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Courses of Instruction

Basic course

The basic course consists of a four-semester block of instruction normally taken during the freshman and sophomore years. During the freshman year, two hours of instruction are taken each week for two semesters. In the sophomore year, three hours of instruction are taken each week for two semesters. The emphasis in these courses is on team and leadership development, “hands-on” equipment instruction, land navigation, and leadership skills training.

In order to receive credit for completing the basic courses in residence at Western Kentucky University, the student must complete MIL 101, 102, 201, and 202. Students who are unable to take these courses may gain credit by taking MIL 210, a 28-Day camp conducted at Fort Knox, Kentucky, where they are instructed on those subjects taught during the basic courses of the ROTC program. Students with prior military service, or membership in the National Guard or Reserves, also may receive advanced placement for part of or the entire basic course, depending upon the amount and character of service performed. Regardless of the option, advanced placement, or prior military training completed, a student must complete the basic course or its equivalent to gain eligibility to enroll in the advanced course.

Course Descriptions

MIL 101 Mountaineering & Leadership (2 hours) Introduction to military mountaineering operations and leadership. Fundamentals of basic rappelling, belaying, and application of leadership in practical exercises. Field trips to off-campus locations may be required, and transportation will be provided.

MIL 102 Developmental Skills (2 hours) Continues the student’s education in military and “life skills” lessons in the areas of problem solving, critical thinking, leadership theory, basic first aid, survival skills and group interaction.

MIL 201 Basic Leadership (3 hours) Prerequisites: MIL 101, 102 or PMS permission. Prepares the cadet to become an effective small unit leader. Topics include leadership techniques, doctrine, skills and application methods, ethics, communications, tactical scenarios simulating missions being conducted around the world, land navigation, first aid, and cultural awareness. .

MIL 202 Team Building and Military Doctrine (3 hours) Prerequisites: MIL 101, 102, and 201, or PMS permission. Reinforces Military doctrine and tactics, values and ethics, and officership from MIL201. Team Building, the fundamentals and definitions of Leadership. The latter includes extensive work in military oral and written communication skills as well as the role of the United States Army from Vietnam to present day.

MIL 210 Military Science Practicum (Basic Camp; 6 hours) Introduces military science in a comprehensive course designed to be taken in lieu of MS 101, 102, 201, and 202 for students who were unable to take these courses. The course is held at Fort Knox, Kentucky during the summer and emphasizes practical application of military skills and development of leadership abilities. Students are provided room and board and paid approximately $600 for attending. Prior to enrollment in this course, the student must meet academic and physical standards established by the Army. To receive credit for this course, the student must register for the course prior to his/her departure for camp. (Summer Only).

Advanced Course (MIL III AND MIL IV)

The advanced course is designed to commission officers for service in the United States Army, both active duty and reserve. Successful completion of the advanced course at Western Kentucky University earns the student a commission as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army. The advanced course consists of four semester-long courses and a 33-day summer course. An additional military history course, normally taken during the junior or senior year, must also be completed prior to commissioning.

The student must graduate from the Advanced Camp (AC) prior to being eligible for commissioning. AC is normally attended during the summer break between the end of the junior and start of the senior year.

While attending AC, students are paid approximately $600.00. The U.S. Army furnishes travel expenses to and from AC, uniforms, quarters, medical care, and rations during the course period.

Additionally, advanced course cadets may be eligible to attend Army schools such as Airborne, Air Assault, and Northern Warfare. They may also spend several weeks during the summer with active Army units located in Europe, Asia, and throughout the United States. These activities are voluntary and students must meet high standards to be eligible for attendance.

The applicant for the advanced course of instruction must:

  • Be a citizen of the United States or an alien in a category approved by the Department of the Army. Approval must be granted prior to enrollment.
  • Be at least 17 years of age at the time of enrollment and not reach 30 years of age at the time of commissioning in the U.S. Army (this may be waived).
  • Be medically qualified in accordance with standards prescribed by the Department of the Army.
  • Have satisfactorily completed the basic course or Leader’s Training Course or have equivalent military or ROTC training. Veterans holding honorable discharges may qualify for the advanced course.
  • Have a minimum overall academic average of 2.0 and have completed a minimum of 60 credit hours.
  • Be selected by the Professor of Military Science.
  • Execute a written agreement with the government to complete the two-year advanced course of training; attend AC; agree in writing to accept an appointment as a commissioned officer in the Army Reserve; and serve a prescribed tour of active or reserve component duty as a commissioned officer.

** Please note that the advanced courses may be taken even if you are not seeking commission but majoring in Military Science.

Course descriptions

MIL 301: Military Leadership and Management (3 hours) Prerequisite: Permission of the PMS Principles and techniques of leadership and management including leadership techniques and training, introduction to basic military weapons, and ethics and professionalism.

MIL 302: Military Leadership and Advanced Tactical Skills (4 hours) Prerequisite: Permission of the PMS. Principles and fundamentals of small unit tactics and communications with emphasis on leadership techniques for controlling and employment of small units. Includes communication, map reading, and troop leading procedures.

MIL 401: Professional Leadership Skills (3 hours) Prerequisite: Permission of the PMS. Focuses on military leadership and management principles. Discussion and practical exercises in leadership principles and traits, organizational leadership, counseling techniques, management, delegation and control.

MIL 402: Role of the Army Officer (4 hours) Prerequisite: Permission of the PMS. The final course of the advanced program focuses on Army combat operations, logistics, administration, readiness, military justice, leadership/ management, and preparation for commissioning.

MIL 410: Military Science Practicum (6 hours; Leadership Development and Assessment Course) Prerequisite: Permission of the PMS. Develops leadership through an intensive five-week summer field course of rotating leader/command roles, practical experience in problem analysis and decision making, and troop leading while providing in-depth coverage of technical subjects. Successful completion of this course is required. Prior to enrollment, the student must meet the physical and academic standards established by the Army.

MIL 490: Military Leadership Seminar (1 hour) Prerequisite: Permission of the PMS. Practical applications of military leadership skills, military bearing and physical fitness are stressed. Course is designed to assist students in the transition to Army officer status and continue their physical conditioning. Field experience on military installations is required (transportation provided.)

Other Courses

Basic Camp

Basic Camp will challenge you to lead your fellow students. It is a fully-paid five-week training camp at Fort Knox, KY which is normally attended by cadets between the sophomore and junior years of college. This is where you'll learn basic military skills through hands-on practice and acquire knowledge other cadets have gained through two years of on-campus ROTC. It is designed to prepare cadets for the ROTC Advanced Courses and is a challenging and exciting opportunity.

You may attend Basic Camp if you:

  • Have not taken Military Science I and II.
  • Are medically qualified to attend.
  • Are transferring from a school that did not have ROTC.
  • Are a junior or community college graduate entering an ROTC school and have no prior active or Reserve component military experience.
  • Are a graduate student, starting a two-year program.
  • Are a high-school graduate entering a military junior college.
  • Students with prior military service will be given credit for Basic Course completion and would not be required to attend the Basic Camp.


Students who attend Basic Camp may compete for a Two-Year Army ROTC scholarship while at camp. These merit scholarships are awarded to the most outstanding students who apply. For more information on the requirements and benefits from a Leaders Training Course scholarship, see the our Scholarship Page.

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 Last Modified 5/16/19