Sith Acolytes, also called Sith Initiates or, if they are youthful, Sith Hopefuls, are the raw recruits that enter into the Sith Order for training in the ways of the Dark Side. While most possess no practical applicant knowledge of the Force, they are often regarded as mere Dark Jedi, and require the training of a Sith Crusader, or if they show unique promise, a Sith Lord, to teach them the aspects of the Dark Side of the Force and truly become a member of the Sith Order.
Unlike the Jedi Order, the rank of Sith Acolyte does not change whether the Acolyte has an appointed master or not. This is in line with the Sith hording power for themselves, with only the exceptional able to gain prominence. Despite the namesake, Sith Acolytes are not considered to be Sith, per other Sith viewing them as lowly Dark Jedi. Thus, a Sith Acolyte must complete their training fully to attain the next rank and become a "true" Sith. This period before becoming a true Sith is marked by much hazing and often death.