(12hr) Training



This course is for:


Please contact us if you do not know what course you need to take.

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Video Length: 5 minutes

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This course is intended to provide a comprehensive training/educational pathway for private detective practitioners, public law enforcement officers who work private investigations part time, all those who are instructors of private detectives, and those who seek new careers or promotion in the field of Private Investigations.  Special attention was devoted during the preparation of this curriculum to assure that it contains all of the required topics set out by Rule 7506 and Minnesota Statute Chapter 326 regarding certified training of Private Detectives.


1. This course is designed to meet or exceed the requirements of the Minnesota State Board of Private Detectives and Protective Agents for mandatory pre-assignment training of private detectives and for continuing education credits for private investigation practitioners.  It is intended that the same material used to teach the 12 hour requirements shall be used to teach the 6 hour requirements.

2. This course is also designed for public law enforcement officials who perform private detective services or who own private detective companies or who teach private detectives.  It is intended that this course will meet or exceed the requirements of the POST Board for licensed public law enforcement officer POST credits.

3. This course will be of interest to private detective company owners, managers and authorized representatives as well as the employees who work for these companies.


The following list of topics will be addressed in this course:

Lesson 1

Private Detective Overview


This opening session is a fast-paced overview of 26 topics that introduce the subject matter of private investigations.  It starts with relevant definitions and includes a look at the goals of investigations, the philosophy of investigations, an extensive list of services provided by private detectives, a comparison of “color-of-law” with “color-of-rule”, the generic job description of a private detective, and many more foundational concepts.  This section ends with examples of the limits of private investigations controlled by law.  Numerous case histories will be discussed.

Legal Authority & Liability Issues


This vitally important segment, concentrates on both civil law and criminal law that impacts the work of the private detective.  It includes all of the elements requested by the State Licensing Board and much more.  The statute law and case law studied here provide the basis for a clear understanding of the guidelines and limits of the private detective.  The examination of the Buswell case is one thing students will not want to miss.  Issues such as use of force, vicarious liability, reasonable expectation of privacy, rules of evidence, and private detective liability generators are essentials for anyone working in this industry to understand.  Obviously, no one wants to get sued or arrested for doing what they do in their life’s work.  This session on legal aspects may go a long way towards preventing your next run-in with Civil or Criminal Law.


In addition to the above, there is a very important segment in this study on sexual harassment.  The message here is to both genders to keep their sexual interests to activities outside the workplace.  This session is a must see for practicing private detectives who work in male-female mixed teams.

Lesson 2

Verbal Communications


From time to time the private detective finds himself or herself in situations where the best skill to use is their verbal skills.  In this session we will examine a hostility analysis, discuss controlling front line rage, review verbal de-escalation and identify positive attitudes towards interpersonal communications.


It could be said that information gathering is 95% of what the private detective does.  Much of the information that private detectives gather is through communicating with others.  This session will explain the difference between interrogation & interviewing

It will examine legitimate interrogation techniques, prerequisites to successful interviews and interviewing techniques, and methods of obtaining a valid confession.


The final step to any investigation or gathering of information is to package that information in such a way that your client will be willing to pay you for it.  It will be stressed that if a private detective is to stay in business that detective must have something to sell.  Information is what he has to sell and the packaging of that information is what makes the client want to pay the bills.  Many times that package of information is delivered in court. Thus, a short segment addresses proper courtroom testimony and how to sell your package to a panel of jurors.

Written Communications


Once we have explained how important information gathering is to the private detective, it is vital that the detective be able to put that information into proper written form.  Putting that report together requires good note taking and then accurate transfer of information from notes to the final report.  In this session we discuss the value of field notes, effective note taking, the six essential ingredients of report writing, the characteristics of a well-written report.  Next we have a short discussion regarding the fact that anything the detective writes down may be used in a law suit by either side in a dispute.  The detective must be careful that what is written down doesn’t come back later to haunt them.

Body Language


Wouldn’t it be nice to know when someone is lying to you?  Well, you can’t!  But the next best thing is reading that person’s common body language which in many cases speaks louder than words.  Using real examples, we will study kinesics, proxemics, facial expressions, physical symptoms and paralanguage.

Lesson 3



The person who walks the thin line between unethical behavior and illegal behavior, will ultimately fall off that line on the side of illegal behavior.  In this session we will discuss  ethics & professionalism, the influence of personal ethics on bias, prejudice, & discrimination, and sexual harassment in the workplace as ethical impropriety.  We will examine numerous codes of ethics, discuss application of ethics on the job, examine ethics with respect to reasonable & necessary use of force and discuss ethics with regards to invasion of privacy.

Minnesota Private Detective Related Statutes & Administrative Rules


In this session we will closely examine state regulatory statutes, state regulatory rules and qualifications and requirements for licensing.  We will study how these new laws effect public law enforcement officials as well.  This study will introduce the student to numerous Minnesota Statutes that impact their work such as:  169.64 Prohibited Lights, Exceptions, 169.98  Police, Patrol, Or Security Guard Vehicle, 326.32 To 326.339, Private Detectives & Protective Agents, 626.88 Uniforms, Peace Officers, Security Guards, Color, 629.30 Arrests, By Whom Made, Aiding Officer, 629.336 Theft In Business Establishments, Detaining Suspects, 629.36 Permitting Bystander To Deliver The Arrested Person, 629.37 When A Private Person May Make An Arrest, 629.38 Requiring A Private Person To Disclose Cause Of Arrest, 629.39 Requiring Private Person Making Arrest To Deliver Arrestee To Judge Or Peace Officer, 629.401 Delaying To Take Prisoner Before Judge, 629.403  Prohibiting Refusal To Aid Officer To Make An Arrest, 629.63 Conditions Under Which Surety (Bounty Hunter) May Arrest Defendant.

Lesson 4

Incident/Situation Assessment


The security officer and private detective share a common problem-personal safety.  In as much as most of us are unarmed, and many of us do not even carry a set of handcuffs, we have a considerable disadvantage in conflict resolution situations.  This session has the potential to save someone’s life or at least reduce the probability of a serious injury.  In this session we will discover priority interests in terms of officer safety, we will review the ten fatal errors officers make and identify the “red flags” to watch out for.  In addition we will review the awareness color chart, explain the “tachy-psyche effect”, explain the “fight-flee-flow” response, and examine the “control formula”.


The important part of covert surveillance is that it remains covert so that the subject does not turn around and pursue the pursuer.  It is essential for the detective to do the following: 1.) identify reasons for surveillance before commencing surveillance, 2.) conduct the proper preparation for surveillance, 3.) understand what covert undercover investigations are all about, including tactics of undercover investigators, 4.) understand the difference between stationary and moving surveillance, 5.) understand the danger of undercover investigations, and 6.) be able to identify common mistakes in maintaining surveillance.  Abuses of surveillance and consequences for abusing this tactic will also be discussed.


Once again we visit information gathering but this time from a very specific perspective.  In this session we will take a look at government sources of information, court record sources of information, books and directories, newspaper archives, church & cemetery records, armed forces records, electronic tracking sources of information, and Internet and software sources of information.

Rights to Privacy, Invasion of Privacy, Data Privacy


There are few rights that Americans cherish more than their privacy, even if they are the bad guys.  Everyone including the bad guy, and especially the bad guy, has state and federally protected rights to privacy.  The private detective has no right to invade that area and violate privacy even if the ends will justify the means.  There are four areas of privacy highly protected in law, “appropriation”, “false light”, “intrusion”, and “public disclosure of a private fact”.  This session will review of each of these areas as well as the 13 deadly sins of invasion of privacy, abuses of the Social Security Insurance system records, and examine the contents of a comprehensive program of data protection.

There are 4 Lessons in this Course.
You must Pass the Quiz in each Lesson before you are able to move onto the next Lesson.

-Click “TAKE THIS COURSE” button on the top of this page to get started-

If you have Started the course, and it says, “In Progress” and “Currently have completed x lessons of 4 in total” at the top left of this page, you can click on the LESSON TITLE listed BELOW to continue.
It will say “In Progress” next to the latest Lesson you have started.
You must complete each Lesson in order.

Do not click on the Lesson links below, UNLESS, you have already started the course and need to continue.
If you click a Lesson from here and have not Started the Course, it will say you don’t have access and need to register.  You will then need to Click the “Take course” button on that page, to start the course.


Lesson 2 Communications CTTA302

Length: 180 minutes

INFORMATION GATHERING THROUGH VERBAL COMMUNICATIONS 1. Interviewing: Interviewing and interrogation are similar in that they both require communication skills, but, both require different approaches.  An interview is a conversation with a purpose.  Interviews develop additional sources of information.  Because investigators want to stay away from the word interrogation they use the term interview sometimes when the […]

Lesson 3 Ethics and MN PD Statues and Admin Rules CTTA303

Length: 180 minutes

ETHICS & MINNESOTA PRIVATE DETECTIVE STATUES & ADMINISTRATIVE RULES 1. There are many definitions for ethics and morals and integrity, but for the purposes of this class we will stick to the time tested traditional definition. Although modern versions of these definitions are much more liberal, and include the flexibility of moral relativism, which is […]

Lesson 4 Incident/Situation Assessment and Privacy Rights CTTA304

Length: 180 minutes

INCIDENT/SITUATION ASSESSMENT & PRIVACY RIGHTS  1. Regarding officer safety, the officer comes first for protection at the scene of a violent incident. Follow this priority of who is most important to protect at the scene: a. The officer b. The victim c. Third parties d. The perpetrator. Yes, you have a duty to protect the […]