Difference Between Ranger School and RASP – Everything You Need to Know

Posted in Blog

Army Ranger candidates are often confused about the difference between Ranger School and RASP.

Because it’s NOT as simple as you think it is.

In fact, the difference is so tremendous and significant. We suggest you read thoroughly and carefully as it will greatly impact your future as an Army Ranger!

Rangers assessment and selection program

RASP (Rangers Assesment & Selection Program)

RASP (Rangers Assesment & Selection Program) is an eight-week course that trains Soldiers in the basic skills and tactics required to operate in the 75th Ranger Regiment.

So let me tell you what the RASP is all about by explaining the 2 phases of the program:

Phase 1: TESTING

The first phase of RASP Is about clearing a ton of physical and psychological tests. During this phase, you must keep in mind that your grades are not all that matter. It is actually your strength of character and leadership ability that’s being tested. Because let’s be frank here — those 2 aspects are what makes an Army Ranger, an Army Ranger.

Tests conducted are as follows:

  • Forced Ruck March and Run — Carrying 50 pounds of gear on a big backpack, and march 12 miles at a pace of 15 minutes/mile. Your running agility will also be graded by a 5-mile run test
  • Land Navigation (Day and Night) — In teams and individually, cadets will be required to find and travel to target objective, most of the time using only a compass and a map
  • First Responder Test — A test on your ability to quickly retrieve and stabilize casualties. Because medical response and evacuation is a critical skill for Rangers
  • Screenings — A test on your knowledge of Ranger history and the Ranger Creed. In addition to that, you must also pass a Psychological screening


The second phase of RASP is where you will learn the skills and maneuvers that will prepare you for the rigors of life in a Ranger unit. A very apt description, we assure you.

You got it. This is where the magic happens. You’ll learn the principals of direct action combat, airfield seizure, personnel recovery and more. Everything that is directly applicable to your mission as a Ranger.

Tests conducted are as follows:

  • Combat Driver’s Course — Practice of convoy maneuvers during various combat environments under both day and night conditions
  • Marksmanship and Tactics — Direct Action Combat is the cornerstone of the success of a Ranger’s mission. This is where you will learn all about the principles of direct action combat
  • Explosives and Breaching — Learning the proper techniques of entering enemy base, which largely includes how to set and detonate explosives to breach doors. You will then be tested on your ability to identify the proper breaching method for certain types of doors


Bonus part: here’s a link from the official GoArmy regarding preparation for RASP .

Ranger School

Ranger School

Ranger School is regarded as one of the toughest training courses for which a Soldier can volunteer. Army Rangers are experts in leading Soldiers on difficult missions — and to do this they need rigorous training. For over two months, Ranger students train to exhaustion, pushing the limits of their minds and bodies. And if they managed to complete this hellish training, they will be awarded the “Ranger Tab”.


Now that you know the ultimate difference between Ranger School and RASP is, make sure you choose the regiment that suits your needs the most.

The key takeaway is this:

  • If you’re someone just wants to start to serve in the Army Ranger, you don’t need to go to a Ranger School. Don’t misunderstand me, if you’re an Army Ranger, you’re expected to enter the Ranger School, sooner or later. But then again, it’s much better to go step-by-step and enter the RASP first so you don’t get shocked by the “brutality” of the Ranger School. Therefore, it’s better to go with the RASP.
  • But if you’re a veteran who’s looking for a challenge and pure improvement in terms of combat skills, mental toughness, and leadership skills, applying to a Ranger School will be perfect for you. Because the Ranger Tab is one of the most honorable achievement a Soldier can have. And also, Ranger School is widely acknowledged as one of the toughest military training a US soldier can undergo. That’s why it will absolutely give you a boost in terms of your combat & military skills.


Good luck, fellow Army Rangers candidate!

Always remember…

“Rangers Lead the Way.”