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News | April 20, 2020

Up to $40k bonuses available for new cryptologic linguists

By USAREC Public Affairs

The U.S. Army is seeking qualified individuals who excel at solving puzzles to serve as cryptologic linguists. Interested applicants could receive up to $40,000 in signing bonuses or student loan repayment up to $65,000, depending on the length of the term of service and the training ship date.


Soldiers are also eligible for up to $4,000 per year in tuition assistance to pursue higher education opportunities in the field of their choice along with a competitive benefits package, including healthcare, housing and meal allowances, and a variety of family support programs.


A cryptologic linguist works in the military intelligence field and is primarily responsible for identifying foreign communications using signals equipment. Their role is crucial, as the nation’s defense depends largely on information that comes from foreign languages.


“What I love most about my job is that it is challenging,” said Staff Sgt. Aimee Barnes, an Army recruiter in Albany, Oregon, whose primary career field is military intelligence. “The intelligence world is constantly evolving, and there is always so much to learn.  I enjoy the opportunities I have to work directly with a variety of units out there.  My experiences have given me skills as an intelligence Soldier and skills in the tactical world as well.”

Some of the skills Soldiers learn are identifying foreign communications from an assigned geographic area, analyzing foreign communications to support missions, procedures for handling classified information and preparing reports.

Job training for a cryptologic linguists requires 10 weeks of Basic Combat Training and up to 52 weeks of Advanced Individual Training with on-the-job instruction. Part of this time is spent in the classroom and in the field under simulated combat conditions. 


“The training I received for this job was extensive,” Barnes said. “Training is normally a year, but I received an additional year in training for the advanced Arabic course. Professionally the training prepared me to conduct my duties effectively and will afford me some amazing opportunities in other government agencies in the future. The U.S. Army has allowed me to work on my degree using the training I received in my language, which was applied towards my college credits.”

To qualify to be a cryptologic linguist, applicants must score a minimum of 91 on the skilled technical line score of the Armed Forces Qualification Test and pass the Occupational Physical Assessment Test at the moderate level.


The skills Soldiers gain as a cryptologic linguist can lead to 41 different certifications or credentials through the Army Credentialing Opportunities On-Line Program.  


To learn more about the role of a cryptologic linguist, read the details at or watch the video at



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