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What is a Correction Officer

While you might think that as a correction officer, a main part of your job is to correct people, it's not necessarily true. I mean you don't want the grammar police guarding the jails, do you? Instead, correction officers are there to keep an eye over those who have either been arrested and are waiting for their trial, or have already been sentenced a time to serve in jail or prison.

I'm going to give it to you straight. This position is one of the most dangerous jobs, as it has one of the highest rates of injuries and illnesses out of all occupations. Sometimes you may have to deal with a confrontational inmate. Or two. On top of that, you'll probably have to work crazy hours because there "ain't no rest for the wicked."

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Correction Officer. For example, did you know that they make an average of $20.32 an hour? That's $42,266 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow -7% and produce -31,500 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Correction Officer Do

There are certain skills that many Correction Officers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed Detail oriented, Interpersonal skills and Physical strength.

Learn more about what a Correction Officer does

How To Become a Correction Officer

If you're interested in becoming a Correction Officer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 29.4% of Correction Officers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 3.1% of Correction Officers have master's degrees. Even though some Correction Officers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a Correction Officer. When we researched the most common majors for a Correction Officer, we found that they most commonly earn High School Diploma degrees or Bachelor's Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Correction Officer resumes include Associate Degree degrees or Diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Correction Officer. In fact, many Correction Officer jobs require experience in a role such as Cashier. Meanwhile, many Correction Officers also have previous career experience in roles such as Security Officer or Customer Service Representative.

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Average Salary
$42,266
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
-7%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
141,330
Job Openings
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Correction Officer Career Paths

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Average Salary for a Correction Officer

Correction Officers in America make an average salary of $42,266 per year or $20 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $56,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $31,000 per year.
Average Salary
$42,266
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12 Correction Officer Resume Examples

Learn How To Write a Correction Officer Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Correction Officer resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Correction Officer Resume Examples And Templates

Choose From 10+ Customizable Correction Officer Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Correction Officer templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Correction Officer resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Correction Officer Demographics

Correction Officer Gender Distribution

Male
Male
63%
Female
Female
38%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among Correction Officers, 37.5% of them are women, while 62.5% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among Correction Officers is White, which makes up 62.7% of all Correction Officers.

  • The most common foreign language among Correction Officers is Spanish at 77.5%.

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Correction Officer Education

Correction Officer Majors

12.0 %

Correction Officer Degrees

High School Diploma

30.4 %

Bachelors

29.4 %

Associate

24.5 %
Job Openings

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Top Skills For a Correction Officer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 20.3% of Correction Officers listed Inmate Population on their resume, but soft skills such as Detail oriented and Interpersonal skills are important as well.

Best States For a Correction Officer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a Correction Officer. The best states for people in this position are Hawaii, Oregon, Connecticut, and California. Correction Officers make the most in Hawaii with an average salary of $59,900. Whereas in Oregon and Connecticut, they would average $55,642 and $54,721, respectively. While Correction Officers would only make an average of $54,489 in California, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Oregon

Total Correction Officer Jobs:
588
Highest 10% Earn:
$78,000
Location Quotient:
1.04
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Nevada

Total Correction Officer Jobs:
348
Highest 10% Earn:
$73,000
Location Quotient:
1.22
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Rhode Island

Total Correction Officer Jobs:
169
Highest 10% Earn:
$75,000
Location Quotient:
1.02
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Correction Officers

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Top Correction Officer Employers

Most Common Employers For Correction Officer

RankCompanyZippia ScoreAverage Correction Officer SalaryAverage Salary
1
1.City of Milwaukee
$44,664
2
2.China Construction America
$42,876
3$42,481
4$41,801
5$41,329
6
6.South Carolina Department of Transportation
$39,763

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Becoming a Correction Officer FAQs

How long does it take to become a Correction Officer?

It takes 4 years of professional experience to become a correction officer. That is the time it takes to learn specific correction officer skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education.

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