Canadian Military Hierarchy

The military establishments in Canada are divided into three parts which are the army, the air force and the navy. Each of these parts is further divided into several positions and parts which are on the basis of the experience, decision making power and skills.

Ranks within the Canadian armed forces signify the positions with their hierarchical structure.  This structure helps in the proper supervision of the forces and makes way for strict order. If you wish to understand the Canadian military hierarchy, you can go through the following given information.

Canadian military hierarchy

Commander in Chief

The highest position in the Canadian military hierarchy is that of the commander in chief. The Queen of Canada who is represented by Governor General is the Commander in chief of the Canadian armed forces.

General/Flag officers

On the next spot in the Canadian military hierarchy is the post of the general or flag officers.  There may be different terms used for the general/flag officers in the three different branches of the armed forces and they are given as follows:

Navy

The topmost position in this branch within this level is that of the admiral followed by the vice admiral, which is followed by rear admiral and then the Commodore.

  • Admiral
  • Vice admiral
  • Rear admiral
  • Commodore

Army

In the Army, the topmost flag position is that of the General followed by the Lieutenant-general, followed by major general and then the brigadier general.

  • General
  • Lieutenant general
  • Major general
  • Brigadier general.

Air force

Within the Airforce, the top position in this level is that of the General, followed by Lieutenant general, followed by major general and then the Brigadier general.

  • General
  • Lieutenant general
  • Major general
  • Brigadier general.

Senior officers

At the next level in the Canadian military hierarchy are the senior officers.  Their ranks and positions have been given as follows, divided into three branches:

Navy

  • Captain
  • Commander
  • Lieutenant commander
  • Lieutenant
  • Sub lieutenant
  • Acting sub lieutenant
  • Naval cadet

Army

  • Colonel
  • Lieutenant colonel
  • Major
  • Captain
  • Lieutenant
  • Second lieutenant
  • Officer cadet

Air force

  • Colonel
  • Lieutenant colonel
  • Major
  • Captain
  • Lieutenant
  • Second lieutenant
  • Officer cadet

Junior officers

The next position is that of the junior officers who are also known as the non commissioned members of the armed forces. There are many positions within this level as well and they have been listed as followed divided into three major branch.

Navy:

  • Canadian forces chief warrant officer
  • Chief petty officer of the navy
  • Formation chief petty officer
  • Chief petty officer 1st class
  • Chief petty officer 2nd class
  • Petty officer 1st class
  • Petty officer 2nd class
  • Master seaman
  • Leading seaman
  • Able seaman
  • Ordinary seaman

Army and air force

  • Chief warrant officer
  • Master warrant officer
  • Warrant officer
  • Sergeant
  • Master corporal
  • Corporal
  • Private trained /aviator trained
  • Private basic/aviator basic