Undergraduate minor: military science
Website: https://veterans.uiowa.edu/army-rotc

The Military Science Program is synonymous with the Iowa Army Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC). It gives students who wish to serve on active or reserve status in the U.S. Army the opportunity to earn commissions as Army officers. It also administers merit scholarships from the United States government to qualified students.

Although the Military Science Program does not offer degrees, students can earn a minor in military science. ROTC courses provide education in the military's role and instruction in leadership and management. The program's courses are an essential part of the University of Iowa ROTC program.

Military science courses are open to all students. 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 Course

The ROTC Basic Course 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 Course.

The following four courses satisfy the Basic Course requirement.

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

Students can take Basic Course requirements over a one- or two-year period or during Basic Camp, held at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Students with prior military training normally are exempt from the Basic Course and Basic Camp requirements.

Basic Camp takes place in the summer, typically between a cadet's first and second years. Similar to basic training, Basic Camp trains cadets on many basic soldier skills ensuring cadets across the country have the same foundation knowledge to be successful with the remainder of their Army ROTC training.

Advanced Course

The ROTC Advanced Course is for cadets who wish to pursue a commission as a lieutenant in the U.S. Army upon graduation. It is open to both undergraduate and graduate students. Most cadets in the Advanced Course incur an obligation to the Army that can be satisfied in the Active Army, Army Reserve, or Army National Guard.

To enter the Advanced Course, students must satisfy the Basic Course requirement, earn at least 54 s.h., and have a cumulative g.p.a. 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 the academic requirements for completion of the Advanced Course.

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.

HIST:1261American History to 18773
HIST:1262American History 1877-Present3
HIST:3271American Revolutionary Period3
HIST:4499First World War3-4
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.

Undergraduate Program of Study


Military Science Courses

MILS:1010 Leadership and Personal Development MSL101 1 s.h.

Introduction to the personal challenges and competencies critical for effective leadership; how skills such as critical thinking, goal setting, time management, physical fitness, and stress management relate to leadership, officership, and the army as a profession; dimensions of army leadership; understanding of the ROTC program, its purpose in the army, its advantages for students. Offered fall semesters.

MILS:1020 Introduction to Tactical Leadership MSL102 1 s.h.

Leadership fundamentals such as setting direction, problem solving, listening, presenting briefs, providing feedback, using effective writing skills; leadership values, attributes, skills, and actions explored through hands-on, interactive exercises; cadre role models, development of strong relationships among students through common experience, practical interaction. Offered spring semesters.

MILS:1090 Leadership Laboratory 0 s.h.

Hands-on training in basic soldier skills, such as customs and courtesies, drill and ceremony, first aid, weapons employment, troop movement techniques; leadership training for U.S. army officership. Offered fall and spring semesters.

MILS:1095 Advanced Military Fitness Training 1 s.h.

Aerobics and running, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, and nutrition through exercise and classroom instruction; how to evaluate and measure fitness improvement; developed around Army physical fitness training program. Offered fall and spring semesters.

MILS:2010 Innovative Team Leadership MSL201 2 s.h.

Dimensions of creative, innovative tactical leadership strategies and styles explored through team dynamics and historical leadership theories (trait and behavior) central to the Army leadership framework; personal motivation and team building through planning, executing, and assessing team exercises and participating in leadership labs; continued development of leadership values and attributes through understanding army rank, structure, duties, basic aspects of land navigation and squad tactics; case studies on soldier's creed and warrior ethos in the contemporary operating environment. Offered fall semesters.

MILS:2020 Foundations of Tactical Leadership MSL202 2 s.h.

Challenges of leading tactical teams in the complex contemporary operating environment; dimensions of terrain analysis, patrolling, operation orders; theoretical basis of the army leadership framework, dynamics of adaptive leadership in the context of military operations; self-assessment of cadet leadership styles, practice in communication and team building skills; case studies on importance and practice of teamwork and tactics in real-world scenarios. Offered spring semesters.

MILS:3010 Adaptive Tactical Leadership MSL301 3 s.h.

Study, practice, and evaluation of adaptive leadership skills in challenging scenarios related to squad tactical operations; feedback on cadets' leadership attributes and actions, continued development of leadership and critical thinking abilities; development of tactical leadership abilities in preparation for Leadership Development and Assessment Course (LDAC). Offered fall semesters. Corequisites: MILS:1090 and MILS:1095. Requirements: MILS:1010 and MILS:1020 and MILS:2010 and MILS:2020; or completion of army basic training or Leader's Training Course.

MILS:3020 Leadership in Changing Environments MSL302 3 s.h.

Development of cadet awareness and tactical leadership to platoon level, through increasingly intense situational leadership challenges; experience reviewing combat, stability, and support operations, conducting military briefings, developing proficiency in garrison operation orders; focus on exploring, evaluating, and developing skills in decision making, persuasion, and motivation of team members in a contemporary operating environment; preparation for summer Leader Development Assessment Course. Offered spring semesters. Prerequisites: MILS:3010. Corequisites: MILS:1090 and MILS:1095. Requirements: MILS:1010 and MILS:1020 and MILS:2010 and MILS:2020; or completion of army basic training or Leader's Training Course.

MILS:3121 Readings in Contemporary Military Issues 1-3 s.h.

Preparation of book reviews from a reading list provided by the instructor, with topics ranging from historical battles and campaigns to global impact of U.S. political policies; or writing of an operations order relating to an ROTC event or similar project of historical significance (work in conjunction with instructor). Requirements: MILS:1010 and MILS:1020 and MILS:2010 and MILS:2020; or completion of army basic training or Leader's Training Course.

MILS:4010 Developing Adaptive Leaders MSL401 3 s.h.

Development of proficiency in planning, executing, and assessing complex operations, functioning as member of a staff, providing performance feedback to subordinates; experience assessing risk, making ethical decisions, leading fellow cadets; military justice and personnel processes in preparation for officership; identification of key staff responsibilities, coordination of staff roles, use of situational opportunities to teach, train, and develop subordinates. Offered fall semesters. Prerequisites: MILS:3020 and MILS:3010. Corequisites: MILS:1090 and MILS:1095.

MILS:4020 Leadership in a Complex World MSL402 3 s.h.

Leadership dynamics in complex military operations of the contemporary operating environment; differences in customs and courtesies, military law, principles of war, rules of engagement in the face of international terrorism; interaction with nongovernmental organizations, civilians on the battlefield, host nation support; ethical and practical demands on army commissioned officers; preparation for first unit assignment through case studies, scenarios, exercises. Offered spring semesters. Prerequisites: MILS:3010 and MILS:4010 and MILS:3020. Corequisites: MILS:1090 and MILS:1095.