Learn to lead as an officer

The Army can transform you from a driven and ambitious person into a leader and commander with an exciting career. It all starts at the Royal Military College, one of the world’s finest military training institutions.

What is an Army officer?

As an Army officer you will lead a team of soldiers, earn their trust and respect, and motivate them to excel at their tasks. You will learn a variety of leadership and management techniques that will serve you well both in and out of Army. Officer training is followed by vocational training specific to your role and promotion courses will prepare you for the additional challenges and responsibilities associated with higher rank.

What are the benefits of officer training?

World-class leadership training plus a fast-track to a great career is just the start. At RMC you'll also enjoy:

Ongoing training, development and progression

Opportunities for diverse specialisation

Free sports and fitness facilities

Free medical and dental care

A mix of classroom and practical learning

A full salary while you train

A guaranteed leadership role on graduation

Highly-regarded transferable skills

Become an Officer Become an Officer

Is it right for me?

If you have drive, determination and ambition you possess the essential attributes to be an Army officer. World-class Army training will equip you with everything else you need. You’ll learn to become a leader, a mentor, and an accomplished operator, and your management and personal skills will be strengthened and given positive direction.

What are my options?

You can apply to be a 'General Service Officer' (GSO) with Year 12 qualifications, or a 'Specialist Service Officer' (SSO) with an appropriate degree in an area such as engineering or healthcare. GSOs train for 18 months at RMC while SSOs undertake between nine and 41 days of military and leadership training to prepare them for their roles.

In either case, you may be able to have all or part of a degree paid for through the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA) or Defence University Sponsorship (DUS). Find out about the ways you can join below, including the option of part-time Reserve work.


If you have Year 12 qualifications

Eighteen months at RMC will equip you with the skills required to lead a platoon of soldiers in your assigned specialisation, which will be based on your preference, your performance, and competition for roles. It will be in one of these roles


If you wish to undertake a degree

At ADFA in Canberra you can study for a degree from the University of New South Wales, earn a salary while studying and graduate with no HELP debt. You'll undertake military training in parallel with your academic studies, so on graduation you'll only need to complete 12 months of officer training at RMC before starting your career.

Degrees offered include:

  • Bachelor of Arts
  • Bachelor of Business
  • Bachelor of Engineering (various courses)
  • Bachelor of Science
  • Bachelor of Technology (various courses)


If you are already studying for a degree

With a successful sponsorship application you can join the Army, have your remaining course fees paid and receive a salary while you complete your degree. Qualifying degrees fall into the following broad categories:

  • Dentistry
  • Engineering
  • Medicine
  • Nursing
  • Pharmacy

After graduation you will undertake between nine and 41 days of military and leadership training during your first year of service (it varies by speciality) and receive ongoing personal and professional development. Find out if you are eligible for sponsorship:


If you are a recent graduate or mid-career

If the officer role you're pursuing is not directly related to your degree, you'll need to undertake the full 18-month training course at RMC before being assigned to a specific branch of the Army. See the ‘enter with no degree’ section above for more information.

Less training is required if you are pursuing a role in one of the following fields and have a relevant degree. These vary from year to year so please check with your Career Coach.

  • Business
  • Chaplaincy
  • Dentistry
  • Engineering
  • IT
  • Law
  • Medicine
  • Nursing
  • Psychology

As a Specialist Service Officer you’ll be able to utilise and expand your professional skills in a dynamic team environment. You will undertake between nine and 41 days of military and leadership training during your first year of service (it varies by speciality), receive ongoing personal and professional development, and may be given opportunities for postgraduate study.


If you want an exciting part-time challenge

The Army Reserve is for you if you want to gain extra training and experience in your profession, or challenge yourself with something completely different. You’ll gain leadership skills in an exciting team environment, as you undertake rewarding and worthwhile work that benefits your country.

Entry requirements, training periods and commitment vary by job, so please check individual job pages.

Where could it take me?

A career as an Army officer will expose you to new challenges and experiences on a daily basis, in barracks, across Australia and overseas. The skills you acquire in the Army are fully transferable to the civilian world, as demonstrated by these notable alumni from the Royal Military College - Duntroon.