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Spartacus    53

The current "commitment" from the chief is that if you are a "select" you will go.

Timing varies, but as of late, the majority of IDE folks are going to school early, while SDE folks are going later...exceptions everywhere of course. The ASG programs take less than 1% of the in-res IDE grads for a second year of advanced school. If you are not a "select" then you are a candidate and 1-2% of candidates will eventually be selected, usually in during third look for IDE or fourth for SDE.

Overall in-res rate for IDE = 25%

Overall in-res rate for ASG = <1%

Overall In-res rate for SDE = 10%

Ok, so to clarify this... Around 20% get selected at their Majors board for IDE. After that everyone gets 3 looks, but only about 5% of those get picked up? I thought I heard someone tell me that by the time everything was said and done around 40% go to IDE when you combine the initial selection with everyone else who gets picked up over their 3 looks. Is that not right? Also, what is ASG? Thanks for the help!

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ClearedHot    1,161

Ok, so to clarify this... Around 20% get selected at their Majors board for IDE. After that everyone gets 3 looks, but only about 5% of those get picked up? I thought I heard someone tell me that by the time everything was said and done around 40% go to IDE when you combine the initial selection with everyone else who gets picked up over their 3 looks. Is that not right? Also, what is ASG? Thanks for the help!

It varies by size of year each year group, but the numbers I've seen show a 25% in-residence rate for IDE over the past 10 years.

ASG = Advanced Studies Group. There are three primary recognized ASG schools:

1. SAASS = School of Advanced Air and Space Studies, a year long USAF program at Maxwell AFB, 40 total students.

2. SAW = School of Advanced Warfighting, a year long USMC program at Quantico MCB, 27 students.

3. SAMS = School of Advanced Military Studies, a year long USA program at Ft Leavenworth, 120 students (too many, dilutes the intent of a focused second year program).

There are two other programs that claim the same moniker but are not.

NOPC is a 13 month USN program taught at Newport NB. I am not sure how many students they have, but this program is like an advanced elective for students attending IDE at Naval Command and Staff. All of the other programs are a complete second year of study after IDE. NOPC students are picked part way through Naval Command and Staff and spend an extra 4-5 months at the end. The claim to be equal to SAASS, SAMS, and SAW, but they are not.

JAWS = Joint Advanced Warfighting School is a year long joint program taught at Norfolk. The program has only been around for a few years and I have heard good reviews, but they mix O-4, O-5's, and O-6's in the same class which would seem to dilute the focus for some.

ASG grads get a special identifier when they graduate and their assignments are completely different from all other PME grads. ASG assignments are typically validated and approved by the VCSAF.

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Guest filthy_liar   
Guest filthy_liar

Ok, so to clarify this... Around 20% get selected at their Majors board for IDE. After that everyone gets 3 looks, but only about 5% of those get picked up? I thought I heard someone tell me that by the time everything was said and done around 40% go to IDE when you combine the initial selection with everyone else who gets picked up over their 3 looks. Is that not right? Also, what is ASG? Thanks for the help!

To tag into what CH said - you compete for ASG schools while you are at in-residence PME, although some services allow applicants from the field to compete. I'm not sure if the AF does that or not. Latest info I heard from the SAASS Commandant on JAWS was that it is only 6 months, but the graduates are still considered ASGs.

Concur, 120 students at SAMS is unsat. The new director said the same. This year there are 8 USAF out of around 120 total students. About 50 applied from ACSC. Not sure what the numbers are on the incomming class. I was told that 14-25 was the standard number of USAF students. Obviously, I was misinformed. As far as I know, there were 2 USAF accepted to SAWS. Again, not sure about the incomming class.

As far as your comment about 40% of majors going to IDE, that seems quite high. However, when you add up all of the folks at CGSC, Navy Post Grad or whatever it is called, ACSC, and all of the "in resident equivalent" gigs out there, it seems like it is higher than 22%. There is an answer to that out there somewhere I guess.

Lastly, one more word about advanced schools, and this is only my opinion - CH feel free to non-concur. I've seen people turn down advanced schools for a DO position, and I've heard people say that their assignment team or mentor or somebody told them that they would be better off not going to an advanced school. I have never seen a situation in which someone was worse off for graduating from an advanced school. In fact, I would argue that it is always the better choice, even if you are turning down command track. There will be another opportunity for command as an ASG. My opinion based on what I've seen.

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tac airlifter    521

It varies by size of year each year group, but the numbers I've seen show a 25% in-residence rate for IDE over the past 10 years.

Thanks for the explanation of ASG, it's good info which I was totally unaware of. Related question: some people who are selected for IDE go to a course at Monterey, CA. What exactly is that school and how does it compare to the other options? Am I more likely to attend IDE somewhere other than Maxwell (assuming I'm selected for that) if I've completed ACSC by correspondence? Thanks.

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Spartacus    53

To tag into what CH said - you compete for ASG schools while you are at in-residence PME, although some services allow applicants from the field to compete. I'm not sure if the AF does that or not. Latest info I heard from the SAASS Commandant on JAWS was that it is only 6 months, but the graduates are still considered ASGs.

Concur, 120 students at SAMS is unsat. The new director said the same. This year there are 8 USAF out of around 120 total students. About 50 applied from ACSC. Not sure what the numbers are on the incomming class. I was told that 14-25 was the standard number of USAF students. Obviously, I was misinformed. As far as I know, there were 2 USAF accepted to SAWS. Again, not sure about the incomming class.

As far as your comment about 40% of majors going to IDE, that seems quite high. However, when you add up all of the folks at CGSC, Navy Post Grad or whatever it is called, ACSC, and all of the "in resident equivalent" gigs out there, it seems like it is higher than 22%. There is an answer to that out there somewhere I guess.

Lastly, one more word about advanced schools, and this is only my opinion - CH feel free to non-concur. I've seen people turn down advanced schools for a DO position, and I've heard people say that their assignment team or mentor or somebody told them that they would be better off not going to an advanced school. I have never seen a situation in which someone was worse off for graduating from an advanced school. In fact, I would argue that it is always the better choice, even if you are turning down command track. There will be another opportunity for command as an ASG. My opinion based on what I've seen.

Yeah, that seemed high to me as well and that was why I was asking. Your explanation for the number needing to be higher than 22% does make sense though. Does anyone know where to find some sort of statistics on the final percentages of Majors who end up attending some sort of in-residence IDE?

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Herk Driver    218

Yeah, that seemed high to me as well and that was why I was asking. Your explanation for the number needing to be higher than 22% does make sense though. Does anyone know where to find some sort of statistics on the final percentages of Majors who end up attending some sort of in-residence IDE?

I can't put the slide here and you wouldn't want to see it anyway, since it's .ppt, but AMC/A1 does a brief at ATA each year. This one is several years old, but it shows ~20% being Selects from the O-4 promotion board with an additional ~15% from DT nominated candidates. I'm sure that number is not 100% constant year to year, but somewhere between 35-40% is fairly accurate. The SDE numbers they put forth are ~15% (selects) from the O-5 board with only ~5% from DT nominated candidates.

Of course, this is also the brief where they rack and stack Air Staff higher than Joint-other, which I think they have changed there philosophy on in recent years.

Edited by Herk Driver

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Guest Blu4   
Guest Blu4
NOPC is a 13 month USN program taught at Newport NB. I am not sure how many students they have, but this program is like an advanced elective for students attending IDE at Naval Command and Staff. All of the other programs are a complete second year of study after IDE. NOPC students are picked part way through Naval Command and Staff and spend an extra 4-5 months at the end. The claim to be equal to SAASS, SAMS, and SAW, but they are not

Not 100% correct. NOPC is now known as MAWS (Maritime Advanced Warfare School), and it is about a 16 month program. The difference is it is run concurrently with your pariticipation in College of Naval Command and Staff (ACSC equivalent). MAWS does indeed qualify as an ASG, does give you an ASG identifier, and graduates are pooled for the same assignments as their contemporaries in SAAS, SAMS, SAW, and JAWS. In fact, the SAAS commandant helps rack and stack "ASG-required" assignments and then shreds them out to the various advanced schools for the graduates to largely deconflict themselves for assignment.

Instead of taking standard electives at CNCS, MAWS students take their curriculum over the course of the entire year. After completion of CNCS, MAWS students stick around for an extra 4-months to stand up as an OPT and research an operational level problem and write an OPLAN/CONPLAN for a numbered fleet or combatant command.

In short, you get the ASG identifier with only 4 months of additional time at school, and finish doing real-world planning for a naval component or COCOM. The overall emphasis/flavor of the course is more operational than the strategic-level thinking applied at the other ASGs, but you will attend a Theater Warfare Exercise at Maxwell with all the ASG students from all the schools.

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ClearedHot    1,161

Not 100% correct. NOPC is now known as MAWS (Maritime Advanced Warfare School), and it is about a 16 month program. The difference is it is run concurrently with your pariticipation in College of Naval Command and Staff (ACSC equivalent). MAWS does indeed qualify as an ASG, does give you an ASG identifier, and graduates are pooled for the same assignments as their contemporaries in SAAS, SAMS, SAW, and JAWS. In fact, the SAAS commandant helps rack and stack "ASG-required" assignments and then shreds them out to the various advanced schools for the graduates to largely deconflict themselves for assignment.

Instead of taking standard electives at CNCS, MAWS students take their curriculum over the course of the entire year. After completion of CNCS, MAWS students stick around for an extra 4-months to stand up as an OPT and research an operational level problem and write an OPLAN/CONPLAN for a numbered fleet or combatant command.

In short, you get the ASG identifier with only 4 months of additional time at school, and finish doing real-world planning for a naval component or COCOM. The overall emphasis/flavor of the course is more operational than the strategic-level thinking applied at the other ASGs, but you will attend a Theater Warfare Exercise at Maxwell with all the ASG students from all the schools.

Things have changed since I went through the ASG program. NOPC was really looked down upon (especially by the other schools), mainly because it was seen as a "short" course and the concurrency with command and staff courses (my ASG course work was COMPLETELY different from ACSC and I actually learned something). SAASS (not SAAS), SAW, and SAMS also attend the Theater Warfare Exercise at Maxwell, although when I went it was a very strategic level exercise. Finally, not all of the course are strategic minded. SAW in particular is focused on the operation level and the Operational Art of war. In fact, the Masters Degree they award is in Operational Art.

I don't know enough about the current JAWS program, but if I were going to apply today it would be to SAASS, SAW, or SAMS. Just an old guys thoughts.

How can our best officers be getting out? I thought our best officers were getting in-res IDE then ASG.

Best of the scrubs that remain.

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Guest Blu4   
Guest Blu4

Oh, I have no doubt there are folks at the other schools who look down on NOPC / MAWS. My point was, from a career perspective, if you're looking for an ASG opportunity, but can't / don't want to do a full second year at school, then MAWS gets you the identifier, and has some highly applicable learning, particularly from the joint planning perspective.

Then again, you have to be selected to attend CNCS before you even can be considered for MAWS, so there's s bit of catch-22isms involved.

Point is, in big AF's eyes, the programs ARE equivalent, regardless of how superior the SAASS, SAMS, SAWS guys view themselves.

JAWS, by the way, is a year long program, fulfilling both JPME 1 and ASG as well. Those guys have probably the most immersive program, to be honest. They sort of skip the whole first year's material, and expect you to self study that info as required.

Lots if different ways to skin it, any way it happens, there's still dead cat fur on the wall at the end of the day.

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BigE    15

and the pendulum starts to swing the other way (just a little)...

Is Gen Welsh's efforts being heard?

_____________

From: Jones, Darrell D Lt Gen MIL AF/A1

Sent: Sunday, September 11, 2011 4:17 PM

Leaders,

Based on recent questions and feedback from the field, we request your assistance to reiterate Air Force guidance on advanced academic degrees (AADs) and promotion recommendations to all Senior Raters.

The Air Force has no policy guidance (nor would it support any) leading Senior Raters to determine award of Definitely Promote (DP) recommendations based "solely" on completion of masters degrees for Majors or Lt Cols.

Although an advanced academic degree (AAD) is an important factor in an officer's promotion potential, it is only one factor of many within the "whole-person" promotion philosophy. Other factors include: professional qualities, leadership, depth and breadth of experience, job responsibility, developmental education, specific achievements, and job performance. Of these factors, job performance is the most important.

Because of the needs of the Air Force, not all officers have had the same opportunity to enroll in or complete advanced degree programs. The Air Force considers it essential that our officers have the knowledge and competency to accomplish the mission. Officer undergraduate and advanced academic degrees are displayed on Officer Selection Briefs at promotion boards for all competitive category records. However, completion of advanced academic education, like other whole person factors, must be assessed in terms of how it enhances performance and potential; and contributes to the mission and effectiveness of the Air Force.

Senior Raters and commanders should encourage officers to pursue their AAD -- however, Senior Raters must not make DP recommendations for Majors or Lt Cols based solely on whether an officer completed his/her AAD.

Please share the above with your Senior Raters.

V/R,

DJ

END PART TWO

Posted 12 Sep 11

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JPStryker    5

Yep, even if the data is masked from a board you will never get the same strats, pushes, etc. on your OPRs/PRF if you don't check the box. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy; even if you excel in all other areas you will never be #1 of XX without an AAD. It would require an unbelievably ballsy show of solidarity to defeat this logic by having all of the dudes in the same year under a SR not check the box...now that would be something to see. I'm sure a new discriminator would quickly surface to solve the dilemma this would produce (number of Christmas parties planned, perhaps?).

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BigE    15

Yep, even if the data is masked from a board you will never get the same strats, pushes, etc. on your OPRs/PRF if you don't check the box. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy; even if you excel in all other areas you will never be #1 of XX without an AAD. It would require an unbelievably ballsy show of solidarity to defeat this logic by having all of the dudes in the same year under a SR not check the box...now that would be something to see. I'm sure a new discriminator would quickly surface to solve the dilemma this would produce (number of Christmas parties planned, perhaps?).

Disagree. And I'm sorry you've never experienced leadership that could dope thru the BS to know who excels and doesn't at the actual mission - and then awards strats, recommendations, etc based upon same. Everybody's experiences are going to be different - every community has a slightly different culture - and god knows we seem to go thru waves of having good guys leading the pack to jackasses.

I don't know if you dudes lived thru the snapshot of time when AADs were masked and met promotion boards with the policy in effect. AADs were not a factor in any step of the promotion process - Squadron, Group, Wing, etc were prohibited specifically for using the lack/accomplishment of a Masters in determining jack and shit. Maybe it was just my experience - but that's how it worked. In fact I think you might still be prohibited from mentioning work or accomplishment of a AAD in OPRs - same for correspondence PME (not 100% on that).

Fück - back in the late 90s/early 2000s a policy came down talking about how we needed tactical level experts sticking around to 20 - and not every swinging dick needed to be on the command track to make LtCol. You could 'track' into staying at the ops squadron and remain flying for 20 and still get promoted. Guess how many dudes wanted that? That is also gone the way of Friday T-shirts and moral patches.

Now - I'm not saying the leadership was behind the whole "AADs have no factor in promotion" policy - hence the reason it changed. And I think education is a good thing - at the proper time. My very humble and uninformed opinion of why they took it out of the promotion process was to put an emphasis on force shaping - we'll send you to get a degree if you need it, increase in school opportunities, etc. This was around the same time the DT boards/ODPs were starting to take off and we had 'stop practice bleeding' guidance reminding commanders to not be stupid requiring guys to do correspondence PME prior to going in-residence. It was also acknowledging how a AAD was becoming the sole go/no-go factor in promotion - to the detriment of other factors that should have more weight.

The memo from the current AF/A1 is echoing some of those same sentiments. Comments on these boards shows how much of a factor AADs are having on promotions and if you read between the lines this is senior level AF leadership telling Wing Commanders to KIO (kind of - it should be worded stronger if you ask me). I've posted on this subject before in another thread - I thought masking AADs was a policy we got right - till we didn't - and the current trend is worse - I wouldn't be surprised to see it go masked again.

More interesting (at least to me) is that I thought this was something Welsh was taking up - and it sounds like some of his feedback might be actually gaining some traction.

This is just an indicator - specifically on the AAD factor and more generally on 'what's wrong with the AF' problems we all bitch about - that the every swinging pendulum may be at an extreme and starting to move back to center.

Back to my beer!

e

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stract    170

as long as AFPC keeps producing a product that breaks down percentage promoted with/without degree, with/without PME in res, etc, then of course those two items will continue to be the discriminators.

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Skitzo    128

Simple solution, instead of every officer being a line officer unless you are a doctor or a lawyer we divide it out like the Navy. Unrestricted Line Officer and Restricted Line Officer. Quit comparing a services officer to an aviator / operator.

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JPStryker    5

Disagree. And I'm sorry you've never experienced leadership that could dope thru the BS to know who excels and doesn't at the actual mission - and then awards strats, recommendations, etc based upon same.

Sorry, bro, but that leadership doesn't exist in the AF. CCs and SRs have just gotten too used to the convenience that the current policy affords them - rating and ranking dudes based on a SURF vs. reality - to ever go back to the way things used to be. If you read through some of these threads you will even see how they are coping with the fact that pretty much everyone has resigned themselves to getting an AAD to be competitive...by placing emphasis on how quickly it is accomplished. Before you know it, they're actually going to care what the degree is in! I don't think that pendulum has reversed course yet.

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jetpilot55    0

Does anyone know the actual percentage of DPs each wing is allocated or, if you don't know the percentage, do you know where that is listed?

I read above that 75% of promotables are given DPs...that seems way too high. I've heard that it's between 10% and 20%.

Also...if someone has SOS DG and a DP, what are his chances at getting a school slot?

Thanks in advance

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Muscle2002    53

Does anyone know the actual percentage of DPs each wing is allocated or, if you don't know the percentage, do you know where that is listed?

I read above that 75% of promotables are given DPs...that seems way too high. I've heard that it's between 10% and 20%.

Also...if someone has SOS DG and a DP, what are his chances at getting a school slot?

Thanks in advance

Depending on the board, the DP allocation can vary from 80% for Major to just ~40% for Lt Col. The SR will usually stratify the top 20% of the eligibles which may explain why you thought the number of DPs was 10-20%.

Being an SOS DG and having a DP cannot hurt, but the board should/will look at the whole record.

Edited by Muscle2002

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Rusty Pipes    286

I think that another problem with our promotion process is that it is essentially a "one look" process. That leaves way too much up to timing. Sure, you meet a Lt Col board 1 and 2 BPZ, but those who get selected BPZ in that less than 1% scenario were identified far in advance so it isn't like it is a realistic shot for everyone else. That means the rest of us, in reality, get one shot at it... because we all know that the chances of APZ are about as good as BPZ. This if one case where the non-rated guys may have a huge advantage over the rated guys, especially at the Wing level. Lets say you are at a Wing where 5-6 guys are up for O-5 which means that the Wing CC most likely has 2 DP's to give and a "Super P". Well there are a lot of Sqs out there (FSS, Finance, MX, Comm) where the Sq CC is a Major... you have two of those and the boss had 2 DPs to give, he pretty much has to give it to his sitting Sq CC's! Now these are usually pretty sharp guys who may very likely already be in res school grads so it's hard to argue them getting the DP because they look much better on paper, but I've seen way too many guys fall victim to this bad timing. That just meant they became the gray beard line pilot that everyone knew as the MWS expert and they retired as a crusty Major, but from what happened last year with the non-continuation and the recent RIF it looks like that crusty O-4 may soon be a thing of the past.

You put me head to head with all of the Pilots and Navs in my year group and lets start comparing FEFs as at least one factor. If I don't make Maj or Lt Col because I didn't make the mark than at least I know where I stand and I also know that we were comparing apples and apples. It would give us a chance to give folks credit for specific accomplishments vs. just looking for how many #1's they have on their OPR. A non-rated O-6 recently told me that any Sq or Gp "of the Qtr" awards on a PRF are almost useless as far as board members are concerned and are seen pretty much as filler. Well if you are a MX officer and there are only 6 CGO's in the Group that makes sense, but if you are in a large flying Wing and you had to beat out 325 other CGOs in your Gp that Qtr then I think it actually means something.

I don't ever see them splitting up the promotion boards in my career by AFSC or even rated/non-rated and I'm not even sure that is the right answer. Maybe having a legit 2-3 yr promotion zone where raters aren't forced into a corner with DP's and P's just based on numbers? I do know that with budget cuts coming up and our current one strike and you're out promotion policy, we're going to lose a lot of great aviators both to non-promotion and a growing pool of pilots who just aren't going to play the game because they keep changing the rules on them and airlines look to once again become a viable option.

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ruckerstud    0

I have a question about PRF writing while we are on the topic. I have heard there is this magical strated prf. Does whomever the senior rate is actually put my 1 of X on some dude's PRF, or is there some sercet code like the rest of the push line?

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Muscle2002    53

I have a question about PRF writing while we are on the topic. I have heard there is this magical strated prf. Does whomever the senior rate is actually put my 1 of X on some dude's PRF, or is there some sercet code like the rest of the push line?

The senior rater can and I bet all do strat their "top" eligibles. Things like #x/y BPZ, #x/y all zones, #x/y Capts; you get the idea. It only kind of gets into secret code when looking at a PRF that does not have a strat.

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Cap-10    157

I have a question about PRF writing while we are on the topic. I have heard there is this magical strated prf. Does whomever the senior rate is actually put my 1 of X on some dude's PRF, or is there some sercet code like the rest of the push line?

There can't really be a magical strated prf. Unlike OPR's where the writer turns "snacko closet re-stocker" into " managed $69,000 of logistical supplies, increased squadron productivity 169%", the PRF's must be built with bullets already written on OPR's / awards, etc. The last line is still open for the rater to make his x of y strat.

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ThreeHoler    413

There are things that can show up in the last line like: "If I had only one more DP to give, Snuffy would get it!" or "My #1 of 5 DPs!" However, for the O-4 board, the most important thing is DP or P. 90% promotion chance and 75% DPs mean only 15% of promotions will come from records with a P.

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ChkHandleDn    31

So I am a late-rated guy and I believe my PRF will be written next summer. I volunteered for a white jet assignment and will be PCSing this fall after PIT. I won't be an MWS IP before I leave this summer for PIT. How bad is it going to be for me to be PCSing a few months prior to my PRF being written without being a MWS IP and showing to a Sq just before it's due? I'm thinking I'm pretty much hosed.

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Jaded    387

Do promotion boards even care if you're an IP or not? Honest question.

I thought that the strength of a PRF was based almost exclusively on the quality and quanitity of your strats.

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