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From College of Distance Education
Feb. 8, 2013

NEWPORT, R.I. -- Voluntary enrollments in the Naval War College’s (NWC) Online Professional Military Education (PME) Program courses surpassed the 100,000 mark on Jan. 31.  

First tasked in 2005 at the direction of then-Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Vern Clark, NWC’s Online PME Program provides a continuum of education for the Navy’s officer and enlisted personnel (E-1 to O-4) that is tailored for critical milestones in a naval career.

The continuum is produced by NWC's College of Distance Education faculty and consists of four interactive multimedia courses: Primary Officer (CWO2 to O4, 70 hours in duration), Primary Enlisted (E7 to E9, 70 hours in duration), Basic Enlisted (E5 to E6, 40 hours in duration), and Introductory (E1 to E4, 20 hours in duration).

Navy e-Learning logoThe courses reside in Navy E-Learning and can be accessed through the Navy Knowledge Online (NKO) portal at on a 24/7 worldwide basis. They are self-paced, can be taken afloat or ashore, and enable students to bookmark their progress.  Lesson topics and content are of an enduring nature, and each course’s 24-month update cycle ensures that students receive the most current and relevant PME experience possible.

Broadly speaking, the courses cover topics such as naval history, professionalism, ethics and the Navy ethos, regional expertise and cultural awareness, policy, governance, planning, force structure and capabilities, and technology.  

In addition to the four online PME courses, the College of Distance Education also offers a reference library that covers professionalism, regional expertise and cultural awareness, and maritime technologies.  Topics in the reference library are identical to those in the PME courses, but they can be accessed directly and do not contain end-of-lesson tests.  

By incorporating learning outcomes established by the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, the PME continuum increases professional knowledge, develops an understanding of the art of naval and joint operations, and enables service members to effectively engage in the joint environment.