Training to be a Probation Officer

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Training to be a Probation Officer

The Helena Kennedy Centre for International Justice at Sheffield Hallam University is contracted by the Ministry of Justice to deliver the academic component of the probation officer training for the National Probation Service and private sector providers of probation services. Whilst undergoing this training learners are employed at probation service officer grade and are based in locations across the North of England, at the same time undergoing a programme of study at Level 6 leading to either Graduate Diploma in Community Justice or BA (Hons) in Community Justice.

In order to qualify as a probation officer, candidates must gain one of the Level 6 academic awards and a suite of Vocational Qualifications that certify their practice competence in the workplace. Together these represent the Professional Qualification in Probation or PQiP.

Individuals who are interested in training to be a probation officer and more widely to undertake accredited training within community justice can apply for the following programmes of study and assessment

  • Level 4 Assessed Practice Portfolio to secure access to the Level 5 study leading to the Diploma of Higher Education in Community Justice (Applied Practice).
  • Level 5 required knowledge modules (4 stand-alone modules) allow graduates with non-relevant degrees or those with gaps in their study to 'top up' their knowledge in order to progress to the PQiP (although these can be included in an Extended PQiP programme)
  • Level 5 specialist modules - these form part of the Level 5 study on the HE Diploma but can also be purchased as stand-alone modules for CPD purposes. They address specialist areas relating to youth justice, addictions, victim services and diversity in the criminal justice sector.

Sheffield Hallam University have a well-established reputation for the delivery of high quality professional training within community justice. We have been a major provider of probation officer training for over 15 years and have well-established and longstanding relationships with the National Probation Service, HMPPS and the Ministry of Justice. We teach and train probation officers across the north of England and have a team of specialist staff with professional practice backgrounds who lead this important area of work.

The Ministry of Justice has recently introduced this new framework for probation officer training.

Applicants who wish to apply for the Professional Qualification in Probation (PQiP)  should submit an application directly to HMPPS via the website.

For more information about graduate entry to the PQiP and for enquiries about other parts of the Community Justice Learning framework, please e mail

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