CANNON SECTION EVALUATION AND TRAINING
This appendix is an evaluation and training guide for the howitzer sections of a cannon firing battery. It is universal in scope and can be adapted readily to all cannon weapon systems currently in the Marine Corps and Army inventory. It may be modified by the commander to meet local requirements. It may be administered as follows:
- Formally or informally.
- With minimal administrative support.
- In the local training area.
- In a nonfiring, but tactical environment.
a. The evaluation is a performance test of the skills that are essential to the successful accomplishment of the mission of the cannon section. Although many of the tasks are evaluated on the basis of individual performance, the evaluation actually measures the ability of the section to function as a team. The evaluation can be used as follows:
- To evaluate the current state of proficiency of the section.
- As a competitive evaluation to determine the best section in a unit.
- As a basis for a howitzer/gun crew training program in preparation for a formal battery or battalion training evaluation.
b. The tasks laid out in this appendix should be used as training vehicles, with as much time as possible devoted to controlled practice of a task. The sections should practice each task to acquire the degree of proficiency required by the standards set forth in the evaluation.
This evaluation evaluates the ability of the section chief to organize and train his personnel into a cohesive, effective fighting unit. It consists of five phases.
a. Phase I is an orientation and organization period beginning with a statement of the purpose, scope, and description of the evaluation. During Phase I, a written test will be administered. This phase should be conducted in a classroom on a day before the test.
b. Phase II involves preparation in an assembly area for movement to a location for a deliberate occupation of a prepared position.
c. Phase III covers the deliberate occupation of a prepared position.
d. Phase IV evaluates the conduct of various types of fire missions.
e. Phase V is a critique of the performance of individual sections.
Note: Phases II through IV of the evaluation are constructed around a tactical scenario that can be altered to fit the training resources and the time available.
a. The task is a general statement of the requirement for the particular evaluation.
b. The conditions outline the specific environment or situation in which the evaluation will be administered. They state what assistance or reference materials, if any, are authorized and what equipment or personnel are required for proper evaluation.
c. Evaluation checklists present the requirements for successful completion of that particular task. Specific technical procedures required in the task will be evaluated by the examiner on the basis of the established procedures in the appropriate reference.
The performance evaluation will be administered within a time framework on a GO/NO-GO basis; the examinee either passes or fails. The examiner will base his judgment upon the criteria stated in the evaluation checklist and on the most current reference for that particular task.
All necessary preparations, as indicated in the conditions for each task, will be made before the task begins. The examiner will ensure that the examinee understands the task to be performed.
a. If the evaluation is administered solely for the purpose of determining the state of training of individual sections within a unit, no formal score is required. The commander can readily determine the strengths and weaknesses of his sections simply by subjectively analyzing the GO and NO-GO ratings received for each task performed.
b. The evaluation may be used to determine the best section in a unit by determining a formal score. To determine the score for individual sections, add the numerical score attained in each of the four scored phases. See Table G-1 for the qualification scheme.
During this phase, preferably conducted on a day before administration of the remaining phases, the following are done.
- All personnel will be briefed as to the conduct and purpose of the training.
- The scoring system will be explained.
- The organization of the training area and general administrative and safety procedures will be explained.
- All questions will be answered.
- The written test will be administered to all section personnel.
- The examiner will be provided a copy to the unit SOP to use during evaluation.
During this phase, the gun guide will prepare a designated location for occupation by the section. The section will move to this location, make a deliberate occupation, and prepare for firing.
During this phase, conducted as soon after phases II through IV as possible, the following actions are taken:
- All section personnel are thoroughly briefed on the detailed results of the evaluation.
- Outstanding performances are recognized and highlighted.
- Weak areas are critiqued in a constructive manner aimed at establishing specific tasks requiring further training emphasis.
- All questions are answered.
Section feedback should be encouraged in an effort to improve the content, organization, or administration of the evaluation.
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