How to Become an FBI Agent

Whether it’s as a support staff member, laboratory researcher, engineer, or a Special Agent working anti-terrorist activities in the field, there are countless ways a person with the right qualifications can serve the Federal Bureau of Investigation to protect innocent people from the worst criminals and threats to our national security. is pleased to provide you with a complete list of resources and informative pages on the requirements to become an FBI Agent, and the various career paths available to those who seek this form of federal service.

The FBI Family

The FBI is a family who are dedicated to the defense and security of the American public. In the past 16 years, the Bureau’s activities have become heavily focused on anti-terrorist activities. However, they also hunt federal criminals who commit the worst of crimes—mass murderers, serial killers, kidnappers, drug cartels sex criminals and those who engage in human trafficking.

The job of working for the FBI is unlike any other career. Staff and agents working for the Bureau are the most dedicated and honorable people out there, and are willing to put their lives on the line every day for the safety and security of the American people.
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An Investigative Hub

FBI Agents work in close proximity with all of the other federal agencies, including the National Security Administration (NSA), Homeland Security (DHS), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Department of Defense (DOD) among others. FBI agents work both at home and overseas, helping to coordinate anti-terror operations and acting as a central research and information hub for all involved agencies.

Advanced Training Facilities

The FBI training facility at the Marine Corps base in Quantico, VA, is the most advanced facility for training, research and education of its kind in the entire world. Its doors are open to police forces in many states and even to foreign partner nations, offering the best possible training to law enforcement of all stripes.

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How Do I Become an FBI Agent?

Becoming a Special Agent in the FBI is a long road and requires the deepest commitment and dedication from those who pursue this path. Applicants must fulfill a broad range of qualifications, starting with their age.

Age Requirements

To become an agent you must be between the ages of 23 and 37, and it’s not unheard of for training and qualifications to take that long.


You must possess, at minimum, a bachelor’s degree and maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0. You must also have at least three years of work experience, though advanced degrees can substitute for a year of this work experience. Many prospective agents seek education in law enforcement, criminal justice or a similar field. Foreign language fluency is also a vital skill for field agents.

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Testing and Training

Because FBI agents must be eligible for top-secret security clearance, you’ll have to go through a wide range of testing and training processes in order to be eligible to become an agent. These include criminal background checks, financial checks, face-to-face interviews, psychological evaluations, polygraph testing, drug tests, medical records, employment records and more.

Finding Programs in Your State

We are pleased to provide a comprehensive list of FBI training facilities, options and qualifications for every state in the Union. Check out our pages to learn more about joining the Bureau in your state!

FBI Career Paths

Not all of those who work for the FBI are Special Agents who work in the field. Did you know the Bureau has its own police force which protects FBI offices and bases, and has full law enforcement jurisdiction on these properties? What about the clerical staff who support organizational activities in the FBI? There are tons of different career paths you might pursue, including:

  • STEM: Science, technology, engineering and math specialists have a major responsibility in FBI research, development and analysis labs, from learning about IEDs to performing crime scene investigation tests.
  •  Accounting and Finance: Financial crimes and terrorism are major issues in the world today, and FBI accountants and finance experts battle crime on this front, shutting down terrorist financial networks wherever they’re uncovered.
  • Surveillance and Cyber Specialists: From on-the-ground surveillance to wiretapping to battling cyber-terrorists, FBI computer and technology experts are present in just about every operation.
  • Linguists and Cultural Experts: The Bureau often has to deal with representatives of other nations, from suspects to diplomats to terror operations. It’s imperative that they have cultural experts and those fluent in foreign languages as assets in these situations.

These are just a few of the many exciting career paths available to FBI agents and specialized professional staff. Check out our pages on FBI careers to learn more about other ways you can help the Bureau protect the citizens of the United States from threats both domestic and international, and start on your path to this dangerous, exciting and ultimately rewarding career today.