How to Become a Criminal Profiler
If you have an interest in criminal law and the workings of the criminal mind, criminal profiler may be an ideal career option for you. As a criminal profiler, you develop psychological profiles of people who commit crimes based on the evidence at the scene in order to find suspects and help the police catch criminals. Other names for this position are “criminal personality profiling” or “offender profiling.” Once you decide that this may be the job for you, you need to learn about how to become a criminal profiler.
Criminal profilers can work in local police departments but all departments may not have their own profiler. The FBI hires most of the criminal profilers but the Central Intelligence Agency or Department of Homeland Security may also have a need for these employees. Profilers that work as classroom instructors may also be able to find teaching positions at different universities.
What It Is Like To Be a Criminal Profiler
Another point about how to become a criminal profiler is that completing your training at a police academy can increase your chances of successful entering this profession. If you decide to become a profiler for the FBI, you will have to enroll in the FBI academy in Quantico, Virginia. The FBI academy is very competitive. Once you complete the FBI training, you will then have to work as an agent for at least 3 years before you can specialize in profiling if you wish to stay with the FBI.
To actively practice as a profiler, you also may need a license verifying your certifications. Requirements for this license may vary from state to state; you need to investigate the specific requirements for your state. You may need this certification if you decide to work for yourself instead of the police or FBI.
What Kind of Schooling Do I Need to Become a Criminal Profiler
College and masters’ degrees are not always required to get hired as a criminal profiler; however, getting a secondary or postgraduate education can increase your chances of becoming a criminal profiler. Many criminal profilers have PhDs; however, obtaining a masters or bachelors degree may also allow you to perform the tasks necessary to be a great profiler.
Studying forensics, criminal justice, or psychology gives you a good foundation for criminal profiling. Some students may complete a bachelor’s program in one of these areas and then focus on one of the others during a master’s program. Other students complete coursework in criminal justice or forensics at a community college over two years and then finish up at a four year university. You can complete your undergraduate class work at a standard four-year university or at an online program.
You should speak with your college adviser about how to become a criminal profiler and the best course of study for you; he or she should have suggestions about classes and degrees. Asking a profiler at your local police department may also give you some insight on how to become a criminal profiler.
How to become a criminal profiler may seem like a complicated question but with dedication and perseverance, you can become a criminal profiler. Obtaining an advanced education improves your chances when trying to break into this profession.