I have "mild" red/green color blindness; How does this limit my options for ROTC?

Can I do ROTC with red-green color blindness?

  • Always Yes

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Always No

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Navy Yes

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Marine Corps Yes

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Marine Corps No

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Army No

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Air Force Yes

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Air Force No

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    2

wperry722

Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2020
Messages
14
I am interested in doing ROTC, but I am concerned about my "mild" red-green color blindness. My diagnosis of "mild" red-green color blindess came from an online test, not an official examination. My first choice would be Navy, but I am willing to do ROTC for any branch of the military.

I have been doing a lot of research into the color vision requirements for each respective branch, but I am finding many contradictions between peoples' comments on posts in forums like this, and I am hoping to find some definitive answers.

What I think is true from my research:
1. Navy ROTC will not admit students with any kind of color blindness. However, if someone skips ROTC, they can join the Navy on Restricted Line Duty with color vision problems.
2. The Marine Corps, as a part of Navy ROTC, has no color vision requirements.
3. The Army ROTC has red-green color vision requirements for some jobs, but for the most part, it is not a concern.
4. I have been able to find almost nothing about the Air Force ROTC. However, it seems clear that any kind of pilot needs perfect vision.

Questions I have:
1. Is the information above accurate?
2. At what point in the ROTC application do I test my color vision?
3. Do I test my color vision at MEPS for ROTC? Can my eye doctor run the test for my ROTC Scholarship Application?
4. Which service has the most opportunities for people with color vision problems?
5. What is a "passing" score on color vision tests?
6. Is there anything else I should know?

THANK YOU!!!
 
Last edited:

MullenLE

DEPUTY CHIEF, DODMERB
10-Year Member
Joined
May 31, 2008
Messages
4,241
FACTS:

1. "Mild" is not a discriminator. Actual test results are.
2. Sea Services = NROTC, USNA, USCGA, USMMA have a color vision requirement that is rarely waived. USNA allows a very small percentage for the entire Brigade to be color deficient.
3. NROTC, USMC Option, has NO color vision requirement.
4. USAFA and AFROTC have NO color vision requirement for admission and scholarship activation respectively. (Pilots and other specialties do have color vision requirements)
5. West Point and AROTC have the requirement to see Vivid Red/Green.:shake::unhappy:
 

Capt MJ

Ancient Mariner
10-Year Member
Joined
Sep 27, 2008
Messages
9,118
I have got to bookmark the above post. Sticky worthy!
 

wgh117

New Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2018
Messages
9
I am a 4 year scholarship winner and a contracted MS2. I also have "mild" red-green colorblindness.

1. The above information about Army ROTC is accurate.
2. Your color vision will be tested during the DODMERB portion of the process. Part of the process includes going to an optometrist where your vision and color vision will be tested.
3. You can't go to MEPs for the color vision test. I tried to use my MEPs physical because I had passed the test there and they wouldn't allow it. You also can't use your personal doctor, they'll send you to a DODMERB/DODMETs verified doctor in your area to get the test.
4. I can't speak for the other branches but for Army the only officer branches I can't commission into are Aviation and EOD. As far as I know, I'm still eligible for schools (Airborne, Air Assualt, etc).
5. If you can't pass the test with the numbers made of different colored dots, which is the first one they give, then you'll have to get a waiver. In order to be granted the waiver for Army, you'll have to pass the Vivid Red/Green test. It's easy, they just show you white, green, and red dots and ask you to identify them. As long as you can see the colors red and green then you'll be fine.
 

Army245bday

Member
Joined
Jun 14, 2020
Messages
28
I am a 4 year scholarship winner and a contracted MS2. I also have "mild" red-green colorblindness.

1. The above information about Army ROTC is accurate.
2. Your color vision will be tested during the DODMERB portion of the process. Part of the process includes going to an optometrist where your vision and color vision will be tested.
3. You can't go to MEPs for the color vision test. I tried to use my MEPs physical because I had passed the test there and they wouldn't allow it. You also can't use your personal doctor, they'll send you to a DODMERB/DODMETs verified doctor in your area to get the test.
4. I can't speak for the other branches but for Army the only officer branches I can't commission into are Aviation and EOD. As far as I know, I'm still eligible for schools (Airborne, Air Assualt, etc).
5. If you can't pass the test with the numbers made of different colored dots, which is the first one they give, then you'll have to get a waiver. In order to be granted the waiver for Army, you'll have to pass the Vivid Red/Green test. It's easy, they just show you white, green, and red dots and ask you to identify them. As long as you can see the colors red and green then you'll be fine.

The test the Army uses is the Pseudoisochromatic Plates (PIP) test. You are correct. If you fail that, then you will be given a chance to pass the vivid red/green test.

You can’t be color deficient to go to airborne school (need to see the red/green light in the aircraft). You need to pass the PIP. If you don’t, then need to pass the vivid red/green test.
 

MullenLE

DEPUTY CHIEF, DODMERB
10-Year Member
Joined
May 31, 2008
Messages
4,241
Army245bday is 100% correct!!!!

For DoDMERB, for all SA's and ROTC programs, we use the PIP test. Other than Army, the PIP test results stand as is and the Service "may" waive a failure. That rarely, if at all, ever occurs. The USNA has an exceptionally small percentage of folks (selected specifically by Admissions and the Superintendent) that will be allowed to enter the USNA and will be restricted to Limited Duty Officer assignments upon graduation.:wiggle:
 
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