Military Science (Army ROTC)

This is the first version of the 2024–25 General Catalog. Please check back regularly for changes. The final edition and the historical PDF will be published during the fall semester.

Undergraduate minor: military science


The Military Science Program maintains the University of Iowa's Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC) program. Military science courses develop individual and organizational leadership attributes both in and out of the classroom. These skills apply to both civilian and military career fields. Military science courses are essential to students who wish to commission as an Army officer through the Army ROTC program.

Students may earn a minor in military science. Military science credit may be applied to additional certificates at the University of Iowa. Students should check with their academic advisors for limitations of military science course credit towards their specific field of study.

Military science courses are open to all students, without obligation of military service. The department maintains merit scholarships to current university students through the ROTC program. Students must have a minimum of four semesters prior to graduation to be eligible for ROTC scholarships.

Course credit that counts toward graduation varies by college. Students in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences may count up to 20 s.h. earned in military science courses toward graduation.

Undergraduate and Graduate Programs

Basic Courses

The ROTC basic course sequence is designed primarily for first- and second-year students. It provides the fundamentals of leadership and management and introduces the roles of the military as influenced by national and foreign policy. Students incur no obligation to the military for participation in the basic courses.

The following four courses satisfy the basic course requirement.

Course # Title Hours
MILS:1010Leadership and Personal Development MSL1011
MILS:1020Introduction to Tactical Leadership MSL1021
MILS:2010Innovative Team Leadership MSL2012
MILS:2020Foundations of Tactical Leadership MSL2022

Students who wish to join ROTC and commission as an Army officer but are unable to take the Basic Course requirements in sequence should meet with military science faculty to discuss their individual circumstances and tailor an academic plan. Students with prior military service may receive credit towards Basic Course requirements.

Advanced Courses

ROTC advanced courses are restricted to students who wish to pursue a commission as an Army Lieutenant in Active Army, Army Reserves, or the Army National Guard upon graduation. They are open to both undergraduate and graduate students. Most cadets in advanced courses incur an obligation to the Army that can be satisfied in the Active Army, Army Reserve, or Army National Guard.

To join advanced courses, students must satisfy the basic courses requirement, earn at least 54 s.h., and have a cumulative grade-point average of at least 2.00. In order to become U.S. Army officers, cadets must complete the Advanced Camp, held at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Cadets normally attend Advanced Camp during the summer between their third and fourth years.

The following courses are required to complete the advanced courses.

Course # Title Hours
MILS:3010Adaptive Tactical Leadership MSL3013
MILS:3020Leadership in Changing Environments MSL3023
MILS:4010Developing Adaptive Leaders MSL4013
MILS:4020Leadership in a Complex World MSL4023

Additional Coursework

Cadets whose aim is a commission must satisfy a Professional Military Education (PME) requirement. They must complete at least one course in military history from the following list. Cadets may use other courses to meet the additional coursework requirement with the military science professor's approval.

Course # Title Hours
HIST:1261American History to 18773
HIST:1262American History 1877-Present3
HIST:3271American Revolutionary Period3
Student walking in front of Memorial Day flags on the Pentacrest arranged in a big I.

Scholarship Opportunities

The Military Science Program offers two-, three-, and four-year ROTC scholarships for students who enter the ROTC program. These scholarships pay full tuition at the University of Iowa, an allotment for books and supplies each semester, mandatory educational fees, and a tax-free monthly stipend during the academic year. The tax-free monthly stipend is provided to non-scholarship cadets who enter a contractual agreement with ROTC to serve in the Army. Additional financial assistance may be provided through scholarships.