Cyber programs at a glance

Here is a look at some of the cyber training programs offered by the military services.

Air Force

Undergraduate cyber training: Provides electronics training to more than 38,000 Air Force members and civilians each year. Conducted by the 81st Training Group at Keesler Air Force Base, Miss.

Network Warfare Bridge Course: For students who didn’t go through initial training, who went through earlier versions of training or who are coming from other specialty areas outside cyber. Gives students foundational cyber skills in preparation for later phases of training.

Intermediate Network Warfare Training: The Air Force’s initial qualification training to prepare airmen to serve in various cyber-related functions throughout the service. Offers training for specific jobs.

Mission Qualification Training: Advanced course that prepares service members to be combat mission-ready cyber operators and analysts. Tailored to the network warfare unit to which students will be assigned.

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Cyber training in the Army mostly focuses on three areas: transport (network and perimeter security, hacking and exploitation), IT devices (Windows, voice over IP, client security, virtual environments, IT systems) and supporting subjects (cyber law, computer forensics).

Signal Center of Excellence: 25-week cyber defense warrant officer course, established in 2009 at Fort Gordon, for experienced senior warrant officers. May be expanded to include courses for enlisted soldiers.

Training with industry: Used to fill gaps in required skills that cannot be attained in-house by sending soldiers to work with a commercial industry partner for roughly 12 months. Still under development.

Marine Corps

The Marines employ multiple levels of cyber training, from basic awareness for all service members to advanced programs for specialists.

Cyber primer: A two-week basic course for computer network operations planners, conducted for the Marines by the Army at Fort Belvoir, Va.

Marine Corps Communication-Electronics School: Conducts specialized training under the Marine Corps Training and Education Command. Currently developing a cybersecurity chiefs course.

Information Assurance Training Center: Offers specialized training at Fort Detrick, Md., as a satellite program of the Army’s Fort Gordon center.


Center for Information Dominance: Offers two Navy ratings, or specialties, in the cyber arena: Cryptologic Technician Networks students go through a 24-week Joint Cyber Analysis Course at the beginning of their careers; sailors pursuing the Information Systems Technician rating go through a basic, 19-week school that includes commercial certifications, followed by a more advanced, 18-week school.

U.S. Naval Academy: Mandatory Cyber 1 introductory course for all freshmen starting this year, to be followed two years later by another mandatory, more intensive course, which is still being developed.

Naval Postgraduate School: Offers a master's degree in cyber systems and operations.

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Reader comments

Mon, Dec 5, 2011 alvin pittman San Diego

I am a college graduate. Currently, I am employed by the Department of Veterans Affairs. How can I obtain cybersecurity training? Thanks

Sat, Dec 3, 2011 Martin Carlisle US Air Force Academy

I find it disappointing this article doesn't mention the ongoing efforts at the Air Force Institute of Technology, which offers a masters' in cyber operation, or the opportunities at the US Military Academy at West Point and the US Air Force Academy, both of which are NSA/DHS Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education.

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