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What is a Corrections Officer?

Have you ever wondered, What is a Corrections Officer? If you’re currently considering a career in the field of prison corrections, you may already have a sense of what a corrections officer does. You may not, however, be certain about how to become a corrections officer.  You may recognize that a corrections officer works in prisons, helps control the behavior of a prison population, but what is a corrections officer? What does a correction officer do? What are the corrections officer’s duties? How do you become a correctional officer?

Once you’ve done some research about what is a corrections officer, you can learn more about the requirements for becoming a correctional officer. You’ll want to investigate how to become a correctional officer and review the types of available training to become a correctional officer.

What is a Corrections Officer?

Before you begin to investigate the requirements for becoming a correctional officer or trying to understand more about the training to become a correctional officer, you’ll want to answer the question “What does a correctional officer do?” A corrections officer is hired to look after detainees in a jail or prison.

What Does a Correctional Officer Do? A corrections officer is necessary in a detention facility (jail or prison) to maintain order. There are different levels of prisons, such as town or community, state, or federal. If you’re wondering “what are the corrections officer’s duties?”, you must look closely at the facility that the officer will be working in. The duties of a corrections officer will vary depending on the type of facility. Corrections officer duties range from simple administrative tasks with no inmate interaction to oversight of daily inmate activities as well as intake duties that may involve extremely close contact with the prisoners.

Regardless of the level of anticipated interaction of a correctional officer, the training to become a correctional officer must be extensive enough for the officer to handle the most extreme and potentially violent inmates. So, what is a corrections officer? He or she is a peacekeeper, an administrator, a transporter, and more. It really depends on the facility in which he or she is employed.

What Does it Take to Become a Correctional Officer?

Once you understand what a corrections officer does, you may be asking: What does it take to become a correctional officer? It’s clear you’ll be asking yourself “What do I need to do to become a correctional officer?” There are several educational paths for someone who wants to develop a career in the corrections industry. Your educational path will depend on the type of facility you wish to work in and your future desire for advancement.

How Long Does it Take to Become a Corrections Officer: If you’re wondering how long does it take to become a corrections officer, that will depend on your intended career path. The requisite length of your training will also depend on the requirements to become a correctional officer at the specific detention center or facility of your desired employment. It could take anywhere from six months to four years to earn the credentials required to work in the corrections field. The type of education and training you pursue will be the basis for answering your question, “what does a corrections officer do?”

Education and Correctional Officer Requirements: The varying levels of education for becoming a corrections officer include 1) a corrections certificate; 2) an associates degree and 3) a bachelor’s degree. Some sample courses that may be part of the requirements for becoming a correctional officer may include:

  • Criminology, Corrections, Law Enforcement and Penal Law
  • Inmate Supervision and Control
  • Abnormal Behavior Conflict Resolution

It’s advisable to search for corrections jobs prior to committing to a formal course of education. Consult with the potential employer to see precisely what’s required for the particular job you’re seeking. The employer should be able to discuss the educational requirements for anyone who is asking, “what do I need to become a correctional officer?” It never hurts, however, to have more education than is required, especially if you’re planning to advance beyond the position of corrections officer. In addition to the formal education that may be required to become a corrections officer, there may be physical training and specific site orientation for the facility you’ll be working in. There is an abundance of student aid available as well.

The field of corrections has a strong future. As long as crime exists, our communities will always have the need for prisons and corrections officers to work in them. They have a great tool that allows people to view expected job growth.

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