DEA, FBI or CIA- Which Branch Is Easier To Be Accepted Into?

A position with the DEA, FBI or CIA is highly coveted and it is an honor to be accepted into any of these faculties. The question of which bureau is easier to get into is common, but there is no clear answer. While there are some similarities for each office, what may be easier for you will usually depend on your areas of aptitude and circumstances.

Working in the DEA
To become a DEA Special Agent you must be 21 years of age and no older than 36 upon time of application. Most candidates have a bachelor’s or master’s degree in Criminal Justice or related disciplines. You are tested for acute hearing and need exceptional distance vision. After passing the multi-step application process successfully, you then have to successfully pass a 18-week Basic Agent Training program. Your final test will be a Physical Task (PT) test administered in the field. If you fail it twice, there is a good chance of your application process being discontinued.

Working with the FBI
To become an FBI agent you must be 23 years old but no older than 36. A four-year degree is necessary and you must have qualified knowledge in accounting, law, computer science/information technology or language. You also must not have any defaulted loans and be able to pass a very extensive background test. Once you’ve made it through those qualifications, you must make it through an intense 22 week training that tests your physical as well as mental strength. It is an assumption you have to be a law enforcement agent prior to applying to the FBI, but if you are able to meet these requirements, your application will be fairly considered.

Working in the CIA
The CIA focuses more on academic aptitude more than any other branch. You must have a four year degree with at least a 3.0 GPA. Your studies should be based mainly on international relations, political science, psychology or sociology and language. You will need to pass the psychological, problem solving and extensive background check to be considered for a position with the CIA. You are also required to pass a more basic Army Physical Test to move on to the more intense paramilitary training that deals with weapon and driving training as well as more physical training very similar to military training. You must be at least 18 years old and a U.S. citizen to apply.This overview of each bureau’s requirements will help you decide which station would prove the most challenging for your skill set and circumstances. If you fail to meet the initial requirements, acquire them. The CIA branch offers internal training if you meet the basic requirements but need more instruction for your desired position. There are more positions in the DEA, FBI and CIA than field positions; there are less physically rigorous positions that you can apply for as well if the physical aspect serves as an insurmountable problem for you. For even more detailed qualification requirements, visit The Federal Bureau of Investigation and The Central Intelligence Agency.