The Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT) is a graduate school and provider of professional and continuing education that is part of the United States Air Force. It is located on Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. A component of Air University and Air Education and Training Command, AFIT has been offering degrees since 1956 and was founded in 1919. Its primary purpose is to provide continuing specialized education to select officer and enlisted US military personnel and civilian employees at the graduate level. Previous names for AFIT include the Air School of Application and the Air Corps Engineering School.
The Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) serves a similar purpose. The United States Army currently does not have a similar institution, choosing instead to send its members to either NPS, AFIT or civilian institutions. NPS and AFIT should not be confused with Command and Staff colleges or War Colleges, which concentrate instead on staff functions, civil-military affairs, tactics and strategy.
Under a recent joint agreement between the Air Force and Navy, and codified by the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Commission, AFIT and the Naval Postgraduate School have realigned their academic programs to reduce duplication, and both schools will be under the oversight of a common oversight panel. As an example of the consolidation, Navy officers are sent to learn aeronautical engineering at AFIT, while the Air Force officers learn meteorology at the Naval Postgraduate School.