The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) transits the South China Sea.
The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) transits the South China Sea. The Carl Vinson Strike Group is currently operating in the Western Pacific as part of a regularly schedule deployment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Third Class Jasen Morenogarcia/Released)

College of Maritime Operational Warfare

The College of Maritime Operational Warfare (CMOW) at U.S. Naval War College is dedicated to improving the leadership capabilities of U.S. Navy commanders, as well as to help Navy staff members function cohesively in maritime operations centers.

Professional Military Education at a Glance

CMOW offers a number of short-term professional development programs at our Newport campus and abroad. Geared toward intermediate and senior officers, our professional military education (PME) courses support combat readiness at the operational level of war. In addition to preparing military leaders, CMOW also offers special programs for international navies and civilians which focus on collaboration during global times of need.

  • Executive Level Operational Level of War Course
    This one-week course helps senior military leaders (O6) assigned to a Maritime Operations Center (MOC) better able to understand both the commander and staff’s perspective on MOC processes, procedures, relationships, coordination, and products, and to understand what is required to align the two.
  • Combined Force Maritime Component Commander Course
    This week-long, executive-level program, offered at locations around the world, is designed to develop a network of international leaders focused on the operational level of command and control.
  • Joint Force Maritime Component Commander Course
    This week-long executive training program prepares flag and general officers for theater-level combat leadership. During the week, students will hear from subject matter experts and discuss current, regional concerns.
  • Maritime Staff Operators Course
    This course is designed to prepare officers and senior enlisted personnel for their assignments in maritime operational centers. Curriculum objectives include building competency in maritime warfare, managing information flow, and exercising operational-level functions.
  • Maritime Operational Planners Course
    This 11-week course prepares officers to make decisions in a fast-paced, complex maritime headquarters environment. Classwork covers an array of relevant topics such as crisis planning, maritime problems, foundations of maritime planning, intelligence, and assessment.
  • Maritime Headquarters Staff Course (MHSC)
    MHSC is a three-week, 54-hour, self-paced online course which includes one virtual two-hour seminar each week. MHSC provides a general understanding of the maritime operational level of war (OLW), Maritime Headquarters / Maritime Operations Center (MHQ/MOC) organizational structure, and MOC processes. It is designed for all MHQ/MOC personnel that participate in MOC processes. MHSC is not a substitute for in-residence MOPC and MSOC courses offered at the U.S. Naval War College. Learning objectives and outcomes are focused more on being aware of, and understanding MOC concepts, organization, and processes and how course attendees, in their assigned positions, may interact with each. Officer graduates of MHSC acquire the JSM, Additional Qualification Designation (AQD), and Reservists receive 13 points.

International Maritime Staff Operator Course

This 12-week course provides international naval officers the skills needed to support the planning and execution of maritime operations and integrate with existing operational planning teams.

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More Information on the College

News, Media, & Events

Current Strategy Forum

Jun. 13-14, 2023
8:30 a.m.
Hybrid Event

What is Operational Maritime Law?

Jan. 03, 2023
Maritime Operational Law Podcast
Article Publication