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Written Testing

Written testing

Once applicants have submitted a completed application package and it has been reviewed successfully, a recruiter will be in touch to schedule a testing date.  All people interested in a career in policing must write the Alberta Communication Test (ACT) and the Alberta Police Cognitive Ability Test (APCAT).

Successful completion of both the ACT and APCAT exams is required for applicants to proceed further in the CPS process.  Applicants with successful test results from another Alberta policing agency and a completed application package are eligible to proceed to the A-PREP stage.  Passing scores for each of the ACT and APCAT are valid for five years.

Alberta Communication Test (ACT)

Applicants will write the Alberta Communication Test (ACT) which takes approximately 1 hour and 35 minutes to complete (including instructions and break). It is designed to assess the applicant's ability to communicate in writing. Using a multiple-choice format, the test covers three areas:

  1. reading vocabulary
  2. spelling
  3. grammar

Applicants can write this exam as many times as necessary to pass. Minimum wait periods before writing again after a fail are:

ACT passing mark 73/134

  • 1st attempt - 1 month deferral
  • 2nd attempt - 6 month deferral
    (after each attempt deferral period doubles)

APCAT passing mark 84/120

  • 1st attempt - 1 month deferral
  • 2nd attempt - 6 month deferral
  • 3rd attempt - lifetime deferral

Both tests are required for the application process but do not have to be written at the same time.

The ACT is designed to assess ability to communicate in writing and the APCAT is a job-related written examination.  Applicants will not be provided with their test marks on the day of writing.  Applicants will be contacted 2-3 weeks after and provided with their scores and are at that point in a position to continue in the CPS selection process.

For more information about the APCAT test, please refer to the APCAT pre-test guide.