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How To Be Your Own Private Investigator


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  • 13
  • 29
    Exams &
  • 12
    average time
  • 1.2

Course Description

How would you like to be your own detective?    


Are you interested in tracking down someone who owes you money, or getting information from credit bureaus or locating lost children or friends, or finding out whether a spouse or lover is being faithful or do you want to learn more about one of the fastest growing careers?  If you answered "yes" to any of these questions then this is the perfect course for you!  Through this private investigator course you will be given the tools to perform searches over the internet, the skills to assess public records online and the methods for performing background investigations.  The class will include real life examples from actual private investigators.  So if sleuthing is something that intrigues you, join this self-paced online course.


If you're interested in learning information about a career in private investigation or how to do online searches of public records or how to perform background checks then How To Be Your Own Detective is an ideal class for you. The instructor uses real life examples of actual private investigators to illustrate the course information.
  • Completely Online
  • Self-Paced
  • 6 Months to Complete
  • 24/7 Availability
  • Start Anytime
  • PC & Mac Compatible
  • Android & iOS Friendly
  • Accredited CEUs
Universal Class is an IACET Accredited Provider

Course Lessons

Lesson 1: Why Become Your Own Private Investigator

The real life of a private investigator is revealed in this lesson. Both the good and bad news. 35 Total Points
  • Lesson 1 Video
  • Take Poll: Survey on course enrollment
  • Complete Assignment: Introduction
  • Complete: Lesson 1 Quiz

Lesson 2: Tools Needed to be a Successful PI

This lesson will provide a detailed account of the equipment needed along with some "field" advice about what does and does not work. 50 Total Points
  • Lesson 2 Video
  • Review 3 Articles: #1 search engine; #1 search engine option for narrower searches; Check Lists for Everything
  • Complete: Lesson 2 Assignment: Concealed Weapons
  • Complete: Lesson 2 Quiz

Lesson 3: Exercises to Develop Investigation Skills

Investigation skills are critical to your success, and there are simple exercises you can do to gain new skills and improve the ones you have. 18 Total Points
  • Review 2 Articles: Perseverance, Patience, and Courage; Interview Techniques
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 3 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 3 Quiz

Lesson 4: Exercises to Develop Observation Skills

In this lesson, we'll spend time discussing the importance of observation to the field of private investigation. 19 Total Points
  • Review 3 Articles: Improve Your Memory; Improving Observation Skills; Memory Skills
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 4 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 4 Quiz

Lesson 5: How To Do Searches On The Internet

Learn how to do high-quality, detailed searches on line to find out information about someone. 38 Total Points
  • Lesson 5 Video
  • Review 2 Articles: advanced google search; search engine
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 5 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 5 Assignment: Find Someone
  • Complete: Lesson 5 Quiz A

Lesson 6: The Rich Sources of Information Found in Public Records

In this lesson you will learn how to access and make use of all the information presented in online public records. 35 Total Points
  • Lesson 6 Video
  • Review 4 Articles: alumni search; company search; Free public records searches; USA Inmate Search
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 6 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 6 Quiz A
  • Complete: Lesson 6 Quiz B

Lesson 7: Background Checks

Put all this information together presented in previous lessons to perform a background check in order to paint a realistic picture of your subject. 69 Total Points
  • Lesson 7 Video
  • Review 4 Articles: alumni search; company search; Veromi Information Source; 50States.com
  • Take Poll: Misconceptions about a PI
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 7 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 7 Quiz A
  • Complete: Lesson 7 Quiz B

Lesson 8: Electronic Surveillance Equipment

There are some key pieces of surveillance equipment that will make your job much easier. 20 Total Points
  • Review Article: EBugging.com
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 8 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 8 Quiz

Lesson 9: Surveillance in the Home

Surveillance is one of the best ways to obtain convincing evidence. 30 Total Points
  • Review Article: Surveillance Tips
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 9 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 9 Quiz

Lesson 10: The Affair

In this lesson, you will learn the basic signs of a cheating spouse. 30 Total Points
  • Review Article: Investigating Infidelity
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 10 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 10 Quiz

Lesson 11: The Runaway

Runaways are different that forcible abductions and other missing person cases in that the person has chosen to disappear. 30 Total Points
  • Review 2 Articles: National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; Runaway Teens
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 11 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 11 Quiz

Lesson 12: Theft

Theft and loss prevention is another service a Private Investigator might provide. 30 Total Points
  • Review 2 Articles: Employee Theft Investigation; Investigating By Computer
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 12 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 12 Quiz

Lesson 13: The Judicial System

Do your homework to determine where the line is between legality and illegality - and then commit to staying on the legal side! 35 Total Points
  • Review Article: Whowhere.com
  • Take Poll: Course Completion Poll: Your Thoughts
  • Take Survey: Program Evaluation Follow-up Survey (End of Course)
  • Complete Assignment: Lesson 13 Exercise
  • Complete: Lesson 13 Quiz
Total Course Points

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Know why become your own private investigator.
  • Describe tools needed to become a successful PI.
  • Describe exercises to develop investigative skills.
  • Know exercises to develop observation skills.
  • Conduct advanced searches on the Internet.
  • Access rich sources of information found in public records.
  • Conduct background checks.
  • Describe electronic surveillance equipment.
  • Describe cases of theft, affairs, and runaways.
  • Describe the processes of the justice system, and
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.

Student Testimonials

  • "A good learning experience." -- Johnny P.
  • "What can i say? Fantastic course! Almost wish I could take it again!" -- Martin M.
  • "All the material was very useful....Great teacher. Always answered any questions you have." -- Mark C.
  • "The instructor was a knowledgeable and capable instructor. I thoroughly enjoyed his class." -- Jerry F.
  • "The website search. I was better my results when searching online. It has made finding things and people a lot easier....I really enjoyed this class and I hope to keep learning on here in the future. The instructor was very nice as well." -- Joseph S.
  • "What was most helpful was the video at the end of each lesson." -- Emilio C.
  • View More Testimonials...

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