In today’s post, I would like to discuss the Army ILE Program also known as Intermediate Level Education. For the most part, we will focus on the course for USAR and ARNG Officers, but we will also provide an overview of the program and talk about the enrollment process, information covered, and course requirements. Let’s get started.
Once you reach the rank of Major, you will need to attend and graduate the Army ILE Course, before you will become eligible for promotion to Lieutenant Colonel. Most Majors spend 4-8 years as a Major, so it would be in your best interest to complete this course as soon as possible. In fact, once you reach the rank of Major, you should sit down and develop a game-plan covering what jobs you want to have as a Major and when you will attend the Army ILE Course. Failure to do this is poor career management. Remember, it’s your job to manage your career if you want to advance in rank.
History of the Army Intermediate Level Course
The Army ILE Program is fairly new. Prior to the creation of the course in 2002, the Army utilized the Command and General Staff College. In 2002, this program was launched and rolled out in full force in 2005. Back in the day, only half of all Army Majors from each year group were selected for the CGSC Program. Now, all Army Majors must attend and graduate Army ILE before they can get promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.
Quick Facts about Army ILE
I wanted to take a moment and provide a few quick facts and information tidbits about the course. These are just a few things you should know up front.
- Active Duty Officers attend the resident training at Fort Leavenworth
- Reserve and ARNG Officers typically take the non-resident course
- It is the third tier of the Officer Education System
- You have 18 months to complete the course, from the time you first sign up
- Distance Learning (Internet) option consists of three phases, all of which are conducted online
- The Army School System (TASS) consists of online classes and classroom time
- The course is designed to prepare Majors for the next ten years of their career
- Most officers complete the course in about 14 months
- You must graduate this course to be eligible for promotion to LTC
How to Sign Up for Army ILE?
You can learn more about the course in ATRRS. The course number is 701-1-250-ILE. I recommend that you sit down with your Readiness NCO or unit S3 Training NCO to get enrolled. They will login to ATRRS and show you your options. You can pick the one that is best for you. In addition, you must have already completed your Captain’s Career Course or 2nd tier education requirements. Once you are signed up for ILE, your unit can print you orders for the course. I also recommend you take a few moments to determine which course (internet or classroom) works best for you.
For most Reserve and Army National Guard Officers, the classroom course is the best option. I’ve found that many officers drop out of the internet portion because they can’t stay focused. I’m not saying that to discourage you in any way though. On the other hand, the major downside of the classroom ILE is that you will probably have to do two drill weekends each month for 9-12 months; one for your ILE and one with your unit. Most units won’t let you miss 9-12 months of drill weekend to attend a school, especially if you are in a leadership position.
In addition, it might be in your best interest to sit down with your chain of command ahead of time, so you can discuss your career goals and develop a game-plan that supports your unit goals, and still lets you attend ILE.
What Will I Learn in the Intermediate Level Education Course?
You will learn how to be a Brigade level staff officer and higher. You will learn a lot about the strategic level in the Army. You will write papers, have discussion groups, take tests and challenge yourself. You will get instruction in many aspects of strategic, operational and tactical leadership. You will also learn about Force Management, Military Leadership and much more. One of the best things about the course is the “fellowship” with your peers. I consider this aspect of the course just as beneficial as the instruction. You will be able to rub elbows with other successful Majors and form long-term professional relationships with them.
The Army ILE Course is a very important course for any new Army Majors. At this moment in time, all Majors must graduate ILE in order to get promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. The course itself is tough, time consuming and very challenging. It will probably be the most difficult military school you’ve had to complete during your part-time military career. However, the information you learn, the friendships you build and the time sacrifices you make will help you become a better, more proficient Army Officer.
What are your experiences with Army ILE? Do you have any questions? Please post them below.