Naval Science Course Descriptions: 

Introduction to Naval Science 

This course is a general introduction to the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, emphasizing organizational structure, warfare components, and assigned roles and missions. The course covers all aspects of naval service, including its relative position within the U.S. Department of Defense, specific warfare communities and career paths. It also includes the basic elements of leadership and Navy core values. It’s designed to expose students to the many elements of naval culture, providing the conceptual framework and a working vocabulary for students to use on summer sea term. 

Sea Power and Maritime Affairs 

Sea Power and Maritime Affairs is a study of the U.S. Navy and the influence of sea power on history. This course uses history and political science to explore the major events, attitudes, personalities and circumstances that are embedded in the Navy’s proud history and tradition. The course deals with issues of national imperatives in both peacetime and war, as well as various maritime philosophies, budgetary concerns, and the pursuit of American diplomatic objectives. It ends with a discussion of the Navy's strategic and structural changes at the end of the Cold War and the Navy’s focus, mission and strategy in the post-9/11 world. 

Leadership and Management 

This course introduces students to many of the fundamental concepts of leading sailors and marines. It is designed to develop the elements of leadership that are vital to the effectiveness of Navy and Marine Corps officers through the use of experiential exercises, readings, case studies and laboratory discussions. Students develop values, interpersonal skills, management skills and application theory.  

Naval Science for the Strategic Sealift Officer 

The course is an introduction to the functional coordination of the merchant fleet with the Navy during times of peace, international tension and formally declared war. It covers naval control of shipping, operations, communications, offensive and defensive procedures, and weaponry for merchant ships in detail. 


Students learn theory, principles, procedures and applications of plotting, piloting and electronic navigation, and are introduced to maneuvering boards. The course covers piloting techniques; the use of charts, visual and electronic aids; and the theory of operation of magnetic and gyro-compasses. Students develop practical skills in plotting as well as electronic navigation. In addition, students learn about tides, currents, the effects of wind and weather, voyage planning, and international and inland rules of navigation. The course is supplemented with case studies involving moral, ethical and leadership issues. 

Evolution of Warfare 

This course traces the development of warfare to the present. It covers the causes of continuity and change in the means and ways of warfare. The political, social and economic factors influencing war are discussed, with significant attention paid to the role of technology on the battlefield. Students explore the contributions of preeminent military theorists and battlefield commanders to the science and art of war. 

Ship Systems I - Engineering 

This course includes a detailed study of ship design, hydrodynamic forces, stability, propulsion, electrical theory and distribution, hydraulic theory and ship control, and damage control. Basic concepts of theory, as well as design of steam, gas turbine, diesel and nuclear propulsion systems are also taught in throughout the course. Students use case studies about leadership and ethical issues in engineering. 

Ship Systems II - Weapons Systems 

This course outlines the theory and use of weapons systems. Students explore the processes of detection, evaluation, threat analysis, weapon selection, delivery, guidance and explosives. It includes discussions about fire control systems and major weapons types, their capabilities and limitations. The physical aspects of radar and underwater sound are described, and students explore facets of command, control, communication, computers and intelligence. The tactical and strategic significance of command and control warfare, and information warfare are also explored. 

Amphibious Warfare 

This course introduces students to the terms, concepts and theories of general and amphibious warfare, as applied through a historical analysis of amphibious doctrine, tactics and technology. It focuses on the evolution of the Marine Corps into a specialized amphibious force and devotes particular attention to the structure and capabilities of today's force for forward and rapid deployment, as well as the development of Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare concepts. 

Naval Operations & Seamanship 

This course is a continued study of relative motion, formation tactics and ship deployment. It includes an introduction to naval operations and operations analysis, ship behavior and characteristics in maneuvering. In addition to that the course covers applied aspects of ship handling, afloat communications, naval command and control, naval warfare areas, and joint warfare. 

Leadership and Ethics 

This course completes the final preparations for ensigns and second lieutenants. It integrates an intellectual exploration of Western moral traditions and ethical philosophy with topics including military leadership, core values and professional ethics. The course goes into detail on Navy and Uniform Code of Military Justice regulations, enlisted members, command relationships and the conduct of warfare. Midshipmen gain a foundation of moral traditions through discussions about current and historic events involving the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, designed to prepare them for the roles and responsibilities of naval leadership. 

Naval Science Laboratory 

This course was developed to ensure coverage of additional naval science topics, including general Navy and Marine Corps mission and policies, force protection, operational security, watch standing, physical fitness, nutrition and stress management. 

Important Documents  

Instructions and Manuals