Welcome to the United States Army War College resident class of 2025.

Your academic journey to Military Education Level I, a master's degree in strategic studies, and Joint Professional Military Education - Level II certification is guided by the Army War College's School of Strategic Landpower.

Our “standard program” is rich with academic options, allowing you to best tailor your time at Carlisle Barracks to position you for your post-graduate assignments in national security. To that end, the school will use a series of assessments to help you devise an Individual Learning Plan with the assistance of a faculty advisor.

Your program will include required core and elective courses with non-classroom experiences such as staff rides and guest speakers. You will help tailor your education through your choices with advanced opportunities, electives, research/teams, and micro programs. You will choose your region for Regional Studies and multiple elective courses and design your research project with guidance from a project advisor. There is also a wide range of complementary programs available that will enrich your experience.

Beyond the standard program, we offer unique tracks that accommodate many students with different interests. These include specializations that teach the core courses through specific strategic lenses. Our four Specializations included the Advanced Strategic Arts Program (ASAP), Carlisle Scholars, National Security Policy Program, and Enterprise Management.

We also offer various experiences that count toward graduation requirements, such as Integrated Research Projects, the Joint Land Air and Sea Strategic Exercise, and the Eisenhower Series College Program. After your arrival, these competitive special programs will be explained in detail.

One thing U.S. students can do before arriving to make themselves a strong candidate for selection is to take the optional GRE. The War College will reimburse you for the expense after you arrive.

In addition to your professional education, the Army War College year allows you to think about, change, and refine many aspects of your life. The wide range of activities - personal, professional, family, spiritual, and more - are presented with the expectation that each student will determine how to make the best time for a healthy, happy, productive academic year.


The basics

At Centralized In-Processing (29 July - 2 Aug), students will finalize their @armywarcollege.edu email accounts if they have not already completed this task during Online In-Processing. These accounts are linked to the Army War College MS Office system, where most formal communication occurs between students and the school. Military students will retain Service.mil accounts for official communication.

The college provides all curriculum materials except for the summer reading material. Most course content is in a digital format available on an Army War College learning delivery platform. “Hard copy” book requirements will be available for pick up during the first week of August.

Students are encouraged to use personal portable computing devices, e.g., notebooks, netbooks, tablets, or smartphones - all welcome and encouraged in the seminar room. A wireless network is available in Root Hall, the academic building, and most base buildings. All digital academic materials will be available, as well, through non-mobile computer stations in seminar rooms and the Root Hall Library.


The student body

The student body represents the diversity of the national security environment at the strategy level – joint, interagency, and multinational. Approximately 380 students include Army, Air Force, Marine, Navy, and Coast Guard officers at the colonel/lieutenant colonel level, with approximately 22 years of officer service from Active, Reserve, and National Guard.

Army officers comprise at most 60 percent of the student body. Additionally, the student body includes senior federal leaders and managers in national security and as many as 80 senior foreign officers from allied and partner nations worldwide.

Foreign officers are “International Fellows” in recognition of their contributions to regional and cultural perspectives. IF and civilian students integrate into each AWC seminar. The International Fellows year begins several weeks before the academic year, with orientation to the U.S. and regional culture, history, government, industry, agriculture, and more, supporting State Department International Military Education and Training (IMET) objectives.

Find a full description of the IF Program at International Fellows Program (armywarcollege.edu)


The Seminar

Student learning occurs in the AWC seminar, which meets four days during a typical week for core courses. Each seminar comprises approximately 16 students selected to enable joint, interagency, and multinational exchanges among students during seminar discussions, case studies, and experiential learning.

  • While there are some exceptions, a typical seminar day consists of a three-hour morning class, with afternoons available for complementary programs, special programs, and preparation for following classes and major assignments.
  • Fully scheduled days are not uncommon to facilitate wargames, special guest speakers, or other academic opportunities as they become available.
  • Graduate courses average two hours of preparation for each hour of seminar contact time. To enhance reflection time for students, the school integrates a Reading, Writing, Research, and Collaboration (RWRC) day into most academic weeks. To the greatest extent possible, RWRCs are fenced from academic scheduling requirements to enable student success.

All students will complete the seven core courses. Some will do so as part of the standard program, and some as members of Specializations, completing the same curricular material through specific lenses and focus: policy, research, strategic art, and enterprise management.


The Faculty

Each seminar is guided through core courses by a faculty team of 3-4 instructors that balances expertise across the three primary focus areas of the College curriculum: Command, Leadership, and Management; National Security and Strategy; and Military Strategy Planning & Operations. One of the team will serve as your faculty advisor for one-on-one counseling and academic mentorship. Faculty additionally sponsor elective classes in their unique fields and serve as project advisors for student research.

The slated faculty is a diverse combination of civilian academics, senior military officers typically with experience in large, complex headquarters, and 'hybrid' uniformed professors with doctoral credentials. These “professors of academics” and “professors of practice” create academic challenges and support, with awareness of the professional responsibilities that await the Army War College graduate. As with the student body, the military-slated faculty body will be no more than 60 percent Army to enable Joint/ multi-service interactions in the seminars. See the Faculty Directory to survey faculty expertise.

Slated faculty are complemented by research faculty and subject matter experts assigned across the College's organizations. They sponsor electives, advise research projects, and lead student-faculty integrated research teams. See Faculty Directory for background information.

Research at the Army War College predominately examines Key Strategic Issues, or similar Sister Service, Interagency, and International issues


The Academic Calendar

These are the seven core courses, with planning dates, subject to change:
Foundations Course, 15 – 30 Aug.
Theory, War and Strategy, begins 4 Sep.
Strategic Leadership, begins 5 Sep.
National Security Policy & Strategy, 10 Oct.
Military Strategy & Campaigning, begins 28 Oct.
Regional Studies Program, begins 7 Jan.
Defense Management, begins 10 Feb.
Peoples Republic of China, begins 27 Feb.
Oral Comprehensive Exams, 17 - 21 March
Electives period, 24 March – 30 May
Pre-Command Course, 21 April – 3 May
National Security Seminar, 2 - 5 June
Graduation 6 June.

Key Calendar Points:

Convocation 5 Aug begins the academic year with welcome addresses from the Commandant and Provost and an introduction to the AWC Faculty.

Resident Education Orientation, 5 - 14 Aug, is a special series of required activities to kickstart your academic success:

Special Programs Brief, 21 Aug, introduces a range of alternatives to the base seminar experience: Specializations, Integrated (team) Research Projects, Enhanced Programs, unique electives, and more. Electives Fair is a marketplace for elective courses whose instructors are available throughout Root Hall, the primary academic facility, to discuss their elective’s purpose, requirements, and special features – and answer your questions as you design your elective plan.

Oral Comprehensive Exams test the student’s ability to integrate new insights across the curriculum, scheduled for each student between 17 and 21 March.

National Security Seminar closes the curriculum with daily keynote speakers and seminar discussions with civilian guests from the United States. All these graduation requirements are fully explained in the AY24 Student Catalog, which will be available to you upon arrival to Carlisle Barracks.


Major Holidays

Major Academic Holidays: (subject to change) Holidays start, typically, at 1 p.m. of the last class day:

Labor Day, 2 Sep
Columbus Day Holiday, 14 October
Veterans Day, 11 November
Thanksgiving Holiday, 27 - 1 Dec; classes resume 28 Nov
Winter recess 21 Dec – 3 Jan
MLK, Jr. Holiday, 20 Jan
Presidents Holiday, 17 Feb
Spring Recess, 17 - 21 April
Memorial Day, 26 May
Juneteenth, 19 Jun


Army War College Campus-Wide Student Support

Each of the Army War College organizations lend specialized support to student learning –

The Army Heritage and Education Center manage the Army’s historical collection and the School’s Library holdings. Its expertise ranges from research and database support from librarians to the massive digitization of Army History now underway to make research feasible 24/7. The AHEC building is located on base, outside the fence line, for ease of access by veteran reunions, researchers, school groups – and Army War College seminars for off-site classes.

The Center for Strategic Leadership is the Army’s strategic wargaming center: the nexus of strategic wargame planning expertise, tech and logistical support abilities, and a network of experts appropriate to any/all ‘games’ of analysis and exploration for policy, strategy, etc. The wargaming expertise supports experiential learning for AWC seminars. On-site experts in the future, data analysis, space, cyber, climate change, and defense support to civil authorities, among others, contribute to teaching concurrently with the backing of Army major commands, ASCC, and Joint/ Army staff. CSL sponsors two critical theater-level courses, the Combined/Joint Land Component Command Course and the Theater Army Staff Course.

The Strategic Studies Institute is the Army think tank, focusing research on geo-strategic net assessment and forecasting (anticipating change), enterprise management, leadership, innovation, and applied strategic art. The SSI team completes independent analysis to develop policy recommendations for senior Army leadership and makes research expertise to partner commands/ agencies and Army War College students/ classes

The School of Strategic Landpower offers the ‘signature’ Army War College graduate education to the 380 students of the resident student body graduating in June each year and to a comparable number of distance education students who complete an equivalent curriculum over two years and graduate in July. Selected elements of the Army War College curriculum are available to non-Senior Service College students, e.g., the Army Strategists’ qualifying course, BSAP, and the Graduate Certificate Program for mid-grade federal employees.

The Army Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Institute is not an AWC organization. Still, its co-location with the College enables cooperation and collaboration on research, educational outreach, and AWC elective classes. Its experts are available for student research projects.