Filling the DA form 638 is not as difficult as it seems. However, due diligence must be taken to ensure the correct information is captured on the form. The following instructions below are instructions required to fill the DA form 638 perfectly.
1. In block 1, feel the information of the office above the person that recommended the award in the chain of command. This means that the office information to be filled will be that with the approval authority.
2. In block two, the recommender of the award office information should be entered.
3. The date the form was filled, the full names, ranks, social security number and organization of the soldier who is recommended for the award should be filled on block 3 to block 7. It is actually self explanatory.
4. In block 8, you are expected to fill the individuals previous achievement awards if any. However, note that service medals such as the Army service ribbon (ASR) South west Asia service Medal (SWASM) and other service medals should not be listed on the form.
5. Block 9 should be left blank for soldiers in the US Army. However, for other members of the US Armed forces, you are expected to enter the service and enter the country for foreign military personnel.
6. In block 10, the recommended award should be entered and should include the number of the award.
7. Block 11 to 19 is self explanatory and also includes the period of award, reason for award, the recommender’s full names, rank, position, relationship to the awardee and the signature of the recommender.
8. Block 20 is part III which is the justification and citation data. It is expected that you use the provided space in the block to fill in the soldiers meritorious service or achievement using bullet points as specified on the form. Note that there are spaces to contain up to four achievements, ensure you list them all if available.
9. Marking the end of part III is the space for the proposed citation. Note that the citations are different for different level of service. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the appropriate citation is written to avoid cancellation.
10. Part IV is the part for recommendation, approval and disapproval. This part is expected to be filled by the immediate authority. In block 22, it is expected that the staff section admin clerk signs and date to verify that the individual on the form is actually eligible for the recommended award.
11. Block 23 to 25 is for the intermediate commanders. Here the commanders full names, position, rank, signature and comments is expected to be filled on the spaces provided.
12. Block 26 is the Approval Authority column. The full names, position, rank and comments of the approval authority are expected to be filled on the spaces provided. Note that the approval authority is also expected to fill any of the check boxes, indicating approved, disapproved, recommend upgrade to or downgrade to.
13. Part V is the orders data which include the orders issuing headquarters, name of the approval authority, title, position, signature and other information.
14. The last page of the form is the addendum of the intermediate authority. The detail information of the intermediate authority is expected to be filled which include the full names, title, rank, signature and comments.
1. Filling the DA Form 638 is easy. However, you must do your homework first before trying to fill the form.
2. Make sure that the soldier is eligible for the award else the whole thing becomes exercise in futility.
3. It is important to check to ensure that the soldier involved is not flagged and ensure he or she has not received an award for the same thing you are submitting for them.