Military branches use different classification structures to assign personnel to specific military occupational specialties. Each service has its own classification scheme and the schemes vary for enlisted personnel and officers. Every military occupation is assigned an occupation code (generically referred to as Military Occupation Code - MOC) that is a few characters in length and used for easy reference and classification when speaking about a job or group of jobs. The characters in these codes may include letters or numbers, depending on the service branch, and each code is matched with a specific occupational title.
Below, you can view the formal terms used by each service to categorize military occupations by personnel category. You can use these terms in conversation with veterans from a particular branch. Some examples are:
When speaking to a former Army Sergeant, you might say:
" What was your MOS? "
When speaking to a former enlisted Sailor, you might ask:
" What was your rating? "
If you are unsure, asking, "What was your military occupation?" is always a good approach.
Note that the Coast Guard is not included in this Tool because of a lack of available information on their military occupations.