The ArmyThe Army
Lead from the front, do something that matters, and put other people first. Become a British Army Officer and you’ll get much more from life than you ever would with a civilian career – you’ll become part of a tradition of leadership and selfless service that stretches back hundreds of years.
The route to becoming an Army Officer starts at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst. Whatever you’ve studied, this is where you’ll learn everything from fundamental skills – like outdoor survival and weapons handling – to big-picture military strategy and the theoretical elements of leadership. You’ll learn alongside people from a whole range of backgrounds who will become the closest friends you’ll ever have, relying on them just as much as they will on you.
When you complete the course you’ll commission as Second Lieutenant and undertake the specialist training that will prepare you for your place in the Army. We need all kinds of people to work effectively – so you could learn anything from combat engineering to hi-tech telecommunications to intelligence gathering. Then you’ll take command of a platoon or troop of soldiers, set an example for them, and serve their interests. Whatever your role, you’ll be part of a regiment or corps with a unique history and traditions, living and serving alongside fellow Officers who’ve been through the same tests as you, and will share in your successes and challenges.
You’ll benefit from the best leadership training in the world, a career that will help you make the most of it, and a clear path for promotion. Life as an Army Officer offers people with potential, a focus for their ambition and a place where they can truly belong.
Training & Profiles
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What happens at officer selection?
You will be invited to attend a two day Army Officer Selection Board briefing, where your leadership and teamwork skills will be tested. This will help you prepare for the Selection Board, which is a three-day assessment of both your physical and mental suitability for the role.
How long is officer training?
The course takes place at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and lasts 44 weeks for Regular officers, or three weeks for Reservists. People with certain experience or qualifications may be eligible for the fast-track Professionally Qualified Officers’ (PQO) course, which lasts ten weeks.
After this initial training, you will go on a second course to learn specific skills related to your first appointment. The length of this course varies depending on the type of role you will be doing.
How much will I earn as an officer?
You’ll earn a salary of £25,727 while you train. This rises to £30,922 when you are commissioned as a Second Lieutenant. If you’re still serving in the Army after five years you could be earning at least £39,628 as a Captain.
How many soldiers will I be in charge of?
For the first couple of years as a junior officer you will be in charge of around 30 soldiers. On rising to Captain, you could find yourself helping to command a unit of around 120 soldiers. Alternatively, you could move on to command fewer soldiers in a more specialised team.