VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (NNS) -- Fifty-eight new information warfare community (IWC) officers graduated from the 3-week Information Warfare Basic Course (IWBC) Integrated Learning Environment (ILE) Blended Learning curriculum pilot class at Information Warfare Training Command (IWTC) Virginia Beach, June 29.
The revised course provides new accession IWC officers with the skills needed to become a leader, analyst, and contributing member of the IWC. While introducing the values guiding the IWC, the course gives students a foundational knowledge and core skills to best implement a warfighting culture with limited supervision in afloat and ashore units worldwide.
"IWBC serves as the foundation for all new IWC officers," said Cmdr. Andrew Boyden, IWTC Virginia Beach's commanding officer, who gave the credit to his IWBC instructor staff and the students for their role in developing the course. "Bringing all the tribes together in this way helps plant the IWC seed early on in their careers. To that end, ensuring our officers are getting the most up-to-date information to help them succeed in the fleet is paramount. As with all our courses, we strive to ensure IWBC is current with the latest fleet requirements and students are exposed to relevant learning.
During the revamp of the course, the IWBC instructor team leveraged the fleet and IWTC Virginia Beach staff to ensure the course was meeting training objectives. The team focused on organizing the course along a logical flow and identifying learning and training gaps.
"The entire IWBC instructor team was excited to be given the opportunity to update and modernize our course from the standard 'Death by PowerPoint' concept to a more interactive and engaging platform," said Lt. Robin LaFrance, IWBC course supervisor. "IWBC students now have a variety of applications, interactive visual aids and knowledge checks to help them not only understand the IWC concepts but more importantly retain and utilize what they have learned in the fleet."
"I thoroughly enjoyed the Information Warfare Basic Course," said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Tigus Hunter, a recent graduate of IWBC. "It helped me understand how the individual information community tribes contribute to the fight. I look forward to using the knowledge I gained at my next assignment with Naval Computer and Telecommunications Station Naples, to further the IWC's interoperability."
The updated curriculum consists of four phases:
Phase 1: Administration and Organization with focus on the IWC organizational structure, writing skills, briefing fundamentals, and training and readiness for each of the IWC specialties.
Phase 2: Battlespace Awareness with focus on meteorology and oceanography capabilities, intelligence fundamentals, resource protection, Navy/IWC planning process, and integration of IWC capabilities.
Phase 3: Assured Command and Control with focus on electromagnetic fundamentals, network essentials, IWC communications systems, NetOps, and information processing systems.
Phase 4: Integrated Fires with focus on Joint warfare, indications and warning, information as a weapon, kinetic and non-kinetic, defensive and offensive cyberspace, and information in operations.
The pilot concluded with two culminating capstone exercises that tied all of the course topics together. The scenarios mimicked the type of job and duties that a junior IWC officer is likely to perform and was designed to prepare the graduates for success in their assignments.
"IWBC is one of the most well put together courses I have had the opportunity of participating in," said Lt. j.g. Alexander Biondo, the IWBC class 18130 honor graduate. "The professionalism and experience demonstrated by the staff exceeded my expectations. The effort put forth, yielding the positive changes to the course, was evident throughout. The networking and relevant learning the course provided will surely prove beneficial to all individuals afforded the opportunity of attending."
IWTC Virginia Beach will hold three more offerings of IWBC in 2018, and the fiscal year 2019 offerings are already scheduled. The IWTC Virginia Beach staff will continue to evaluate the course going forward to ensure it consistently matches the evolving demands of each of the IWC.
IWTC Virginia Beach currently offers 65 courses of instruction in information technology, cryptology, and intelligence with an instructor and support staff of 280 military, civilian, and contract members who train over 6,400 students every year at five training sites in the Hampton Roads area. It is one of four school houses for Center for Information Warfare Training and also oversees learning sites at Jacksonville and Mayport, Florida; Kings Bay, Georgia; and Groton, Connecticut to continue aligning IW community training.
For news from the Center for Information Warfare Training organization, visit www.navy.mil/local/cid/, www.netc.navy.mil/centers/ciwt/, www.facebook.com/NavyCIWT, or www.twitter.com/NavyCIWT.