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    Preference Points

    Educational Preference

    Candidates who have successfully completed a course of study at an accredited college or university will be given:

    • 1 point added to their final score if the highest degree received is an Associate's Degree or if the candidate has at least 60 college credits.
    • 2 points added to their final score if the highest degree received is a Bachelor's Degree.
    • 3 points added to their final score if the highest degree received is a Master's Degree.

    Military Preference

    Ten points for veteran's preference will be added to the scores of those who pass the written examination. You are eligible if you are honorably discharged from the U.S. Armed Forces. Spouses of disabled or deceased veterans may also be considered. Attach a legible copy of your DD-214, Member 4, to your application if you wish your eligibility to be reviewed. For more information, visit the Military Experience page.

    Police Explorers Cadet Preference

    Candidates who successfully complete the Philadelphia Police Explorers Cadet Program and who pass the Police Officer Recruit written examination, will be awarded three points for the completion of a minimum of two years of service with the Philadelphia Police Explorers Cadet Program. Service will include 672 hours training offered by the Philadelphia Police Department and an additional 298 hours of community service or external training. If you would like to learn more about becoming a Police Explorer Cadet visit

    Demonstrated Fluency in Non-English Language or in American Sign Language

    Preference points for the above are pending Administrative Board and Civil Service Commission approval expected to be completed in February 2012. Candidates will be awarded three points for verified ability to communicate fluently in a Non-English language or in American Sign Language. The Police Department will have sole responsibility for verification of the ability to communicate in a Non-English Language or American Sign Language.

    Legacy Preference

    The children of Philadelphia Firefighters or Police Officers who were killed or died in the line of duty shall be accorded a preference in open competitive civil service entrance examinations. Candidates who qualify for this preference and who take and pass open competitive civil service examinations shall have ten points added to their final score. The candidate must successfully pass all parts of the examination before points are awarded.

    Residency Preference

    Candidates who have maintained a bona fide residence in Philadelphia for at least one year prior to the date of the civil service examination shall have priority over all other persons receiving an identical test score.

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