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- Main Article: Ninja Ranks
Chūnin (中忍, Literally meaning: Middle Ninja) are ninja who are qualified to guide other ninja and lead missions. Chūnin have reached a level of maturity and ability that primarily consists of leadership skills and tactical prowess. Genin who do not have the skills to become chūnin are weeded out in the Chūnin Exams. Some of them, like Iruka Umino, move on to function as Academy teachers and others, like Shikamaru Nara, serve as team leaders in charge of small teams who need to make decisions and utilise the skills of the shinobi under their command to the maximum effect. Chūnin are typically sent on C-rank or B-rank missions.