Requirements and Guidance

The DoD SCW Certification Program consists of the following three required elements that must be satisfied by members of the SCW:

  • Mandatory Training: Complete all required training through the DSCU or its designated affiliates
  • Required SC Experience: Obtain one year of experience in the appropriate AoC at the appropriate level to be eligible for certification
  • Continuous Learning: Maintain "good standing" with the program through continous learning

What's Your Certification Level?

The Defense Security Cooperation University (DSCU) administers the certification program, which requires training, experience, and continuous learning. Training requirements for the SCW member vary based on the SCW position’s designated certification level and SC academic Area of Concentration (AoC). The listed timelines begin at the DoDI publication date for existing SCW members or the date a new member is assigned to a SCW position.

  1. Basic-level Certification: General knowledge and understanding of SC
    Deadline: One year to complete all required basic-level courses
  2. Intermediate-level Certification: Focus is on developing technical knowledge and understanding one AoC in the context of broader SC
    Deadline: One year to complete basic-level courses and 2 years to complete all required intermediate-level courses (3 years total)
  3. Advanced-level Certification: Focus is on increased technical mastery of one AoC in the context of broader SC
    Deadline: 3 years to complete basic- and intermediate-level courses, and 2 years to complete all required advanced-level courses (5 years total)
  4. Exeutive-level Certification: Focus is on a broad understanding of SC and its strategic application to achieve defense and national security objectives
    Deadline: Three years to complete all required executive-level courses

SC Areas of Concetration (AOC) for Certification

An academic Area of Concentration (AoC) is used to logically organize SC competencies for curriculum through the progression of certification levels.
All SC Workforce positions fall within one of the five AoCs:

SC Planning, Oversight, and Execution Management

Focus on broad planning, policy development, oversight, and execution of SC activities and programs. Also includes management of SC programs, intelligence cooperation, military-to-military engagements, defense

SC Case Life Cycle Management

Focus on building partnership capacity/foreign military sales (BPC/FMS) case execution, including case development, management, and execution (financial) logistics, and training management.

Security Cooperation Office (SCO) Operations And Management

Focus on SC activities conducted by a security cooperation office (SCO). This would typically include most members of the armed forces and civilian employees of the DoD working in Security Cooperation Organizations (SCO) overseas, as well as some combatant command (CCMD) staff.

SC Execution Support Management

Focus on SC execution not in another AoC, including but not limited to SC support staff, International Military Student Offices, and the State Partnership Program.

SC Acquisition Management

Focus on acquiring defense articles and services using the DoD acquisition process for DoD’s international partners.

Understanding the Requirements

SCW members do not need to request to be certified. Once eligible, the status is automatically updated.
DoD Components assign an SC Area of Concentration (AoC) and SC certification level for all of their SCW positions in the Security Cooperation Workforce Development Database (SCWD-D). The SCWD-D calculates the specific training courses required based on the assigned AoC and level. The following brochures have more information on required courses by AoC and Level:

DSCA recommends that supervisors and SCW members of the SC Workforce discuss their position’s required AoC and certification level and the associated training required to create or revise their individual development plans to satisfy the position’s training requirements.
All Basic-level courses are online. Intermediate-level and Advanced-level courses blend online distance learning and in-residence training. The ratio of online to in-residence training varies by AoC and Certification Level.
To view your training status and your unofficial DSCU transcript and the required courses for your position, please visit the DoD CAC-enabled SC Certification Center.
A detailed description of SCW Certification requirements can be found in the DoDI.

SCW Certification Program References

For more information, please review the following SCW Certification Program reference documents and pages: