program must first enroll in and successfully complete POSC V01A. Enrollment in POSC V01A is contingent on the clearance of the following requirements: 1) the application, 2) reading and writing ability test, 3) fingerprint check, 4) driver’s history, 5) medical screening, and 6) POST physical agility test. You should begin early to ensure all phases are completed prior to the deadline.
All information and applicable forms can be found on the Police Science web page at https://www.venturacollege.edu/departments/academic/police-science. Students are responsible for contacting the Criminal Justice department to find out the deadlines for all requirements.
1. Application Form: Required of all applicants. Complete the form entirely. Do not leave blanks. An incomplete application may be grounds for non-acceptance or delay in processing. The form should be turned in to the Career Education Division at Ventura College to obtain a Live Scan authorization. Students are responsible for contacting the Criminal Justice department to determine the submission deadline.
2. Reading and Writing Ability: California law requires that "Every peace officer candidate shall be able to read and write at the levels necessary to perform the job of a peace officer.” Therefore, applicants for the academy must possess a level of reading and writing ability that will allow them to be successful and meet the legal requirement. There are multiple measures used to indicate an adequate level of ability to read and write for this program. They are:
a. College transcript showing successful completion (grade "C" or higher) of English V01A or V02, or comparable (e.g. AP scores), OR
b. High school transcript showing an overall 9th through 11th grade high school GPA of 2.2 or higher, OR
c. Achievement of a minimum score of 43 on the POST Entry-Level Law Enforcement Test Battery (PELLETB) or a score deemed acceptable on another professionally developed and validated test of reading and writing ability. The test can be administered by either a law enforcement hiring department or another entity.
There are multiple Learning Domains and exercises in the Regular Basic Course (RBC) that will examine the student’s ability to read and write at the levels necessary to be successful as peace officers. Failure to demonstrate this ability can result in removal from the Regular Basic Course program. For information regarding the POST expectations for success in this domain may be found at https://post.ca.gov/portals/0/post_docs/publications/poWrittenPracticeTest.pdf.
3. Fingerprint Check (LiveSCAN): This is required of non-affiliate applicants. Because of long delays at the California Department of Justice, we ask you to submit your LiveSCAN as early as possible in your application process. Students who are not sponsored by a local or other law enforcement agency or are not a peace officer employed by a state or local agency, department or district, shall be required to submit written certification from the Department of Justice that the applicant has no criminal history background which would disqualify him or her from owning, possessing or having under his or her control a firearm. Students are responsible for contacting the Criminal Justice department t determine the deadline for the DOJ clearance.
4. Driver’s History: Each applicant must have and maintain a valid California Driver’s License and must submit a DMV INF 1125 (a DMV printout of a driver's record). Contact the Criminal Justice Department if there are any problems with driving history.
5. Medical Screening: PRIOR to starting the program, you are required to have a health appraisal which is administered at the Ventura College Student Health Center. This program requires that all students be documented to be in good health and drug free. There are two parts to this phase: (a) a self-history completed by the student, and (b) a physical exam and medical release completed and signed by a physician or medical practitioner. Students are responsible for contacting the Criminal Justice department to determine the deadline and location of the screening.
6. P.O.S.T. Physical Agility Test: All applicants are required to complete the P.O.S.T. physical agility test conducted during POSC V01A–Orientation for P.O.S.T. Regular and Modular Academy. The Physical Agility Test consists of five parts: a) 500-yard run, b) 99-yard obstacle course, c) 165-pound dummy drag, d) scale a 6-foot solid wall, and e) scale a 6-foot chain link fence.
7. Conduct: If a student violates the Ventura College Student Code of Conduct while attending the Basic Law enforcement Academy, or if a student has violated the Ventura College Student Code of Conduct in the past, they will not be admitted to the program. Examples of violations include, but are not limited to, academic dishonesty; cheating; plagiarism; causing, attempting to cause, or threatening to cause physical injury to another or oneself; disruptive behavior, etc.
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Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to:
- Define and recognize the fundamental duties, obligations, and philosophies of the criminal justice system, and function within the law enforcement field.
- Define and recognize situations and scenarios relating to application of the California Penal Code, California Health and Safety Code, and the California Vehicle Code, and apply the appropriate law.
- Define and recognize the techniques of crime scene searches, courtroom demeanor, and criminal investigation related to child abuse and sexual assault situations.