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Acquisition Instructor Course

"Accelerate the Kill Chain"

Mission: Train highly skilled acquisition instructors and leaders in tactical and strategic knowledge to meet the operational needs of tomorrow’s multi‐domain battlespace 

Vision:   Enhance integration between acquisition, industry, and operational communities through instruction, collaboration, and innovation to accelerate the kill chain 


The Acquisition Instructor Course (AQIC) is the Department of the Air Force’s premier training ground for informed, connected thought leaders who are part of a larger network shaping the way the Acquisition community interacts with and supports the warfighter. As the Acquisition community’s equivalent institution to the United States Air Force Weapons School, AQIC is a highly selective, five-and-and-one-half month course based at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base for both Air Force and Space Force Acquisition officers and civilians. The AQIC schoolhouse maintains a strategic partnership with the USAFWS to create numerous integration opportunities for students and graduates, and its construct parallels the USAFWS curriculum methodology, requirements, rigor, and intent.

AQIC was established in 2019 under the Air Force Vice Chief of Staff’s direction to integrate with the USAFWS to accelerate the kill chain through constant acquirer and operator collaboration. The course employs an unconventional curriculum designed to build a cadre of graduates who bridge the divide between acquirers and operators, enhance workforce capability through instruction, and embrace a culture of innovation. In order to achieve its unique mission, AQIC’s curriculum was developed entirely from the ground-up. Some key aspects of the curriculum include:

  • Cross-Functional Academics
  • Operations Integration
  • Intelligence Briefings
  • Collaborative Case Study Exercises
  • Debrief / Tactics, Techniques & Procedures (TTPs)
  • Constructive Feedback
  • Numerous Briefings
  • Research Papers


Graduate Research Papers

Graduation requirements for AQIC include the completion of an academic research paper on acquisition-related topics and issues.

The papers published by Class 23B include the following topics:

Airworthiness Process: TTPs to Promote Efficiency

 Authors: Capt. Marc Green (AF Ventures) and Justin Freitas (HQ AFMC)

The current geopolitical environment requires rapidly delivered capabilities to the warfighter, and the Department of the Air Force must embrace a more efficient Airworthiness Certification Process. This paper recommends improving the Airworthiness Processes by designating authority, enhancing communication, and risk resolution.

Bolstering Operationally Focused Acquisitions

Authors:  Capt. Joshua Leonard (AFLCMC) and Capt. Andrew Tymchenko (SSC)

In the face of a growing divide between operations and acquisitions, this paper analyzes the importance of operationally-focused acquisition professionals.

Impact of a Proliferated Space Architecture on Launch

Authors: Maj. Alexis Sanchez-Martinez (NRO) and Capt. Dennis Sieber (SSC)

The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how the ongoing shift to proliferated space architectures by the Department of Defense and commercial industry has an immense impact on the launch enterprise and furthers the already increasing launch cadence faced by U.S. ranges.

The Role of AFMC A3T

Authors: Maj. Leon Lowman, III (ACC) and Capt. Ayesha Hein (SSC)

Developing a warfighting culture and mindset in the acquisition community is critical to driving change in how the DAF thinks about and implements its capability requirements. An A3T division with a focus on readiness, training, operator event integration, and AQIC schoolhouse management, can influence the AFMC community to move on from the environment of the Global War on Terror to refocus on the Great Power Competition.

These papers are available for review on the AQIC milSuite page located here:   

For questions about the program or to submit a research paper topic for consideration, contact

Program Outcomes

AQIC Graduates are:

  • Skilled Tacticians: Highly capable professionals with extensive technical knowledge across Acquisition functional areas.
  • Leaders: Courageous, selfless Airmen dedicated to developing and supporting others to enable Acquisition and Operations integration. Change agents who are a part of a robust ecosystem of influencers, able to leverage considerable resources to excel.
  • Instructors: Force multipliers who raise the level of talent around them to provide relevant, timely capabilities.

An AQIC graduate will:

  • Function as a strategic integrator, problem solver and advisor across portfolios, also capable of injecting into programs for targeted support
  • Embody the 6 key graduate attributes to drive the Air Force and Space Force missions forward
  • Provide formal & informal instruction to cross-functional Acquisition and Operational communities at the point of need
  • Promote stakeholder communication and collaboration
  • Facilitate the development of tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) to enable institutional learning/growth
  • Participate in integration and strategic planning events as necessary. Assist with requirements development, identifying effective procurement processes and fund sources to meet user needs
  • Support senior leader initiatives as necessary.

Program Eligibility

AQIC targets high-speed individuals in the following categories:
  • 61X, 62E, and 63A, O-3/O-4, with between 7 to 11 years TAFCS at Course Start Date
  • 64P and 65F/W, O-3, with between 4 to 8 years TAFCS at Course Start Date
  • 13XX, 08XX, 1101, 1102, 0501, 1515, GS-12/13/NH-03/DR-2 (non-supervisory) with between 5 to 11 years of acquisition-coded experience at Course State Date

Additional Requirements:

  • Nominees must possess a final TS/SCI security clearance by the course start date. Clearances must also remain valid through course end date.
  • Nomination criteria (except security clearance) may be waived, subject to AQIC Commandant right-fit determination.

 AQIC graduate patch

Program Info

Application Instructions and additional information is available on MilSuite. (CAC required).

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Graduate Attributes

Core Competencies

♦ Problem Solving
♦ Critical Thinking
♦ Develops Others
♦ Communication
♦ Accountability
♦ Flexibility
♦ Relationship Management
♦ Business/Political Acumen
♦ Operational Acumen
♦ Cross‐functional Savvy
♦ Technological Savvy