Civilian credentialing puts people first, increases readiness of Army maintainers

By Chief Warrant Officer 4 Jeremy M. BentleyApril 8, 2021

Mockup of ASE coverall patches. Colors, design, wear and appearance are in the developmental stages.
Mockup of ASE coverall patches. Colors, design, wear and appearance are in the developmental stages. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

FORT LEE, Va. - In April 2020, the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) and the United States Army Ordnance School (USAOS) entered a partnership to build a series of ASE tests developed with and for Army maintainers. Development is underway, and tests will be implemented in a phased approach.

Two tests (MIL2-Diesel Engines and MIL6-Electrical/Electronic Systems) were made available in January 2021. The remainder of the intermediate-level tests will be available by August 2021. A third phase will release the entry-level and three advanced-level tests; however, a timeline has not been determined.

The new ASE Military Tactical Wheeled Vehicle (TWV) Certification tests will address critical gaps in the civilian certification that has been used by Army maintainers as a self-development training option for many years.

In addition to closing the test content gap, the tests will also serve to increase the number of maintainers pursuing ASE certifications and provide maintainers with a portable credential. This will align ASE tests to Army equipment, task lists and processes, and provide long and short-term benefits to the Army.

Development of the new ASE tests moves the USAOS closer to its goal of providing civilian credentialing programs for every Ordnance military occupational specialty (MOS). As of 2021, the USAOS had approved credentials for 80% of its MOSs and expects to increase that to 95% by 2022.

ASE Army Technician Test Series Framework. The ASE Military TWV test series provides Army maintainers with a relevant and viable self-development credentialing program that supplements their institutional and operational training and sets the conditions for continuous learning and growth. The test series consists of 11 tests - entry (1), intermediate (7), and advanced (3) levels - that will be written for, and developed in collaboration with, Army maintainers.

The target audience for the entry-level test will be Soldiers attending advanced individual training in mechanical maintenance fields.

The target audiences for the intermediate and advanced-level tests will be Soldiers from specialist to sergeant first class, automotive (915A) and engineer equipment (919A) maintenance warrant officers, contractors, military technicians (MILTechs), and general schedule (GS) employees in the maintenance field.

The tests will be voluntary and available to anyone who has at least two years of documented experience working on Army tactical wheeled vehicles. ASE credentials will expire at 5-year intervals, and recertification will be required.

Qualified service members will be eligible for financial assistance from the Army Credentialing Assistance (CA) Program. The Ordnance school provides vouchers for interested Soldiers during advanced individual training. The primary means of test preparation will be an ASE-developed test guide; applicable vehicle technical manuals (TM); TM 9-8000, Principles of Automotive Vehicles and hands-on experience.

Soldiers seeking ASE credentials can access myASE, an online portal, to monitor test results, credentials earned, and credential expiration dates. In addition to the tests being developed, the USAOS is working to develop and implement incentives such as promotion points, a new Special Skill Badge, and ASE patches for wear on Army coveralls.

Additional information can be found on the ASE website: - see ASE Military Tactical Wheeled Vehicle Certification Tests (MIL Series). Additionally, an introduction to the program is available through a webinar at