1. Reference Army Regulation 600-8-19 (Enlisted Promotions and Reductions), 30 Apr 10, Rapid Action Revision
issued 27 Dec 11.
2. This directive establishes Army policies that link completion of structured self development (SSD) and
professional military education courses with promotions under a newly defined select-train-promote methodology
applicable to the Active Army, Army National Guard/Army National Guard of the United States and U.S. Army
3. The Army remains committed to the professional development of its leaders, and our noncommissioned officer
(NCO) Corps is an essential element of this leadership component. As set forth in this directive, the accumulation
of training, education and experiences, coupled with lifelong learning, will enhance the development of NCO
leader competencies. To support this approach, we will require a synchronous relationship between the NCO
Education System and promotions that is deliberate, continuous, sequential and progressive to produce
competent and committed leaders of character for a 21st century Army.
4. In addition to the existing eligibility criteria for promotion outlined in Army Regulation 600-8-19, Soldiers must
complete SSD courses as follows:
a. Active Component and Army Reserve only. Effective 1 January 2014, specialists and corporals must complete
SSD level 1 to attain eligibility for recommendation for promotion to sergeant.
b. Army National Guard of the United States only. Effective 1 January 2014, specialists and corporals must
complete SSD level 1 before attaining eligibility for promotion against a valid promotion vacancy.
c. All Components.
(1) Effective 1 January 2014, the authority to waive Warrior Leader Course as a requirement to attain eligibility for
both promotion consideration and pin-on to staff sergeant is rescinded. Soldiers previously appended to the staff
sergeant promotion list or promoted to staff sergeant before 1 January 2014 must graduate from the Warrior
Leaders Course no later than 30 September 2014. Soldiers who are deployed on
1 January 2014 must complete the course no later than 270 days after redeployment or release from active duty
(reserve component), as appropriate. Failure to complete this training will result in removal from the promotion list
or reduction to sergeant, as appropriate.
(2) Completion of SSD level 1 is a promotion pin-on requirement for Soldiers who are promoted to sergeant as a
result of an approved battlefield promotion or US. Army Recruiting Command merit promotion. For Soldiers who
are not SSD level 1 graduates, the promotion is conditional, provided the Soldier completes SSD level 1 within
270 days from redeployment (active component) or release from duty (reserve component), as applicable, for
battlefield promotions and within 270 days from the promotion date for merit promotions.
(3) There is no SSD level 2; instead the common core phase of the Advanced Leaders Course serves that
purpose. Completion of this level of training will not be tied to promotion eligibility.
(4) Staff sergeants must complete SSD level 3 to attain eligibility for promotion consideration to sergeant first
(5) Sergeants first class must complete SSD level 4 to attain eligibility for promotion consideration to master
5. Army leaders across all components will apply the following select-train-promote methodology:
a. Selection for promotion to an NCO rank is based on a Soldier’s potential to serve at increasing levels of
responsibility, and this potential stems from a leader‘s assessment of a Soldier in his or her current rank. The
description of an NCO as a leader is based on the core roles derived from the duties, responsibilities and
authorities of the NCO Corps. Our NCOs lead, train and educate, care for Soldiers and equipment, and maintain
and enforce standards. These four roles establish the foundation for NCO development and serve as
measurements of success throughout an NCO’s career. Leaders must continually assess how Soldiers perform in
their current rank and, when successful, identify those who show the capacity and potential, with training, to
perform at higher levels of responsibility.
b. The training and education of our NCO ranks is vital to the readiness of our Army. These policy changes will
help ensure that NCOs are prepared to assume their next grade and/or position by completing the requisite
training and education before their advancement. By linking $80, the NCO Education System and, subsequently,
a promotion, we will better prepare NCOs for the complexities of today’s operational environment while reinforcing
the benefits of a deliberate, continuous, sequential and progressive professional development strategy. The NCO’
s career time-line provides a foundation for accumulating the necessary training, education and experiences
needed to attain competency at each grade and serves as the catalyst to consider leaders for increased
c. Soldiers should be considered for promotion to the next higher rank when they achieve competency in their
current rank and exhibit the potential to serve successfully at the next higher rank. These Soldiers display a
progression of competencies and attributes in the following general learning outcomes:
(1) the Army Profession,
(2) professional competence.
(3) team building,
(5) lifelong learning, and
(6) comprehensive fitness.
6. The Deputy Chief of Staff, 6-1 is the proponent for these policies, which will be incorporated into the next
revision of Army Regulation 600-8-19.
7. This directive is rescinded upon publication of the revised regulation.
John M. McHugh