HomeNewsArticle Display

OTS revamps program creating more efficient, effective training environment

OTS revamps program creating more efficient, effective training environment

Officer Training School cadets march in their blues, Aug. 22, 2012, on Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. Recent implementations have saved OTS hours of classroom setting lectures and allowed them to focus more on hands-on, experiential training. (Air Force photo by Donna L. Burnett)

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) -- Over the past year, Air University’s Officer Training School has been revamping its program in order to provide a more efficient and effective training experience for its cadets.

One of the major changes the school has made has been the implementation of pre-requisite courses designed to cover topics, which otherwise would be done during a mass-lecture when the cadets arrive.

“Officer Training School and our curriculum department are looking at ways of helping people get ahead of the timeline a little bit, and give them credit for information that they potentially already know,” said Capt. Joshua S. Leis, OTS director of operations. “The first thing we got at was doing a distance learning pre-requisite of the program. You have to do some web-based training online before you get here and that goes over what some of our informal lectures used to be, which weren’t very interactive.”

By eliminating hours of one-way lectures, OTS has freed up more time to focus on hands-on, experiential training.

“This allows us to get to a deeper level of learning with the students when they get here,” Leis said. “We take all those hours that we used to use for those lectures and now do guided discussions and case studies where it’s very interactive. Instead of going with the knowledge level type academics, we can now get into the comprehensive and application type level academics.”

One of the major aspects of this new implementation is how it ties in with the continuum-of-learning construct, allowing OTS to meet people where they are.

Leis gave an example of how a prior-service technical sergeant, who has attended Noncommissioned Officer Academy, has the opportunity of testing out of the pre-requisite courses and receive credit. On the other end of the spectrum, an incoming cadet with no prior military experience can take web-based courses to learn about dress and appearance as well as customs and courtesies in order to be ahead of the curve when they arrive.

In addition to allowing the school to focus more on experiential learning, these changes have also allotted more time for the instructors to conduct both one-on-one and group feedback and mentorship.

“It’s more beneficial for the students because I think the most important thing we do here is that feedback and mentorship,” Leis said. “It has significantly increased the amount of feedback that we’re now giving the future officers. Now, (the cadets) go execute a training session, whether it’s out in the field or tabletop, and then provide that content to the instructor who keeps notes and can now provide them leadership feedback and tie that into their own experiences and with what they’ve seen happen in the operational Air Force.”

By allowing the cadets to receive more exposure to real-world scenarios and gain that instant feedback from their instructors, Leis and his team believe these future officers will be better prepared for when they head out into the field.

Another way OTS has been adjusting its program to fit in with the CoL construct is by promoting lifelong fitness through their tailored fitness program.

Through creating personalized workout regiments specifically for cadets struggling with physical training, OTS expeditionary training instructors have saved more than 90 percent of the ‘would-be’ washouts in the past year, said Leis. Meeting the cadets where they are both intellectually and physically has paved the way for OTS to produce more well-rounded leaders.

The common theme between the implementations OTS has been making this past year has primarily been to ‘leverage Air Force technology to further tailor individual learning,’ something Leis says his team is focused on continuing to do in the future.

Engage

Facebook Twitter
Remembering a woman who changed the world: Millicent Young, Women #AirForce Service Pilot in World War II, dies at… https://t.co/mri1QRXOC8
From fast food to future technology, one #Airman found a new calling @AirNatlGuard and decided to ditch the fryer f… https://t.co/I8qX7GpH4n
An #F35 sits on the flightline @LukeAFB, Jan. 10. Six different aircraft maintenance units from #TeamLuke competed… https://t.co/OxVMxf7Ayw
It takes a lot of coordination to clear a flightline of snow, but @TeamMisawa--a place that averaged more than 147… https://t.co/VQ4qjdsxFz
RT @SecAFOfficial: It is our responsibility to maintain a strong national defense @usairforce https://t.co/JXzhtqdMrg
When lives are on the line, there is no margin for error. Combat Search & Rescue #Airmen at #MoodyAFB conduct pre-d… https://t.co/AsWzaa1I00
RT @AFResearchLab: When a product goes from lab to battlefield, you can expect some amazing capabilities. See what work we've done to assis…
A B-2 Spirit bomber from @Whiteman_AFB, conducts aerial refueling near @JointBasePHH, during an interoperability tr… https://t.co/wzM5GvcviS
The #AirForce Life Cycle Management Center team is working to acquire next generation fixed-wing helmet.… https://t.co/LJ2xeCLdf2
Capt Jerry Yellin, #WWII fighter pilot who flew the last combat mission in August 1945, was laid to rest… https://t.co/XnSB9Yo3PC
75 years of @WrightPattAFB! Take a walk down memory lane with the leaders in military aviation development. https://t.co/vmjwxLUydg
C-5M #SuperGalaxy aircrew & aerial port specialists @Travis60AMW join the @USArmy to transport four UH-60… https://t.co/kTxdf9axY5
RT @SecAFOfficial: Why do we care about #space? It's contested. It's congested. It's competitive. https://t.co/DJZBjF2NHu
To continue the military’s strides to become a more cohesive force, @MacDill_AFB hosted its first #Joint #PME enhan… https://t.co/K56KEUVnIb
The #AirForce aims to boost cooperative technology development between small businesses and research institutions t… https://t.co/tUi4yBcqsx
RT @DeptofDefense: LIVE NOW: @POTUS, @VP and Acting Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan release the #MissileDefenseReview. https://t.co/3…
.@AirNatlGuard & @USNationalGuard #Soldiers working together towards mission readiness! https://t.co/gmVIaEqVww
The innovative thoughts & immediate actions of #JBER #Airmen ensured the Alaska Mission Operations Center had water… https://t.co/hl0zIIa05q
.@NCAirGuard #Airmen and @914ARW Reservists combined recipes for a rare hands-on experience. https://t.co/IAZ6LYrtzO https://t.co/WtjF4fITxh
Bringing the #futurefaster! @Offutt_AFB #Airmen bring ideas to life, build partnerships with academia through a ne… https://t.co/ujNSaBZxEL