Career Detail

Probation & Parole Officers
“Listen to Your P.O.”
Work with and monitor offenders to prevent them from committing new crimes.
The Job
Probation and parole officers supervise offenders on probation or parole through personal contact with the offenders and their families. They may arrange for offenders to get substance abuse rehabilitation or job training. Probation officers also spend much of their time working for the courts. They investigate the backgrounds of the accused, write presentence reports, and recommend sentences. They review sentencing recommendations with offenders and their families before submitting them to the court. Probation officers may be required to testify in court as to their findings and recommendations. Workers may be required to carry a firearm or other weapon for protection. Probation officers and correctional treatment specialists generally work a 40-hour week, but some may work longer. They may be on call 24 hours a day to supervise and assist offenders at any time.
Work Environment
Workers may be assigned to fieldwork in high-crime areas or in institutions where there is a risk of violence or communicable disease.
College Majors
social work, criminal justice, psychology
Minimum Qualifications
A bachelor's degree in social work, criminal justice, psychology, or a related field is usually required. Many are required to complete a training program sponsored by their State government or the Federal Government, after which a certification test may be required.
Personality traits helpful for this career
Have strong writing skills because they are required to prepare many reports. Also have excellent listening and interpersonal skills to work effectively with offenders.
Quick Facts
  • Job opportunities are expected to be excellent.
  • Workers may be assigned to fieldwork in high-crime areas or in institutions where there is a risk of violence
  • More Info: American Probation and Parole Association, P.O. Box 11910, Lexington, KY 40578.
Compensation and Outlook
Median annual earnings of probation officers and correctional treatment specialists in May 2006 were $42,500. The middle 50 percent earned between $33,880 and $56,280. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $28,000, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $71,160.
Comments and Updates
If you are a professional in this field please post comments so we can make this section the best and most relevant. Comments and updates are reviewed by our staff prior to posting. Post your comments
Comment or Update:

Take a free Career Personality Test on Facebook

Career Icon LegendShow Legend

  Represents $30K  Each represents salary of $15K

Job Growth Outlook
Hyper growth industry Hyper growth industry
Average growth Average growth
Declining job market Declining job market
No growth No growth
Dead end profession dead end profession

H.S. diploma H.S. diploma
BA Degree BA Degree
Masters Degree Masters Degree
Doctorate,MD,PHD,JD Doctorate,MD,PHD,JD

© Copyright 2021
All rights reserved.