October FSOT

Registration opens

August 12, 2024 (registration)

Registration is open. You have until October 5, 2023, to register. You must submit both your application and narratives.

Testing window

Sep 28 – Oct 5, 2024


Top Resources

FSO Compass

Compass is the predominant online resource to help guide and prepare you to become a diplomat. With courses, practice tests, an online community, and the famous personal narrative challenge. Compass is the membership site for folks who don’t want to go through this process alone.

Department of State

If you’re thinking of becoming an FSO, then you’ll want to make sure to visit the Department of State’s website on the Service. In addition to a grounding of the career, State also provides a great service through the Diplomats in Residence – FSOs in the US available to answer your questions.


Honestly, this tool has improved my writing tenfold. Grammarly is a grammar checker and proofreading tool that goes beyond its technical purpose – it does not only help check spelling, punctuation, grammar, and sentence structure, it also offers real-time assistance to improve a content’s clarity, cohesiveness, fluency, as well as your vocabulary.

Grammarly is great for writing your narratives and practicing for your FSOT essay.

Foreign Service life and career (books)

If you’re looking for grounding on the career and lifestyle, then consider reading one or both of these suggested books: 

  1. Career Diplomacy
  2. Inside a U.S. Embassy

If these don’t float your boat, then consider one of the other suggested books on the DoS reading list.

A simple step-by-step quickstart guide.

  • Framing. Six email lessons walk you through an introduction to the Foreign Service and initial application.
  • Tools and strategies to take action. The course includes recommended tools and strategies to help your preparation. 
  • Jumpstart your career in the FS. You can use this course to build your foundation to joining the Foreign Service. 
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