Military

U.S. Military Ranks

The United States of America has the third largest military in the world. The 2019 data shows the U.S. currently has 1,359,450 active military personnel. It is just under China and India but considering the population, it is more than the two per 1,000 capita in total.

When you have this large of a military, there is surely going to be a wide variety of ranks. The U.S. military’s ranks are pretty much the same as far as the pay is concerned but what we refer to the ranks change depending on what branch of the military you’re serving.

Table of Contents

There are a total of three different pay grades that apply to all branches of the U.S. military. These are Enlisted, Warrant Officers and lastly, Commissioned Officers.

Related Article: U.S. Military Pay Chart 2020 (updated)

The pay grade in each branch of the military is the same. But the ranks of the military personnel in different branches of the U.S. military is going to be different. At least to a certain degree. Marine Corps and Army share the same ranks. So does the Coast Guard and Navy while the Air Force ranks are different than the rest.

Marine Corps and Army Ranks

Marine Corps and Army – Enlisted

Pay GradeRank
E-1Private
E-2Army Private/
Marine Private First Class
E-3Army Private First Class/
Marine Lance Corporal
E-4Corporal
E-5Sergeant
E-6Staff Sergeant
E-7Army Sergeant First Class
Marine Gunnery Sergeant
E-8Master Sergeant
E-9Sergeant Major

Marine Corps and Army – Warrant Officers

Pay GradeRank
W-1Warrant Officer
W-2Chief Warrant Officer
W-3Chief Warrant Officer
W-4Chief Warrant Officer
W-5Chief Warrant Officer

Marine Corps and Army – Commissioned Officers

Pay GradeRank
O-1Second Lieutenant
O-2First Lieutenant
O-3Captain
O-4Major
O-5Lieutenant Colonel
O-6Colonel
O-7Brigadier General
O-8Major General
O-9Lieutenant General
O-10General

Coast Guard and Navy Ranks

Coast Guard and Navy – Enlisted

Pay GradeCoast Guard and Navy Rank
E-1Seaman Recruit
E-2Seaman Apprentice
E-3Seaman
E-4Petty Officer, Third Class
E-5Petty Officer, Second Class
E-6Petty Officer, First Class
E-7Chief Petty Officer
E-8Senior Chief Petty Officer
E-9Master Chief Petty Officer

Coast Guard and Navy – Warrant Officers

Pay GradeCoast Guard and Navy Rank
W-1
W-2Chief Warrant Officer
W-3Chief Warrant Officer
W-4Chief Warrant Officer
W-5Chief Warrant Officer

Coast Guard and Navy – Commissioned Officers

Pay GradeCoast Guard and Navy Rank
O-1Ensign
O-2Lieutenant Junior Grade
O-3Lieutenant
O-4Lieutenant Commander
O-5Commander
O-6Captain
O-7Rear Admiral
O-8Rear Admiral
O-9Vice Admiral
O-10Admiral

Air Force Ranks

Air Force – Enlisted

Pay GradeAir Force Rank
E-1Recruit
E-2Airman
E-3Airman First Class
E-4Senior Airman
E-5Staff Sergeant
E-6Technical Sergeant
E-7Master Sergeant
E-8Senior Master Sergeant
E-9Chief Master Sergeant

Air Force – Warrant Officers

Pay GradeRank
W-1
W-2
W-3
W-4
W-5

Air Force – Commissioned Officers

Pay GradeRank
O-1Second Lieutenant
O-2First Lieutenant
O-3Captain
O-4Major
O-5Lieutenant Colonel
O-6Colonel
O-7Brigadier General
O-8Major General
O-9Lieutenant General
O-10General

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