The ACTEDS Training Catalog

Chapter 2: Command and General Staff Officer Course
/Professional Military Education
(CGSOC/PME) Programs

General Information
Grade GS-13 or GS-12 (by exception – See AD 2015-24), or pay band equivalent position.


This chapter provides CGSOC/PME announcements and application procedures. (IAW Army Directive 2015-24 (DA Senior Enterprise Talent Management - SETM and ETM Programs

For Academic Year (AY) 2018-2019, Army has civilian quotas for the following schools:

  • Command and General Staff College, Combined Arms Center (CAC)-Leavenworth, Fort Leavenworth, KS.

These school is the only ones available for Army Civilians for AY18-19 CGSOC/PME.

Applicability You must be applying for one of the Army Civilian CGSOC/PME quotas.

NOTE: Eligibility requirements and rules for mandatory compliance with the Graduate Placement Program (GPP) and Mobility Agreement applies to all CGSOC-PCS/PME participants only. Applicants selected for participation under the CGSOC-TDY/PME option will return to their home station under a pre-approved parent organization Utilization Plan.

Application Deadlines



CGSCO/PME 01 Jul 2017 Oct - Nov 2017 Jul/Aug 2018 - Jun 2019 (resident courses)

NOTE: ALL CGSOC/PME applications must be submitted via the automated SETM-System through the applicants' command structure AND receive command endorsement.

The applicant is expected expected to contact his/her command (Army Command, Major Subordinate Command or Direct Reporting Unit) to determine if any additional procedures or deadlines must be met for their applications to be forwarded. Most commands will have an internal deadline for accepting applications of at least 30 days earlier than HQDA's 01 July 2017 date.

Length of Program:
  • 10 months full-time residence course AND
  • 2 weeks resident pre-course (P-920)
  • Distance education pre-course
NOTE: Actual start/stop dates are dependent upon specific College requirements. See the Nomination Sheet for Academic Year 2018-2019 (Resident) for specific start and stop dates. Additional Master’s degree program curriculum available at CGSOC for voluntary students only.

Target Audience/Ideal Candidates

CGSOC/PME prepares civilians for positions of greatest responsibility in the Department of Army. SSC/PME provides advanced level educational opportunities for those who have completed CES training through the Advanced Course or who have received course credit from HQDA G-3/5/7. The CGSOC/PME module allows Army Civilians at grade GS-13 or equivalent and, by exception, grade GS-12 or equivalent who meet the prerequisites to compete for and participate in the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College Developmental School at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. CGSOC offers a collaborative, experiential and educational partnership in which Army Civilians, interagency students, U.S. military students and international military officer students gain expertise and knowledge in solving today’s complex problems. Participation prepares emerging and aspiring enterprise leaders for the challenges of a dynamic and complex global environment.

CGSOC provides graduate-level education using an experiential learning model in which small groups work together to exchange ideas and methodologies to identify problems in the current environment and come up with feasible solutions to the problems. All CGSOC participants are expected to make meaningful contributions to their learning groups. The CGSOC learning model educates and trains students to be adaptive leaders who are capable of critical thinking and prepared to dominate in unified land operations and collaborate in joint, interagency, intergovernmental and multinational environments in the United States and abroad. Army Civilian and interagency students graduate with a refined knowledge of the current and future operating environment and the ability to identify and analyze operational level issues. They also develop superb problem-solving skills, gain a firm understanding of organizational leadership, and develop a network of military and civilian contacts and a shared understanding of each other’s processes.

Selection for attendance at a CGSOC is a competitive process and a HQDA ETM-Board screens applicants and makes Army nominations. Like the Officer Corps, Army Civilians graduating from CGSOC-PCS option are centrally placed under the Graduate Placement Program (GPP) in a position of greater responsibility in another assignment or organization where they can apply the operational education they have received.

For Army Civilians, CGSOC is an 11-month graduate-level program. The curriculum includes instruction on leadership philosophy, military history, and the military planning and decision-making processes. In addition, Army Civilians selected to participate in ETM CGSOC have the opportunity to complete a thesis-level research paper and receive a Master of Military Arts and Sciences degree accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the accrediting body for collegiate institutions in the Midwestern United States. A distance learning module must be completed before orientation. Army Civilians will report to CGSOC for orientation and a preparatory curriculum in July. CGSOC classes begin in August and end the following June.

Selection of Army Civilians to attend leader development and education courses is linked to performance in current assignments, to professional and career development and progression, to career development plans and career management models, and to future assignments. Students are expected to significantly contribute to the learning environment through in depth analytical discussions drawing on their subject matter knowledge and experiences in operations and policy aspects. Generally, the superior CGSOC/PME candidate:

  • Is a high performing civilian with outstanding potential for more responsible or leadership positions across the enterprise
  • Is ready and able to contribute as a student at a senior leader CGSOC/PME school.
  • Has a broad and varied history of experience leading to increased responsibility and broad perspectives:
    • In multiple organizations, commands, or Defense agencies;
    • At various organizational levels (operating, staff, headquarters);
    • In a range of related occupational areas; and
    • At multiple geographical locations.
  • Has in-depth operational and managerial experience and that has demonstrated the competence, confidence, and motivation to be a bold and innovative leader in the public sector to supervise or manage people in an official capacity.
  • Has an outstanding performance record and has progressed through positions of increasing responsibility at a faster pace than his/her peers.
  • Values life-long learning and:
    • Has succeeded in other rigorous programs of formal education, training, and self-development
    • Has one or more degrees in fields related to his/her occupational specialty, and
    • Has successfully completed Army-sponsored leadership programs and other developmental activities toward attaining career goals.
  • Is motivated to succeed, and is willing to challenge himself/herself to do so; and
  • Has the passion to lead, inspire, and produce results for Army.

Only those with the capacity, commitment and leadership support to pursue a rigorous educational program should be nominated. Specific eligibility requirements and additional guidance on identifying candidates follow.

Eligibility Requirements

To be considered for CGSOC/Professional Military Education (PME) per Army Directive 2015-24, Army Civilian applicants must have met all eligibility requirements at the time of applicant submission to his/her command:

  • LENGTH OF ARMY EMPLOYMENT: Be a permanent, full-time Army Civilian employee for a minimum of three years at time of application. Eligible applicants must have career status in an Army permanent competitive appointment, Schedule A, Excepted appointment without time limitation, or be serving under Non-Appropriated Fund (NAF) instrumentality or hold an Excepted Service appointment in the Defense Civilian Intelligence Personnel Management System.
  • GRADE/PAY BAND: : Hold a permanent GS-13 or GS-12 (by exception – See AD 2015-24), or pay band equivalent position
  • LEADERSHIP EXPERIENCE: Have demonstrated a high level of operational and leadership experience.
  • EDUCATION: Hold a baccalaureate degree or higher from an accredited institution
  • CLEARANCE: Have at a minimum an interim SECRET clearance that will not expire during the academic year. A copy of your clearance must be submitted with your application.
  • TRAINING: Have successfully completed the Civilian Education System (CES) Advanced Course (AC) or have received Advanced Course Credit from HQDA G-3/5/7. If applying for CES Constructive Credit, applicants should allow 90 days for processing (i.e. if application is due to individual's command on 12 May, request for constructive credit should be made NLT 12 Feb).
  • ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS: See the individual SSC/PME announcements in this chapter for additional requirements.

NOTE: Applicants who have already completed a Professional Military Education diploma for CGSOC (resident or non-resident) or equivalent from any Command and General Staff College are not eligible for consideration under Department of the Army guidelines.

Nomination/ Selection Process
  • Eligible candidates: Application requires mandatory command endorsement as part of the automated SETM-System application process. Packets must go through the chain-of-command to the designated Army Commands (ACOM), Army Service Component Commands (ASCC), Direct Reporting Units (DRU), equivalent Human Resource Directorate (HRD) Staff, or MACOM-equivalent organizations' representative. Command representative may have established local points of contact as well as internal suspense dates earlier than the HQDA date.
  • Army Commands (ACOM), Army Service Component Commands (ASCC), and Direct Reporting Units (DRU): Will establish and announce an intermediate suspense date that allows time to receive applications from their serviced population, conduct a board at the appropriate command level, and forward the applications of the best qualified candidates to the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Manpower and Reserve Affairs), ATTN: CSLDD via command endorsement reflecting rank order by the suspense date. Applications not submitted through the proper chain-of-command will not be accepted by CSLDD. All CGSOC applications will be submitted to CSLDD using the automated SETM- System.
  • Applicants: : Are expected to indicate the CGSOC attendance (PCS or TDY) preference on the CGSOC Nomination Form in the SETM-System applicant survey. In addition, applicants are highly recommended to volunteer for the Master’s degree curriculum offered as part of CGSOC attendance.
  • Enterprise Talent Management - SETM-Board: Will create an Order-of-Merit List (OML), ranking applicants in priority for submission to CGSOC. The OML lists will order/arrange applicants in best-qualified priority order using board-established ranking criteria. CSLMO will release the results of the Enterprise Talent Management Board through Command/Human Resource Director (HRD) channels. Based on the number of available quotas, OML application packages will be forwarded to CGSC as final selection.
  • The CGSCs: Reserve final acceptance authority. Selections are not final until acceptance is confirmed by the respective institution via ATRRS. CSLDD will notify commands and applicants of final acceptance upon confirmation from CGSOC.
  • Results notification: The Secretary of the Army will authorize the release of the Enterprise Talent Management Board results by CSLDD immediately following the board dates, and, later, final acceptance decisions by the schools. Be patient! Final acceptance notifications are received by CSLDD between March and May during the same year as CGSOC starts based on final review process.

Dates for Nomination & Selection Timeline


Date to be determined by individual Commands Commands conduct internal review boards and ranking. Check with your training POC for exact details.
3 Jul 2017 Deadline for Command to submit CGSOC Nominations to CSLDD.
4-11 Jul 2017 CSLDD conducts review of nomination packages to be boarded by the Enterprise Talent Management Board (ETM Board)
20 Oct- 20 Nov 2017 CGSOC ETM Board convenes Phase I Records Review and Phase II Interviews
Dec 2017 /Jan 2018 Notification of CGSOC ETM-Board results to Army Commands
Jan 2018 CGSOC Nominees confirm the Acceptance via email to CSLDD
Mar 2018 CGSOC Students complete DE course requirements
Jul 2018 CGSOC Civilian Students report to CAC-Leavenworth for inprocess and to find living quarters
Jul 2018 CGSOC Students begin Pre-Course
Aug 2018 CGSOC resident course begins
Aug 2018 CGSOC-PCS students submit resumes and assignment preferences to CSLDD
Feb 2019 ETM Board GPP Placement Board convenes.
Apr 2019 CGSOC students notified of SETM Board direct placements.

Application Checklist

There is a checklist for CGSOC. Applicants will submit only one application package request in SETMS for Command and HQDA consideration as follows:

The CGSOC announcement: Describes the program requirements along with application, evaluation, and selection procedures. Announcements must be reviewed carefully to obtain program requirements and to submit quality nomination packages. Applicants in a pay band position should confer with a Human Resources Specialist to determine if they meet grade requirements. The SETMS application website provides both a User's Guide and an additional checklist with detailed instructions for completing ETM applications and mailing address to forward additional application documents. Applications reaching CSLDD that are incomplete in any way will be returned to the command without action.

Applicant Checklist - Applicants will assemble their application package in accordance with the ETM-CGSOC Checklist. Some forms are on-line fillable and can be retrieved by clicking on them from the Checklist or via Appendix D: On-Line Forms, in this Catalog. Do not provide your full SSN or DOB on any documents.

Career Program Functional Chief Representatives/ Career Field Functional Proponents (FCR/FP)
  • Market CGSOC and encourage managers to nominate highly motivated Army Civilians who require a thorough knowledge of Army Operations in order to perform at the operational level (ACOM, ASCC, DRU, Field Operating Agency, Joint Task Force or higher).
  • Get to know the CGSOC selectees under your purview. Once the Army OML is published, start working with the attendees on post- placement opportunities through GPP and/or utilization planning. See the GPP for more information on what you can do now to enhance the Army mission post-graduation.
  • Upon receipt of nomination packets from Command Civilian training POCs, conduct review for those applicants in the FCR or Functional Proponent purview.

Assist application in preparing the Application early
  • Assist the applicant in obtaining endorsements from first-line Supervisors and first SES/GO endorsers.
  • Provide advice and assistance to the applicant on defining his/her career goals in support of the Army’s mission.

Applicant: Take these steps to submit a competitive application.

  • Discuss the one page supervisory letter of recommendation with your supervisor. If asked by the supervisor to provide input for this recommendation, do so.
  • Seek confirmation of the applicable Command intermediate suspense date and apply through chain-of-command in a timely manner.
Army Commands (ACOM), Army Service Component Commands (ASCC), and Direct Reporting Units (DRU) equivalent HRD Staff MACOM/equivalent organizations:
Market CGSOC
  • Market CGSOC and encourage managers to nominate highly motivated GS-13 (GS-12 by exception) or equivalent Army Civilians who require a thorough knowledge of Army operations in order to perform at the operational level (ACOM, ASCC, DRU, Field Operating Agency, Joint Task Force or higher).
  • Establish and announce command suspense date to ensure timely compliance with HQDA suspense date.

Guide Applicants and Supervisors
  • Ensure your familiarity with program requirements. Be prepared to act as an internal resource for applicants and their supervisors.
  • Screen applications carefully to confirm accuracy and completeness.
  • Verify that pay band applicants meet the GS-13 (or GS-12 by exception) grade equivalency.

Letters of Recommendation:

Both Rater and first SES/GO Endorser pre-designated by the applicant in the SETMS survey must endorse each applicant as part of the SETMS application process.

Command Endorsement Memo

The "Command endorsed" order-of-merit list (OML) forwards the best qualified candidates to CSLDD. It must:

  • Include an order-of-merit list (OML) of nominees within the body of the endorsement or as an enclosure via the SETMS Command Board link.
  • If the Command/equivalent organization has only one nominee, the endorsement must include a statement that the nominee is "one of one."
  • Include the name, email address and telephone number of the Command/equivalent POC.

The Command will determine what method(s) are appropriate to generate an OML. Submit nomination packages of best qualified candidates to HQDA via command endorsement in SETMS. Command endorsement must be completed in SETMS in time to reach CSLDD by the suspense date.

Command and General Staff Officer College -- Graduate Placement Program (GPP):

CGSOC placement under the GPP applies to all Army Civilian applicants for CGSOC-PCS option only. It is a post-training placement process, established by the VCSA in June 2003. It is designed to maximize Army's return-on-investment and provide an avenue for full utilization of the competencies acquired through CGSOC. The VCSA policy memorandum can be read at

  • Applicants: Must sign the ETM GPP Mobility Agreement and continued Service agreement as a condition of applying for CGSOC.
  • Selectees: Will submit an updated resume to CSLDD reflecting their attendance to CGSOC and current school and home email addresses, telephone numbers, and projected date of graduation within thirty calendar days of CGSOC start. Resumes will be sent electronically to:
    Assistant Secretary of the Army (Manpower and Reserve Affairs)
    Civilian Senior Leader Management Office (ATTN: CSLDD SETM/ETM Programs)
    111 Army Pentagon, Room 1D755 Washington, DC 20310-0111

    Email: or

  • • The CGSOC-PCS Graduate Placement Program (GPP) is authorized to reassign you to a position in your current grade. You cannot be non-competitively promoted via the GPP. If you are looking for a specific location and/or type of duty, work with your FCR to identify vacancies and provide to CSLDD prior to the February 2019 SETM- Placement Board convening. Positions you find on your own efforts, including reassignments, must be validated and approved by the applicable FCR and the SETM-Placement Board. Use this link to the Validation Guidance that describes the characteristics of a position requiring CGSOC level training.
  • • Work with your FCR to identify your GPP goals and discuss options prior to HQDA SETM-Placement Board convening. The FCRs are actively committed to finding you a post-placement assignment that meets both CGSOC requirements and your personal goals. Students should establish and maintain regular communication with their FCRs throughout their CGSOC attendance.

CGSOC Program Manager (CSLDD)
  • Will contact students at the start of the school year to obtain updated resumes, biographies and preferences.
  • Will actively work with CGSOC students to identify student's personal career goals, assignment preferences and objectives. Student preferences will be considered by the SETM-Placement Board but these preferences are not binding. The needs of the Army are the first consideration when placement decisions are being made.
  • The resumes of all CGSOC-PCS students will be presented to the SETM-Placement Board for consideration and deliberation.
  • The SETM-Placement Board will consider the CGSOC students for permanent lateral placement into known or projected vacancies for which they are qualified.
  • The SETM-Placement Board will make final placement decisions and the CSLDD will prepare announcements notifying Army Commands (ACOM), Army Service Component Commands (ASCC), and Direct Reporting Units (DRU) Human Resource Directors (HRD), and to Career Program Functional Chief Representatives (FCR), Career Field Functional Proponents (FP) and students in April of the CGSOC graduation year.

Army Commands (ACOM), Army Service Component Commands (ASCC), and Direct Reporting Units (DRU) Human Resource Directors (HRD), Career Program Functional Chief Representatives (FCR), Career Field Functional Proponents (FP) and Selecting Officials/Gaining Organization
  • Army Commands (ACOM), Army Service Component Commands (ASCC), Direct Reporting Units (DRU), Human Resource Directors (HRD), Career Program Functional Chief Representatives (FCR), Career Field Functional Proponents (FP) and Acquisition Support Center will provide CSLDD valid vacancies at the GS13 (GS12 by exception) equivalencies for the CGSOC-PCS GPP consideration. These vacancies are due to CSLDD NLT Jan 2019.

Affirmative Action Goals:
  • Advanced leader development education such as CGSOCC provides a valuable learning experience. The success of today's Army comes from the total commitment to the ideals of freedom, fairness, and human dignity upon which our country was founded. To this end, equal opportunity for all personnel is the only acceptable standard. The backgrounds, ideas and insights of men and women, all racial and ethnic groups, and persons with disabilities are a source of strength and diversity for our Nation and our workforce. Eligible employees should be encouraged to participate in these programs by functional, managerial, human resource, and equal opportunity officials in support of Army goals.

Administrative Procedures - Post Selection
Selectees: Accepting an CGSOC Offer:
  • You are required to accept in writing the offered seat. Acceptances must be submitted by email to the CSLDD POCs identified at the end of this section within two weeks of the date that final acceptance notices are released.
  • Declinations: Selectees declining CGSOC will forward a formal statement of declination through their chain of command to the address provided above, with copy furnished to HQDA G-37 TRV POC. Selectees who decline will be removed from any future consideration for CGSOC.

Civilian Training Student Account (CTSA) (HQDA G-37 TRV Civilian Training and Leader Development)

Candidates selected to attend the Command and General Staff Officer Course residency program under PCS option will be reassigned from their current organization to a long-term training authorization on G-3/5/7 Table of Distribution and Allowances (TDA). Students will attend CGSOC in a TDY status from their current duty location. HQDA G-37 TRV will fund salary and benefits for CTSA members while in a training status. Exception: OCONUS candidates will PCS to the training site (Note: Selectees whose families will be negatively impacted by the current Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) will NOT be reassigned to the G-37 TRV TDA, but remain assigned to their current organization --- Backfill reimbursement can be provided to organization's for the period participants are not assigned to the CTSA).

  • Final placement decisions will be made as soon as possible during the academic year. The personnel action may be cut at any point during the academic year, but not later than the second week of May each academic year.
    • The DCS G-37 TRV will cover any PCS costs unless the graduate is already covered by a transportation agreement in connection with an overseas transfer.
  • Will coordinate with the selecting official/gaining organization regarding effective date of reassignment.

Losing Organization
  • For candidates transferring to the central account, organizations will be able to backfill against the vacant position once the student has been reassigned (per effective date of the SF50).

Submit all inquiries to the HQDA G-37 TRV POC

CGSOC Policy and CTSA:


Mr. Don Harrison
703-545-4313 (DSN 865)

Budget/Travel Orders:

Travel Orders:
CSLDD Points of Contact

Chief, CSLDD and SETM GPP Board POC:
Mr. Edmund Shaw, ,
703-693-1128 (DSN 223)

ETM Program Manager and GPP Policy
Mr. Angel Maldonado, ,
703-695-4834 (DSN 225)