Joint Military Operations

The Joint Military Operations curriculum course prepares future military and civilian leaders for the operational arena by emphasizing problem-solving, operational planning, and joint force application to achieve military objectives. Students will examine theater-strategic and operational levels of war across the spectrum of conflict and further develop joint attitudes and perspectives; officers will be exposed to, and increase their understanding of, service cultures while concentrating on joint staff operations.

Auditorium chairs at the U.S. Naval War College.

About the Course

The course is comprised mostly of a seminar learning environment and is composed of members of the U.S. and international armed forces, and U.S. Government members. This course is designed to prepare military officers to:

  • Enhance students’ ability to develop operational concepts, to adeptly apply joint planning processes, and to leverage creatively the instruments of national power across the spectrum of conflict in achieving assigned objectives.
  • Strengthen senior leadership skills necessary to excel in major staff responsibilities and in theater-strategic positions of leadership, and to serve as trusted advisors to policy makers.
  • Develop skilled senior warfighters, able to synthesize valid courses of action and to function in volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous operating environments.
  • Hone critical and creative thinking skills, especially the ability to develop and evaluate a range of potential solutions to ill-structured problems.

All students are required to write a research paper that critically examines an aspect of the course material. The Operations Research Paper presents an opportunity to study a theater-strategic or operational-level issue, conduct research, perform analysis, and write a paper that advances the literature and demonstrates critical reasoning skills.

Capstone Planning Exercise

The final event in the curriculum is a capstone planning exercise, the purpose of which is to synthesize and reinforce course material through practical application in a realistic staff environment. This is an educational planning exercise that provides an opportunity to apply the principles and concepts studied throughout the trimester.

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