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A Study of Critical Thinking Training in the Army Contracting Workforce

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Technical Report

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Defense Acquisition University Huntsville United States

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With the simultaneous challenges of an increasingly fiscally constrained environment and the continuing need for advancements in our Warfighting capabilities, the imperative to do more with less was manifested in the Department of Defenses DoDs Better Buying Power BBP initiatives. The BBP goals of restoring affordability, increasing efficiencies, delivering better value, and achieving technical excellence and innovation in DoD acquisitions all require the Armys acquisition workforce to think critically about programs and to craft sound acquisition decisions to successfully implement the BBP initiatives. The research gathered the perspectives of the Army contracting workforce and Defense Acquisition University DAU contracting faculty members regarding the readiness of the Army contracting workforce in the area of critical thinking skills. The research examines the question, Does the current required Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act contracting training address the training of critical thinking skills sufficient to implement Better Buying Power initiatives The study identifies methods the Army contracting workforce uses to obtain or improve critical thinking skills and the effectiveness of those methods. The research also examines the DAU mandatory contracting curriculum to determine if the current curriculum was effective in teaching critical thinking skills and if improvements are warranted. The objective of this research is to provide Army contracting and DAU leadership with additional information and recommendations to assist in the development of improved critical thinking skills within the Army contracting workforce.

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