Glossary of Defense Acquisition Acronyms and Terms

Glossary of Defense Acquisition Acronyms and Terms

Not nearly all that you will need for the acronyms and terms even for defense work in the United States, but certainly a good starter set.

From the webpage:

Department of Defense, Defense Acquisition University (DAU), Foundational Learning Directorate, Center for Acquisition and Program Management, Fort Belvoir, Virginia

The DAU Glossary reflects most acronyms, abbreviations, and terms commonly used in the systems acquisition process within the Department of Defense (DoD) and defense industries. It focuses on terms with generic DoD application but also includes some Service-unique terms. It has been extensively revised to reflect current acquisition initiatives and policies. While the glossary identifies and highlights many terms, it is not all-inclusive, particularly regarding the military Services, defense agencies and other organizationally unique terms. The Glossary contains a listing of commmon abbreviations, acronyms and definitions of terms used throughout the DoD acquisition community, including terms that have commonality beteween U.S. and Allied acquisition programs. The Glossary is for use by students of DAU, and other working on defense acquisition matters, including congressional staffs, Pentagon and other headquarters (HQ) staffs, program managers and requirements managers of the DoD, and defense contractors.


The Glossary of Defense Acquisition Acronyms and Terms provides an extensive list of acronyms, abbreviations and terms commonly used in the systems acquisition process within the DoD and defense industries. Many of the terms in the Glossary may be defined in other documents in a different fashion. For example, the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) contains upwards of 600 definitions of words and terms. Definitions that are applicable to all parts of the FAR are contained in FAR Part 2, Definitions of Words and Terms, whcih contains close to 250 definitions.

Other words and terms may be defined for a particular part, subpart or section. Some terms, such as “United States”, have multiple definitions. “United States” is defined 11 different ways in the FAR, due to how it is defined in various pieces of legislation. Some of those definitions differ from the ones contained in the Glossary.

The reader may want to use definitions that are provided in the Glossary in solicitations and resulting contracts to help clarify the government’s requirement. In doing so, keep in mind the FAR requires that all solicitations and contracts excceeding the simplified acquisition threshold incorporate the definitions in FAR 2.101 Definitions.

See FAR 52.202-1, Definitions, for appropriate clause.

Take heed of the topic map like warning that other definitions of these terms exist!

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