The National Defense University is made up of five colleges, each with a distinct focus that provides uniquely valuable education and leader professional development opportunities. NDU’s education programs offer a combination of rigorous graduate education and the ability to grant JPME II certification, a major requirement for the award of Joint Qualified Officer (JQO) status. Research and partnership programs throughout the university enhance the educational experiences of NDU’s students.

College of Information and Cyberspace

The NDU College of Information and Cyberspace (CIC) educates and prepares selected military and civilian leaders and advisers to develop and implement cyberspace strategies, and to leverage information and technology to advance national and global security.

CIC offers a wide spectrum of educational activities, services, and programs to prepare information leaders to play critical roles in national security in the Information Age. Whether in pursuit of the Master of Science in Government Information Leadership, an NDU CIC certificate, or a graduate level course for professional development— CIC students bring diverse perspectives to contribute to a rich and dynamic learning environment. They are motivated to learn and share knowledge, experience, and best practices. Our students are encouraged to become better leaders and decision-makers and to master the tools of lifelong learning. Students, graduates, employers, leaders, and practitioners create a global learning community to foster innovation and creativity.

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College of International Security Affairs

The mission of the College of International Security Affairs (CISA) is to educate joint warfighters, civilian national security leaders, and partner nation counterparts in critical thinking to inform national strategy and globally integrated operations, under conditions of disruptive change, to prevail across the continuum of competition and war, with a special emphasis on irregular warfare. CISA is the Department of Defense flagship for education and the building of partnership capacity in combating terrorism and irregular warfare at the strategic level. CISA prepares students for high-level policy and command and staff responsibilities through a graduate, interagency, and joint professional military education program.

The College offers a Master of Arts Degree in Strategic Security Studies to students enrolled full-time. CISA collaborates with US Government departments and agencies to tailor professional graduate education development programs to equip employees with the knowledge and skills needed to meet the growing and ever-changing demands of today's complex world.

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Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy

The Eisenhower School (ES) prepares select military officers and civilians for strategic leadership and success in developing national security strategy and in evaluating, marshaling, and managing resources in the execution of that strategy.  

Under the guidance of the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Eisenhower School Commandant and faculty prepare senior military officers, government civilians, and selected representatives from the private sector and international officers for the national security challenges of the 21st century. The goal is to leverage technological advances, integrate new strategic and operational concepts, identify and adapt to evolving global developments, and channel the vitality and innovation of the Services, the interagency, and allies to achieve a more seamless, coherent effect when confronting new national security challenges and the battlefields of the future.

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Joint Forces Staff College

The mission of the Joint Forces Staff College (JFSC) is to educate national security professionals to plan and execute operational-level joint, multinational, and interagency operations to instill a primary commitment to joint, multinational, and interagency teamwork, attitudes, and perspectives. Military operations increasingly require the Armed Services to work jointly and JFSC provides students the tools to operate in a joint environment. 

Seminars, led by purple cadre teams, focus on joint doctrine at the operational level employing historical case studies and computer-driven war games to create the intellectual rigor to stretch student minds. The results yield the critical thinking required to conceive and apply joint solutions on the 21st Century battlefield. 

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National War College

The National War College (NWC) mission is to educate future leaders of the Armed Forces, Department of State, and other civilian agencies for high-level policy, command and staff responsibilities by conducting a senior-level course of study in national security strategy.

The curriculum emphasizes the joint and interagency perspective. Reflecting this emphasis, 59 percent of the student body is composed of equal representation from the land, air, and sea (including Marine and Coast Guard) Services. The remaining 41 percent are drawn from the Department of State and other federal departments and agencies, and international fellows from a number of foreign countries.

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