United States Marine Corps basic reconnaissance course: predictors of success
Nowicki, Albert Cole
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The need for reconnaissance forces has been documented throughout history. Thus, the process for recruiting, assessing, and training Reconnaissance Marines should not be left to chance. The Marine Corps' Basic Reconnaissance Course (BRC) is at the forefront of this process. As identified by examining the data obtained from BRC, attrition rates have been nearly 50 percent over the last three years, illustrating there is room for improvement. This study conducts a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the criteria used to select candidates for the BRC. The research uses multi-variate logistic regression models and survival analysis to determine to what extent the current requirements to attend the Basic Reconnaissance Course are indicators of success. Using data from multiple cohorts of BRC students, this research develops a predictive model that allows the Marine Corps to more successfully recruit and train the most likely candidates to graduate BRC. The results of this study suggest that the Physical Fitness Test and General Test are the most significant predictors of success. The impacts of physical and cognitive capability on success are not surprising, but the magnitudes of these effects on the probability of graduating BRC provides commanders with survival percentages based on incremental changes in the prerequisites.
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