Defence Force Gap Year

What is a defence force gap year

The Defence Force has a Gap Year option, also known as “try before you buy”. There is no further obligation for service and those accepted into the program can give 21 days notice to leave, as they would in any other job. The gap year is paid and includes medical and dental cover.

Young people between the ages of 18 and 24 who have completed year 12 can apply to join. You will not need an ATAR to apply for the gap year.

How do you apply for a gap year

The Defence Force Gap Year recruitment site informs prospective applicants that A typical application process includes two separate visits to a Defence Force Recruiting Centre. At the first session, you will identify from the hundreds of ADF jobs available which ones you wish to apply for and are eligible for through an aptitude test and a discussion with a Defence Recruiter. You will also have a basic medical history review.

On the second visit, you will be required to have more comprehensive interviews with a doctor, psychologist and a senior member of the ADF (Defence Interviewer). If recommended to progress by the Defence Interviewer, Officer Entry candidates will also have to sit an Officer Selection Board, which is similar to a formal job interview.

What can you expect


Army gap year starts with basic training at Kapooka, then the rest of the year depends on what specialty you have chosen.


The Navy Gap Year is broken up into different stages, including basic training, a tour of shore establishments and a sea phase, to enable participants to experience life at sea, as well as employment ashore.

Air Force

The Air Force will rotate its gap year recruits through several RAF bases. RAF bases include Williamtown, Richmond, Amberley, Edinburgh, and Williams. The gap year participants will complete the Air Force Course at RAAF Williams, Point Cook, in Victoria. This course is equivalent to the Initial Officer Course and the Airman Recruit Course.

Get the Triservice Gap Year Brochure here:

Tri-services Gap Year Brochure

Defence recruitment site for gap year:

Tri-services recruitment Gap year
Tri-services recruitment Gap Year

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