NCO Academy Open Ranks Inspection

“Known as “the backbone” of our United States military, our NCOs focus on continued growth in their professions and the development of others to deliver mission excellence.”

The Blueprint: Enlisted Force Development, 2022

To meet this extraordinary charge from Air Force leadership, enlisted members will eventually attend the Noncommissioned Officer Academy (NCOA). As the second level of Enlisted Professional Military Education (EPME), with 10 academies worldwide, the course prepares Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) for increased responsibilities by developing their leadership capabilities and expanding their understanding of the military profession to achieve national strategic objectives. 

The NCOA course is a resident Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) affiliated course that consists of 196 hours of classroom instruction delivered over 25 academic days. The overall goals of NCOA are to develop the leadership capability of NCOs with relevant and solution-focused leadership attributes to successfully lead teams, strengthen their organizations culture, solve problems collaboratively, and expand their understanding of the Air Force’s role in joint operations to achieve national strategic objectives. The NCOA meets these goals by providing the best academic program possible through the delivery of outcome-based objectives related to the curriculum areas of Team Leadership, Joint Warfighting, and Strategic Thinking.

A self-study version of the NCOA program is available through Air University’s Global College of PME to facilitate EPME completion for Air National Guard and Air Force Reserves members for whom resident attendance may not be possible.

The course syllabus is located here.  


Upon completion of the course, NCOs will be able to:

  • Demonstrate leadership and management concepts applicable to leading NCOs and teams.
  • Illustrate the Air Force’s role in support of joint all-domain operations.
  • Demonstrate various thinking and communication skills to solve problems at the tactical & operational levels of warfare.


CONUS NCO Academies

OCONUS NCO Academies