Foreign Service Exam Information

Applicants taking exam

United States Foreign Service Officers are members of the US Foreign Service, along side Foreign Service Nationals and Specialists. They serve in international locations at some point of the world, carrying out overseas policy and assisting to maintain diplomatic family members.

Their paintings includes administrative management, consular services, political and financial reporting and analysis, and public diplomacy. As well as working in Washington, D.C., Foreign Service Officers also stay and paintings overseas, at more than 270 embassies, consulates, and different missions. 

If you're interested in a career as a diplomat, step one is to take the Foreign Service Officer Test (FSOT). The examination is held in towns during the US, in addition to at American Consulates and Embassies abroad.

Are You Eligible to Apply? 

Before you keep in mind making use of to turn out to be a Foreign Service Officer, first test which you meet the following eligibility necessities: 

  • Between 20 and fifty nine years antique on the date of examination. Appointment to the Foreign Service need to take vicinity before the candidate's 60th birthday
  • A citizen of the USA
  • Available for international assignment, including Washington, D.C.

An Overview of the Foreign Service Officer Application Process

Here is a have a look at the method of applying to end up a Foreign Service Officer. 

Select a Career Track

The first step inside the application process is to select one of five career tracks: consular, political, economic, management, and public diplomacy. This choice can't be changed in the course of the software technique, so select cautiously. (You can regulate your selection in case you follow again with a sparkling software, however.)

There are not any academic requirements to take the examination and apply to sign up for the USA Foreign Service; however, most applicants are broadly-study or have taken quite a few university courses.

Apply to Take the Exam Online

Once you've got decided approximately your profession tune, you could sign up on line (via Pearson) for the Foreign Service Office Test. In your application, you will want to percentage real statistics about your self, together with your paintings records, training, language expertise, and so forth.

Foreign Service Officer Testing

Once your utility is complete, you could sign up for an examination date. The Foreign Service Officer Test is offered several times a yr. The examination can best be taken once in a 12-month duration (meaning in case you fail the examination the first time, you may need to wait a 12 months to re-take it).

The exam measures a candidate's understanding and understanding of more than a few subjects decided with the aid of a task evaluation to be important to carry out the obligations required of a Foreign Service officer. It includes both essay and multiple preference questions. 

Here is a exercise exam to present you a experience of what to expect. 

Personal Narrative

If you skip this exam, the next step is to proportion a non-public narrative with the Qualifications Evaluation Panel (QEP). Think of this as your private statement, or a (long) cover letter. Your aim here is to reveal which you are certified for the function of Foreign Service Officer. You could have weeks to write down the personal narrative, and there can be questions furnished to influence your writing. 

Foreign Service Oral Assessment

The next step, if your non-public assertion passes muster with the QEP, is am oral evaluation, that's conducted in Washington, D.C., and in numerous predominant towns across the United States. This day-long software seeks to determine whether you've got the understanding, capabilities, and skills that are essential to the overall performance of Foreign Service paintings. 

Final Steps

After passing the oral assessment, the rigorous procedure continues. The next steps encompass a background investigation, a assembly with a Final Review Panel, medical clearance, after which placement on a listing of eligible hires you will be placed on a rank-ordered Register. Note that, depending for your area on the Register and the quantity of Foreign Service Officers wished, it's miles still feasible that you may no longer get hold of a suggestion of employment. Finally, for folks who are a success, it is a Foreign Service profession with the USA Department of State.

The Hiring Process

The procedure is aggressive, so it is crucial to prepare as very well as feasible for the examination. Applicants for Foreign Service Officers undergo a written examination, an oral evaluation, and a safety background test.

It is estimated that much less than percentage of candidates turn out to be Foreign Service Officers. Candidates which have handed all necessities and clearance tests acquire a rating and are taken care of for his or her respective career tracks.

Up to 5 thousand applicants can take the examination for the duration of each take a look at window, but, most aren't decided on to keep directly to the oral assessment degree that's the second step inside the manner.

Foreign Service Exam Study Guides

Many web sites have examine courses to help candidates in getting ready for the exam with the hope of becoming a Foreign Service Officer. Depending at the profession music of preference, those observe publications assist explain the application technique, what to anticipate at the take a look at, how to write an powerful personal narrative, how to prepare for the oral assessment, and a proof of how the exam is evaluated. Many also explain the Medical and Security Clearances and what to anticipate heading into them, together with more pointers and trainings. 

What to Expect If You Pass

Once formally employed, new officials are hired on a constrained undertaking that can't last longer than 5 years. They are required to be talented in foreign language and transition into the alternative Foreign Service sectors before becoming tenured employees.