How to Become a Probation Officer?

  • Criminal Justice
  • March 11, 2024
  • 3 min read
Probation Officer prisoner in interrogation room

TV shows might project the idea that probation officers are hard-nosed bounty hunter-type characters who are all about hunting down people who break their probation, but the reality is quite different.

Probation officers can often be a lifeline for criminals who have committed non-violent crimes, supporting them while they overcome drug addictions, leave criminal gangs and generally reintegrate into normal society.

So, if you are looking for a career in which you can really make a difference in people’s lives, here is all the information you need to become a Probation Officer.

How to Become a Probation Officer?

What Does a Probation Officer Do?

A probation officer works with offenders who have been given probation. Probation is when a judge allows offenders to complete a period of supervised good behavior rather than going to prison.

The primary duty of any probation officer is to help probationers complete their probation without incident, support them while restarting their lives, and help them to avoid reoffending in the future.

Probation Officer Job Duties

  • Interview probationers and their families and friends
  • Determine the best course of action for rehabilitation
  • Assign a treatment plan to help overcome addictions
  • Provide resources for finding a job and accommodation
  • Ensure that probationers are living within the terms of their probation
  • Visit probationers and complete individual progress reports

Probation Officer Salary Expectations

The median annual salary for probation officers in 2018 was $53,020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Probation Officer jobs are projected to see a steady 6% growth in employment through 2026, according to the BLS. This rate keeps pace with the average for all U.S. occupations, and it will result in an additional 5,200 probation officer jobs by 2026.

Probation Officer Educational Requirements

Around 72% of all probation officer job postings required a minimum of an associate’s degree. Thankfully, getting that required associates degree can take as little as 18 months here at Northwest Career collage.

Northwest’s schedule allows you to attend criminal justice training, care for family and have a balanced life in Las Vegas while advancing towards your new career.

As a criminal justice student, your understanding of the law and the needs of the legal system are critical. That’s why, at Northwest Career College, your Criminal Justice instructors are comprised of experienced legal professionals including attorneys, paralegals, and criminal justice specialists.

Our specialist instructors are able to not only teach you the law but also guide you in the many ways a criminal justice graduate integrates into a Las Vegas legal profession.

Qualifying For Your Future

Gaining a qualification from our Criminal Justice School puts you in an excellent position to access a variety of employment opportunities as you look for one that suits your skills and interests. At Northwest Career College, our Criminal Justice instructors include licensed, practicing attorneys and degree instructors able to teach, not only the law but also to guide our students in the many ways a criminal justice graduate integrates into a Las Vegas legal profession.

As part of our Criminal Justice Program, you’ll visit courts, jails, meditation centers and more to experience first-hand the law in action, which will make your criminal justice training applicable to the Las Vegas legal system. Northwest offers a flexible blended program with all criminal justice classes Las Vegas law classes taught on campus by an attorney, and general education courses offered online. Our experienced instructors are on-campus to review and support your learning experience at all times.

Call us at (702) 403-1592 to speak to one of our enrollment team about joining our Criminal Justice Program today!

Lisa Myers
General Education Department Director

Beginning her career as a Paralegal, Lisa soon advanced to the role of Senior Paralegal for various Family Law, Personal Injury and Corporate law firms in the Las Vegas community. She obtained her Juris Doctor and LL.M, completing her fellowship…Read Full Bio