Chief Master Sergeant Leadership Course

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Chief Master Sergeant Leadership Course

Modules and LessonsProgram Description.  The Chief Master Sergeant Leadership Course (CLC), located on Maxwell-Gunter AFB, AL, is a resident program that consists of 80 classroom hours.  The CLC is designed to prepare Chiefs for their initial CMSgt roles and responsibilities, primarily targeting Chiefs serving at the squadron level. This course provides Chief Master Sergeants the education to bridge strategic vision into tactical execution. Throughout the program, the CLC emphasizes critical thinking and an enterprise-level view in order to educate, inspire, and develop Chief Master Sergeants who effectively lead, manage, and mentor lethal and ready organizations. Chiefs will attend the CLC within two years of receiving their promotion line number. Chiefs will continue to build on foundational leadership competencies invaluable to fly, fight, and win across the full-spectrum of conflict and all domains of military power.    

Learning Outcomes.  The CLC prepares Chief Master Sergeants to:

  • Incorporate an enterprise-level view to effectively advise leaders at all echelons and develop lethal, agile, and adaptable Airmen for present and future challenges
  • Flexibly leverage approaches and thinking styles to appropriately address different types and levels of problems; 
  • Strategically leverage networks and relationships to lead and communicate effectively across all spheres of influence;
  • Employ purposeful strategies to lead the integration of Air Force ethos, Airman identity, character and performance in individuals, organizations, and in diverse employment contexts. 

Faculty.  The teaching staff of the CLC is composed of highly experienced active duty Chief Master Sergeants, along with retired Chief Master Sergeants who hold a minimum Masters level academic and/or instructional credentials.  Instructor selection is determined by professional experience, academic background, and faculty qualification.

Duration.  Completion of the course is delivered in 10 academic days.  The CLC conducts ten classes per year with 72 to 84 students in each class.

Eligibility.  Chief Master Sergeants from the total force (AD, AFR, and ANG) may attend the CLC. The course is mandatory for active duty Chiefs who meet Air Force standards of performance, appearance, and fitness. Active duty Air Force personnel must have at least one year of retainability following graduation. Air Force Personnel Center (AFPC) identifies and notifies active duty students for CLC attendance. Selected AFR and ANG Chiefs are scheduled through their unit training manager. 

Refer to AFI 36-2656, Developmental Education, and the ETCA website (.mil only) for additional information.

Leadership Team

Course Schedule

Class Start Graduate
21C 11 Jan 21 22 Jan 21
21D  1 Feb 21 12 Feb 21
21E 1 Mar 21 12 Mar 21
21F 29 Mar 21 9 Apr 21
21G 26 Apr 21 7 May 21
21H 7 Jun 21 18 Jun 21
21I 12 Jul 21 23 Jul 21

AU Student Support & Research Guides

Air University Student Support & Research Guides

CMSAF Professional Reading Picks

CMSAF Joanne Bass - Reading List

Required Reading


Self-Assessment and Your RTL
LDP401B Read Ahead, Self-Assessment and Your RTL

Doctrine Annex 1-1 Force DevelopmentLDP402A Read Ahead, Doctrine Annex 1-1 Force Development

Making Twenty-First Century Strategy, Dew and Snow
LDP402A Read Ahead, Making Twenty-First Century Strategy, Dew and Snow

Emotional Intelligence for LeadersLDP402B Read Ahead, Emotional Intelligence for Leaders

Emotional Intelligence, Daniel GolemanLDP402B Read Ahead, Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman

LDP402C Read ahead, Strategic Leadership Ch 10 Organizational Climate and Culture

NDS SummaryMSN401A Read Ahead, National Defense Strategy Summary

National Security Strategy MSN401A Read Ahead, National Security Strateg

UNCLASS_2018_National_Military_Strategy_Description MSN401A Read Ahead, UNCLASS_2018_National_Military_Strategy_Description

MSN 401C Doctrine Read-AheadAnnex-3-1-DAF-Role-in-JADO

MSN 402B Read-Ahead Renewed Great Power Competition Implications for Defense

Developing Leaders in a VUCA Environent PBS401A Optional - Developing Leaders in a VUCA Environent

Critical Thinking for the Military Professional PBS401B Student Reading, Critical Thinking for the Military Professional

What is RED Critical Thinking PBS401B Student Reading, What is RED Critical Thinking

Cognitive Influences on Decision Making PBS402A Reading, Cognitive Influences on Decision Making

Framing the Issue PBS402C STUDENT READING Framing the Issue

The Critical Difference between Complex and Complicated PBS402C STUDENT READING The Critical Difference between Complex and Complicated