What Is E4 in the Army?
Each branch of the United States Armed Forces has its own rank structure. To maintain an equivalent pay and benefits structure throughout the military services, the U.S. Department of Defense established pay grades which correspond to those ranks. For example, a U.S. Army Specialist 4, a U.S. Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class, a U.S. Marine corporal and a U.S. Air Force senior airman all hold the pay grade of E
Federal E-4 Pay Grade
The pay grade of E-4 in the U.S. Army represents an enlisted soldier with increased expertise and lower-level management responsibilities. Soldiers typically enlist as recruits, or privates, with the pay grade of E-1, then work their way though the ranks of private and private 1st class before being promoted to the rank of either corporal or specialist 4. Both of these ranks correspond to the E-4 pay grade.
Rank of U.S. Army Corporal
The rank of corporal is as old as the United States Army itself, having been authorized by the Continental Congress in It is one of two enlisted ranks that have continued to exist from that time to the date of publication. In the U.S. Army, corporals are the lowest level of the non-commissioned officer ranks. Corporals have leadership and command responsibilities at the small unit level. Although a corporal holds the same pay grade as a specialist 4, a corporal outranks a specialist 4.
Rank of U.S. Army Specialist 4
Specialist 4 is the more common of the U.S. Army's two E-4 ranks. Although a specialist 4 holds the same pay grade as a corporal, a specialist is not a non-commissioned officer. A specialist 4 typically does not have command responsibilities, but is more focused on being technically proficient in a particular field of expertise. A specialist 4 holds the highest of the U.S. Army's junior enlisted ranks.
Pay and Benefits
All U.S. Army soldiers with the pay grade of E-4 are paid at the same rate based on their time in service, regardless of their rank. For example, a corporal and a specialist 4 with two years in service both receive basic pay of $5, per month as indicated on the Army pay chart, Military Benefits reports.
Soldiers are also provided free living quarters on post. If quarters are unavailable, they receive a basic allowance for quarters, which varies by duty station. For example an E-4 solidier at Ft. Huachuca, Arizona, receives $1, per month for housing, while an E-4 soldier at Ft. Meade, Maryland, receives $2, per month, according to the Army pay calculator found on the Military Benefits website.
Specialist (abbreviated "SPC") is one of the four junior enlisted ranks in the U.S. Army. It is just above Private First Class and equivalent in pay grade to Corporal. Unlike Corporals, Specialists are not considered junior non-commissioned officers (NCOs).
Specialist[change | change source]
|Specialist 9 rank insignia (U.S. Army)||Specialist 8 rank insignia (U.S. Army)||Specialist 7 rank insignia (U.S. Army)||Specialist 6 rank insignia (U.S. Army)||Specialist 5 rank insignia (U.S. Army)||Specialist 4 rank insignia (U.S. Army)|
On 1 July four grades of Specialist were established. The first was Specialist Three (E-4). It is the only one that still exists. It was changed to Specialist Four in Specialist Two (E-5), Specialist One (E-6), and Master Specialist (E-7) were also created in These were all eventually replaced with other titles. In the DoD added two more pay grades. This gave enlisted soldiers more opportunities to progress to a full career. These were Specialist Eight (E-8) and Specialist Nine (E-9) which were abolished in All except SP4 were abolished in when SP4 was renamed as "Specialist" and abbreviated as "SPC".
References[change | change source]
Other websites[change | change source]
U.S. Army Ranks Insignias
U.S. Army ranks and are broken down into three different categories: Officer Ranks, Warrant Officer Ranks, and Enlisted Ranks. In the Army, rank and insignia not only indicates pay grade but also the amount of responsibility that is held.
Enlisted soldiers hold the pay grades of E-1 through E-9, warrant officers have pay grades of W-1 through W-9 and commissioned officers have pay grades of O-1 through O The amount of time spent in each rank is based on averages, where the promotion process can be accelerated by taking advantage of additional training and schooling opportunities.
Learn about the ranks and insignias below.
Enlisted Ranks & Insignias
Enlisted Soldiers are known as the backbone of the Army. They train in a specific job and utilize those skills within their unit. They properly perform their job functions, and their knowledge ensures the success of their unit’s mission within the Army. Enlisted ranks are broken down into three groups: Junior Enlisted (E-1 through E-4, NCOs (E-4 through E-6) and Senior NCOs (E-7 through E-9). The sequence of ranks for Enlisted Soldiers are as follows:
Earned during basic training, Private is the lowest enlisted rank. This rank does not carry an insignia and is also referred to as a “fuzzy” (which refers to the blank velcro patch where the rank is normally placed on the uniform).
After completing Basic Combat Training, most soldiers receive the rank of Private Second Class. This is the first promotion the majority of enlisted soldiers earn after completing basic training, or they will get promoted after serving six months in the Army. The soldier will utilize the skills and knowledge they acquired during basic training to their new job. They will also follow orders that are given by higher ranking supervisors.
Private First Class/ PFC (E-3)
Within a year, soldiers will typically be promoted to Private First Class. Soldiers holding this rank are important to this branch. They are considered the backbone and workforce strength of the Army. From here, PFCs will begin to transition to carry out orders and complete their missions.
Specialist/SPC (E-4) / Corporal/CPL (E-4)
Specialists and Corporals are both E-4, but Specialists will have less responsibilities than Corporals. Specialists are put in charge of lower-ranked enlisted soldiers. A soldier can be promoted to this rank after serving two years and after completing a training class. Service members with a four-year degree may enter basic training as a specialist.
Sergeants are expected to be efficient leaders. They are crucial in making missions happen. They guide the junior enlisted in ensuring the mission is done properly and in accordance to the orders from the higher-ranking authorities. Sergeants oversee junior soldiers in their day to day tasks, and are expected to set a good example as an NCO (Non-commissioned officer).
Staff Sergeant/SSG (E-6)
Staff sergeants and sergeants have similar duties, except SSGs will be in contact with a larger amount of soldiers and generally have more equipment and property to maintain. The SSGs will also have one or more sergeants under their direct leadership. They will also be responsible for the development of their soldiers’ full range of potential.
Sergeant First Class/SFC (E-7)
This rank normally means the soldier has 15 to 18 years of military experience. This level is now considered as a senior NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer). Their job entails being the key assistant and advisor to the platoon leader. This rank requires them to make quick and accurate decisions for the mission at hand.
Master Sergeant/MSG (E-8)
The Master Sergeant is considered as the principal non-commissioned officer at the battalion level (or higher). They do not have the same roles and responsibilities as the First Sergeant, but they are expected to lead with the same professionalism as a First Sergeant.
First Sergeant/1SG (E-8)
The First Sergeant is the principal NCO and often referred to as the life-blood of a company. His role is to discipline and counsel the soldiers in his unit. The first sergeant conducts formations, instructs platoon sergeants, advises the Commander of the unit, and assists in training for the enlisted soldiers. When addressing this rank, they are not called “Sergeant,” but “First Sergeant.”
Sergeant Major/SGM (E-9)
Sergeant Majors role is the chief administrative assistants for an Army headquarters. They are important members of staff elements at battalion level or higher. Their experience and abilities are equal to command sergeant majors, but they are limited to leading those that are directly under his charge.
Command Sergeant Major/CSM (E-9)
Command Sergeant Major is the enlisted advisor to the commanding officer. Their duties include carrying out policies and standards and help in advising the commander. They advise and initiate recommendations to the commander and staff in regards to the support and well-being of the company.
Sergeant Major of the Army/SMA (E-9)
There is only one Sergeant Major of the entire Army. The SMA oversees all non-commissioned officers and serves as the senior enlisted advisor. He serves as the senior enlisted advisor and consults the Chief of Staff of the Army.
Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff/ SEAC
The Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the main advisor to the chairman and plays a pivotal role in decision-making for the enlisted joint force. The role was originally created in
Warrant Officer Ranks & Insignias
Warrant Officers are known as the adaptive technical experts, combat leaders, trainers and advisors. They hold warrants from their service secretary and they specialize in specific military technologies or capabilities. They acquire their authority from the same source as commissioned officers, but they are considered specialists, compared to commissioned officers, who are considered generalists. The sequence of ranks for Warrant Officers are as follows:
Warrant Officer 1 (WO1)
Warrant officers are considered the tactical and technical experts of the Army. WO1 is the base-level rank, and primarily support operations from team or detachment through a battalion.
Chief Warrant Officer 2 (CW2)
This rank is considered an intermediate-level technical and tactical expert. Their responsibility is to support levels of operations from team or detachment through a battalion.
Chief Warrant Officer 3 (CW3)
This rank is considered as an advance-level technical and tactical expert. Their role is to support operations from a team/detachment through a brigade.
Chief Warrant Officer 4 (CW4)
This rank is considered as a senior-level technical and tactical expert. Their primary duty is to support brigade, battalion, division and corps operations.
Chief Warrant Officer 5 (CW5)
This rank is considered a master-level technical and tactical expert. Their primary duties include supporting brigade, division, corps, echelons and command operations. They specialize in warrant officer leadership and representation responsibilities within their respective commands.
Officer Ranks & Insignias
Commissioned officers are considered the managers, problem solvers, key influencers and planners in the Army, and they hold the highest ranks. They lead enlisted soldiers in all situations. Their duties include planning missions, giving orders and assigning soldiers tasks to complete missions. Army officer ranks have three tiers: company grade, field grade and general. The sequence of ranks for Commissioned Officers are as follows
Army officer ranks are in three tiers: company grade (O-1 to O-3), field grade (O-4 to O-6) and general (O-7 and above).
Second Lieutenant/2LT (O1)
Service members of this rank are addressed as “Lieutenant.” This is the entry-level rank for the majority of Commissioned Officers in the Army. Their job consists of leading a platoon(s), which initiates leadership training they will need throughout their military career.
First Lieutenant/1LT (O2)
Service members of this rank are also addressed as “Lieutenant.” This rank is considered a seasoned lieutenant normally with 18 to 24 months of service. As a a senior Lieutenant, members will be looked at for the position of Executive Officer (XO) of a company (consisting between to soldiers).
Service members of this rank are addressed as “Captain.” Captains will be put in charge of and control a company (between to soldiers). Other jobs include becoming an instructor at a service school or becoming a Staff Officer at a battalion level.
Service members of this rank are addressed as “Major.” Majors are considered field grade officers, and they serve as a primary Staff Officer for brigade. They are also part of task force command in regards to personnel, logistical and operational missions.
Lieutenant Colonel/LTC (O5)
Service members of this rank are addressed as “Lieutenant Colonel” or “Colonel.” At this rank, they are put in charge of battalion-sized units (can range between to 1, soldiers). During this time, they can also be looked at for brigade and task force Executive Officer.
Service members at this rank are referred to as “Colonel.” They normally are put in charge of and command brigades (between 3, to 5, soldiers). Another responsibility at this rank will be becoming the chief of divisional level staff agencies.
Brigadier General/BG (O7)
Service members at this rank are addressed as “General.” They serve as the Deputy Commander to the commanding general for Army divisions. They will assist in coordinating and planning of missions for the Army.
Major General/MG (O8)
Service members at this rank are addressed as “General” (or two star). Will typically command a division unit (10, to 15, soldiers).
Lieutenant General (O9)
Addressed as “General” (or three star). Their main job typically consists of commanding corps-size units (20, to 45, soldiers).
Addressed as “General” (or four star). This is a senior level Commissioned Officer that has over 30 years of military experience. At this rank, they command all operations that fall under their geographical area. The Chief of Staff of the Army is a four star General.
General of the Army(GOA)
This rank is only used during the time of war. The Commanding Officer must be equal or of higher rank than the opposing commanding armies from other nations. The last officer to hold this rank was during and after WWII.
Army Ranks Chart
|E-3||Private First Class||PFC|
|E-7||Sergeant First Class||SFC|
|E-9||Command Sergeant Major||CSM|
|E-9 Special||Sergeant Major of the Army||SMA|
|W-2||Chief Warrant Officer 2||CW2|
|W-3||Chief Warrant Officer 3||CW3|
|W-4||Chief Warrant Officer 4||CW4|
|W-5||Chief Warrant Officer 5||CW5|
|Special||General of the Army||GA|
The United States Army is the oldest U.S. military branch and was founded in Their mission and purpose continues to remain constant: To deploy, fight and win our nation’s wars by providing ready, prompt and sustained land dominance by Army forces across the full spectrum of conflict as part of the joint force. The Army also provides logistics and support to other branches. Members of the U.S. Army are referred to as soldiers.
Army Ranks For Enlisted Personnel
There are 13 enlisted Army ranks: private, private second class, private first class, specialist, corporal, sergeant, staff sergeant, sergeant first class, master sergeant, first sergeant, sergeant major, command sergeant major and sergeant major of the Army.
You May Also Like: Army Basic Training PFT
In general terms, these Army ranks are broken down into three groups -- Junior Enlisted (E-1 through E-4), NCOs (E-4 through E-6) and Senior NCOs (E-7 through E-9).
Army Ranks: Junior Enlisted (E-1 to E-3)
The term as a military rank seems to come from the 16th century when individuals had the privilege of enlisting or making private contracts to serve as private soldiers in military units. Before then, many soldiers were forced (conscripted) into service by royalty or feudal lords.
Some sources claim that the use of "private" as an official "rank" dates back to the 18th century, when the French Army, under Napoleon, established the permanent rank of Soldat.
Related: Want to join the military? You need to take the ASVAB
Junior Enlisted in the Army -- privates and specialists -- are promoted automatically based on their time in service and time in pay grade. Privates (E-1) are promoted to private 2nd class after completing six months of service, and PV2s normally are promoted to PFC when they have 12 months' time in service and four months' time in grade. In general, soldiers earn the rank of specialist (E-4) after having served a minimum of two years and attending a specific training class.
Private, the lowest Army rank, normally is held only by new recruits while at Basic Combat Training (BCT), but the rank occasionally is assigned to soldiers after a disciplinary action has been taken. The Army private (E-1) wears no uniform insignia.
Private 2nd Class (E-2)
Private 2nd class (PV2) is the first promotion most enlisted soldiers can earn after completing BCT. The private's job is to apply the new skills and knowledge learned during basic training and to continue to learn how to follow orders given by higher-ranked supervisors.
Private First Class (E-3)
Private first classes (PFC) are the basic workforce strength and rank of the U.S. Army. PFC is the point in which junior enlisted soldiers begin the transition from apprentice to journeyman by developing technical and leadership skills.
Army Specialist (E-4)
Specialist (SPC) is considered one of the junior enlisted ranks in the U.S. Army. Ranked above private first class (E-3) and holding the same pay grade as the corporal, the specialist is not considered an NCO.
The specialist's job is focused on technical expertise, and they normally have less personnel leadership responsibilities than corporals. They often are promoted to the E-4 pay grade due to enlisting. Those enlisting with a four-year college degree or who have certain specialized civilian skills or training can enter BCT as a dpecialist.
Army Non-Commissioned Officers (E-4 to E-6)
Like nearly all the other branches of the Armed Forces, the United States Army consider all ranks E-4 and above to be NCOs. Corporals (E-4) are referred to as junior NCOs, however, they are given the same respect as any other NCO.
The rank of corporal was established in with the birth of the Army and the NCO Corps. Along with the rank of sergeant, the corporal is the only rank that never has disappeared from the NCO Corps.
The rank of corporal always has been placed at the base of the NCO ranks. For the most part, corporals have served as the smallest unit leaders in the Army: principally, leaders of teams.
Like the grade of sergeant, corporals are responsible for individual training, personal appearance and cleanliness of their soldiers.
As the command sergeant major is known as the epitome of success in the NCO Corps, the corporal is the beginning of the NCO Corps. As the NCO Corps is known as the backbone of the Army, the corporal is the backbone of the NCO Corps.
Information Courtesy of the U.S. Army
Moving up the Army ranks: Normally, unit commanders may advance PFCs to corporal once they have met the following qualifications:
- 26 months in service
- Six months' time in grade, waiver-able to three months
- Security clearance appropriate for the MOS in which promoted; advancement may be based on granting an interim security clearance.
Like the junior enlisted ranks, commanders may advance soldiers on an accelerated basis.
Sergeants (SGT) operate in an environment where the sparks fly -- where the axe meets the stone. Although not the lowest level of rank where command is exercised, this level is the first at which enlisted soldiers are referred to as sergeant, and of all the grades of the NCO, this one, very possibly, has the greatest impact on the lower ranking-soldiers. Privates, who are the basic manpower strength and grade of the Army, generally have sergeants as their first NCO leader. It is the grade sergeant that the privates will look to for example.
Like the next grade, the staff sergeant, the sergeant is responsible for the individual training, personal appearance and the cleanliness of their soldiers.
The sergeant also is responsible for insuring that:
- Each member of their unit is trained to competency in their MOS, as prescribed in the appropriate soldiers manual.
- All government property issued to members of their unit is maintained properly and accounted for at all times, and discrepancies are reported promptly.
- While on duty status, they are ready at all times to report to the location and activity of all members of their unit.
- Their unit is trained to function in its primary mission role.
The authority of the sergeant is equal to that of any other grade or rank of the NCO. Professionally competent leaders inherently command respect for their authority, and the sergeant must be unquestionably competent in order to carry out the mission correctly, accomplish each task and care for assigned soldiers.
The rank of sergeant is not a position for learning how to become a leader; no apprenticeship here. While certainly the new sergeant will be developing new skills, strengthening old ones and generally getting better, he is a sergeant and is therefore no less a professional than those grades of rank to follow.
Moving up the Army ranks: Unlike the promotion processes for privates, specialists and corporals, promotions to sergeant (SGT) and staff sergeant (SSG) is based on an Army-wide competition. The competition is based on a point system that grants points for firing range scores, performance evaluations, physical fitness, education level, awards and promotion board ranking.
Corporals and specialists must meet the following basic eligibility criteria to compete:
- Command recommendation
- 36 months' time in service
- Eight months time in grade
- Must graduate the primary leadership development course (PLDC)
- Possess a high school diploma, GED equivalency or college degree.
Staff Sergeant (E-6)
The staff sergeant rank closely parallels that of the sergeant in duties and responsibilities. In fact, the basic duties and responsibility of all the NCO ranks never change, but there are significant differences between this step in the NCO structure and the preceding one.
The major difference between the staff sergeant and the sergeant is not, as often mistakenly believed, authority but rather sphere of influence. The staff sergeant is in daily contact with large numbers of soldiers and generally has more equipment and other property to maintain.
The SSG often has one or more sergeants who work under their direct leadership. The SSG is responsible for the continued successful development of sergeants as well as the soldiers in their section, squad or team.
Moving up the Army ranks: SSG candidates must meet the following basic eligibility criteria to compete:
- Command recommendation
- 84 months' time in service
- 10 months' time in grade
- Must graduate the primary leadership development course (PLDC)
- Possess a high school diploma, GED equivalency or college degree
Army Ranks: Senior Non-Commissioned Officers (E-7 to E-9)
Although the Army does not make the official distinction in the rank structure, enlisted ranks of sergeant first class and above (E-7 to E-9) generally are referred to as Senior NCOs, and they carry increasing levels of responsibility and demand greater levels of respect and deference.
Although there are only three pay grades, the SNCO ranks actually cover six separate ranks or designations -- sergeant first class (platoon sergeant), master sergeant, first sergeant, sergeant major, command sergeant major and sergeant major of the Army.
Unlike the promotion processes for private through staff sergeant, unit commanders have little to do with the promotion process to the SNCO ranks. These promotions are centralized completely at the Headquarters of the Department of the Army (HQDA).
There is no minimum time-in-grade (TIG) requirement for promotion to the Army SNCO ranks, but candidates must meet the following minimum time-in-service (TIS) requirements to be eligible for promotion:
- Sergeant first class (E-7) -- six years.
- Master sergeant/first sergeant (E-8) -- eight years.
- Sergeant major (E-9) -- nine years.
Sergeant First Class (Platoon Sergeant) (E-7)
The SFC is the first level at which the term senior NCO properly applies. The platoon sergeant or sergeant first class generally has 15 to 18 years or more of military experience and is expected to bring that experience to bear in quick, accurate decisions that are in the best interest of the mission and the soldier.
Depending on experience and billet assignments, the SFC's role may be that of platoon sergeant or NCOIC (NCO in Charge) of the section.
Platoon sergeant is a duty position, not a rank. The platoon sergeant is the primary assistant and adviser to the platoon leader, with the responsibility of training and caring for soldiers. The platoon sergeant takes charge of the platoon in the absence of the platoon leader. Platoon sergeants teach collective and individual tasks to soldiers in their squads, crews or equivalent small units.
The position title of platoon sergeant is considered key in the command structure of the Army. The platoon sergeant generally has several staff sergeants who work under his direct leadership.
During the Vietnam era, the platoon sergeant was referred to affectionately as the "Plat-Daddy," and although the term has since faded, the role remains that of the "Father of the Platoon."
Information Courtesy of U.S. Army
Master Sergeant (E-8)
The master sergeant is the principal NCO at the battalion level, and often higher. They are not charged with all the leadership responsibilities of a first sergeant, but are expected to dispatch leadership and other duties with the same professionalism.
The First Sergeant (E-8)
When you are talking about the first sergeant, you are talking about the lifeblood of the Army. When 1SGs are exceptional, their units are exceptional, regardless of any other single personality involved. Perhaps their rank insignia should be the keystone rather than the traditional one depicted here. It is the first sergeant at whom almost all unit operations merge. The first sergeant holds formations, instructs platoon sergeants, advises the commander and assists in training of all enlisted members.
The 1SG may swagger and appear, at times, somewhat of an exhibitionist, but he is not egotistical. The first sergeant is proud of the unit and understandably wants others to be aware of his unit's success.
The title of address for this grade is not sergeant but first sergeant. There is a unique relationship of confidence and respect that exists between the first sergeant and the commander not found at another level within the Army.
In the German Army, the first sergeant is referred to as the "Mother of the Company." The first sergeant is the provider, the disciplinarian, the wise counselor, the tough and unbending foe, the confidant, the sounding board, everything that we need in a leader during our personal success or failure. The Mother of the Company
Information Courtesy of U.S. Army
Sergeant Major (E-9)
The sergeant major is the key enlisted member of staff elements at levels higher than battalion. The sergeant major's experience and ability are equal to that of the command sergeant major, but the sphere of influence regarding leadership is limited generally to those directly under his charge.
Command Sergeant Major (E-9)
Enlisted soldiers who attain the distinction of being selected by the Department of the Army for participation in the command sergeants major program are the epitome of success in their chosen field. There is no higher grade of rank, except sergeant major of the Army, for enlisted soldiers, and there is no greater honor.
The command sergeant major carries out policies and standards of the performance, training, appearance and conduct of enlisted personnel. The command sergeant major advises and initiates recommendations to the commander and staff in matters pertaining to the local NCO support channel.
Perhaps slightly wiser and more experienced than the first sergeant, the CSM is expected to function completely without supervision. Like the old sage of times past, the command sergeant major's counsel is expected to be calm, settled and unequivocally accurate, but with an energy and enthusiasm that never wanes, even in the worst of times.
Assignable to any billet in the Army, the CSM is all those things, and more, of each of the preceding grades of rank.
Information Courtesy of U.S. Army
Sergeant Major of the Army (E-9S)
The sergeant major of the Army (SMA) is a rank held by only one enlisted soldier at a time. The holder of this rank is the most senior enlisted member in the Army. The SMA's primary function is to address the issues of enlisted soldiers at the Army's highest levels. The SMA is the senior enlisted adviser to the Army Chief of Staff and is selected based on their outstanding leadership, extensive experience and ability to communicate up and down the Army chain of command. The SMA is giving the highest level of honor and respect of any other enlisted soldier.
Each SMA's duties are determined by the current chief of staff. As a rule, though, the SMA serves as the Army hierarchy's eyes and ears, keeping the chief of staff abreast on virtually any subject that affects enlisted soldiers and their families.
Interested in Joining the Military?
We can put you in touch with recruiters from the different military branches. Learn about the benefits of serving your country, paying for school, military career paths, and more: sign up now and hear from a recruiter near you.Show Full Article
Army spc 4
Army Ranks » Specialist Rank • SPC Pay • SPC Rank History • Promotion Information
E-4 Specialist - Enlisted Soldier - U.S. Army Ranks
|Title||Specialist (last name)|
|Paygrade|| E-4 (DoD Paygrade) |
OR-4 (NATO Code)
Specialist is a junior enlisted rank in the United States Army, equivalent in salary to a Corporal. Specialists have basic management duties and may command soldiers of lower rank, although most leadership duties at this pay grade are the responsibility of Corporals.
Specialist is the most common rank advancement available to a Private First Class, and becomes available after two years of service and upon completion of a leadership and officer candidate training course. Recruits who enlist in the Army with a four-year Bachelor's Degree, or desired civilian skills and experiences, may be entitled to enter the Army as a Specialist.
Specialist is the 4th rank in the United States Army , ranking above Private First Class and directly below Corporal. A specialist is an Enlisted Soldier at DoD paygrade E-4, with a starting monthly pay of $2,
How do you become a Specialist?
A Specialist is most often promoted from Private First Class (PFC), although promotion from lower paygrades may occur with sufficient display of leadership and experience. Click here to learn more about promotion to Specialist.
What is the proper way to address a Specialist?
Warning: A non-numeric value encountered in /home/militaryranks/public_html/includes/dbconnect.php on line
The correct way to address a Specialist named Mr. Rodriguez is "Specialist Rodriguez", or written as SPC Rodriguez. In formal situations, a Specialist should always be addressed by their full rank.
How much does a Specialist earn?
Warning: A non-numeric value encountered in /home/militaryranks/public_html/includes/dbconnect.php on line
Basic pay for an entry-level Specialist with 2 or less years of experience is $2, per month.
A Specialist receives an automatic raise to their basic pay every one to two years. Basic pay is only a small percentage of a Specialist's final compensation package.
In addition to a monthly basic pay salary, a Army Specialist may be eligible for multiple types of allowances and bonus pay including food allowance, hazard pay, and more.
For full details on the Army's Specialist compensation and retirement plan, visit the Army Specialist Pay Chart. A full table of the Army's current paygrades are available at the Army Pay Chart.
Military Occupational Specialties for Army's E-4 Specialist
To learn more about Military Occupational Specialties, see our complete list of MOS job titles.
Equivalent Ranks to the Army's E-4 Specialist
To learn more about the Army's rank structure, see our complete list of Army ranks.
The Government civilian-employee equivalent of a Specialist is paid under the General Schedule payscale. For more details, see this Army rank to GS grade conversion table .
To see a list of military medals and decorations that can be earned by servicemembers in the Army and other branches of the military, see our list of military decorations and medals.
For the group of non-commissioned officer ranks in Singapore, see Specialist (Singapore). For other uses, see Specialist.
Specialist (abbreviated "SPC") is one of the four junior enlisted ranks in the U.S. Army, just above Private First Class and equivalent in pay grade to Corporal. Unlike Corporals, Specialists are not considered junior non-commissioned officers (NCO).
Recruits with college degrees and officer candidates
New recruits enlisting into the United States Army who have earned a four-year degree, and as of those with civilian-acquired job skills, will enter as a Specialist. Typically, newly recruited Officer Candidates hold the rank of Specialist when enlisted and during BCT/AIT (Basic Combat Training, Advanced Individual Training) prior to their official enrollment into OCS (Officer Candidate School) they will be promoted to the Pay Grade of E-5 but hold a rank of Officer Candidate (OC), not a Sergeant (SG).
Trades and specialties
In , the Army rank and pay system received a major overhaul. All enlisted and non-commissioned ranks were reduced from different insignias and several pay grades to only 7 rank insignias and 7 pay grades, which were numbered in seniority from 7th Grade (lowest) to 1st Grade (highest). The 2nd grade had two rank titles: first sergeant which was three stripes, two rockers and a lozenge and technical sergeant which was three stripes and two rockers. By World War II, the rank of first sergeant had been elevated to 1st Grade and a third rocker was added, with the lozenge in the center to distinguish it from master sergeant. The wearing of Specialist badges inset in rank insignia was abolished and a generic system of chevrons and arcs replaced them.
Private / Specialist
From to there was a rank designated "Private / Specialist" (or simply "Specialist") that was graded in 6 Classes (the lowest being 6th Class and the highest being 1st Class). They were considered the equal of a Private First Class (PFC) but drew additional Specialist pay in relationship to the specialist level possessed on top of their base PFC (Grade Six) pay. The classes only indicated experience, not seniority, and a Private / Specialist did not outrank a PFC.
Officially, Specialists wore the single chevron of a Private First Class because no special insignia was authorized to indicate their rank. Unofficially a Private / Specialist could be authorized at his commander's discretion to wear one to six additional arcs (1 arc for 6th Class and a maximum of 6 arcs for 1st Class) under their rank chevron to denote specialty level.
On 8 January , the rank of Technician was introduced to replace the Private / Specialist rank, which was discontinued by 30 June This gave technical specialists more authority by grading them as non-commissioned officers rather than senior enlisted personnel. They were parallel to pay grades of the time, going in seniority from Technician Fifth Grade (Grade Five), Technician Fourth Grade (Fourth Grade), and Technician Third Grade (Third Grade). A technician was paid according to his grade, was outranked by the corresponding non-commissioned officer grade but was senior to the next lowest pay grade, and had no direct supervisory authority outside of his specialty. To reduce the confusion this caused in the field, an embroidered “T” insignia was authorized for wear under the chevrons on 4 September The rank was finally discontinued on 1 August
On 1 March , four grades of Specialist were established: Specialist Third Class (E-4), Specialist Second Class (E-5), Specialist First Class (E-6), and Master Specialist (E-7). They were created to reward personnel with higher degrees of experience and technical knowledge. Appointment to either Specialist or Non-Commissioned Officer status was determined by Military Occupational Specialty. Different Military Occupational Specialties had various transition points, for example in the band career field (excluding special bands at D.C. and West Point) a bandsman could not achieve non-commissioned officer status until pay grade E-6 was attained. In some military occupational specialties, a soldier was appointed either a specialist or non-commissioned officer depending on which particular position or "slot" that he filled in his organization.
Specialist grades paralleled the corresponding grade of non-commissioned officer (E-4 through E-7) only in terms of pay. The specialist grades, although they outranked the enlisted grades (E-1 to E-3), were outranked by all non-commissioned officers (E-4 to E-9) and lacked the authority conferred on them. This is the major differentiation between a specialist and a "hard striper".
When the so-called "super grades" (E-8 and E-9) were introduced in , the specialist grade titles were changed to Specialist Four through Specialist Seven and the Specialist Eight and Specialist Nine were added on top.
Only the lowest specialist grade survives today, as the higher grades were gradually phased out. Specialist 8 and 9, which had existed only on paper, were eliminated in Specialist 7 was abolished in and Specialist 5 and 6 in At that time, the rank of Specialist 4 simply became known as "Specialist," which is how it is referred to today. While the official abbreviation was changed from "SP4" to "SPC" upon the elimination of the SP5 and SP6 ranks, the SIDPERS database was initially authorized to continue using SP4 until such time as the change could be made at little or no additional expense in conjunction with other system upgrades. The continued use of SP4 on automatically produced documents (transfer orders, leave & earnings statements, unit manning reports, inter alia), hampered the adoption of the new abbreviation (and, to a lesser extent, the absence of "-4" in the non-abbreviated rank) by individual soldiers who naturally viewed the computer produced documents as the final word on what the proper term was.
Today, the rank of specialist is the typical rank to which Privates First Class are promoted. It is granted far more often than corporal (E-4), which is now reserved as a fast-track rank for personnel who have either passed the leadership development course or have been assigned low-level supervisory or clerical duties.
United States Navy
Between and , the United States Navy maintained an enlisted rate of Specialist in the Petty Officer pay grade structure. A seaman would typically be known as a Specialist followed by a letter indicating what field the specialty was held. For instance, a Specialist (C) served as a "Classification Interviewer," while a Specialist (T) was a "Navy Teacher," among several other specialist designations.
The Navy's use of the Specialist grade was done away with in , when the World War II specialist positions were merged back into the standard rate structure.
- ↑, US Army Website
- ↑, Army Command Policy
You will also be interested:
- Autonation collision mesa
- Rc airplane starter
- Innovation analyst salary
- 220 electric motors
- Holden ss hp
- Pacific grove condos
- Charlie chair cb2
- Chewy pond supplies
- Unfinished oak dressers
- Epson f2100 used
- Sporting game score
- Evil superman name
Specialist is a military rank in some countries’ armed forces. In the United States Armed Forces, it is one of the four junior enlisted ranks in the U.S. Army, above private (PVT), private (PV2), and private first class and is equivalent in pay grade to corporal. In the U.S. Space Force it consists of the four junior enlisted ranks, prior to the rank of sergeant.
- Regular forces
In the Royal Danish Navy and Royal Danish Air Force, the rank of specialist is used branch specific; "Naval specialist" and "Air force specialist" (Danish: Marinespecialist, Flyverspecialist) respectively. The ranks are placed below corporal and above private first class (Overkonstabel). They are rated OR-3 within NATO and has the grade of M within the Ministry of Defence's pay structure.
- Home guard
In , new specialist ranks were introduced to the Danish Home Guard. These new ranks were created to remove the need for leadership training at the lower ranks, as the selected functions no longer require actual leadership.
Republic of China (Taiwan)
Specialist (Chinese: 上等兵shàngděngbīng, "upper-rank soldier") is a rank in the Republic of China Army next to the rank of corporal, and has NATO equivalent code of OR
United States Army
Trades and specialties (–)
In , the Army rank and pay system received a major overhaul. All enlisted and non-commissioned ranks were reduced from different insignias and several pay grades to only seven rank insignias and seven pay grades, which were numbered in seniority from seventh grade (lowest) to first grade (highest). The second grade had two rank titles: first sergeant, which was three stripes, two rockers, and a lozenge (diamond) in the middle; and technical sergeant, which was three stripes and two rockers. By World War II, the rank of first sergeant had been elevated to first grade and a third rocker was added, with the lozenge in the center to distinguish it from master sergeant. The wearing of specialist badges inset in rank insignia was abolished, and a generic system of chevrons and arcs replaced them.
From to , there was a rating (not a rank) for men of the sixth and seventh grades designated "private first class, specialist, or "private, specialist," that was graded in six classes (the lowest being sixth class and the highest being first class). They were considered the equal of a private first class or private in authority, but drew additional pay in relationship to the specialist level possessed on top of their base pay. The classes only indicated competency, not authority, and a specialist did not outrank another man of his respective non-specialist rank.
Officially, specialists wore the single chevron of a private first class because no special insignia was authorized to indicate their rank. Unofficially, a specialist could be authorized, at his commander's discretion, to wear one to six additional rockers (one rocker for sixth class, and a maximum of six rockers for first class) under their rank chevron to denote specialty level. Such insignia was commercially available through catalogs or the base Post Exchange (PX) and could also be ordered with inset trade badges.
On 8 January , the rank of technician was introduced to replace the private/specialist rank, which was discontinued by 30 June This gave technical specialists more authority by grading them as non-commissioned officers rather than senior enlisted personnel. They were parallel to pay grades of the time, going up in seniority from technician fifth grade, technician fourth grade, and technician third grade. A technician was paid according to his grade, and was senior to the next lowest pay grade; however, he was outranked by the corresponding non-commissioned officer grade and had no direct supervisory authority (that is, that of a private) outside of his specialty. To reduce the confusion this caused in the field, an embroidered "T" insignia was authorized for wear under the chevrons on 4 September The rank was finally discontinued on 1 August
On 1 July , four grades of specialist were established: Specialist third class (E-4 or SP3), specialist second class (E-5 or SP2), specialist first class (E-6 or SP1), and master specialist (E-7 or MSP). The insignia was yellow on a dark blue background. It[clarification needed] was the same smaller size as women's NCO stripes—to differentiate specialists from NCOs, they were the same shape as NCO stripes—but were[clarification needed] inverted to distinguish them, and the General Service Army Eagle was set in the center. The senior specialist ranks of SP2 (E5), SP1 (E6), and MSP (E7) were indicated by one, two, or three yellow arcs over the Eagle, respectively.
In the Army Green uniform was adopted. The enlisted stripes were changed from yellow on a blue backing to Goldenlite Yellow on a green backing. The specialist insignia was redesigned to be larger, broader, and more rounded.
In the DoD added two additional pay grades to give enlisted soldiers more opportunities to progress to a full career with additional opportunities for promotion. Thus the recognition was changed to six specialist ranks, and the pay grade was tied into the rank designation: specialist four (E-4), specialist five (E-5), specialist six (E-6), specialist seven (E-7), specialist eight (E-8), and specialist nine (E-9). The "Super Grades" of Spec./8 and Spec./9 were respectively given one and two Goldenlite chevrons below the Eagle.
CSM Daniel K. Elder goes on to explain, "In when the Army added the rank of command sergeant major, the specialist ranks at E-8 and E-9 were abolished", because they were notional rather than actual. "In the specialist rank at E-7 was discontinued and in , the specialist ranks at E-5 and E-6 were discontinued."
These specialist ranks were created to reward personnel with higher degrees of experience and technical knowledge. Appointment to either specialist or non-commissioned officer status was determined by military occupational specialty (MOS). Different military occupational specialties had various transition points. For example, in the band career field (excluding special bands at D.C. and West Point), a bandsman could not achieve non-commissioned officer status until pay grade E-6 was attained. In some military occupational specialties, a soldier was appointed either a specialist or non-commissioned officer depending on which particular position or "slot" that he filled in his organization. A cook was a specialist, while a mess steward held the rank of sergeant (E-5 through E-7).
Specialist grades paralleled the corresponding grades of non-commissioned officer (E-4 through E-7) only in terms of pay. The specialist grades, although they outranked the enlisted grades (E-1 to E-3), were outranked by all non-commissioned officers (E-4 to E-9) and lacked the authority conferred on an NCO. This is the major differentiation between a specialist and a "hard striper".
Only the lowest specialist grade survives today and the rank of specialist 4 simply became known as "specialist", which is how it is referred to today. While the official abbreviation was changed from "SP4" to "SPC" upon the elimination of the SP5 and SP6 ranks, the SIDPERS database was initially authorized to continue using SP4 until such time as the change could be made at little or no additional expense in conjunction with other system upgrades. The continued use of SP4 on automatically produced documents (transfer orders, leave and earnings statements, unit manning reports, inter alia), hampered the adoption of the new abbreviation (and, to a lesser extent, the absence of "-4" in the non-abbreviated rank) by individual soldiers who viewed the computer-produced documents as the final word on what the proper term was.
Today, the rank of specialist (E-4) is the typical rank to which privates first class are promoted after two years of service, although PFCs may be waived into the rank of specialist after 18 months' time in service and six months' time in grade. It is granted far more often than corporal (also E-4). Those specialists who are graduates of the Basic leader course (BLC) and who have been recommended for promotion are to become corporals before further promotion. This change in Army culture applies to Active Army, National Guard as of 1 July , and to the Army Reserve; the Army Reserve change takes place 1 October  Corporal is now reserved for personnel who have passed the BLC.
Specialists were informally called "specs" (pronunciation IPA: /ˈspɛk/ ) plus the numerical grade of their rank. Thus, a specialist 4 was called "spec 4". As of July the rank of Specialist is the most common rank in the U.S. Army, being held by , of the Army's , soldiers.
Recruits with college degrees and Officer Candidates
New recruits enlisting into the United States Army who have earned a four-year degree, and as of [update] those with civilian-acquired job skills, will enter as a specialist (pay grade E-4). Typically, newly recruited officer candidates hold the rank of specialist when enlisted and during BCT (basic combat training) prior to their official enrollment into OCS (Officer Candidate School) where they will be administratively promoted to the pay grade of E-5 but are referred to as "officer candidate" (OC) as opposed to sergeant (SGT).
United States Navy (–)
Between and , the United States Navy maintained an enlisted rate of Specialist in the petty officer pay grade structure. This was to absorb directly appointed civilian experts needed in the rapidly expanding Navy. A seaman would typically be known as a specialist followed by a letter indicating what field the specialty was held. For instance, a Specialist (C) served as a "classification interviewer", while a Specialist (T) was a "navy teacher", among several other specialist designations.
The concept was first proposed in late and was approved by the Secretary of the Navy sometime in November or December of that year. The Navy started with four specialties in February , expanding to twenty-two specialties and their associated sub-specialties by the war's end in The Coast Guard added an additional five exclusive specialties in (D, CW, PR, PS and TR); four were awarded double letters to avoid duplication. The WAVES added Specialist (U) for "Utility"—a general purpose title that was abolished in and merged with the similar Specialist (X), for "Specialist (Not Elsewhere Classified)".
The trade badge was an embroidered diamond-shaped border inset with the specialty letter and set between the US Navy Eagle and the rank chevrons. Specialists 3rd, 2nd, and 1st Class (Grades 4, 3, and 2; equivalent to Petty Officers 3rd, 2nd and 1st Class) had 1 to 3 downward red chevrons. A Chief Specialist (Grade 1; equivalent to a Chief Petty Officer) had the US Navy Eagle perched on a red rocker over three red chevrons, with the diamond trade badge inset between the stripes.
- Specialist A: Athletic Instructor, Physical Training Instructor
- Specialist C: Classification Interviewer
- Specialist CW: Chemical Warfareman (USCG)
- Specialist D: Dog Handler (USCG), Horse Handler (USCG), Dog Patrol (USCG)
- Specialist E: Recreation and Welfare Assistant, Motion Picture Service Booker
- Specialist F: Fire Fighter
- Specialist G: Gunnery Instructor, Aviation Free Gunnery Instructor, Anti-Aircraft Gunnery Instructor
- Specialist I: I.B.M. Operator, Punch Card Accounting Machine Operator
- Specialist M: Mail Clerk
- Specialist O: Inspector of Naval Material
- Specialist P: Photographic Specialist, Motion Picture Technician, Photo Laboratory Specialist, Photogrammetry Specialist
- Specialist PR: Public Relations (USCG)
- Specialist PS: Port Security Patrolman (USCG)
- Specialist Q: Communications Specialist, Cryptologist, Cryptanalyst, Radio Intelligence Technician, Registered Publications Clerk
- Specialist R: Recruiter
- Specialist S: Entertainer , Shore Patrol and Security [–], Master-at-Arms (WAVE), Personnel Supervisor (WAVE)
- Specialist T: Teacher, Instructor
- Specialist TR: Transportationman (USCG)
- Specialist U: Utility (WAVE) , Stewardess (WAVE) 
- Specialist V: Transport Airman
- Specialist W: Chaplain's Assistant
- Specialist X: Specialist (Not Elsewhere Classified) [–]. Air Station Operations, Artist, Cartographer, Intelligence, Key Punch Operator, Pigeon Trainer, Plastics Expert, Public Information, Special Projects, Strategic Services (OSS), Switchboard Operator, Topographic Draftsman, Visual Training Aids.
- Specialist Y: Control Tower Operator
Emergency Service ratings (–)
The Navy's use of the specialist grade was reorganized in to integrate them into the petty officer structure. The assigned letters and job titles changed several times in the rank's history.
Some positions were reclassified as Emergency Service Ratings (ESRs) from to and Emergency Ratings (ERs) from to All personnel holding an Emergency Service rating were members of the Naval Reserve subject to activation only in time of war or national emergency. Their specialty letters had a prefix of "ES" added and were different than that of those in regular service.
A pruning and absorption or discontinuing of specialty ratings commenced between and and nearly all of the remaining specialties were discontinued in The sole remaining specialty was ESK (ES Specialty (K) – "Telecommunications Censorship Technician"). It was renamed "Information Security Specialist" in and disestablished in
United States Space Force
On 1 February , the United States Space Force established the rank of specialist for paygrades E-1 to E Specifically, the rank of specialist 1 replaced airman basic (E-1), the rank of Specialist 2 replaced airman (E-2), the rank of specialist 3 replaced airman first class (E-3), and the rank of specialist 4 replaced senior airman (E-4). Specialist 4 ranks beneath sergeant. Verbal address for all four grades is just Specialist. On 20 September , new rank insignias for all enlisted Guardians, including the specialists, were revealed. These new insignias will replace the U.S. Air Force enlisted rank insignias that have been worn by enlisted Guardians since the foundation of the Space Force on 20 December
- ^ ab"DoD Personnel, Workforce Reports & Publications". Department of Defense. Archived from the original on 10 March
- ^Military Committee Land Standardization Board (13 January ). STANAG (7thed.). NATO Standardization Agency. pp.E-2, F
- ^ ab"Historik". forpers.dk (in Danish). Ministry of Defence. Retrieved 26 September
- ^"Søværnets Gradstegn"(PDF). forsvaret.dk (in Danish). Danish Defence. Retrieved 26 May
- ^"Flyvevåbnets Gradstegn"(PDF). forsvaret.dk (in Danish). Danish Defence. Retrieved 26 May
- ^Hjemmeværnskommandoen (17 August ). "Nye distinktioner til specialister og menige på vej" (in Danish). Retrieved 14 July
- ^"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 29 June Retrieved 30 April CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- ^ abcElder, CSM Dan. "Short History of the Specialist Rank"Archived 14 July at the Wayback Machine.
- ^"Army Command Policy"(PDF). Retrieved 16 February
- ^ abHarm Venhuizen (7 Jun ) All soldiers must now serve as corporals before promotion to sergeant
- ^ abJoseph Lacdan, Army News Service (4 June ) Soldiers to pin on corporal after BLC
- ^Sessum, Peter. "The Spec-4 Mafia, If You Ask You Lose All Deniability". The Dog Tag Chronicles.com. Archived from the original on 1 November Retrieved 9 August
- ^"Replace Specialist with Corporal Army Wide". Military Times. Archived from the original on 2 November Retrieved 9 August
- ^"US Army Website". Goarmy.com. Archived from the original on 14 August Retrieved 16 February
- ^BLUEJACKET.COM Navy Specialist RatingsArchived 24 April at the Wayback Machine
- ^"U.S. Navy: World War II Enlisted Rates: Specialists". uniform-reference.net. Archived from the original on 1 May Retrieved 1 May
- ^ abCohen, Rachel S. (29 January ). "Space Force to Adopt 'Specialist,' Other New Ranks Feb. 1". Air Force Magazine. Retrieved 29 January
- ^SpaceForceDOD Twitter, "Chief Master Sergeant of the Space Force Roger A. Towberman announced today the new design of the #SpaceForce's enlisted rank insignia."
- ^Hadley, Greg (20 September ). "Space Force Reveals Insignia for Enlisted Ranks". airforcemag.com. Air Force Magazine. Retrieved 21 September
- ^Toropin, Konstantin (20 September ). "The Space Force Finally Has Its Own Rank Insignia". Military.com. Retrieved 21 September