How To Become a Special Agent with the FBI

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The basic qualifications to become a FBI Special Agent are rigorous and include the following:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or a citizen of the Northern Mariana Islands
  • Be between 23 and 37 years of age, unless seeking a veteran’s waiver
  • Possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited four year college
  • Possess a valid state driver’s license
  • Have worked as a professional for at least three years

Qualifications for Special Agent Entry Programs

In order to apply to become a Special Agent, the candidate must meet the qualifications for one of five Special Agent Entry Programs:

  • Accounting: Must possess CPA Certification, hold a four year degree in Accounting, or worked for three years in an accounting profession.
  • Computer science/Information Technology: Must possess a bachelor’s degree in an IT discipline.  Applicants should also possess a Cisco Certified Network Professional (CCNP) Certification or a Cisco Certified Internetworking Expert (CCIE) certification.
  • Language: Possess a four-year degree and proficiency in a critical foreign language specified by the FBI. Applicants must demonstrate competencies in reading, writing, speaking and translating. Presently languages include
    • Arabic
    • Chinese
    • Farsi
    • Hebrew
    • Hindi
    • Japanese
    • Korean
    • Pashtu
    • Punjabi
    • Russian
    • Spanish
    • Urdu
    • Vietnamese
  • Law: Applicants must possess a JD degree from an accredited law school.
  • Diversified: Candidates must possess a bachelor’s degree in any concentration with three years of professional experience, or a master’s degree, JD degree, or PhD along with two years of professional experience.

FBI Special Agent Application Process

Prospective Special Agents should visit to create an account and submit a resume. If the resume meets with approval, the candidate will be asked to sit for a battery of written tests that assess various competencies.  Additional testing may be required for those seeking entry through the Language program.

Candidates who pass the initial tests must then submit to a second round of testing that includes written and interview portions. If approved, the candidate will be provided a Conditional Letter of Appointment.  The candidate will then have to pass a physical fitness test followed by a comprehensive background and security investigation that includes a polygraph. Finally, the candidate must meet all of the medical requirements including hearing and vision necessary to serve in the field. If the candidate meets all qualifications, they must complete an intensive 21-week training program at the FBI Academy in Quantico, VA.

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