Security Guard

Career Diploma 2 months

Online Security Guard Training

If you've got sharp observational skills and want a job that allows you to protect others, our online Security Guard Career Diploma can help you take the first steps toward the career you want. With flexible online classes, you can learn the skills to become a security guard from home, on your schedule. 

  • Can prepare students for entry-level jobs as unarmed security guards in a variety of settings including stores, office buildings, hotels, universities, casinos, stadiums, and more.
  • Online security guard training classes cover essential topics like conduct in the workplace, civil and criminal laws, and how to best proceed when responding to emergencies.
  • Our online programs are flexible enough for you to finish them at a pace that works for you, based on how much time you can dedicate to your coursework each week.
Self Paced

Save up to $240 Ends 2/7/2023

Cost of Program


$1,089 Save $240


$59/month, Start for as low as $19

1-800-275-4410 (9AM - 9PM EST)

uniformed security guard standing in store.

What You Will Learn

  1. How to describe procedures and best practices in crisis intervention and management for handling emergencies, various types of threats, and evacuations.
  2. How to understand the elements of a crime, the difference between civil and criminal law, the stages of criminal and civil procedures, and legal liability issues that can affect a security business or individual security officer.
  3. How to properly and legally respond to crimes in progress, secure crime locations, make arrests, and conduct search and seizure activities.
  4. How to write an investigative report, conduct an interview, and collect and preserve evidence, as well as how to provide court testimony.
Full Program Goal & Outcomes

Security Guard Career Outcomes

Security Guard







Our online Security Guard training program can help prepare students for entry-level jobs as unarmed security guards in retail, corporate offices, hotels, universities, schools, and more.

State Licensing Requirements

Licensing and/or certification requirements for jobs in this field are not the same in every state and may include educational, testing, and/or experiential requirements beyond those offered in the Penn Foster Program. Prospective students should contact the state professional licensing board or similar regulatory body in the state(s) where they plan to work to determine their requirements before enrolling in this program.  See the State Licensing page for contact information for state licensing/regulatory boards and certain industry licensing information.

Online Security Guard Curriculum

  • 8 courses
  • 24 exams
  • 39 continuing education units (CEUs)

Estimated completion time:

  • Fast track = 2 months
  • Average time = 5 months

With Penn Foster, you can learn at whatever pace works best for you. Some learners will be more comfortable moving faster, and dedicating more time, and the fast track estimate will apply to them. The average track will apply to most learners who can dedicate a few hours per week to completing their coursework.

In the online security guard training program, you'll learn the fundamental skills and knowledge to take the first steps toward a career as an unarmed security guard. Your classes include:

  • Civil and Criminal Laws and Liabilities
  • Protecting Buildings, Property, and Assets
  • Emergencies, Threats, and Evacuations
  • Investigations

Show Full Curriculum

Security Guard Success Stories

Penn Foster’s online Security Guard Training can help prepare you for the first step in your career as a security guard. This program has helped recent graduates find new jobs or start their own businesses while learning at their own pace. Learn more about Penn Foster graduates' experiences and how Penn Foster worked for them.
View Student Success Stories
quote icon

 Alysha S.

Penn Foster Graduate, 2021

“The things you learn are actually things you do in the field. Everything applies.”

Looking for training for your workers?

Penn Foster currently works with hundreds of leading employers to meet their unique organizational needs.
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Online Security Guard Training Tuition 

Take the first steps toward a new career with our online Security Guard Career Diploma Program. Simply choose from one of our low-cost customized payment plans below and get started today! 

Option 1: Pay in full

Save up to $240 Ends 2/7/2023

Cost of Program


$1,089 Save $240

  • Best price. Best value.
  • Pay the full cost today
  • No monthly payments
Enroll Now

Option 2: Monthly Auto Pay Plan

Save up to $40 Ends 2/7/2023

Cost of Program


$1,089 Save $40

  • Pay $59 per month
  • Start for $19 down
  • Credit card, PayPal, or ACH from bank account
Enroll Now

Option 3: Monthly Mail Pay Plan

cost of program


  • Pay $59 per month
  • Start for $39 down
  • Mail your payment using coupon book
Enroll Now

California residents please click here for Required California Disclosures.

Need more info or ready to enroll?

Looking for more information on transfer credits, military benefits, or our refund policy? Find this information and more about tuition and enrollment here.

Tuition & Payment Options

We're here to help. Call 1-800-275-4410 9AM - 9PM EST

Request Info

Our Proven Security Guard Learning Model

Empowering students to reach their professional goals


  • Start anytime 
  • No exam due dates 
  • Self-paced


  • Digital study guides 
  • Self-check quizzes 
  • Simulations and videos 


  • 24/7 access to online resources 
  • Online student community 
  • Student Portal Help Center


  • Expert faculty 
  • Dedicated student services 
  • Robust learning resources

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Online Security Guard Training FAQs

What qualifications do you generally need to be a security guard?

In order to become a security guard, you first need a high school diploma. A college degree isn't required to start working in this job, but some post-secondary training can be helpful when applying for jobs. Most security guards will receive on-the-job training for up to eight months. Many states recommend that security guards receive about 8 hours of pre-assignment training, 8 to 16 hours of on-the-job training, and 8 hours of annual training. Security guard training curriculum may include protection, public relations, report writing, deterring crises, first aid, and other specialized training requirements related to the security guard’s assignment.

Additionally, some states have regulations around the age of security guards. While many need to be at least 18 years old, some states require security guards to be 21 years old before they can work in the field.

Depending on where you work as a security guard, you may also be required to pass a criminal background check and drug screening.

How long does it take to become a security guard?

Depending on your work experience, it can take as little as a few months to become a security guard. Through Penn Foster's online Security Guard Career Diploma, you can learn the fundamental knowledge that can help you become successful in the role in as little as one to five months.

What is the average salary of a security guard?

According to national averages from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for entry-level security guards was $31,470 per year in 2021.* Salary can vary based on education, work experience, where you work, and even the state you live in. Security guards who work at casinos may earn more than other security guard roles.

What is the career outlook of a security guard?

About 155,900 openings for security guards* are projected each year, on average, over the next ten years. The demand for security guards is expected to grow as more businesses, large and small, require guards to protect people and property. Places you can work as a security guard include stores, office buildings, schools, libraries, and arenas. Additionally, after becoming an entry-level security guard, you can pursue different career paths in the field in public and private security roles.


*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. "Security Guards and Gambling Surveillance Officers." Occupational Outlook Handbook. September 26, 2022.

Statements found in the United States Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook are not a guarantee of any post-graduation salary, in part because the data used to create the Occupational Outlook Handbook includes workers from differing educational backgrounds, levels of experience, and geographic areas of the country.