The story is set at a facitiy to train future agents. There is a group of new trainees, that have to be tested selected to either: "Fail" (they failed a test and are no longer able to participate) or one of the different fields (Forensics, Hostage, Inteligence gain, analysis, cyber, Air Force...)

One part of their Training are certain challanges or tests, the candidates have to pass: https://worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/q/67248/29535

The other part of the education, contains the trainig, in which they are coached and prepared for these exercises.

During their Education and Evaluation proccess, they have to learn certain skills, however this is not critical to the plot, it's more the setting of the academy in which the storie plays.

However, how would would a general education as a Special Agent/Spy... look like.

Similar to the FBI training in Quantico, but on a broader scale in terms of tasks to learn (general education of all fields, to determin, where the candidat fits in best). And the proccess is mor selective than that

If I were to train a group of spies or special/secret agents, what would I have to teach them?

The skills should be based in reality, however, there have to be some, that are interessting to watch that gives a little action to the plot.

You can Imagine a setting similar to Quantico

What would they need to know? What are known skills from movies and TV series?

I'm looking for something similar as in the TV show Quantico or BBC's SPY or the Movies "Kingsman" or the trainings programm in "GI Joe" or "the recruit".

I'm not looking for a single answer, more for a collections of answers?

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    $\begingroup$ There is a delightful documentary on spy work called 'Dr. No.' $\endgroup$
    – kingledion
    Jan 8, 2017 at 22:36
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    $\begingroup$ Are you asking for a fictional spy such as Mr. Bond, or for a real-life spy such as Richard Sorge or Sidney Reilly? Starting with the Wikipedia article on espionage will get you a lot of good info. For a very good science-fiction approach you may want to look up Eric Frank Russell's Wasp. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Jan 8, 2017 at 23:04
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    $\begingroup$ What does the spy actually do? For example, an "industrial" spy doesn't need any martial arts (?) $\endgroup$
    – A_A
    Jan 8, 2017 at 23:09
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    $\begingroup$ Just as an interesting aside, check out the CIA's page for games for kids. $\endgroup$ Jan 8, 2017 at 23:10
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    $\begingroup$ Ideally, they could stare at goats and other similar wizardry. :) $\endgroup$ Jan 9, 2017 at 0:19

1 Answer 1


How to encode and send the information they gather, and when.

That's it. Maybe the local language if you want to skyrocket the risk by sending a foreigner.

The best real spies live very dull, boring and standard lifes, have an according personality and a very civilian skillset. They are so uninteresting they raise no suspicions, ever.

But of course, they are boring by definition. That's bad for stories that aren't day-to-day-with-a-surprise or biographies of real spies (which are interesting because they risking their real neck against the real Nazis, for example).

If you are thinking of James Bond, he's actually more of a super-commando with a battleship-grade plot armor. His skills are whichever he needs to have in that moment.

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    $\begingroup$ As far as I can tell, most real-life spies are recruited because they are in a position that has access to information the spying entity wants. They are either offered money, or do the spying for ideological reasons. So the skills a future spy needs is basically whatever will let them get a sensitive job. $\endgroup$
    – jamesqf
    Jan 9, 2017 at 5:30
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, even if deliberately training someone for infiltration as a spy you would focus on the "job skills". Trying to insert a spy in enemy military to be useful a decade later - don't train commando skills, but planning and logistics to get him a staff officer job pushing potentially sensitive documents. Trying to get enemy secret weapons - inflitrate the spy as a CAD draftsman or network administrator, so you'll train them for that job and engineering skills to know which data matters. Also, worth to note, all those missions are measured in years at least, not like James Bond short term trips. $\endgroup$
    – Peteris
    Jan 9, 2017 at 13:10

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