How to Become a 911 Dispatcher
If you’re looking for a career that’s both exciting and challenging, a public safety dispatcher job may be right for you. Dispatchers work around the clock to help people in need. They make quick decisions that impact lives and help communities thrive.
If this sounds like the perfect job for you, the next step is to pass the CritiCall test and get hired as a dispatcher! The test consists of various types of questions and will assess your skills in several areas.
Typing & Speed
The average typing speed for a 911 dispatcher is 40 words per minute. Having a faster typing speed allows dispatchers to answer calls more quickly and accurately, which can be especially important in emergencies.
It’s also important to practice your typing regularly in order to improve your accuracy and speed. You can do this by using typing programs that offer realistic feedback on your speed and accuracy.
Practicing typing regularly will also allow you to master the correct finger position and speed for your specific keyboard. A good typing program will also include interactive learning tools that will keep you motivated and practicing.
Listening Comprehension & Deductive Reasoning
If you’re applying to a public safety dispatcher job, it’s likely that one or more listening comprehension tests will be administered during the selection process. These tests measure how well you can follow a series of steps and answers questions in the correct order.
Deductive reasoning is an essential skill for dispatchers because it allows them to make critical decisions based on information presented to them. It can be particularly challenging, as it requires candidates to analyze and understand a variety of situations before making a judgment.
Dispatchers often need to read maps when they’re dealing with emergency situations. They may need to determine the fastest and most direct route for an ambulance to reach an accident scene, for example. This can be especially difficult if the area is rural or lacks public transportation.
Writing & Communication
The ability to communicate clearly and professionally is an essential part of being a 911 dispatcher. This includes knowing how to use proper grammar, spelling and punctuation. It’s also important to know how to write reports and logs, which can be used as documentation for incidents.
It’s vital to learn how to type accurately and quickly, because mistakes could lead to life-threatening consequences. If you’re applying for a 911 dispatcher job, it’s important to practice your typing frequently in order to improve your accuracy and speed.
You can do this by using typing programs that allow you to practice with real-time feedback on your accuracy and speed. These programs also usually include other features, such as a timer and callback function, to ensure that you’re not wasting any valuable testing time.
If you’re considering becoming a dispatcher, it’s important to know how fast you can type so that you don’t waste any of your time on the actual testing process. You should try to achieve a typing speed of at least 35 words per minute, which is the average for most public safety dispatcher jobs in the United States and Canada.