SD Highway Patrol Trooper at the face of the Oahe Dam in Pierre.


As a new trooper, you must undergo approximately 24 weeks of rigorous academy training before being assigned to a duty station. The academy consists of approximately 13 weeks of basic law enforcement certification training and the Highway Patrol portion of the academy, which is approximately 11 weeks long. The academy training takes place at the Law Enforcement Training Center in Pierre. The academy will teach you all the necessary skills to become one of South Dakota's finest. The curriculum includes:

  • Patrol Procedure

  • Accident Investigations

  • Highway Safety

  • Motor Vehicles Code

  • DUI Enforcement

  • Firearms Training

  • Emergency Vehicle Operations

  • Motor Carrier Enforcement

  • Criminal Procedures

  • Criminal Investigations

  • Drug Interdiction

  • Physical Fitness

  • Public Relations / Speaking

  • Officer Safety

  • Self Defense Tactics

Upon completion of the academic training, recruits are assigned to approximately 10 weeks of field training with a veteran trooper. At this time, all of your training, education, and experience will come together.

For more information about the qualifications to become a trooper, please click here.

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