The academic curriculum offered by the School of Strategic Landpower includes both required core courses and elective studies and educational enrichment programs that will enable you to craft your own student experience. With your faculty advisor, you'll develop an Individual Learning Plan that establishes personal goals and a plan to complete them this year.

In addition to your professional education, the Army War College year provides opportunity 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 use of time for a healthy, happy, productive academic year.

The majority of course content is in a digital format available in USAWC Blackboard.

The USAWC encourages students to bring personally owned mobile computing devices, e.g., notebooks, netbooks, tablets, or smartphones. Students may connect their personal mobile devices to a commercial wireless network available throughout much of the campus, including seminar and conference rooms. Many students choose to use mobile computing devices, but these devices are not required, and all academic materials will be available through non-mobile connections to USAWC Blackboard.

The International Fellows in the student body enrich the academic experience. The International Fellows Program site outlines the scope of their USAWC experience, which includes orientations to the U.S. and regional customs, history, government, industry, agriculture, and more. Find a full description of the IF Program.


Academic Choices

All students complete the core course foundation in about six months (accelerated for Carlisle Scholars so as to divert more time to research and publication). Building upon that foundation, each student chooses during February registration his or her own set of electives, pursuing professional development and personal interest.

Elective courses the AY2022 Electives Directive will change to some extent in 2021, but suggests the scope of elective choices offered typically March thru May.

  • Most electives are weighted at 2 credit-hours, representing 30 hours contact time and appropriate time for reading, writing, and preparation.
  • A few electives coincide with the term I core courses. Selected comprehensive electives are weighted at more than 2 credit-hours.
  • The School will introduce to the student body the details about special programs, to include distinctions about schedule, requirements, and credits, at the Special Programs Brief on Sept. 3.
  • All students will take a regional studies elective, coinciding with the Theater Strategy & Planning core course. You'll select the region to study; some will elect to study a region for which you have some familiarity, and some will seek to explore something new.

Your Strategy Research Project (SRP) exemplifies professional choice to shape your professional identity. Students are encouraged to select a topic from the Key Strategic Issues List because it aligns your research effort with validated research requirements on behalf of the Army and/or DOD. Each student will complete an SRP contract with project advisor in December and finalize the SRP by April 3. There is a wealth of expertise available to guide and assist you in your decision making process. PKSOI maintains the resources and expertise to serve as mentors for any student wishing to write on an aspect of stability activities, Peace Operations, Protection of Civilians, Mass Atrocity Response, Foreign Humanitarian Assistance and disaster response, and/or Gender Dynamics. PKSOI can also support research efforts related to the above areas for both resident and DDE students and Fellows.

In addition to the Library Databases located at the Root Hall and Ridgeway Libraries, the U.S. Army War College also holds a large collection of current books and monographs on the study of strategic leadership, landpower, and military ethics.

Special electives/ programs take the place of some or all electives. The following programs package learning and experiences for specific student outcomes. The Special Programs Brief will offer details to the full student body on Sept. 3. Students should consider all alternatives, so as to understand the implications of selecting into a specific academic program. For each of these programs, scroll to Academic Resources for additional information and faculty contact.

  • The Advanced Strategic Art Program (ASAP) is a six month program that offers 14 competitively selected U.S. students a concentrated course of study that focuses on the policy-strategy interface. The program integrates history, theory, strategy, concepts and doctrine to provide students a rich professional perspective that will prepare them to serve as strategic advisors upon graduation. The program includes review and analysis of Depart of Defense classified products. Guest lecturers from within and outside the US government coupled with staff rides and visits to Vicksburg, Washington, DC, New York City, Sicily, Normandy and Paris reinforce the program learning outcomes.

  • The Carlisle Scholars Program (CSP) integrates the seminar experience of traditional Professional Military Education with the autonomy of a self-directed fellowship. Selected students will form a single seminar to complete approximately 10 weeks of intense course work, and then shift focus to research, writing, and advising senior leaders through a combination of individual, team, and faculty-coordinated work. The essence of the Carlisle Scholars is competitive analysis of strategic challenges, and contribution to broad strategic dialogue among national security leaders and stakeholders about problems/opportunities of national security. Coordination for the Carlisle Scholar program begins in the months prior to arrival.

  • The National Security Policy Program (NSPP) immerses students in study of policymaking and planning and the national and theater levels. NSPP incorporates case study analysis, engagement with policy practitioners, policy-based exercises and staff rides to relevant agencies so as to prepare students for critical policy planner positions in the Washington-based interagency community, with any of the combatant commander staffs, and in U.S. billets in international organizations such as NATO and the United Nations.

  • Advanced Defense Management Course (ADM) is a tailored elective course for US students, providing a detailed understanding of the key process of DoD force management that drive military programmatic and policy decisions: ideal for students who will serve within the Office of the Secretary of Defense, on the Joint or Service staffs.

  • Joint Warfighting Advanced Studies Program (JWASP) is an intensive elective for US and international officers and civilians, focused on understanding the challenges facing contemporary commanders through the study of senior joint/combined command, strategic 'hotspots' and the operational design, organization, and execution of theater level campaigns across the spectrum of warfare.

  • Joint Land, Air, and Sea Strategic Exercise (JLASS) is an elective preparing students to participate in a strategic crisis response exercise conducted in a wargaming environment, 10 years in the future, across all of the Senior Level Colleges, in which students role-play key leadership roles, e.g., positions in Geographic Combatant Commands and policy-making interagency organizations.

  • The Eisenhower Speakers College Program brings USAWC students to cities around the nation to present on issues of their choice with strategic importance. Our goal is to connect with diverse audiences -- from Harvard faculty to Pittsburg high school students -- with an interest in national security, but little contact with the military.


Faculty Instructor Team

Each seminar will be guided by a faculty team of 3-4 instructors. Student-Faculty relationships at the Army War College extend far beyond a weekly 'student-time' schedule. They make themselves available; they participate in the whole-of-War College activities and Carlisle Barracks garrison-sponsored events. In fact, faculty members balance their professional responsibilities -- to educate, to research and publish, and to serve -- with their personal commitment to students, student families, and student success.

The faculty team of 3-4 instructors represents the integration of three teaching departments within the School of Strategic Landpower: National Security and Strategy (DNSS); Command, Leadership and Management (DCLM); and Military Strategy, Planning and Operations (DMPSO). One faculty instructor will serve as a faculty advisor for one-on-one counseling and academic mentorship. Faculty advisors will offer guidance to students for the Individual Learning Plan, and suggestions for the right faculty mentor for the student's Strategy Research Project.

As with the student body, the faculty will be no more than 60 percent Army officers. In fact, the 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 challenge and support, with awareness of the professional responsibilities that await the Army War College graduate. See the Faculty Directory to survey faculty expertise.

The Army War College faculty includes the full-time faculty of the School's teaching departments. It includes as well a diverse selection of talented professors, researchers and staff members who offer electives, provide functional expertise for specific lessons, and support student learning in other ways. These instructors are assigned to the Army War College centers and institutes that complement and support the School.


Whole-of-College Campus Resources

The Army War College incorporates several organizations, much as a university does. Each has a distinct, important role in support of student education and development.

  • School of Strategic Landpower delivers the signature Army War College graduate educational program – to a resident class and 2 distance classes annually – and sponsors the Army Strategists (FA57) BSAP course.

  • Army Strategic Education Program manages Army General Officer education – Active, Reserve, Guard; and delivers the mandatory ASEP-B, -A and -S for all 1-stars, 2-stars, and 3-stars, respectively.

  • Center for Strategic Leadership offers expert advice and facilitation for wargaming, educational gaming, experiential exercises and emerging issues.

  • Strategic Studies Institute is the Army’s think tank for strategic issues – sponsoring research and publication, some in collaboration with faculty/student teams.

  • Army Heritage and Education Center provides academic support by managing the USAWC Library, providing data bases and research guidance; providing educational programming including family-friendly military history experiences; and managing the vast collection of military history archives and artifacts now undergoing a long-term digitization project.

  • U.S. Army Garrison manages the security, support functions, and servicemember/family services for tenant missions (like USAWC) and all assigned personnel.

  • USA Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Institute, a TRADOC organization, is co-located with the Army War College to leverage shared interests and networks at the strategic level.


Academic Curriculum and Calendar

The academic calendar (plus) extends from centralized in-processing in late July through graduation in early June 2022. Calendar shifts can be anticipated. The curriculum model is two core courses concurrently – starting in August with Strategic Leadership (SL) and War, Policy and National Security I (WPNS-I). Current planning is to start classes in seminar rooms in Root Hall, the College's academic building. (In contrast, the class of 2021 has been meeting in large rooms across campus that enable social distancing.

What we teach evolves each year, but how we teach in ay2022 will incorporate new methodologies and skills that leverage innovative pilots of ay2021 as well as COVID-19-related virtual learning. Dean Mr. Edward Kaplan has guided the faculty to safely and creatively educate our student body in the COVID environment. As a result, innovation and experimentation has widened learning approaches, to include effective online teaching that emphasizes engagement. The war college has the technological infrastructure for online, hybrid and face-to-face education. The USWC platforms of choice are Blackboard Ultra and Office 365/ Teams.

ABOUT THE CALENDAR: The academic calendar is deconstructed here to explain several sets of dedicated, protected time for specific academic purposes – intended to guide a student’s personal approach to balancing academic goals across the year.

  • Zero Week, 3-13 Aug: fulfills 3 objectives with students: set the seminar (introductions, intro to Individual Learning Plans, icebreakers with family), orientation to the curriculum and academic goals, library resource); understand installation policies & services

  • Reading, Writing, Reflection and Collaboration (RWRC) are protected days for which no academic events are scheduled. When practicable, the core course period will have an RWRC or SRP day in every week that does not contain a holiday.

  • Generally, every federal holiday is a four-day weekend: RWRC or SRP use is at the student's choice.

  • Strategy Research Project: 10 days SRP to research, meet with project advisor, analyze and write to meet the 6 April 2021 SRP due date.

  • National holidays and Recess = no academics scheduled; ‘generally’ students are released as of 1300 on the day prior --
    • Sep 5 Labor Day
    • Oct 10 Columbus Day
    • Nov 11 Veterans Day
    • Nov 24-27 Fall Recess
    • Dec 19 – Jan 2 Winter Recess
    • Jan 17 MLK, Jr Holiday
    • Feb 21 Presidents Day
    • Apr 14 – 18 Spring Recess
    • May 30 Memorial Day Recess
    • June 19-Juneteenth

  • Academic landmarks --
    • Aug 9-13 Zero Week – required seminar activities, includes Convocation
    • Aug 16 - April 1 Term 1 core courses (scroll below for descriptions)
    • Aug 16 – 26 Introduction to Strategic Studies, ISS core course
    • Aug 27 – Oct 25 Strategic Leadership, SL core course
    • Aug 31 – Oct 21 War, Policy and National Security I, WPNS-1 core course
    • Sep 21 or 22 (by seminar) National Security Staff Ride 1
    • Oct 26 - Dec 15 War, Policy and National Security-II, WPNS-II core course
    • Nov 1 – Mar 11 Military Strategy and Campaigning, MSC core course
    • Jan 24 - Feb 28 Regional Studies Program (select one region), RSP core course
    • Mar 4 – April 1 Defense Management, DM core course
    • April 11-13 National Security Staff Ride 2
    • April 19 – Jun 3 elective courses
    • May 18-20 National Security Staff Ride 3
    • Jun 6-9 National Security Seminar with distinguished speakers & citizen-guests from across the nation
    • Jun 10, 9 am GRADUATION

  • Traditional Extracurricular landmarks, all subject to student council shaping --
    • Mid-August "Boatyard Wars" seminar-based team building, casual
    • Early Fall at student choice: "Air/Shipwreck" Social, Navy and USAF student-led, casual
    • Mid-Fall: 'Know Your World' IF nations’ showcase, casual
    • Dec: Student Holiday Socials, students determine uniform
    • Early Feb at student choice: Civilian Student-led Social, casual
    • Late April/ early May: Jim Thorpe Sports Days, casual
    • Mid-May Joint Ball, Army and USMC student-led, formal.


Health and Fitness


Dunham U.S. Army Health Clinic is a Primary Care medical treatment facility that includes Pediatric care, Optometry, Physical Therapy, and Behavioral Health Services for Any Active Duty Service Member and their dependents registered with DEERS.

DUSAHC also provides a full array of ancillary and support services that include optometry, laboratory services, pharmacy, radiology and, immunizations, and physical exams.

If you have an emergency, i.e. threat to life, limb or sight, call 911 or go immediately to the nearest Emergency Room. If you require urgent care when the clinic is closed call the CONUS Nurse Advice Line at 1-800-TRICARE (1-800-874-2273) and select option 1. You will be evaluated by a Registered Nurse and directed to the nearest urgent care center, or emergency room based on that evaluation.

Dental Clinic

The Carlisle Barracks Dental Clinic will provide dental treatment to ensure the oral health and readiness of the active duty joint forces that live or work within a 60 mile commute of Carlisle Barracks.


To meet the mission the requirements of medical readiness, self-development, and human performance optimization, the Senior Leader Sustainment (SLS) program provides a comprehensive assessment and individual consultations throughout your academic year.

Specific to the needs of senior leaders, the medical, physical, and behavioral resilience components of the human dimension are incorporated into this assessment to optimize lifestyle behaviors and achieve health and human performance goals.

The SLS program captures primary measurements though a comprehensive assessment that includes: blood analysis, musculoskeletal injury screening, sleep and recovery screening, nutrition review, testing of muscular strength, power, and cardiorespiratory endurance with run technique screening, a health risk counseling by a credentialed provider, and a full out brief of the results with recommended interventions.

Following this initial appointment, you will have the opportunity to utilize SLS program services to support you during your USAWC academic year.


How can we help you maximize your potential?

  • Sleep Optimization
  • Stress Management
  • Attention Control
  • Energy Management
  • Problem Solving


Your nutrition appointment includes a comprehensive, individualized nutrition assessment with a registered dietician. Dietary recommendations will be made based on the participant's unique health background, dietary intake and personal health and performance goals.


Let our fitness staff at SLS create an individualized program tailored to you and your fitness needs.

  • Not sure how to get started on your
  • Fitness and exercise goals?
  • Do you want to make changes to a current program to better achieve your goals?
  • Are you looking for guidance to help prepare for the ACFT? We offer a three phase periodization program with coaching.


A human performance initiative to advance and apply the science of running. A running analysis includes:

  • Advanced technology feedback
  • Technique Coaching and program design for sprint and endurance training
  • Strength and conditioning
  • Shoe recommendations
  • Detailed report


Musculoskeletal care prioritized for the War College student with a physical performance focus.

Services provided:

  • Direct access to PT at Dunham Clinic or SLS
  • Customized goals-based physical therapy treatment throughout the academic year
  • Mobility work to manage long term wellness
  • Manual therapy to include spinal manipulation
  • Trigger Point Dry Needling


SLS will complete all Army PHA Physical and Vision screening during your assessment to meet the Carlisle Barracks readiness mission.

PHA Part I: Senior Leader will complete Part I NLT 7 days prior to the scheduled SLS appointment. Part I may be completed on a NIPR computer with a green tag on it, which can be found at the Root Hall library or seminar rooms.

Team sports begin for all student with seminar-based softball: a group-development opportunity built around an all-American favorite.

As the year progresses, the Sports Office organizes multiple games and championships for intramural play: basketball, volleyball, flag football. Highlights: the USAWC Army-Navy football game on Indian Field just prior to The Army-Navy Game;

Jim Thorpe Sports Days to which students from the senior service colleges gather at Carlisle Barracks for 3 days in April of competition and camaraderie - in the spirit of Olympic athlete Jim Thorpe who played many sports at Carlisle during the Carlisle Indian Industrial School days. USAWC teams form in late Fall for skeet & trap, basketball, tennis, volleyball, golf, bowling, cycling, 1-mile relay races, 5-mile race, and soccer.

Three fitness centers and other fitness options –

Thorpe Hall Fitness Center - 717-245-3418, 23 Lovell Ave.
Open Monday-Friday 5 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday-Sunday 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Holidays 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Indian Field Fitness Center – everyday 5 a.m. – 9 p.m., weekends and after 4:30 will need to swipe your badge to enter.

Root Hall Gym – 6 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday – Friday, floor open 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. on weekends.

Bowling Center, 686 Letort Lane, 245-4109 - Monday - Friday 9 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Saturday 1 - 9 p.m.

Golf Course, 901 Jim Thorpe Road, 243-3262 - Monday - Friday 7 a.m. - dusk Saturday & Sunday 6 a.m. - dusk.

Indian Field running track - oval track 1/4 mile, behind Indian Field Fitness Center.

Golf Course running track - 1.9 miles begin at Rail Road crossing.

Tennis Courts, next to Thorpe Hall - BY APPOINTMENT ONLY - 717-245-3418.

Plan, now, for all you can do in the Cumberland Valley -

  • Visit Cumberland Valley
  • Appalachian Trail hiking
  • Carlisle Auto Shows
  • Carlisle Sports Emporium
  • Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet
  • Climbnasium for Indoor Rock Climbing
  • Hawk Mountain Bird Watching
  • Hershey Park
  • Historic Gettysburg
  • RoundTop Mountain Ski Resort
  • Twin Ponds ice skating
  • Williams Grove Speedway


Key contacts in the College

Advanced Strategic Art Program, Dr. Bill Pierce,

Carlisle Scholars, Col. Celestino Perez Jr,

National Security Policy Program, Dr. Richard Lacquement,

Advanced Defense Management Program, Prof. Waters,

Senior Civilian/Interagency Advisor, Ms Manta, 717-245-4872

USAF Senior Service Rep COL Michael (Mike) Zick,, 717-245-4863

USMC Senior Service Rep. COL Gomez,, 717-245-4862

USN Senior Service Rep. CAPT. Michael Hritz, 717-245-3238

Reserve Officer Senior Service Rep, COL Michael Zinno, 717.245.3543

National Guard Senior Rep. COL John 'Boz' Bozicevic,, 717-245-4514