Maritime Staff Operators Course

The Maritime Staff Operators Course (MSOC) provides resident education in the application of the Maritime Operations Center (MOC) concept, organization and processes; maritime operational level of warfare concepts, terminology and processes; and the Navy Planning Process (NPP) in order to produce graduates capable of immediately supporting the commander’s decision cycle at the operational level of warfare in a dynamic and complex environment.
Students in the Maritime Staff Operators Course at the U.S. Naval War College listen to a lecture.

General Information

Eligibility

The course is for Navy chiefs and officers, O1 -O5, en route to a MOC or operational-level maritime staff. U.S. Government Civilians are also eligible (GS11-GS14).

Location & Duration

MSOC is a five-week course held at U.S. Naval War College (NWC) in Newport, Rhode Island.

Learning Format

The course is conducted in a seminar format and culminates with practical planning and execution application using a complex, fictitious case study, and a Battle Lab experience.

Outcome

Officer students (O1-O5) receive an Additional Qualification Designation (JOM) upon completing the course and enlisted personnel (E7+) receive a Navy Enlisted Classification (831A) certificate. MSOC graduates receive partial credit for College of Distance Education's Web-Enabled Program.

Program Structure

Line of Effort I

Strategy, Operational Art, and Operational Functions

Required
Students are introduced to the fundamental aspects of joint warfare. The initial lecture culminates in a comprehensive discussion of the Battle of Leyte Gulf which synthesizes the key aspects of operational art. The foundational aspects are then carried forward and used extensively throughout the remainder of the course.

Line of Effort II

Maritime Command and Control

Required
The second lecture focuses on the core aspect of operational-level warfare – command and control (C2) of maritime forces, the employment of maritime capabilities, and how the Navy executes operational C2 via the MOC construct. They are also shown the organization and missions of the individual Navy MOCs and explore how a Combined/Joint Force Maritime Component Commander is formed and how a staff operates within a disciplined battle rhythm to support the decision cycle.

Line of Effort III

Planning and Preparation

Required
This lecture uses operational art and MOC processes as its foundation to engage students in practical exercises using a contemporary scenario that reinforces class lectures and uses a “learn then do” methodology. The students then employ the NPP, with emphasis on key techniques, supporting concepts, and doctrine to perform the six steps of the NPP.

Line of Effort IV

Execution

Required
This lecture is the synthesizing event of MSOC, where the class functions as a MOC staff and applies joint and service concepts, fundamentals, doctrine and knowledge of the NPP within the context of a realistic scenario. The intent is to demonstrate how internal and external activities support the commander’s decision cycle. It is a week-long command post exercise where students are assigned (and later rotated) among various cross functional teams.

Incoming Students

Contact Information

MSOC Administration

More Information

Useful resources and publications to help you in your studies are listed below.

Chairs Overlooking the Bay
NWC Information, lodging, and more

MSOC Student Information

While you’re attending NWC, you’ll have time to take a break from coursework to explore Newport and the New England region, from seaports and mansions to festivals and downtown entertainment. We offer support services to all of our students and access to a writing center. Our library is open 24/7.

More Student Information