Brig. Gen. Bryan T. Roberts, Fort Jackson Commanding General

FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- Eleven years of persistent conflict. Adaptive enemies. Decentralized operations that push both responsibility and risk to the edge of our operational formations. Decreased resources. Increased mission requirements. Exponential technological change. These factors challenge the Army's ability to execute core learning and training missions and functions for Soldiers, leaders and units but cannot dissuade Fort Jackson from being "The Premier Training Center in DoD."

The Army Learning Model, or ALM, for 2015 describes the deliberate actions and concepts that we are using here at Fort Jackson to train Soldiers who will face the above challenges. The ALM 2015 is changing the Army's individual learning methods and processes from a platform-centric, place-dependent model to one that is as adaptable as our operational forces.

ALM is learner-centric, more engaging, relevant, rigorous and accessible for a generation of recruits who have grown up in a digital world, as well as seasoned Army professionals with repeated deployments who bring a wealth of experience to the learning system.

While the Army has given us until 2015, Fort Jackson is implementing the Army Learning Model now with changes to instructional strategies that shift slide-based lectures to facilitated, collaborative learning events and engage learners by employing digital learning content and relevant operational scenarios using Virtual BattleSpace 2, or VBS-2, and blended learning approaches. We are the first Army Training Center to conduct a virtual training pilot program for Basic Combat Training Soldiers using VBS-2. From Day One, I've said, we're going to implement ALM 2015 in 2013 -- and we're doing it.

As one of the first installations to implement ALM 2015, we are transforming Basic Combat Training, Advanced Individual Training, Basic Officer Leadership Courses, the Financial Management School and the Recruiting and Retention School by focusing on improving the quality, relevance and effectiveness of each individual Soldier's learning experience.

The ALM 2015 describes the learning continuum for an individual Soldier and leader from initial military training through functional courses and professional military education. The outcomes for this continuous learning model are the Army's new 21st Century Soldier Competencies. The nine competencies that Soldiers and leaders at all levels must continue to learn, develop and possess are: character and accountability, comprehensive fitness, adaptability and initiative, lifelong learner, teamwork and collaboration, communication and engagement (oral, written, negotiation,) critical thinking and problem solving, cultural, joint, interagency; intergovernmental, and multinational competence, tactical and technical competence (full spectrum).

ALM 2015 addresses the need to transform the Army's outdated learning model from one that is course-based and throughput-oriented to one that is relevant and rigorous and focuses on the individual learner. These capabilities are characterized using the mnemonic L-E-A-R-N:

-- Learner-centric. Integrate training, education and experience; tailor learning to individual needs and gaps throughout the Soldier's career; and use seasoned Army professionals experience and education.

-- Engaging. Challenge and inspire learners and provide feedback and support from peers and mentors.

-- Adaptive. Develop Soldiers and leaders who have the cognitive, interpersonal and cultural skills to be adaptive in complex tactical and strategic environments; provide an adaptive learning model that routinely includes feedback from operational forces and development tools to rapidly update curriculum and learning products to be responsive.

-- Rigorous & relevant. Establish and maintain rigorous doctrinal and performance standards for Soldiers and leaders, and provide Soldiers with access to relevant information.

-- Networked. Use learning technologies and on-demand content such as search engines and information repositories, and provide delivery systems not bound by "brick and mortar" for learning at the point of need.

This vision has a lot of moving parts that require the collective efforts of us all. We are at the forefront of transitioning the Army into a future force focused on what I refer to as virtual warfare combat training. As we transition, it is important to remember that the next few years are a fundamental period of transition for the Army as we change the dynamics of how we train and prepare Soldiers for the future.

All of us have an important role in the development of ALM 2013 and I'm happy to say that I'm seeing it when I view training across post. I challenge you to imbed the concepts of this model in your training. Let's continue to set the standard here at Fort Jackson where "Victory Starts" and "Heroes Live".

Army Strong and Victory Starts Here!

Page last updated Fri March 22nd, 2013 at 09:05