Maritime Headquarters Staff Course

The Maritime Headquarters Staff Course (MHSC) is a three week, online synchronous/ asynchronous course that exposes personnel that participate in Maritime Operations to the maritime operational level of war (OLW), maritime headquarters and maritime operations center (MHQ/MOC) concepts, organizational structure, processes, and procedures. Total course commitment is 54 hours over the three weeks. It is hosted online at MilUniversity six times per year. Completion awards the JSM AQD.
USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) transits the San Bernardino Strait.

General Information


Student priority is assigned to those in, or enroute to, the MOC billets identified as requiring the course in OPNAV M-3500.42 (series) Maritime Operations Center Standardization Manual. Priority is then given to active duty over reserve, and reserve over civilian. Other military or DoD civilian personnel may take course on a case by case basis as billets allow. Link to request a spot is under Quick Links below.

Location & Duration

The course is a three-week program, with approximately 54 hours of work spread over the three weeks, or about 18 hours per week. Each week concludes with a two hour live session so students and faculty can connect directly. All course materials are accessed online by students, so it can be accomplished anywhere with connectivity.

Learning Format

Most of the course content is delivered by video lectures from U.S. Naval War College faculty in the College of Maritime Operational Warfare. Three live sessions will be fundamental to understanding the material within this course. A significant part of the live sessions will reference a case study.


MHSC provides basic MOC education to personnel generally assigned to MHQ staff positions, MOC core positions, or externally supporting command staffs. As such, learning objectives are focused more on being aware of, and understanding MOC concepts, organization, and processes and how course attendees, in their assigned positions, may interact with each other.

Program Structure

Course Overview

Week One

Overview of MOC, References, Joint Force and Joint Task Force Organization, Operational Art, Operational Warfare at Sea, and Operational Law in maritime environment.

Week Two

Introduction to Operational Factors and Principles of Joint Operations, Plans and Orders, and Design Framework. Apply these to case study in live session.

Week Three

Introduction to Planning, Center of Gravity (COG) Analysis, and functions of personnel assigned to MOC. Apply COG analysis to case study in live session.

Student Information

Contact Information

MHSC Faculty

More Information

Next Steps
Request registration to the Maritime Headquarters Staff Course.