Police Scotland failed S.E.T test x 3 options / chances on still joining?

Good Afternoon Reddit,

I’ve made a throw away account for obvious reasons.

Very embarrassed to write this however I’m hoping somebody somewhere can help.

I’ve always wanted to join the police, it’s been my dream job forever ( very cliche however very true ) I applied late last year passed the fitness no problem at all. I then sat the S.E.T test and unfortunately failed it three times ( the maximum) I failed the last one by 0.5 of a mark.

As you have probably already guessed I am TERRIBLE at academic tests, always have been always will be practically and physically I’m perfect however when it comes to tests I’m useless.

I’ve contacted the recruitment and they advised I may need to wait until they change the recruitment procedure which could be years away.

I don’t know if anybody can help or if there’s anything anyone can say. I truly am gutted about this but need to take it on the chin.

Any help or advice is truly appreciated.

Kindest regards.



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  1. You did the right thing by phoning to ask or else you’d be dwelling on it for even longer but the information they’ve given you is right and it’s been that way for a long time.

    Lots has changed since the move to Police Scotland so there’s always a possibility that rule could change in years to come but I’ve not heard anything about plans for it just now.

    Your best hope is that they change the entrance exams to something different and that gives everyone a clean slate but it’s probably unlikely.

    I don’t think anything anyone can say will make you feel better in the short term though.

    You could maybe look at the MoD police at Faslane. They’re not a Scottish force so it would count as a separate application. Or an English force if you’re willing to move.

  2. Don’t mean to sound harsh, but if you’ve failed the test 3 times then maybe the job isn’t for you? Being physically fit isn’t enough to be a copper these days. It’s not the 60’s where you’d have been chasing crims down the street and bashing them on the head with a baton.

  3. Don’t be embarrassed, we’ve all been there. I failed a test for the RAF regiment once. Let’s not go there…

    But in the nicest way possible, I don’t think the police is for you lad. As others have mentioned physical fitness just isn’t enough anymore. Have you considered the forces then military police? MOD Police? All options.

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