Starboard side view of USS Theodore Roosevelt, CVN-71, while underway

United States Military Rank - Enlisted

The Navy Rate

In the Navy, rates identify Sailors occupationally by pay grades E-1 through E-9 and they reflect levels of aptitude, training, experience, knowledge, skill, and responsibility. Enlisted rates are divided into three groups: general rates (E-1 through E-3 apprenticeships), Petty Officers (E-4 through E-6), and Chief Petty Officers (E-7 through E-9).

General rates are apprenticeships assigned to personnel at paygrades E-1 through E-3 to indicate their eligibility for entry into various ratings. These apprenticeships are: Airman (AN), Fireman (FN), and Seaman (SN).

Petty Officers (Third Class Petty Officer [PO3 -- E-4]; Second Class Petty Officer [PO2 -- E-5]; and First Class Petty Officer [PO1 -- E-6]) are the technicians and work managers within Navy ratings who possess increasing degrees of skill responsibility and authority as they advance in paygrade. Petty officers are capable of accomplishing tasks normal to their rating and paygrade and they provide the "hands on" skills required to maintain, repair, and operate systems and subsystems.

The Chief Petty Officer (CPO) (E-7) is the technical authority, expert, and supervisor within a rating. The CPO is capable of accomplishing all tasks normal to a rating using technical supervision, instruction, and training of lower rated personnel.

The Senior Chief Petty Officer (SCPO) (E-8) is the senior technical supervisor within a rating or occupational field with primary responsibilities for supervising and training enlisted personnel oriented to system and subsystem maintenance, repair, and operation. Based on wide ranging experience and specialized training, the SCPO provides the command with a higher level of technical and managerial expertise than is expected at the E-7 level.

The Master Chief Petty Officer (MCPO) (E-9) is the senior enlisted petty officer in the United States Navy. As such, the MCPO is vested with special command trust and confidence extending to administrative and managerial functions involving enlisted personnel. Based upon experience, proven performance, and technical knowledge necessary for advancement to the grade of MCPO, individuals of that rate within a command hold the senior enlisted positions and contribute to forming as well as implementing policy within their occupational field or across the full Navy rating spectrum.

Military Enlisted Pay-Grade and Ranks Comparison Chart

Enlisted U.S. military pay-grade and rank comparison chart.
Enlisted Ranks and Paygrades
Pay grade Navy
Coast Guard
Marines Army Air Force
E-9 Master Chief
Petty Officer
SGT Major
Master Gunnery SGT
SGT Major
Command SGT Major
Chief Master SGT
E-8 Senior Chief
Petty Officer
1st SGT
Master SGT
First SGT
Master SGT
Senior Master SGT
E-7 Chief
Petty Officer
Gunnery SGT SGT 1st Class Master SGT
E-6 1st Class
Petty Officer
Staff SGT Staff SGT Technical SGT
E-5 2nd Class
Petty Officer
Sergeant Sergeant Staff SGT
E-4 3rd Class
Petty Officer
Corporal Corporal
E-3 Seaman Lance
First Class
First Class
E-2 Seaman
First Class
Private Airman
E-1 Seaman
Private Private Basic

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