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Top 35 Correction Officer Interview Questions
Question 1 of 37
What would you do if an officer next to you was engaged in a physical fight with an inmate?
  Professional Answers
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List of Correction Officer Interview Questions
  1. What would you do if an officer next to you was engaged in a physical fight with an inmate?
  2. Do you have a role model or mentor?
  3. Tell me about an experience where you successfully used deescalation techniques in preventing a physical altercation.
  4. Why do you want a position as a correction officer?
  5. Tell me about yourself.
  6. What do you fear will be your potential weaknesses as a correction officer inside our prison?
  7. Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.
  8. How would you address the issue of a subordinate who is consistently late for their shift?
  9. How would you handle an inmate who constantly yelled at you and said extremely derogatory things to you?
  10. Are you willing to work long hours, on a variety of different shifts, with a limited amount of notice?
  11. If you saw another correctional officer doing something inappropriate, how would you handle the situation?
  12. How has your education prepared you for your career?
  13. Tell me about a time there was a serious conflict. How did you resolve it?
  14. What part of this career brings you the most stress?
  15. How do you determine priorities when you have multiple projects due?
  16. What are your salary expectations?
  17. How have you had to adapt your work style to fit the team's objectives?
  18. How do you develop trust among your team members in a virtual setting?
  19. Do you prefer doing work on a routine day-to-day basis or do you prefer mixing up your routine occasionally?
  20. When have you shown great integrity at work?
  21. What is the most challenging problem you have encountered in your professional career?
  22. How do you handle a difficult problem you must solve, where you are unsure of the answer.
  23. What would you do if your commanding officer was taken hostage, inside the prison, by inmates?
  24. Tell me about a time when it was better to be agreeable in a situation, rather than continue the argument.
  25. Tell me about a time when you showed your superior officer that you are trustworthy, and responsible.
  26. Have you ever faced a company policy you disagreed with, but had to enforce anyway?
  27. Have you ever worked in a stressful environment? How did you handle it?
  28. Why are you the best suited person for this job?
  29. Describe a situation in which you supervised a large group of individuals. What specific steps did you take to ensure that all individuals in your group completed scheduled activities?
  30. What role do you believe a correction officer plays in preventing contraband in the prison?
  31. Do you have a problem with authority?
  32. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
  33. Why did you leave your previous employer?
  34. What makes you angry?
  35. How do you resolve a disagreement with someone?
  36. Tell me about a time when you went above and beyond your job duties.
  37. When have you had to be extra thorough in completing tasks?
Authors:
Contributing Author
Rachelle Enns
Recruiter
 
Contributing Author
Diana D'Souza
HR Professional
Creativeinkdrops.com/
Correction Officer Information
August 17th, 2017

Correction officers monitor individuals who have been sentenced to serve time in jail or who have been arrested and are waiting for their trial. Besides counseling and rehabilitating prisoners, correctional officers also inspect facilities periodically to ensure that all safety and security standards are met.
A high school diploma or equivalent is the minimum qualification required for this job. In addition, correction officers have to go through a training academy to learn the practical aspects of the job. Correction officers must have good judgment and must have excellent self-discipline, physical strength, and negotiating skills.
Expect to go through a rigorous interview. The interviewer will want to ensure that you are the right candidate for the job and will ask you about your strengths and weaknesses as they relate to this role. Are you a good judge of character? Do you have the necessary self-discipline so you can be a role-model the individuals you are in charge of? To gauge your ability to handle challenging situations, which are the norm in this job, the interviewer may provide you with a mock scenario and ask you how you would handle it. Your answer will play a key role in whether or not you get hired as a correction officer. You can find several more questions at Mock Questions. Go through them and spend some time thinking about how you will answer them. The more compelling your replies, the higher the chances of getting hired.
Correction Officer Professional Answers
Question 1 of 37
What would you do if an officer next to you was engaged in a physical fight with an inmate?
Professional answer
According to my training, when I observe that an inmate is engaged in a physical altercation with an officer, I'm supposed to [actions and procedures] in order to ensure [an outcome, e.g. the inmate is under control] while maintaining [conditions, e.g. officer and inmate safety].
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Call for back up and run over to help my fellow officer.
2.
Try to help restrain the inmate and get it under control.
3.
On my way to the altercation, I would radio for backup and assistance. Then I would assist the officer that is currently involved in the fight.
4.
Radio for help and assist the officer.
5.
I would radio for additional help and help my co-worker take control of the situation.
Question 2 of 37
Do you have a role model or mentor?
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
My father, My grandfathers and a lot of my family members.
2.
President Obama, Buddha and a friend nick named Chief.
3.
My mother and step father.
4.
My Dad, the church pastor, our President, Governor, great leader of our country.
5.
My father he came into America when he was 17 years old from Laos being Sponsored by my aunt who had her citizenship and he went to high school for a year and graduated for just being in America for about a year he is a hard worker and did everything he could to support me and my mom hes taught me a lot about hard work and responsibility earning your money the right legal way and dealing with racist people since there was so many where we lived hes kept me out of trouble I am very grateful to have him as a father.
Question 3 of 37
Tell me about an experience where you successfully used deescalation techniques in preventing a physical altercation.
Professional answer
Because I am new to this career I do not have a specific example; however, if I were to experience a potential threat like this I would be sure to follow the regulations and procedures put in place at this facility. Safety is incredibly important for both the officers and inmates and order must be kept at all times.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Lower my voice and speak calmly to minimize the anger.
2.
I once worked in a convient store and two of my customer were in an altercation so I inserted myself in the middle and broke the fight up.
3.
Inmate beating on the door. I went and talked to the inmate to find out exactly what the problem was. It was another inmate bothering him. So we were able to move the inmate to a different cell and he was content.
4.
Between my friend and his girlfriend. I separated the two from each other an talked it out.
5.
Two friends of mine were arguing over a woman that they were both romantically involved with. I persuaded them both that they should be concerned with the fact that she was cheating on both of them rather than attacking each other. It did not get rid of the underlying issue, but it de-escalated the current situation.
Question 4 of 37
Why do you want a position as a correction officer?
Professional answer
I started my education in Criminology because I initially wanted to become a police officer. When I was in post-secondary studies, I learned more about the career path of a correction officer. I prefer the idea of working with inmates rather than being on the street trying to catch the criminals.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Because I worked for a short time with juveniles and I did a really good job. I enjoyed the job very much and found satisfaction in seeing my work help these girls in a positive manner.
2.
It is a permanent job with no layoffs, pays great, offers promotions, it is a challenge to work, deal with those who have already been sentenced by the courts, the challenge of encouragement, being watchful in preventing and reporting any threats of violence, escapes, etc...
3.
I am dedicated, trustworthy, able to work under pressure with people management. I have ability to manage comflict.
4.
Because I think that its a great experience before I choose to futher my education in criminal justice.
5.
I want to be ale to contribute to the rehabilitaing of inmates and give back to the community.
Question 5 of 37
Tell me about yourself.
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I have been with my husband for 25 years and we have 4 daughters. I love the study of Buddhism and enjoy gardening and animal husbandry.
2.
I am a good American, enjoy taking a class or two to better myself, daily be aware, through current events, i. E. The news... Regarding my country U.S.A. And continuously look for ways to serve and protect it, I like learning about God's Word, how to treat and care about others, how to help my fellowman.
3.
Tolerant person who believe in changing ones life. I have relevant qualification and experience to manage offender. I am good at people with goal to achieve the desired goal.
4.
I am 32 years old and am a security supervisor presently. I have 6 years as a non supervisor in security with armed and unarmed security services. Each security job had its customer service end to it. As a supervisor it was all about the customer. I also have 9 years experience as a cna. I have learned a great deal of compassion, pride and other things.
5.
I am originally from the south I was raised in Arkansas joined the Army right out of high school to serve my country and to have done something that is meaningful to me and something I can look back at in life and be proud of it and as well to help pay for my education I am a hard work I was a chicken farmer with my father and mother for Tyson Foods it was a hard labor job that constantly have us working out through the day into night I am a quick learner I learn on the go and adapt well to change I am easy going I get along with everybody I meet I have good communication skills I make sure I am being understood and also clarify with people if I am not fully understand what they are saying so there wont be no confusion later down the line of duty.
Question 6 of 37
What do you fear will be your potential weaknesses as a correction officer inside our prison?
Professional answer
I'm very good at getting inmates to comply. A lot of the time, I can de-escalate the situation before it gets physical. But I'm not as experienced in dealing with inmates once the situation gets escalated into a physical alteration. I'm taking martial arts classes now to help me learn how to contain the inmate without causing injury.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Being able to trust my fellow officer, until I see that he/she is not a threat to me, other fellow officers... For me to become strong in that area, I must see proof of trust.
2.
Being too emotional for offenders who don't have visits.
3.
I do not have a fear of any weaknesses.
4.
Perhaps my size, inmates may try to target me simply because I am smaller than the average officer.
5.
I am a very honest person and sometimes that can come off as rude. It is important to be respectful and to not cause confrontations even if it is unintentional.
Question 7 of 37
Rate your communication skills from 1-10 with proper examples backing your given rating.
Question 8 of 37
How would you address the issue of a subordinate who is consistently late for their shift?
Question 9 of 37
How would you handle an inmate who constantly yelled at you and said extremely derogatory things to you?
Question 10 of 37
Are you willing to work long hours, on a variety of different shifts, with a limited amount of notice?
Question 11 of 37
If you saw another correctional officer doing something inappropriate, how would you handle the situation?
Question 12 of 37
How has your education prepared you for your career?
Question 13 of 37
Tell me about a time there was a serious conflict. How did you resolve it?
Question 14 of 37
What part of this career brings you the most stress?
Question 15 of 37
How do you determine priorities when you have multiple projects due?
Question 16 of 37
What are your salary expectations?
Question 17 of 37
How have you had to adapt your work style to fit the team's objectives?
Question 18 of 37
How do you develop trust among your team members in a virtual setting?
Question 19 of 37
Do you prefer doing work on a routine day-to-day basis or do you prefer mixing up your routine occasionally?
Question 20 of 37
When have you shown great integrity at work?
Question 21 of 37
What is the most challenging problem you have encountered in your professional career?
Question 22 of 37
How do you handle a difficult problem you must solve, where you are unsure of the answer.
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I often use my spiritual teachings to guide me through difficult times.
2.
If the problem is beyond my control, I pray to God who helps me, turn to others that I trust for advice, not give up until I have solved the problem, similar to working a math problem in algebra.
3.
Evaluate the situation an look for answers.
4.
I look for advice and try to tap into my previous life experiences.
5.
I consider every advance available, even those that do not seem possible. I will attempt everything once, and if I get results in some form, I will attempt it again.
Question 23 of 37
What would you do if your commanding officer was taken hostage, inside the prison, by inmates?
Professional answer
According to my training, in this situation, I'm supposed to [actions and procedures] in order to ensure [an outcome, e.g. the officer is safe] without [conditions, e.g. 'endangering either officer or inmate safety'].
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I would contact the FBI before doing anything.
2.
I would have to disobey because we promise during the hiring process, that we can be taken hostage, that law enforcement, higher officials, etc..., will do everything possible to obtain our freedom.
3.
Assess the situation and try to save his life as far as possible.
4.
I would comply with my commanding officers orders.
5.
I would not follow those orders. By doing so, that could put a lot more peoples lives in jeopardy.
Question 24 of 37
Tell me about a time when it was better to be agreeable in a situation, rather than continue the argument.
Professional answer
One time, an inmate was breaking a minor rule and I drew his attention to that fact. He grew very frustrated and began shouting and he got very close to me and the situation escalated. I could've made the situation worse by physically containing the inmate, but instead I verbally de-escalated the situation by [technique]. I showed the inmate that I have my eye on him and that I'm the one in control. At the same time, I showed him that I respected his dignity, and that made it easier to gain his compliance in the long run.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Any time the argument is about something from the past. There is no sense in arguing over something that you cant go back and change, its better to go forward and make sure you learn from your mistakes.
2.
When an officer is not making sense, i. E. Will free a notorious inmate and write a book, to become famous... I will pretend to be agreeable, but will report this as soon as possible to higher authority.
3.
When my head was rotating me in any given time he want.
4.
When it came to cleaning the pod area.
5.
Nearly every time I have ever argued with my father. Even if you know you are right, sometimes its more efficient to let the other person get the last word.
Question 25 of 37
Tell me about a time when you showed your superior officer that you are trustworthy, and responsible.
Professional answer
One time, I caught an inmate smuggling contraband by hiding objects under a loose tile. This area wasn't covered by the cameras. The inmate observed that I saw him and approached me and offered me a substantial bribe to turn a blind eye. I told the inmate that I would think about it and immediately reported to the captain.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
My neighbor asked me to watch her 2 sons with down syndrome while she had to go out of state for a funeral.
2.
I showed great trustworthy and responsibility when a famous person would arrive to visit prisoners, informed to not allow anyone without clearance first, to be extra cautious regarding trusties (inmates) at the front gate, in the middle of media people and excited visitors, be extra careful to not jeopardize the security of the institution.
3.
When still heading finance office the supply was coming with tempting offer but I decline based on ethics.
4.
By handling confidential information about an inmate.
5.
Even thought my current job description doesn't require me to assist with these events, when people are injured at MTD, I normally step in to help where I can. This happens frequently.
Question 26 of 37
Have you ever faced a company policy you disagreed with, but had to enforce anyway?
Professional answer
What I've come to understand is that policies aren't up to me to decide, and that as a CO, my job is to enforce whatever policies are in place. I may disagree with policies that endanger officer safety and I tell my commanding officer about those. But at the end of the day, there are people up the chain of command who have more information than I do, a wider broader view. So I have to trust that they're making the best decisions that they can given the constraints they have. No matter what I think, it's my sworn duty to uphold and enforce the laws and regulations that we have on the books.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Close company and did all the unfinished work while more work was coming in.
2.
Yes. My former employer had a room that the kids had to go into as punishment if they acted up. The room was like a small closet with nothing in it and it locked. I didn't feel it was right but had to enforce it any way.
3.
Oh yes, continued to secure the main entrance... I did not agree with the policy, i. E., using a chain which really would not prevent an intruder to enter, but was able to change it when explaining why to the company's security personnel.
4.
Yes, transferring male offender alone with a driver as there was shortage of officials.
5.
No. I always try to find the right and reason with the policy and just know that there is a reason for the policy.
Question 27 of 37
Have you ever worked in a stressful environment? How did you handle it?
Professional answer
I don't let the stress get carried away and limit it by focusing on what I can observe and not imagining things. I focus on the present moment. When I get out of work, I have a daily routine that helps me unwind. And when it's my first day off, I make sure I get plenty of rest and have some fun with my family and friends.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Yes, I have worked in a stressful environment. I handled it through regular exercise, eating healthy and sleeping the amount of hours that my body requires, sought counseling if need be.
2.
Working alone in finance while the clerks couldn't handle pressure, Iuse time management skills and plan my day based on the most important tasks.
3.
Yes. I had no problems. I dont lose my cool easily.
4.
I currently work in a potentially stressful environment every day I go into work. One moment I'm filing accident reports, and then I am pressing gauze down on a dismembered finger to slow the bleeding. I have to be calm, cool, and collect for my co-workers, myself, and the people we are assisting.
5.
Basic training was a stressful environment til I adapt to it when I was in Afghanistan doing patrols through villages looking for Improvised explosive devices that have been known to be in the village we are patrolling was stressful not knowing when one would go off on you as well as capturing high value targets knowing things can get chaotic in a few seconds.
Question 28 of 37
Why are you the best suited person for this job?
Professional answer
I have a lot of experience with verbal de-escalation and am very good at getting inmates to comply, which reduces the likelihood of physical altercations. This drastically increases officer safety and maintains order because inmates are more likely to misbehave when they see other inmates being disorderly.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I have an associates degree and spent two solid years learning about criminology from some of the best professors. I can handle stressful situations very well and solve problems all while deescalating the situation.
2.
I am best suited for this job because I am disciplined, will listen to and obey my superiors, asks questions if there is something that I do not understand, desire to promote in this job, am able to make good decisions during any emergency.
3.
I meet all requirement as stipulated and a hard worker who handle pressure and understand prescribed policies.
4.
Because im reliable and dependable. And I bring experience and determination.
5.
Passion. Ever since grade school, I have had an incredible drive to pursue a career in law enforcement. I believe that I can perform any task that is set upon me to the best of my ability, and I can constantly improve.
Question 29 of 37
Describe a situation in which you supervised a large group of individuals. What specific steps did you take to ensure that all individuals in your group completed scheduled activities?
Professional answer
Although I have not yet led a group of people in my role as a correction officer, I do stand as a leader in my church and volunteer community. We hold multiple fundraisers annually and I have led those initiatives for the past 5 years. I think that the specifics necessary on a group project include clear communication, consistency, and a strong leader. I provide all of these things and look forward to working my way into a leadership position at your facility.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I maintain a professional attitude, use encouragement and explain why the type of action is to be completed, try to be fair with each one in the group, listen to their concerns, offer to bring up the issues to my superiors.
2.
Motivation and support system through being part of the team to complete the tasks.
3.
Supervised 100+ inmates. I assigned each individual a task and a time frame and I constantly checked on them to make sure it was being completed.
4.
On the nights that we serve food to the different lines at MTD, we will cook hamburgers or BBQ and serve it to them during lunch break. We have to make sure that everyone is getting the same amount before people can come back for seconds, to ensure that everyone has enough and we do not run out.
5.
I not only I was charge of my squad since the squad leaders had a meeting with the first Sargent I was in charge of another squad since their team leader was absence for the day I made sure we did a training session so everybody can brush up on the skills they need to do for there position in that squad.
Question 30 of 37
What role do you believe a correction officer plays in preventing contraband in the prison?
Professional answer
The prevention of contraband in a prison is 100% the responsibility of the facility staff. My role as a correction officer is to ensure that regulations are followed while maintaining the safety of fellow officers and the inmates.
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User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
It is the officers job to continuously check for contraband and to keep it out of the jail.
2.
The role is serious, very serious... continuous observation, who, what, when, where, how... Pat search the inmates' persons, regular cell searches, know those inmates under your supervision; being observant of prisoners' visitors, conducting the appropriate searches as instructed in our rule book, reporting to higher authority any suspicious activities...
3.
I see the officers playing a direct role in preventing it from entering the facility. As far as I can tell, the only way that contraband could enter the prison is if an officer or staff brought it inside.
4.
Searching inmates cells as well as patting down the inmates.
5.
Outside of the facillity itsself they are the number one deterant. I havea brother in law who is a co who currently has an inncodent where a fellow co brought in contraband to an inmate and it resulted in an inncodent. So I hwould have zero tolerance for any \co who did this.
Question 31 of 37
Do you have a problem with authority?
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I never have a problem with authority because I know that they big responsibility. If a police officer tells me to do something, i. E. Traffic stop. I do what he/she instructs me to do. I try to look at the good in those who have authority, know they are trying to do their job to the best of their ability.
2.
No. I have always respected and followed authority.
3.
No, I believe it is necessary in most situations, especially a prison.
4.
I have nothing but respect for them.
5.
No, I respect authority and obey any orders given to me from someone higher up.
Question 32 of 37
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
Making videos on spiritualism, cooking and animals.
2.
I love to relax by drawing cartoons, exercise on my trampoline, take a class or two, watching the latest news, local and national, taking care of my pets.
3.
I enjoy exercising and fishing.
4.
In my spare time, I enjoy video games and other electronic entertainment. It is a great stress reliever, helps me further develop communication skills, as well as problem solving.
5.
Because family is so important to me, and the years seem to be flying by, I enjoy our family outings. We like to go to Provincial Parks and go for walks on the trails or play sports. I also like to workout and go for jogs. I do my best to live a healthy lifestyle and I find it also gives me more energy during the day. I also like to volunteer. I currently volunteer with a local Search and Rescue group and find great joy in that. I like to give back to my community.
Question 33 of 37
Why did you leave your previous employer?
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I never wanted to leave because I loved my job; I was injured severely, which resulted that I could no longer be effective on my job.
2.
I have the vision to drive your department to higher level.
3.
I wasnt getting enough hours.
4.
I am still currently employed at MTD and I will stay employed through them as well as this job, should I get it. My hours at MTD are extremely flexible.
5.
I had completed my 3 and a half year active duty contract and was honorably discharged.
Question 34 of 37
What makes you angry?
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
It takes alot to make me angry and when I do, I am very good at controlling my anger so that it isnt an issue.
2.
When someone disrespects a woman in front of me.
3.
Seeing people who aren't loyal and honest people who lie to get ahead in their career who talk down on people to others to make themselves look better.
4.
Things I cant control, people who are inconsiterate, and selfishness.
5.
People who chew food with their mouths open.
Question 35 of 37
How do you resolve a disagreement with someone?
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
By asking to speak alone with them at a time when we are both calmed down. I ask them what their feeling and how we could find a resolution to our disagreement.
2.
Try to understand his side of story and agree to disagree in good spirit.
3.
I try to talk it out with the person and see if we can get to the root cause of the problem.
4.
I attempt to find alternate solutions to the current problem, or a resolution that we can both agree on.
5.
I talk to the and let the m know my opinion and resources so they too can know themsleves.
Question 36 of 37
Tell me about a time when you went above and beyond your job duties.
User Submitted Interview Answers
1.
I often worked double shifts when co workers could not make it in for their shifts.
2.
Starting my day as early as 4 in the morning and leave the office after hours in order to capture budget and allocate it accordingly.
3.
Several times when I had to complete a report. The supervisor told me I could just finish it the next day but I always wanted to stay and finish it after my shift even though I wasnt getting compensated for it.
4.
One night we had a woman stop breathing in the middle of the office, she collapsed on the floor and went limp. Everyone was trying to call 9-11, and I got down and began CPR. Nothing in my job description mandates that I'm required to do that, but there is simply a moral implication there as a person who knows CPR and someone just passed out in front of you and stopped breathing.
5.
There was a time I trained new soldiers on combat life saving skills even though medics are suppose to train and set up a class for that I helped the new soldiers get a head start on what to know when the combat life saving course comes up they can already be ready to pass the course and help pass the knowledge down to others as they progress into their Army career.
Question 37 of 37
When have you had to be extra thorough in completing tasks?
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