United States Air Force Academy

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Research and Scholarship Division

Professional Development

The Research and Scholarship Division at the CCLD serves as the focal point for disseminating, producing, and encouraging research in the areas of character and leadership development and the profession of arms. We also advise the Academy’s assessment community on character and leadership assessment methodologies.


By coordinating and facilitating research related to character and leadership development and the profession of arms, we strive to serve as a catalyst for cutting-edge, innovative thinking in these areas. The division supports resident and visiting scholars who focus their research on these topics, and publishes the Journal of Character and Leadership Development (JCLD ), a primary means of disseminating research and sparking dialogue within our field.
Our current research efforts include:

  • Redefining the modern military profession
  • Measuring the relationship between cadet activities and cadets’ capacity for grit and resiliency
  • Researching and piloting several developmental innovations to include a web-based mentoring tool, the effectiveness of “What Now, Cadet?” interactive training, and exploring virtual reality in moral decision-making education
  • Examining trends in historical military leadership failures

Collaborating with the key functions at the Academy—including the Dean of Faculty, the Athletic Department, and the Commandant of Cadets—Research and Scholarship personnel work to develop a holistic picture of the effectiveness of the Academy’s character and leadership efforts, and to aid in the continual refinement of programs and assessment methodology. We research the latest assessment methods and best-practices and inform the community of those findings.