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International Principal Warfare Officer (A) (IPWO(A))
online courses / warfare officer

International Principal Warfare Officer (A)

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Key information

To train selected Officers in the tactical handling of warships, up to Frigate size and the integrated use of associated weapon systems and sensors. This course is designed to enable successful students to act as watchkeeping Warfare Officers dealing with multi axis threats in the AAW, SuW and ASW environments. It also includes training in the conduct of Medium Range Gunnery in support of SuW and Amphibious Operations. Students will also be trained in Task-Group level mission planning procedures.

Course details

  • Technical module
  • Action Information Organisation
  • Meteorology & Oceanography
  • Communications and EW
  • Command & Control, Duties & Responsibilites
  • Rules of Engagement and International Maritime Law
  • Anti-Air Warfare and Anti-Ship Missile Defence
  • Anti-Surface Warfare
  • Anti-Submarine Warfare, including Mine Warfare
  • Introductions to Amphibious Operations
  • Introductions to Air Operations, Including Search and Rescue
  • Medium and Close Range Gunnery, including practical drills
  • Explosives Safety
  • Mission planning and in-depth Maritime Tactical Estimate training as part of a dedicated planning syndicate
  • Board and Search training
  • Practical tactical serials and medium and close range gunnery live at sea in a RN Frigate or Destroyer
  • 7 weeks of practical simulator training culminating in assessed multi-threat scenarios prior to qualification 


  • Rank of Lieutenant with at least 5 years seagoing Bridge watchkeeping experience, of which at least 2 should have been as a Lieutenant
  • A minimum of 2000 hours of certified Bridge Watch keeping experience
  • Must have attended the RN’s ILT course or equivalent
  • Eyesight standards are detailed at the front of the chapter

Qualifications gained

 Written modular progress tests and final exam. Assessed maritime Tactical Estimate planning syndicate presentation. Practical assessment during sea and simulator training.

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