How to Become a Private Investigator

In order to become a private investigator, you will have to go through a certain amount of education and training. Here are the basics of how to become a private investigator successfully.


There is not a specific educational path required to become a private investigator. Private investigators come from every educational background that you can imagine. However, you will first need to start out by getting a high school diploma. After that, you could potentially apply for a job as a private investigator. However, if you want to increase your odds of success, you should go after a bachelor's degree first. Many private investigators obtain a bachelor's degree in some type of behavioral science or criminal justice. If you can go even further and get a master's degree in one of these disciplines, that will increase your future chances of employment.

There are many different skills that you will need to acquire in order to become a private investigator. You will want to make sure that you become very proficient with computers. Much of the work that modern private investigators do is on the computer. You will be doing online background searches and recovering deleted e-mails, for example. Therefore, you should take as many computer classes as possible in order to prepare for your job as a private investigator.

You will also want to make sure that you become proficient at writing. Taking writing courses can help you improve your writing ability, which is a vital trait to private investigators. You will typically have to write detailed reports on your findings and investigations.

Detective School

There are a number of different programs that you may choose to attend that will teach you how to be a private investigator. These are typically private schools that will give you a broad view of what it takes to become a private eye. They will teach you everything from surveillance to document recovery. This type of school is not a requirement, but it will help your chances of finding work in the industry.


Depending on which state you live in, you may have to obtain a license in order to practice as a private investigator. Check with your state laws to determine whether or not you have to become certified. If you do have to become licensed, you will typically have to take a basic test.

Finding Work

Once you have finished your necessary training, you could apply for a job with a private investigator service. You may also decide to start your own business as a private investigator.

Finding a Job

If you are currently looking for a position as a private investigator, you will want to check out This will provide you with a good place to access current job listings and important information for job seekers.