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How To Join The Army

By James Summers

Every Regular British Army Officer (with the exception of professionally qualified officers, medical and legal personnel) will undergo exactly the same training:

The Commissioning Course at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS), regardless of the Corps or Regiment that he or she will ultimately serve with.

After they have commissioned as a Second Lieutenant, they will then undergo the specialist training that they are required to do before joining their unit and taking command of their soldiers.

1. Candidate expresses interest to an Army Careers Advisor (Officer)

2. Candidate attends a Familiarisation Visit with a Regiment or Corps with the aim of securing administrative sponsorship throughout the Army Officer Selection Board (AOSB).

3. Candidate secures sponsorship and attends AOSB Briefing or candidate does not secure sponsorship resulting in his ACA(O) sponsoring him throughout the process.

4. Candidate is awarded a category (1-4) based on their performance. Category 4 candidates are deemed unsuitable; the individual reserves the right to appeal.

5. Candidate achieves a pass allowing the individual to attend the Commissioning Course at The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst (RMAS).

Applicants that fail to achieve a pass may attend the AOSB again after six months, however they may only attempt the AOSB x2.

In 2008 Commonwealth origin volunteers comprised approximately 6.7% of the Army’s total strength. In total 6,600 foreign soldiers from 42 countries were represented in the Army, not including Gurkhas. After Gurkhas, the nation with most citizens in the British Army is Fiji, with 1,900, followed by Jamaica and Ghana with 600 each; soldiers also come from more prosperous countries such as Australia, South Africa and the Republic of Ireland. Levels of recruitment amongst Irish nationals have also been increasing, and figures for recruitment in Northern Ireland reveal that 16% came from south of the border during 2008. With Levels growing year on year since 2005 and up from 5% in 2006.

The MOD caps the number of recruits from Commonwealth countries at 10% of any corps or regiment in the Army, although this will not affect the Gurkhas. If the trend continues 10% of the army will be from Commonwealth countries before 2012. The cap is still debated, as some fear the army’s “Britishness” is being diluted, and employing too many could make the army seen as employing too many mercenaries.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Summers, James "How To Join The Army." How To Join The Army. 24 Jul. 2010. 10 Aug 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Summers, J (2010, July 24). How To Join The Army. Retrieved August 10, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Summers, James "How To Join The Army"

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