Structured Self-Development

Tuesday August 21, 2012

What is it?

"Structured Self-Development" is generally Web-based training that enhances previously acquired skills, knowledge, behaviors and experience. SSD is an important supplement to the Noncommissioned Officer Education System. Army Regulation 350-1 defines SSD as required learning that continues throughout a Soldier's career and is closely linked to and synchronized with classroom and on-the-job learning. This training also contributes to personal development and increases the potential for progressively complex and higher-level assignments. SSD promotes lifelong learning and also sets conditions for continuous growth as a warrior and warrior leader.

All Soldiers are required to complete SSD, as it will be a prerequisite for attending NCOES courses. As such, SSD affects future promotions.

What has the Army done?

SSD was developed by U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command's Institute for Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development and the U.S. Sergeants Major Academy to add a clear focus and structure to self-development. To that end, four courses have been developed and can be accessed through the Army Career Tracker or Army Knowledge Online.

For instructions on how to register for the Structured Self-Development Level 1 Course, please visit

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

To ensure SSD is easily accessible, the Army created a senior-level management oversight team to improve development, accessibility and delivery of SSD course materials. Army leaders at all levels can assist Soldiers in meeting the new mandatory SSD initiative by improving awareness of this requirement.

Why is it important to the Army?

SSD links self-development to NCO professional development by ensuring the self-development domain is well-defined, meaningful and integrated into leader development process. SSD will bridge the operational and institutional domains and set conditions for continuous growth for future leaders.

The effective dates for Structured Self-Development as a prerequisite for NCOES attendance are as follows:
SSD-1 "April 1, 2013 - Warrior Leader Course
SSD-3 "June 1, 2013 - Senior Leader Course
SSD-4 "June 1, 2013 - Sergeant Major Course
SSD-5 "Jan. 1, 2015 - Nominative Assignments (fielding for SSD-5 Jan. 1, 2013)


Related Article: Sergeant Major of the Army Send Message, SSD, dated May 2011 Structured Self Development Letter of Instruction

Army Career Tracker Login

Army Regulation 350-1, Army Training and Leader Development dated Aug. 4, 2011

Field Manual 7-0, Training the Force, dated February 2011

Department of the Army Pamphlet 350-58, Leader Development for America's Army - The Enduring Legacy, 1994

Department of the Army Pamphlet 600-25, U.S. Army Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Guide, dated July 28, 2008

Department of the Army Policy Memorandum, SSD Governance and Implementation, dated Sept. 15, 2010

Department of the Army All Army Activites Message, SSD Governance and Implementation, dated Sept. 15, 2010

Department of the Army ALARACT Message, SSD Governance and Implementation, dated Sept. 27, 2010

Department of The Army ALARACT Message, Structured Self Development (SSD) Prerequisite for NCOES, dated Aug 12, 2012







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