1. Careers
Send to a Friend via Email

Joining the Air Force

Joining the Air Force. Information and resources for those thinking of joining the United States Military, specifically, the U.S. Air Force.
  1. Air Force Enlisted Jobs (190)
  2. Enlistment and Re-Enlist...

ASVAB Composite Score Conversions
Tables used to convert raw ASVAB scores to the Air Force General, Mechanical, Administrative, and Electronics composite scores.

Enlisting in the Air Force, Step-by-Step
So, you're thinking about enlisting in the Air Force. It's a big life-changing step, and you know that the enlistment process is a little more complicated than simply speaking with a recruiter. Here's a step-by-step guide of what you can expect during your process of enlisting in the USAF.

"Stressed" Air Force Career Fields
While the Air Force hasn't released an exact formula of how they determine whether or not a career field is stressed, the three primary factors are (1) Shortage of needed personnel to do the job; (2) Above average deployment rate; and (3) Long working hours.

A Female's Perspective of Air Force Basic
A recent female graduate of Air Force Basic Training describes her experience.

Advanced Rank
Certain categories of personnel can enlist in the United States Air Force, and receive advanced paygrade status.

Air Force Academy Changes Policies
When the Class of 2007 cadets reported for in-processing at the U.S. Air Force Academy in late June (2003), they found many new changes that are putting academy policies more directly in line with those of the active Air Force.

Air Force ASVAB Composite Scores
To qualify for specific Air Force jobs, applicants must achieve a specific score in the applicable Air Force Appitude Qualification Area. The areas are G-General, M-Mechanical, A-Administrative, and E-Electrical.

Air Force FY 2005 Recruiting Goals Decrease
Air Force Recruiting Officials have been crunching the numbers, and have cut the Fiscal Year 2005 Recruiting Goals even more. During the middle of Fiscal Year 2004, recruiting officials set the Fiscal Year 2005 (which runs from 1 October 2004 to 30 September 2005) at an estimated 35,600. At the start of the fiscal year, they reduced the number by 16,700 for a goal 24,465. Now, they've cut the goal even further.

Air Force Needs Officers to Separate
The Air Force has too many commissioned officers and is looking for volunteers in 9 career fields to separate.

Air Force Recruiting Service
The Air Force Recruiting Service, based at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas, oversees various programs designed to recruit personnel into the U.S. Air Force.

Combat Controller Physical Requirements
Requirements for the Physical Ability & Stamina Test (PAST) given for individuals who wish to become Air Force Combat Controllers.

Criminal History Waivers
Nobody has a right to serve in the United States Air Force. Federal law and Department of Defense directives give the military services significant leeway in determining who they want to accept for enlistment or commission. An applicant's criminal and "moral" history plays a large role on whether or not they are eligible to join.

Dormitories - Moving Off Base
A change in how the Air Force figures unaccompanied housing requirements will call for fewer dormitory rooms -- meaning more airmen could move off base and receive a monetary housing allowance, in the future.

Electronic Data Processing Test (EDPT)
The Electronic Data Processing Test (EDPT) has the reputation of being one of the hardest tests that one can take at the Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS). The EDPT is used by only the Air Force and the Marine Corps. The test is used to evaluate one’s basic ability to learn a military job which involves computer programming or working with electronic data processing equipment.

Electronic Data Processing Test (EDPT)
A friend of mine recently took the Air Force/Marine Corps Electronic Data Processing Test (EDPT). Here's a blow-by-blow of the experience.

Enlistment Bonus for Prior Service
Enlistment Bonus amount and program requirements for individuals who enlist in the Air Force with prior military service.

Enlistment Bonuses
Certain jobs in the Air Force qualify for a monetary enlistment bonus.

Fewer Enlistees in Fiscal Year 2007
As part of its force-shaping initiative, the Air Force will accept fewer new recruits in fiscal year 2007 than they did in fiscal year 2006. To match the Air Force's new strength numbers, next year's recruiting goals have reduced by nine percent. The service will be seeking 27,760 high school graduates or the equivalent, ages 17-28 to enlist in its ranks during FY 2007.

First Term Airman Centers (FTAC)
FTAC is designed to aid all first-duty-stationed airmen with their transition from a systematic and regimented environment into a hands-on employment of the airmen's skills, knowledge and training gained from technical school. FTAC is a 'one-stop-shop-program' that greatly benefits the airmen and allows them to focus on their job without being tagged for various appointments.

Fitness Standards for Officer Accessions
The Air Force has changed their fitness standards for graduation from the Air Force Academy, AFROTC, and OTS, effective January 2004.

Flying Physicals
Qualification requirements for Air Force Flight Class I, Flight Class II, and Flight Class III Flying Physicals.

Hardest Air Force Jobs
I'm often asked, "What are the hardest Air Force jobs?" Until now, that was a difficult question to answer. What does one mean by "hard?" Are we talking menally, physically, or otherwise? A good measurement would be technical school wash-out rates, and thanks to a recent Air Force Times article, the eight Air Force job specialties with the highest technical school failure rates are now available.

Air National Guard
Official Web Site for the Air National Guard Recruiting Service.

How to Become an Air Force Pilot
Becoming an Air Force pilot isnt easy. If you make it, you will be among the elite of the elite in the United States armed services. Heres what you need to do to try to reach this lofty goal.

Basic Training Photos
Air Force Basic Training Flight (Graduation) Photos from 1940 to the Present.

Job Conversion Charts
Special procedures apply when a prior service individual wishes to join the United States Air Force. In general, if a prior service member is already qualified in a job that the Air Force current has requirements for, that individual MUST enlist in that job. Here are charts to convert Army, Navy, and USMC jobs to Air Force AFSCs.

Job Descriptions & Qualification Factors - Officer
Detailed description and qualification standards for all the commissioned officer job positions in the United States Air Force.

Job Descriptions & Qualification Standards - Enlisted
Detailed description and qualification standards for all the enlisted job positions in the United States Air Force.

Jobs (Enlisted) Divided by Aptitude Areas
All Air Force enlisted jobs fall into a specific apptitude area: General, Mechanical, Administrative, or Electronic/Electric. Here are the AF enlisted jobs which fall into each aptitude category.

Joining the Air Force is Going to be Tough for the Forseeable Future
Bad news for those wishing to join the Air Force in the next year and a half: The Air Force has achieved about 99 percent of their recruiting goal for the remainder of this fiscal year, and has already signed up a significant portion of the recruits for the next fiscal year. What's more, the Air Force is going to accept about 11,000 fewer new recruits next year.

Non-Citizen Jobs
Air Force AFSCs (Jobs) which do not require United States Citizenship.

Officer Qualifying Test
Frequently asked questions about the Air Force Officer Qualifying Test -- a test required to be taken by all applicants for a commission in the USAF.

OTS Board Changes for FY 2004
The Air Force has announced Officer Training School (OTS) changes for fiscal year 2004. The information contains minimum qualifying GPAs, and announces limitations on pilot/nav, technical and non-technical boards.

OTS Selection Statistics
Statistical information (grade point average, number selected, AFOQT scores, ect) for recent selectees for Air Force Officer Training School (OTS).

Pararescue Physical Requirements
Requirements for the Physical Ability & Stamina Test (PAST) given for individuals who wish to become Air Force Pararescuemen.

Pararescue Training - Hell Night
Faced with a rigorous physical regiment and lack of sleep, Air Force pararescue trainees endure their toughest day -- and one hellish night.

Benefits of Joining the Air Force
Benefits available for members of the United States Air Force (Note: To one degree or another, these same benefits are available to members of all the U.S. Armed Forces).

Prepare for Air Force Basic in 21 Days
This FREE online "e-course" covers all the major academic areas that Air Force recruits are required to study while in Air Force Basic Military Training (BMT). Those who sign up for the FREE course will receive one lesson per day, via email, for 21 days.

Rank Determination Rules for Prior Service
Here are the rules to determine initial active duty rank for prior service members who join the active duty Air Force.

Commissioning Quotas
Here's a handy chart of where the Air Force expects to get their commissioned officers in FY 2004 (academy, ROTC, OTS), and goals for accession into the various job fields.

Cronic Critical AFSC List
Jobs in the Air Force that the service has listed as cronic critical shortages.

Recruiter Assistance Program (RAP)
The Recruiter Assistance Program (RAP) is a way Airmen can assist in finding quality men and women to meet the challenges of today’s Air Force. Airmen can be a major influence in bringing the Air Force story to their hometown or place of previous residence by assisting the local recruiter in making contacts and developing leads. Airmen are eligible to apply for up to 12 days of non-chargeable leave for RAP.

How to Become an Air Force Recruiter
Details about Becoming a recruiter in the United States Air Force.

Sensitive Job Codes
In the Air Force, when you are processed by the Air Force Security Specialist at MEPS, you will be assigned a Sensitive Job Code (SJC), which determines your eligibility for some Air Force Jobs (All jobs requiring a Top Secret Clearance, and jobs requiring higher ethical standards, such as Security Forces).

Pilot Test
Information about the BAT, a test used to help select Air Force Pilot Candidates.

Surviving Air Force Basic Training
Air Force Basic Training is now 8 1/2 weeks long, and tougher than before. Here's the ultimate guide to preparing for, and making it through Air Force Basic Military Training (AFBMT).

Recruiter Assistance Program
Active Duty Air Force personnel can apply for permissive temporary duty to assist an Air Force Recruiter.

Surviving Air Force Basic Training Graduation
A guide for parents, relatives, and friends who plan to attend Air Force basic training (boot camp) graduation at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas.

Technical School Physical Fitness Requirements
Non-Prior Service (NPS) Airmen in Phases I through III ( of Air Force Technical Schools must complete 3 days of "Physical Readiness Training (PRT) per week. Here are the requirements.

Technical School Training Restrictions
After boot camp, Air Force recruits attend technical training. During technical training, there are restrictions on what recruits can and cannot do while attending Air Force technical training.

Things to Consider When Deciding Whether to Join The Army
Choosing a military service can be a complicated decision. The services differ when it comes to enlistment incentives, assignment opportunities, quality of life programs, deployment rates, promotion opportunities, and more. Here are the pros and cons of choosing to enlist in the United States Air Force.

Official Air Force Recruiting Home page. Contains general information about joining the Air Force.

Trip to Air Force Basic Training Graduation
Kim Drake, an avid reader of this site, recently returned from Lackland Air Force Base in Texas, where she had the proud privilege and pleasure of watching her daughter graduate from Air Force Basic Training. Kim was kind enough to tell us about her experience in the following detailed article.

Two Year Enlistment Option
As part of the FY 2003 Military Authorization Act, Congress mandated the services each implement a two-year enlistment option. For the Air Force, the two year option will be available to only one percent of new recruits, and is limited to 29 AFSCs (jobs). Additionally, some jobs will require previous civilian training (certificates) in order to obtain the AFSC under the program.

Unarmed Combat Training in OTS
Air Force Officer Training School has began teaching officer candidates the fundamentals of unarmed combat.

Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT)
All about the Air Force's pilot training program.

Weight Charts
The Air Force changed their weight standards, both for those serving, and for new accessions when they adopted their new physical fitness program on January 1, 2004.

Air Force Safety Center
All About the United States Air Force Safety Center

You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Discuss in my forum

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.