What can I expect?

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Thread: What can I expect?

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    Senior Member Array '75scout's Avatar
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    What can I expect?

    What kind of questions can I expect during the polygraph portion of the Austin PD and/or DPS academy interview process. I don't have a shady past and my only brushes with the law has been 2 speeding tickets. I have good, moral friends. I'm in decent shape and am good at tests. However I am still very nervous about the polygraph test for some reason.

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    IIRC a good many questions are placed to assess the ''nerves factor'' - and then the test relates to that.

    I am one of those folks who when going thru a scanner feels guilty - when clean!! It is something to do with a stress situation and authority I guess.

    I know myself if doing a polygraph test I'd be nervous as all get out - and I have a clean past and really nothing major to have to hide!!
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    Member Array MIKEV's Avatar
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    Don't be surprised if they ask questions about strange practices with children.. and believe me when I say this animals.

    I took and passed a poly for U.S. Park Police. Ultimately didn't take the job for personal reasons. Going thru some ACL problems with one of my knees and didn't feel like i could handle it if my being 85% led to some problems and somebody else got hurt.

    But anyway that was part of the poly that kind of stood out in my mind. Maybe because of the mounted division they have.

    MikeV

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    Distinguished Member Array SixBravo's Avatar
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    Mike is exactly right. I've been ploy'd before. Generally, they will ask you all the questions before they hook you up. They'll give you a chance to explain everything and then they will hook you up and ask you everything again.

    If there's a question you feel shady about (for whatever reason) - EXPLAIN IT in the pre. Otherwise, don't try to "beat" a poly. I figure you won't try cuz you seem like a straight shooter, but its still something to remember. They CAN be beat, but usually only by people who have experience trying to beat them.

    Expect a lot of questions of moral ambiguity. They'll ask you about finances, drug use, sexual preferences, etc. Some of it can be rather embarrasing depending on who you are, but stick with it. Trust me: a poly proctor has heard IT ALL.
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    Senior Member Array '75scout's Avatar
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    Yeah I talked to a friend who have been through the poly. He didn't believe me that I have never done any drugs. He kept asking me if I was sure I had never experimented with Pot. When I said never he said they wouldn't believe me until after the poly. He told me some of the other stuff and it seems pretty nerve racking but I'll get through it I guess, given I make it that far.

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    Member Array Pickpocket's Avatar
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    Don't worry about it. They're going to ask you a bunch of questions, some off the wall, quite a few that may make you uncomfortable but are asked because people are expected to lie about them, and they'll ask you questions with real substance.

    It's not as though if your heart-rate changes during a "have you ever slept with a goat" question that you'll fail the test.

    Just be honest and calm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MIKEV View Post
    Don't be surprised if they ask questions about strange practices with children.. and believe me when I say this animals.
    OMG I totally forgot about that one!

    But to put your mind at ease... They're going to give you a questionnaire before you take the polygraph, a very thick packet I might add. These are the questions that you are going to be asked plain and simple, so you know up front what the questions are. The entire purpose of the polygraph is truthfulness. If you've done drugs, admit it. If you've done something else wrong, admit it.

    Believe it or not, being truthful is one of the most-important part about being in law enforcement. Take responsibility for your actions, answer truthfully and you're good. Granted there are some people that are perfect angels, but a majority has some blemishes. As long as you admit to them, you're fine. You're going to be nervous as hell going in there, everybody is. The examiner is going to go over your questionnaire before he even hooks you up, so don't worry.

    Even after being hired it's important. If you make a mistake, admit it. 99% of the time they're not going to fire you, as long as you admit your mistake, don't try to hide it and don't do it again.

    Cheers.

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    Senior Member Array sheepdog's Avatar
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    Excellent post, soundwave. I haven't seen it said better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by '75scout View Post
    Yeah I talked to a friend who have been through the poly. He didn't believe me that I have never done any drugs. He kept asking me if I was sure I had never experimented with Pot. When I said never he said they wouldn't believe me until after the poly. He told me some of the other stuff and it seems pretty nerve racking but I'll get through it I guess, given I make it that far.
    I had the same experiece when I applied for my department. They couldn't believe I'd never smoked pot! I told them that after trying a tobacco cigarette when I was in the 6th grade it hurt so much to inhale and I'd thought: Well this is stupid, why do somethin' that HURTS? Later on it was easy to say no to dope.

    They STILL didn't believe me. When that little line slid across the paper smooth as a baby's behind...they scratched their collective heads and grinned: Boy...I DO believe you're the last American Virgin!

    Funny thing was when they ran my prints up POPPED a red flag with the feds! They thought they'd caught somebody from the FBI's most wanted for a moment. But I knew it....sure enough, my security clearance had flagged me. Never failed. Until I left the reserves plus five years.
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    VIP Member Array SammyIamToday's Avatar
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    I didn't take a polygraph for police, but did for my security clearance. One thing I did notice was that the longer the test went on and the less I was paying attention the harder it was to keep the answers flat. So, lots of focus helps, get some good sleep the night before, and don't take in too much caffeine if any at all.

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    I took a poly, there WILL be at least one question about sexual practice with animals, and there will be at least one question about crimes against children. And they WILL repeat questions, sometimes it's to get a cleaner reading, sometimes they're trying to bait you into changing your story. You get nervous when they repeat a question, for me they repeated "Have you ever commited a crime against a child" and "Have you commited any crimes you haven't told us about?" The answer was no to both, which I said. I got nervous anyway but I passed.
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    Question Ducks?

    Quote Originally Posted by absit View Post
    I took a poly, there WILL be at least one question about sexual practice with animals....
    Yeah asked me about sexual contacts with "DUCKS" specifically. I just have to wonder that the question is asked because some number of folks answer in the affirmative? Gotta wonder about the percentages....
    Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.

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    Member Array walther1's Avatar
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