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Special Forces Berlin
by James Stejskal




Special Forces Assessment
and Selection (SFAS)

Home > Training > SFAS

Special Forces training is long and hard.  There are several phases of training to go through before one becomes a "Green Beret".  The first step is to be "selected" in the Special Forces Assessment and Selection course or SFAS.

Special Forces Assessment and Selection (SFAS)

Special Forces Assessment and Selection is three weeks long.  You are mentally and physically stressed and evaluated by Special Forces instructors for suitability to continue training in Special Forces.

There are many reasons why you may not be selected during SFAS.  One reason is you may not be physically ready for the course - meaning your physical fitness is not what it needs to be.  A second reason is that you may suffer an injury that prevents you from completing the course. A third reason is that you are just not mentally tough enough - the heart and mind is not there! The cadre may feel your are not quite Special Forces material or that you are not ready for the SFQC just yet.

But hopefully you will show up for SFAS prepared for the rigors ahead of you.  The info and links below may be helpful in your preparation.

Websites with Info on SFAS

"What is SFAS?" Learn about SFAS and the Thor 3 Training Program to prepare for SFAS.

Special Forces Assessment and Selection (SFAS), National Guard.

SFAS, Enlisted Special Forces - WordPress.com


Articles about SFAS

October 24, 2020. "Predicting Success: US Army Special Forces Assessment and Selection (SFAS)", Tier Three Tactical.

March 16, 2017. Passing SFAS - Team Week, Be Prepared to be Tested, Special Operations.com.

SFAS Videos on YouTube

Special Forces Assessment and Selection, USAJFKSWCS, DVIDS, November 14, 2018, 4 mins.

How to Pass Special Forces Assessment & Selection (SFAS) & Become a Green Beret, Mr Guns & Gear Channel - YouTube, August 13, 2018.

Another Disappointing Day as SFAS Cadre, YouTube.com, October 28, 2014.

SFAS: Special Forces Assessment and Selection, GX Magazine, February 19, 2014, 4 mins.

Two Weeks in Hell.  Discovery Channel video documentary on SFAS.  Produced in July 2010. When it was filmed SFAS was two weeks long; shortly before the one-hour program aired on TV SFAS was increased to three weeks.

Pre-SFAS Workout. California Army National Guard.

Books, Papers, and Publications about SFAS

Gucciardi, D. F., Lines, R. L. J., Ducker, K. J., Peeling, P., Chapman, M. T., & Temby, P. (2020). Mental toughness as a psychological determinant of behavioral perseverance in special forces selection. Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1037/spy0000208

Emily K. Farina et al, "Physical performance, demographic, pyschological, and physiological predictors of success in the U.S. Army Special Forces Assessment and Selection course", Physiology & Behavior, Volume 210, October 15, 2019. Retrieved on October 25, 2020 from ScienceDirect. Read online or download PDF (12 pages).

"A History of Assessment and Selection", Special Warfare Magazine, Volume 29, Issue 2, July - December 2016.

"Selected!".  Be prepared for the U.S. Army Special Forces Selection & Assessment Course.  Learn to use your mind as a weapon.  By Josh Henkin and Anthony Humpage, September 2009.  This 61 page document, located on the website of the Special Operations Recruiting Battalion (SORB), provides important information on how to physically and mentally prepare for SFAS. Some of the topics include a recommended fitness program, footcare, preparation for running tests and rucksack marches, heat acclimatization, hydration and electrolyte management, and more.
www.bragg.army.mil/sorb/Text/SELECTED_EBOOK.pdf (link no longer works)

"Developing Physical Capability Standards That are Predictive of Success on Special Forces Selection Courses", Military Medicine, 178, 6:619, 2013.
Access here.

Beal, Scott A., The Roles of Perserverance, Cognitive Ability, and Physical Fitness in U.S. Army Special Forces Assessment and Selection, U.S. Army Research Institute, July 2010, PDF, 27 pages.

Bartone, Paul T. et al, "Psychological Hardiness Predicts Success in US Army Special Forces Candidates", International Journal of Selection and Assessment, January 25, 2008.

"Get Selected for Special Forces".  A book by LTC Joe Martin available on Amazon.com. (Sep 2005).

Special Forces Assessment and Selection Program Development for Force XXI, by Major Daniel G. Burwell, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, 1999.

Prescreening Methods for Special Forces Assessment and Selection, May 1999. The Special Operations Proponency Office (SOPO) at the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Warfare Warfare Center and School (USAJFKSWCS) requested help from the U.S. Army Special Operations Command Psychological Application Directorate (PAD) and the U.S. Army Research Institute (ARI) in identifying prescreening tools that could be used to identify which soldiers have the greatest chance for success in the Special Forces (SF) selection and tralning pipeline. This information would allow SOPO to minimize recruitment of soldiers with little chance of completing Special Forces Assessment and Selection (SFAS), and allow slots to be filled by soldiers who have a greater probability of success. PDF, 39 pages.
https://www.researchgate.net/publication/235010591 and https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a365003.pdf

Special Forces Assessment and Selection, by Sean P. Feeley, Thesis for U.S. Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, California, December 1998.

Brooks, Judith E. and Michelle M. Zazanis, Enhancing U.S. Army Special Forces Research and Applications, ARI Special Report 33, U.S. Army Research Institute, October 1997, PDF, 87 pages.

Russell, Teresa L. et al, Development of a Roadmap for Special Forces Selection and Classification Research, United States Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences, October 1995, PDF, 269 pages.

Hudgens, Gerald A., Frank J. Malkin, and Linda T. Fatkin, Stress Evaluation of a Special Forces Assessment and Evaluation Course, Technical Memorandum 6-92, U.S. Army Human Engineering Laboratory, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, August 1992, PDF, 63 pages.

Pleban, Robert J. et al, Selection and Assessment of Special Forces Qualification Course Candidates: Preliminary Issues, U.S. Army Research Institute, ARI Research Note 88-37, April 1988.


Once you are selected in SFAS you can then attend the Special Forces Qualification Course.

Members of the Army National Guard can attend SFAS without leaving their current unit.  Once they attend SFAS and get selected then they can then transfer to the National Guard Special Forces.



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