From Academic Kids

This article is about the rank of sergeant. For alternate meanings see Sergeant (disambiguation).

In most non-naval military organizations, a sergeant is a non-commissioned officer (NCO) ranking above privates and corporals, and below warrant officers and commissioned officers.

There are usually several ranks of sergeant, each corresponding to greater experience and responsibility for the daily lives of the soldiers of larger units. Although even the highest sergeant is officially lower in rank than the lowest lieutenant, an experienced sergeant will have considerable personal power and know how to exercise it.


United States military

E-5 insignia
Sergeant insignia
U.S. Army

In the United States Army, although there are several ranks of sergeant, the lowest carries the title of Sergeant, referred to as buck sergeant when needed to distinguish it from the higher ranks. Sergeant is the fifth enlisted rank in the U.S. Army, just above Corporal and below Staff Sergeant, and is the second-lowest grade of non-commissioned officer.

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E-5 insignia

Sergeant insignia
U.S. Marine Corps

Similarly, the United States Marine Corps has several ranks which carry the title of sergeant, the lowest of which is Sergeant. U.S.M.C. Sergeants are the fifth enlisted rank in the U.S. Marine Corps, just above Corporal and below Staff Sergeant.

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Flag of the United States of America

U.S. military enlisted ranks

  E-1 E-2 E-3 E-4 E-5 E-6 E-7 E-8 E-9
Air Force: AB Amn A1C SRA SSgt TSgt MSgt SMSgt CMSgt -


Army: PV1 PV2 PFC SPC -






Marine Corps: Pvt PFC LCpl Cpl Sgt SSgt GySgt MSgt -

1st Sgt

MGySgt -

SgtMaj - SMOMC



British Military

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The Sergeants (Sgt) of the British Army wear three point-down chevrons on their sleeves and usually serve as platoon or troop sergeants, or in specialist positions. Staff Sergeant is the next most senior rank, above which come Warrant Officers. The Household Cavalry use the rank of Corporal of Horse instead, the only regiments to preserve the old cavalry tradition of having corporals but not sergeants.

The official spelling was Serjeant (Sjt) until after the Second World War, although the modern spelling had already been in common use for many years.

The Royal Marines use the ranks of Sergeant and Colour Sergeant.

The Royal Air Force also has sergeants, wearing the same three chevrons. The next highest rank is Flight Sergeant (or Chief Technician for technicians and musicians). Between 1950 and 1964 sergeants in technical trades were known as Senior Technicians and wore their chevrons point up. On 1 July 1946, aircrew sergeants were redesignated as Aircrew IV, III or II, replacing the chevrons with one, two or three six-pointed stars within a wreath and surmounted by an eagle. This was unpopular and in 1950 they returned to the old rank, but have worn an eagle above their chevrons ever since. Sergeants of the Royal Flying Corps wore a four-bladed propeller above their chevrons.

In the British Indian Army, the equivalent rank was Daffadar in cavalry regiments and Havildar in other units.

German military

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German Insignia

In the German language, the rank of Sergeant is known as Feldwebel. The rank has existed since the 18th century with usage as a title dating to the Middle Ages. One important difference between Sergeants and Feldwebeln exists: in a typical Bundeswehr company, only one Zug (equivalent to a platoon) is under the command of an officer, while the other Zugführer (platoon leader) positions are held by Feldwebel-ranked NCOs (typically Hauptfeldwebel and above).

Republic of Singapore

In the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF), there are five different grades of sergeant: 3rd Sergeant (3SG), 2nd Sergeant (2SG), 1st Sergeant (1SG), Staff Sergeant (SSG), and Master Sergeant (MSG). Sergeants as well as Warrant Officers are the non-commissioned officers in the SAF. Soldiers serving national service are promoted to 3SG after passing out of the School of Infantry Specialists (SISPEC)or other training institutes . They can then go on to become 2SGs or 1SGs. The senior NCO ranks, SSG and MSG, are usually only attained by regular soldiers and not conscripts.

3SGs are usually section commanders/second-in-commands (equivalent to a British Lance-Corporal/Corporal, as well as other vocations like Company Quartermaster Sergeants (CQMS) as well as technicians. 2SGs usually serve as platoon sergeants (equivalent to a British Sergeant). 1SGs, SSGs, and MSGs usually serve as Company Sergeant Majors or administrative NCOs at company level or higher (equivalent to British Staff Sergeants and Warrant Officers).

In the Singapore Police Force, the rank of Sergeant lies between Corporal and Staff Sergeant.


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LAPD insignia

The rank of sergeant is common to the police of several countries. In the British police, sergeant is senior to Police Constable and junior to Inspector.

External links

Related articles

de:Sergeant fr:Sergent nl:Sergeant


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