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Army Acronyms List - Official & Slang

Updated on March 27, 2013

Army Acronyms

The Army is famous for using acronyms for everything. Whether your an Army wife, new soldier or Army Veteran, this guide of Army acronyms can help you out. It is almost impossible to know every last acronym there is. This list can serve as a reference guide to all who may need it. This list includes what the acronym means and in most cases, a definition of what that means. This is in no way a comprehensive list. These are the most commonly used and the terms you will hear most often if you are around a soldier or Army base.

General Army Related Acronyms

ACU - Army Combat Uniform. This is the uniform soldiers wear to work every day.

AAFES - Army & Air Forces Exchange Service. This is the mall like store or gas station on post.

PX - Post Exchange. This is like the Army's version of Walmart.

HOOAH - Heard, Understood, Acknowledged. This was thought to have originated as HUA.

DOD - Department Of Defense. The part of the Government that oversees the Military.

AWOL - Absent Without Leave. When you don't show up for duty multiple times, the Army can stop your pay.

DFAC - Dining FACility. This is also called the Chow Hall.

TDY - Temporary Duty. Getting sent somewhere other than your assigned location for a month or even 6.

ROTC - Recruit Officer Training Academy

POV - Personally Owned Vehicle. As apposed to a military owned vehicle.

POW - Prisoner Of War

PCS - Permanent Change of Station. When you get orders to move to a new base, it is called a PCS.

MOS - Military Occupational Specialty. This is your job title.

KIA - Killed In Action

Army Pay Related Acronyms

BAH - Basic Allowance for Housing. You get paid a certain amount based on if you are married, have children and where you are stationed.

BAS - Basic Allowance for Subsistence. This is what the Army gives you for groceries if you don't use the DFAC.

DFAS - Department of Finance & Accounting Systems. This is who is in charge of getting your paycheck ready for you.

LES - Leave and Earnings Statement. This is the Army's version of a pay stub.

Training Related Army Acronyms

BCT - Basic Combat Training. Your initial "soldiering" training.

AIT - Advanced Individual Training. Your specific job training.

DEP - Delayed Entry Program. The period of time between when you sign your contract to enlist in the Army and actually leave for BCT.

ANCOC - Advanced Non Commissioned Officer Course. This is a training course that a soldier must complete as a Staff Sergeant.

BNCOC - Basic Non Commissioned Officer Course. This is a training course that a soldier must complete as a Sergeant.

WLC - Warrior Leader Course. Another course to become a sergeant.

APFT - Army Physical Fitness Test. This is the physical test to qualify for Army service. It includes push ups, sit ups and a 2 mile run.

PT - Physical Training. The physical workout soldiers do every day.

STX - Situational Training Exercise. Field training.

ASI - Additional Skill Identifier. Addition training after your AIT.

AARTS - Army American Council on Education Registry Transcripts System. This is like a college transcript but for Army training.

TRADOC - Training And Doctrine Command. BCT and AIT are considered TRADOC.

FTX - Field Training Exercise

Other Army Acronyms

ASAP - As Soon As Possible

AAR - After Action Review. After completing training or a mission, you talk about how it went and what you can do to improve performance.

AO - Area of Operations

BSB - Brigade Support Battalion. A type of Battalion that offer supporting roles for a Brigade.

CIF - Central Issue Facility. This is where the Army gives you are of your gear.

CQ - Charge of Quarters. A duty assignment where you are in charge of a building or area.

CWO - Chief Warrant Officer

DX - Direct Exchange. This gives you an opportunity right after BCT to trade your grungy stuff for new ones.

FOB - Forward Operating Base. A deployment base.

IED - Improvised Explosive Device,

LMTV - Light Medium Tactical Vehicle

LBV - load Bearing Vest

MIA - Missing In Action

MRE - Meal Ready to Eat

MP - Military Police

NBC - Nuclear, Biological, Chemical

NCO - Non Commissioned Officer

OCS - Officer Candidate School. The school a college graduate goes through to become an Army Officer.

OER - Officer Evaluation Report. Basically an Officer's job performance evaluation.

NCOER - Non Commissioned Officer Evaluation Report. Basically an NCO's job performance evaluation.

PCI - Pre Combat Inspection. This is when you make sure you have everything and are ready for the training or mission you are about to complete.

PLDC - Primary Leader Development Course (Changed to WLC)

PMCS - Preventative Maintenance Checks and Services. Checking function, tune-ups and repairs to your military vehicle.

POC - Point of Contact

RFI - Ready For Issue. This is where you get gear issued to you for deployment.

ROE - Rules Of Engagement. The Army has specific rules on interacting with an enemy.

SF - Special Forces

TC - Tank Commander. The person in charge in an Army vehicle.

UXO - Unexploded Ordinance. An explosive that has not been detonated.

XO - Executive Officer. The Commander's right hand man/woman.

Unofficial Army Acronyms

ARMY- Ain't Ready for Marines Yet. This is usually what Marines will tell you that "Army" means. Marines always think they are better than Soldiers.

FIDO- F*** It, Drive On. My Drill Sergeant used this to motivate us in Basic Training.

FUBAR- F***ed Up Beyond All Recognition

SNAFU- Situation Normal, All F***ed Up

BCGs- Birth Control Glasses. In BCT, the glasses you are issued are so ugly; there is no way anyone will be making babies.

Does This Help You Understand Army Acronyms Better?

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    • Learning in Life profile imageAUTHOR

      Megan Smith 

      5 years ago from Florida

      Lol yes the Army loves anything that can use an "F" in the acronym.

    • Veritas Separatim profile image

      Luke A. Hall 

      5 years ago from Ohio

      You forgot MFIC and HMFIC lol... and Whiskey Tango, Oscar Mike, etc. I always liked the unofficial ones lol.

    • Marquis profile image


      5 years ago from Ann Arbor, MI

      I remember during my days of basic training, not one of us could say that we were an army of one. It was all about team work.


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