Faculty Application Information Page
Thank you for your interest in joining the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership at West Point! Our department is an internationally respected inter-disciplinary teaching department, home to world-class military and civilian scholars. We are currently seeking officers from all commissioning sources who have a passion for teaching and mentoring in order to fulfill our vision of inspiring, educating, and developing the future of our Army. Opportunities exist for fully funded study at the Masters and Ph.D. levels through premiere graduate schools. We primarily offer teaching positions; however, we also work in conjunction with the USMA Brigade Tactical Department to recruit future tactical officers.
This web page is designed to facilitate the application process for rotating military faculty positions. Those who are interested in joining the BS&L team should bookmark this page and check it periodically for updates.
USMA has implemented the Web Enabled System and Tracking ("WEST"), a web application system that is in use by most departments. The web application system allows an applicant to simultaneously apply to multiple departments. If you are applying to more than one department, it is advised that you contact each department, as they may have different requirements for eligibility.
Already submitted a packet to WEST? Click Here to review a file that you've already started. You will need the userid and password that was provided when you first submitted your application.
New to application process? Click Here to start a new file. If you are new to this web page, it is highly recommended that you read the information below before you start the application process.
If you have any questions or problems related to the WEST system, to include lost passwords or connection problems, you can email WEST technical support personnel at WestQuestions@usma.edu.
Masters Degree / Rotating Faculty Positions (Application deadline is 1 December annually; applicants with a complete packet on 1 December 2013 will be considered to start graduate school in Summer 2015, completed packets received by 1 December 2014 will be considered to start graduate school in Summer 2016 and so on).
The next board which will meet in early 2014 will be open primarily to officers from Year group 2008. However, Officers in year group 2007 may be considered as long as your timeline supports this assignment. Faculty assignments generally follow a five-year timeline: two years in graduate school and three years of teaching. All of our instructors have the opportunity to earn a degree from a premier graduate school. BS&L instructors usually obtain degrees that support and enhance their ability to teach and conduct research in the following disciplines:
- Leadership and Management Instructor (earn an MBA)
- Leadership Instructor (earn a Masters in Leadership, Organizational Psychology or Social Psychology)
- Leadership and Sociology Instructor (earn a Masters in Sociology; focus on Military Sociology)
- Psychology Instructor (Earn Masters in a variety of Psychology disciplines)
- Engineering Psychology Instructor (earn a Masters in Human Factors Engineering, Cognitive Science or Biopsychology)
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How does the selection process work?
When you start an application in WEST, your packet will appear in the system as an "interested applicant". After a short review process, the department personnel officer will either select you as a candidate for selection, or contact you via email to explain why your packet was not accepted. Once you are a candidate, you may build your packet in the WEST system as the documents become available. All packets must be complete by 1 December. Notification typically takes place in late February. It is extremely important that you have an accurate email address on file so that you are kept abreast of the faculty selection board process.
2. What should my WEST packet consist of?
The West system is designed to guide you through the application process. However, a checklist of detailed instructions in printable form is available here.
3. What are the prerequisites for selection?
To be considered for selection to earn a Master's degree, you must be on a path to complete branch qualification as a Captain prior to starting graduate school. Normally this means excellent performance in a Captain's Key Development Assignment (Command or equivalent). If you're seeking a Ph.D., you must be very competitive for promotion to Lieutenant Colonel. Normally this means outstanding performance in key developmental assignments as a MAJ.
4. What is a typical tour of duty for a BS&L faculty member?
Exact duties vary a great deal, but the following is typical. From arrival in June until school starts in August, you'll engage in our Faculty Development Workshop, where you'll learn the basics of teaching at the college level. The first year is often spent teaching in one of our Core Programs (Psychology - PL100 or Leadership - PL300). Afterward, you're likely to spend the second summer supporting cadet military training as a trainer or staffer. In the second academic year, you may begin teaching courses in one of the majors - Sociology, Psychology, Leadership, Management, or Engineering Psychology. In other cases you may remain with the Core Program. In your last summer, you may support cadet military training, teach in our faculty development workshop (FDW), conduct scholarly research, or work on projects directly supporting the Army.
5. When should I apply for a faculty position?
Although packets are due on December 1st, you can start an application at any time. Earlier is better than later. Another important planning factor is test scores (GRE or GMAT). Allow time to study for the test, take it, and possibly retake it before the application deadline. Keep in mind that faculty are selected approximately 18 months out to allow time for assignment processing and applying for graduate school.
6. I was commissioned through ROTC, OCS, or directly. Does this prevent me from serving on the faculty?
Absolutely not! We are constantly on the lookout for qualified officers from all commissioning sources.
7. What if my GRE/GMAT scores are older than 5 years - do I to retake the exam?
You can submit old scores into WEST and the board can review your packet with old scores, but current scores are more competitive, and you must have current scores in order to be accepted into the ACS program.
8. Where do I send my GRE scores?
We do not require original GRE scores for your WEST file. You can load a (readable) copy into the system and save the original for future use.
9. How do I update my packet?
When you start an application in WEST, you are given a username and password. The link to log back into the WEST system is at the top of this web page.
10. What should I do if I experience problems with the WEST system?
11. Can I come visit West Point and BS&L?
Yes! We're always happy to see potential faculty members. Whether you would like a more formal interview or you're just going to be in the area, you are welcome to contact one of the personnel officers to arrange for the office calls.
1. What are my options for finding a graduate school?
You will be assigned a senior faculty member within the department who will work with you as you select a graduate school. We want you to seek admission at the highest quality school where you can succeed. For the most part, you will select courses and schools based on your academic interest, but you may receive some guidance on courses to take based on teaching needs. We have established relationships with several graduate schools and programs.
2. What are the low, medium, and high cost graduate schools?
The guidance form HRC changes from year-to-year. We want you to apply for the best possible schools without regard to cost. Our intent is that cost should be a tie-breaker, not a determining factor. As a safety measure, you are required to seek acceptance in at least one low cost school.
3. How am I reimbursed for the application fees?
There is no direct reimbursement for application fees.
4. What information / documentation is required in my Advanced Civil Schooling (ACS) packet? The guidelines for the packet (to include the suspense) are published by HRC every year in the ACS SOP which can be found on the HRC website (Requires AKO access) at:
The documents should be sent to the Personnel Officer in BS&L, and will then be routed through West Point AG to HRC for approval.
5. What information is required in a letter of acceptance from a potential graduate school?
Letters of acceptance must state the following:
- Name of officer being accepted.
- Statement stating acceptance to the school.
- Tuition cost (resident or non-resident) - must say resident status for universities that grant resident tuition to military students.
- Degree to be obtained (MA, MS, PhD)
- Department and discipline to which admitted.
- Registration and class start dates.
- <Inclusive dates of the officer's program of study (imperative that they be accurate).
Expected graduation date.
- Length of academic program (i.e. 33 semester hours or 18 months or 3 semesters).
- Required prerequisites (if any) and if they can be taken concurrently with the program or must be taken prior to official acceptance into the graduate program.
- Tuition reduction agreement (if any).
- Point of contact at the institution.
It is usually a good idea to make sure that the school is aware of this requirement since most do not usually have all of this information in their acceptance letters.