911 Dispatcher Test Prep: Practice Tests & Tips
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Here is a detailed overview of each type of test you are about to take. Let's start with the Dispatcher Test, which is administered in most U.S. states and Canada.

The 911 Dispatcher Test

The 911 operator exam is designed to evaluate multiple metrics, related to successful performance as a dispatcher. The 911 dispatcher test is comprised of a written test and occasionally a typing test. The test contains a variety of questions and topics, which we will further elaborate on below.

Dispatcher exams are used across the US, including New York (Police Communications Technician Exam), California (POST Dispatcher Test), Georgia, Illinois, Texas, Connecticut, and more. Note that the Dispatcher test sections may vary slightly between states (and countries) and you won't be tested on all of them on your test day.

To help you prepare, JobTestPrep has created a customized preparation package specifically suited for your needs. 

But first, here is some info on each of the things a good Dispatcher needs:


There is a lot of memorization involved in being a dispatcher. You must be able to remember codes and the emergencies they correlate to, while also keeping in mind who you're speaking with, as this varies depending on the caller (victim, police units, medical responders, etc.).

Spatial Orientation

You must understand where the caller is calling from and know which units are available and closest to the scene. Additionally, you need to be able to read a map.

Personality Test

The personality test assesses how you interact with callers and how you manage the stress of emergencies. During such times, it is crucial to stay calm and collected, despite the circumstances, as you are viewed as the lifeline between callers and emergency responders.

Data Entry

You input a lot of data as a dispatcher. Some entries might include the caller’s name, the location of the incident, and the type and severity of the emergency.

Attention to Accuracy

Being detail-oriented is a crucial aspect of this job. If you enter data incorrectly, it could send emergency responders to the wrong location. Such a mistake could have devastating results.

Inductive/Deductive Reasoning

In this field, there is no such thing as a "standard emergency." 911 dispatchers must have excellent inductive and deductive reasoning skills to make the quick and calculated decisions that help save people's lives.

Reading Comprehension

Your training period, demands a tremendous amount of reading. Your ability to comprehend those materials will impact your success on the 911 Dispatcher exam. Moreover, beyond passing the exam, your daily workload will demand reading reports in the form of notes, data entry, and other sources from which you obtain information.


Dispatcher Job Titles

The 911 dispatcher job title has numerous names. Nevertheless, they all require taking a similar dispatcher skills test.

These are some of the most common job titles:

  • 911 Operator
  • Public Safety Telecommunicator
  • Communications Operator
  • Emergency Dispatcher
  • Police Dispatcher
  • Fire Dispatcher
  • Emergency Medical Dispatcher

If you're interested in one of the above positions - continue with our PrepPack™.

911 Dispatcher Test Sample Question

Get a taste of the real thing with this sample question (taken from the complete PrepPack™):

Question: A happy camper at campsite 44 is looking at campsite 1. In which direction is she looking?

911 Dispatcher Test


Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

Correct! She is looking East.

Have you noticed how long it took you to locate the correct campsite and answer the question? Because on the real test, you'll be very short on time.

In the complete Dispatcher PrepPack™, every practice question is coupled with a detailed explanation, providing the quickest and simplest solving method.

Here's a review sent by one of our satisfied customers:

Nicco K. - 911 Dispatcher

Excellent Prep Tool for 911 Dispatcher. This job prep test was an absolute benefit to prepare me for the Criticall exam for 911 Communications Operator for RCMP. It is very similar to the real test. Well worth the purchase.


Ready to Practice for the Dispatcher Test? Let's go!

Ace the Dispatcher test with our exclusive PrepPack™ for only $89

Now, we'll guide you through the most common test type that dispatcher candidates take:

The Criticall Test

The Criticall test is a computer-based assessment used to ensure applicants possess the necessary skills to perform all the required duties for 911 dispatcher/call handler role.

The test itself is divided into several different sections, each assessing a specific skill. Many of the test subjects mimic the actual tasks you'll encounter on the daily Dispatcher job.

To become eligible for a 911 dispatcher role, you'll need to pass each section of the test with flying colors.

Watch the short video below to learn more about the Criticall test and to try some nifty sample questions:


00:00- introduction. 
00:30- What is the Criticall test? 
00:58- Test sections.
01:55- Sample questions.
04:36- How to prepare for it? 

As you've seen in this video, the test consists of unique and complicated question types. And to pass it, you'll need to have sharp skills and senses.

To ensure you take the test in your best mental shape, we've created a proven preparation for every section of the Criticall test.

Here's a review sent by one of our customers who got the Criticall test PrepPack™:

Jessica C. - Verified Buyer

Got the job! Job prep was worth every penny! It was my second time around testing because the first time I had no idea what I was walking into. After some research I decided on job prep for my next criticall test and it paid off! I highly recommend job prep!


Ready to Practice for the CritiCall Test? Let's go!

Ace the CritiCall test with our exclusive PrepPack™ for only $89

As part of your recruitment process, you will also attend at least one interview. Here are examples of questions you can expect in the Dispatcher interview:

911 Dispatcher Interview Questions

  • How do you understand the job's expectations and what do I think the job entails?
  • This job is highly intensive, and requires both multi-tasking and the ability to perform under pressure with a high volume of calls--do you have any experience with these aspects of a job and do you feel comfortable with it?

  • How would I respond to a call from someone who is using strong profanity?
  • How would I rank the priority of three incidents called in which require police response?
  • What skills do I possess that could help me succeed in this job?
  • What is my favorite and least favorite part of my current job?

If you feel insecure regarding your interview skills - take advantage of our Interview PrepPack™ and impress your interviewer with flawless answers.

Dispatcher Exam FAQs

What to Expect on a Dispatcher Test?

The 911 Dispatcher test has more than a dozen of test sections that evaluate four different areas of aptitude. The tests include typing, listening, reading, setting priorities, speech recognition, memory, spatial orientation, and more.

How Long Does the Dispatcher Test Take?

The 911 Dispatcher test takes about 2½ to 3 hours to complete, including a short 10 minutes break.

How to Study for the 911 Dispatcher Test?

The best way to study for the Dispatcher test is by practicing the same question types you'll face on the real test together with the same tight time limits. This will ensure you know how to work fast while making as few mistakes as possible.

What Is a Public Safety Dispatcher?

A public safety dispatcher is a police dispatcher, a fire dispatcher, or an emergency medical dispatcher.

What Is a Good Score on the CritiCall Test?

A score of 90 or higher is considered to be excellent.

Is the 911 Dispatcher Test Hard?

The 911 Dispatcher test can be tough since you'll face unusual question types and you'll need to perform quickly and accurately under time pressure.

How Fast Do You Have to Type to Be a Dispatcher?

The minimum typing speed required from a 911 Dispatcher is 30 to 45 WPM (Words Per Minute). This skill, like any other skill required on the Dispatcher test, can be developed and improved through practice.

Dispatcher Exam Preparation

Whether you're going to take the CritiCall test or a Dispatcher test you're unfamiliar with - JobTestPrep's customized practice packs will help you succeed on these tests and place you at the top of the candidates' list. 

Now You're Ready to Start!

Choose Your PrepPack™ and Ace the Test!

  • All the practice tests you need to get ready - mapping, reading, listening, typing, problem-solving, personality tests & many more!
  • Dozens of prep exercises designed to sharpen any Dispatcher skill needed to pass the test (exclusive to JobTestPrep)
  • Multiple study guides and detailed explanations that will make your learning process as easy and smooth as possible
  • 24/7 Customer Support & Money-Back Guarantee!


Three Months Access, One-Off Payment

  • Prep materials simulating the actual CritiCall test experience (including multitasking tests, decision-making, assigning field units & more)
  • Practice Tests and study guides exclusive to the CritiCall Test - everything you need to ace it!
  • Extra drills to help you dominate every test topic, including data entry, oral comprehension, cross-referencing, memory recall tests, map reading, and spatial orientation
  • 24/7 Customer Support & Money-Back Guarantee!


Three Months Access, One-Off Payment

911 Dispatcher, CritiCall test, and other trademarks are the property of their respective trademark holders. None of the trademark holders are affiliated with JobTestPrep or this website.
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