Description > Special Forces
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about
National Guard Special
Forces Warrant Officers (180A)
Duty Description of a Special Forces
"Special Forces (SF) warrant officers are combat
leaders and staff officers. They are experienced subject matter experts in
unconventional warfare, operations and intelligence fusion, and planning
and execution at all levels across the operational continuum. They advise
commanders on all aspects of special operations and are responsible for
the integration of emerging technologies. Warrant officers in the rank of
WO1, CW2, and select CW3s serve on a Special Forces Operational
Detachment-Alpha (SFOD-A) primarily as the assistant detachment commander
and can also serve as the detachment commander (in the absence of a
commander) or commander of specialized teams. CW3 through CW5 SF warrant
officers serve as staff operations warrant officers within the SF group
and at higher commands within SF, Army SOF, and joint SOF staffs. They may
lead task-organized SOF elements as directed. They serve as senior warrant
officer advisors (SWOAs) to the commander for all warrant officer matters
and other interests as directed. Select CW5s serve as the Command Chief
Warrant Officer (CCWO) for the Commander, United States Army Special
Forces Command (Airborne), CCWO for the Commanders of the SF groups, and
SWOA to Commander, United States Army Special Operations Command as an
integral part of the commanderís personal staff."
(The paragraph above
taken from the link below from the United States Army Warrant Officer
Recruiting website. Click here for the Army WO Recruiting
Special Forces Warrant Officer Institute
(SFWOI). Special Forces Warrant Officers attend the Warrant
Officer Tactical and Technical Certification Course and the Special Forces
Warrant Officer Advance Course at the Special Forces Warrant Officer
Institute at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Below is a description of
the SFWOI taken from the USAJFKSWCS
website. One correction to the verbage below is the length of the
WOTTCC - as of 2011 the course is 20 weeks long.
"The Special Forces Warrant Officer Institute is an
adaptive and collaborative learning institution that provides the most
current and relevant professional military education for SF warrant
officers at every level of their career in support of operational
requirements. The Special Forces Warrant Officer Institute supports all of
the lifelong learning requirements of both warrant officer candidates and
senior warrant officers in the 180A MOS. The institute educates, mentors,
trains and appoints warrant-officer candidates to the grade of WO1 as well
as provides education and training to senior warrant officers at key
points in their career. The institute produces highly capable combat
leaders and innovative planners capable of planning and executing SF
The Special Forces Warrant Officer Technical and
Tactical Certification (SF WOTTC) is conducted in three iterations each
year. The 16-week class results in the appointment and qualification of
selected Special Forces Soldiers as WO1s in MOS 180A. The SFWOTTC,
conducted at the JFK Special Warfare Center and School's Warrant Officer
Institute, conducts Army BOLC and Special Forces proponent based MEL 7
training and education to provide the force with skilled assistant
The Special Forces Warrant Officer Advanced Course
(SFWOAC) provides proponent-based MEL 6 professional military education to
mid-grade SF WOs to prepare them to serve as operational-level planners
and operations officers in SF units, component commands, joint task forces
and joint staffs as subject-matter experts in unconventional warfare and
foreign internal defense."
Frequently Asked Questions about SF Warrant
Can I join the National Guard Special Forces with no prior
military experience and become a Special Forces Warrant Officer?
No, you can't. You must meet the prerequisites below.
What are the prerequisites to become a
Special Forces Warrant Officer? The prerequisites have
changed from time to time over the years. You must have served at
least three years on a Special Forces Operational Detachment "A" with good
NCOERs to prove it. You must have the rank of Staff Sergeant or
higher. There are a number of Letters of Recommendations from
commanders at every level and senior warrant officers required. You must
have a final SECRET clearance. There are some specialty intelligence
courses that you must complete. You must demonstrate a language
proficiency or the ability to learn a language.
What is the minimum GT score for Special
Forces Warrant Officer? You must have a GT score of 107 or higher.
This is the same as entry into Special Forces.
What is the age limit for becoming an SF
warrant officer? The maximum age one can attend WOTTCC is
currently 46 years old. One has to demonstrate superior physical
fitness and excellent medical condition to enter the SF warrant officer
ranks above age 40.
What MOS do I need to become a Special
Forces Warrant Officer? You must be a 18B, 18C, 18D, 18E,
or 18F. At one time more than one MOS was required. In earlier
days one was required to also be an 18F but that requirement has been
Can a Warrant Officer with another MOS
become a 180A? Not usually; you must meet all the
prerequisites listed above.
Can a Special Forces Officer (18A) become a
Special Forces Warrant Officer? In some cases this is
authorized; however, you must attend the entire 20-week long SF WOTTCC and
meet many of the prerequisites SF NCOs must meet.
How long is Special Forces Warrant Officer
training? The Special Forces Warrant Officer Tactical and
Technical Certification Course (WOTTCC) is 20 weeks long.
Where is SF WOTTCC conducted? The
John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School conducts WOTTCC at the
Warrant Officer Institute at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
Is there any difference between the
prerequisites and training between active duty and National Guard SF
Warrant officers? No, the prerequisites and the training
are the same.
Other Web Sites with Info on Special
Forces Warrant Officer
The Special Forces Warrant Officer, the Beginnings, by J.H. Crerar,
COL, USA Retired, Warrant Officers Heritage Foundation, August 31, 2004.
Warrant Officer Historical Foundation
Warrant Officer History Articles. Warrant Officer
United States Army Warrant Officers Association
180A Discussion on Professional Soldiers
provides an interesting read on the early history of SF WOs (replacing the
LTs) and pros and cons of WO service.
Special Forces Warrant Officer Institute Beret
Flash and Back Trimmings
The Institute of Heraldry at pentagon.mil
Papers and Publications about SF Warrant
McPherson, William A. et al. Recruitment and
Accesson of Special Forces Warrant Officers, U.S. Army Research
Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences, Research Report 1851,
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