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Border Patrol Agent Interview

Structured Interview

Due to the strenuous nature of the Border Patrol Agent position, you must take and pass a structured interview (SI) in which you need to demonstrate that you possess the abilities and other characteristics important to Border Patrol Agent positions.  Among these are the competencies of judgment/decision-making, emotional maturity, interpersonal skills, and cooperativeness/sensitivity to the needs of others. 

Border Patrol Agent Structured Interview Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the Structured Interview (SI)?

The structured interview (SI) is given to candidates who have applied for entry-level BPA positions. The SI will be administered face-to-face, meaning you will be interviewed in person. You will be interviewed by three interviewers who will ask you a series questions that are designed to measure specific competencies. The interviewers will ask questions that will be in the form of hypothetical situations and will probe for additional information. After you are dismissed from the room, three trained SI interviewers will rate you on the competencies. You must pass the SI in order to continue in the hiring process.

What type of questions will be asked during the Structured Interview (SI)?

You will be given hypothetical situations and asked to describe how you would react. These situations are related to different competencies that are critical to success as a BPA. (i.e., Judgment/Decision-Making, Emotional Maturity, Interpersonal Skills, and Cooperativeness/Sensitivity to the Needs of Others).

How is the Structured Interview (SI) scored?

After you leave the room, three trained interviewers will use your responses during the interview to rate you on the following four competencies: Judgment/Decision-Making, Emotional Maturity, Interpersonal Skills, and Cooperativeness/Sensitivity to the Needs of Others. You must receive a passing rating on all four competencies in order to pass the SI. Applicants cannot appeal the SI; results are final.

Can I review the Structured Interview (SI) questions beforehand?

No, the SI questions and the rating scales are considered test material and cannot be released to candidates. You will be asked to sign a confidentiality agreement prior to beginning the interview process.

Do I need to take the Structured Interview (SI)?

All BPA job announcements include the requirement that all candidates participate and pass the SI.

How will I be notified of the Structured Interview (SI)?

Approximately 6 weeks after you are tentatively selected, you will receive a notification letter emailed to the email address you indicated at the time you submitted your application informing you of the date, time and location of your SI. You will be scheduled for the SI at the location you chose when you registered for the written test. If you have moved and have new contact information or otherwise need to request a new SI location, you must contact the Structured Interview Team at (952) 857-2907.

What should I bring to the Structured Interview (SI)?

Candidates scheduled for a SI located in a CBP facility will be required to present a valid form of identification, such as US Passport, military ID, veterans ID or a REAL ID compliant state issued driver’s license. Please check the Secure Driver's Licenses page on DHS.gov to see if your state is compliant. You will not be given a SI without valid photo ID.

How do most applicants dress for the Structured Interview?

Although there are no absolute dress attire requirements when taking the SI, we can tell you your SI will be conducted by a panel of trained Border Patrol Agents. The SI will be in a professional office environment where employees are either in uniform or professional attire. Most candidates tend to dress in business attire (e.g., a suit); however, you will not be rated based on your attire. Use your best judgment.

What if I cannot attend the Structured Interview (SI) on the date scheduled for me?

You may call the Structured Interview Team at (952) 857-2907 to request a reschedule. Candidates are allowed one reschedule and will only be granted under extenuating circumstances. You will be notified of the scheduled SI at least 2 weeks in advance to enable you to make arrangements to attend. Failure to attend a rescheduled SI will result in your removal from the hiring process and you will be required to reapply during the next vacancy announcement.

How will I know if I passed or failed the Structured Interview (SI)?

The SI results are sent to the Structured Interview Team at the Minneapolis Hiring Center. The Structured Interview Team will send you an email with your "Notice of Results." This "Notice of Results" will indicate either an eligible (pass) or ineligible (fail).

Can you tell me which part of the SI I did not successfully pass?

The Minneapolis Hiring Center cannot give more detailed information about your responses to the SI. To do so would compromise the integrity of the testing process. The success of the testing process is dependent on applicants giving honest responses to situational questions. If applicants were to modify their answers in response to specific feedback, the integrity of the testing process would be harmed.

How long are the SI results good for?

The SI results are good for 3 years if you were rated eligible. If you received a rating of ineligible, you cannot be considered for a Border Patrol Agent for six months from the date of the SI. If you have additional questions in regards to the SI process, contact us at our e-mail address of CBPHiringSI@cbp.dhs.gov. You may call during normal business hours at (952) 857-2907. Because of the volume of inquiries received, you may have to leave a message and wait for a return call, so we strongly encourage you to contact us via e-mail.

What is the contact information for the Structured Interview Unit?

Phone:  (952) 857-2907

Fax:  (952) 857-2000

Email:  CBPHiringSI@cbp.dhs.gov

Last modified: 
Wednesday, January 25, 2017 - 14:02
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