Is it fair to say that the second officer is usually the Chief Engineer? Dax was a Science Officer, Tuvok was Tactical Officer, and Data was Chief of Operations. The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk).

Classifying second officers Edit

During the time of Enterprise and the Original Series, the third highest ranking officer aboard ship took command whenever both captain and first officer were off the ship regardless of whether or not that person was a bridge officer. Later on, as indicated in a TNG episode and a Voyager episode, an ensign who was a regular bridge officer could take command over a non-bridge officer of higher rank. The preceding unsigned comment was added by Enterprise1981 (talk • contribs).

Data, 3rd in command?Edit

How is it that Data is 3rd in command of the Enterprise D when he is outranked by four of the ship's senior officers (Capt. Picard, Cmdr. Riker, Dr. Crusher, and by the end of the series, Counselor Troi)? The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk).

Because that is how the command structure worked out. --Alan 01:02, 28 February 2008 (UTC)
Because Dr. Crusher and Deanna are outside of the direct chain of command. -- Michael Warren | Talk 01:05, 28 February 2008 (UTC)
I figure that it's due to his service, and him being a direct bridge officer. It wasn't until two or three seasons in before Crusher was even 'authorized' to work on the bridge, she mentioned needing her bridge officer's exam, which Troi later took. So technically, despite those two holding a higher rank. Data outranked them in the chain of command. --Terran Officer 01:09, 28 February 2008 (UTC)
Crusher and Troi are also both staff officers. --- Jaz 01:09, 4 March 2008 (UTC)
It is a matter of position, Data is a bridge officer, it is the same reason why Data has Worf as his second-in-command when Picard and Riker were kidnapped, even though Geordi outranks Worf. There is a command line and there are staff officers in charge of departments, because your chief enginner or medical officer isn't necessarilly your best command choice. The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk).
This brings up the question, why was Scotty the Second Officer of the original Enterprise then?Ctetc2007 04:50, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
It was a hundered years appart, things could have worked differently, after all tucker was second officer in Enterprise.--General MGD 109 23:26, August 21, 2011 (UTC) Insert formula here

Procedure Edit

This is speculative, but why would it be standard procedure for the second officer to accompany away teams? Especially since the first officer usually commanded them, shouldn't the second officer stay aboard the ship to back up the captain, instead of a lower ranking officer taking over?The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk).

It's standard procedure because Starfleet says it is. --31dot 22:29, 23 August 2009 (UTC)


I've added Worf as second officer of the Defiant. I know he seemed to be first officer in Seasons 4 and 5 but in Tears of the Prophets Kira takes command ahead of him. I'm taking that to mean she was now first officer and he'd been dropped back to second officer, possibly because Bajor was a participant in the Dominion War and so their officers had equal authority to Starfleet officers. – Skteosk 12:39, January 16, 2010 (UTC)


In "Conundrum", Riker is "demoted" to second officer due to the tampering by "Kieran MacDuff".... I don't know how - if at all - to go about mentioning that in this article. His position as S.O. is stated in the (altered) computer records as such, not just implied by the insertion of MacDuff. What is interesting is that the article indicates a second officer is "a department head aboard the ship first, and a second officer second", however it's unclear what department Riker was supposed to be head of at that point. 19:08, November 13, 2010 (UTC)

I added Riker to the article. Since he wasn't really demoted, I just put it as a note in the body of the article.
As for the article's statement about department heads, that seems to be merely observational based on what we've seen from a handful of starships/space stations. I thus changed it to "it was common", but maybe that whole bit should be rewritten. In any case, since MacDuff wiped everyone's memories, I doubt he was concerned about giving Riker a department; everyone accepted what the computer said they did.– Cleanse ( talk | contribs ) 02:39, November 14, 2010 (UTC)

Chekov/Sulu as 2nd officer?/Saavik Edit

Didn't Sulu have command of Excelsior by Star Trek VI? And how can Chekov and Sulu BOTH be listed as the second officer on the Enterprise-A? I know I know: Because the writers wanted it that way! Maybe so, but perhaps the writers could have written things with more sensitivity to the world they were writing about. Sorry for the editorializing; but only one of them could be the 2nd officer, and I think that'd be neither. Scotty was Captain of Engineering and had far more experience; also he was in command of the ship after Kirk and Spock during TOS. Also in Star Trek II, which I saw last night, Saavik appears to take command whenever Kirk and Spock leave the bridge; wasn't she 2nd officer in Star Trek II? And doesn't that raise some questions of why? She was a cadet at the Academy in the beginning of the film; maybe an officer cadet, but definitely junior to Sulu and Uhura, both of whom were lt. cmdrs. by then. Why would a fresh-out-of-the-Academy, wet-behind-the-ears officer take command in a crisis situation when there were at least three more experienced senior officers on board? Despite that they were on a training cruise with a ship full of cadets; a crisis is not the time for cadets to take over, unless you're Ronald Moore. 02:59, January 15, 2011 (UTC)

I was the one that added Sulu, my thinking was he was second officer in Star Trek V (and that little bit at the end of Star Trek IV, I guess) and Chekov was second officer in Star Trek VI. There's a case to be made that Scotty was still second officer, the on-screen evidence is less than definite but general thinking is he was "just" chief engineer by that point and wasn't interested in command (as he sort-of intimates in Relics). Perhaps the clearest evidence is in Star Trek V when Chekov seems to be in command in the absence of Kirk, Spock and Sulu, even when Scotty's on the bridge. As for Saavik in Star Trek II, the command structure in that film is in such a state of flux that trying to identify a second officer would be a bit pointless, even the captain changes during the course of the film. Saavik's a lieutenant so there's a fair chance she wasn't a "fresh out of the Academy cadet" but an experienced if somewhat junior officer who was at the Academy for command training, perhaps similar to Ro in Season 7 of TNG. Given that part of the point of the cruise was to give her command experience, I imagine Kirk left her in charge to fulfill that duty, I don't think there was ever any immediate crisis when she was in command. Skteosk 09:54, April 8, 2011 (UTC)
Might Saavik be the First Officer of the USS Enterpise when it was being used as a training ship, then? Kirk was a Flag Officer, Spock was the CO, so either Scotty is promoted from 2ndOff to 1stOff (unlikely, given his role as Chief Engineer), or Saavik was the XO, at least in a training capacity? --Ima Wiz Iway amway Imagineway Izardway. 18:13, June 28, 2013 (UTC)

Captain Edit

I'm wondering if the Captain can't name his own Second Officer. I know that on current Naval Ships (United States at least) the 2nd Officer is usually the Navigator or Chief Medical Officer. However, the Capt. can name whoever he really wants as 2nd officer as long as they meet the qualifications of being a bridge officer. So If Picard named Data 2nd officer, then there really wouldn't be any way around that. The preceding unsigned comment was added by Dilithium1701 (talk • contribs).


Spock does call himself second officer in "The Enemy Within". "Captain's Log, stardate 1673.1. Entry made by Second Officer Spock. Captain Kirk retains command of this vessel, but his force of will rapidly fading. Condition of landing party critical. Transporter unit still under repair." --LauraCC (talk) 21:40, June 3, 2016 (UTC)

Chekov and Sulu Edit

I've removed references to Chekov and Sulu being 2nd officers of the Enterprise and Enterprise-A. This was never established on screen. --Alan del Beccio (talk) 20:07, December 4, 2017 (UTC)