Best Online College For Military Veterans

Veterans and military personnel can attend online college with the help of military education benefits. Here, we outline what you need to know to get started.

Updated September 15, 2022

Reviewed by ACO Rankings Team
Best Online College For Military Veterans

AffordableCollegesOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Are you ready to find your fit?

Nearly half of all college students took at least one online class in 2019, according to the U.S. Department of Education. Online learning can especially benefit military personnel and service members. These learners can continue their education while on active duty.

Veterans face unique challenges entering the civilian job market. For example, veterans are 70% more likely to take a step back in seniority than civilians. They are also 36% less likely to advance in seniority. Online college for veterans can help them address these challenges by making them more competitive in the workforce.

This page provides information on the best colleges for military veterans. Read on for answers to common questions and to learn the benefits of online college for military personnel.

Is Online College the Right Choice for Military Personnel?

Can You Attend Online College While in the Military?

Yes. Online college for military personnel allows learners to earn a degree from anywhere with an internet connection. Active-duty service members can complete a degree while deployed.

What Is the Best Online College for Veterans?

Military-friendly colleges offer flexible, online programs with year-round admissions. The best colleges for military veterans also offer support for veteran-specific challenges. For example, these schools may provide dedicated veterans centers or peer mentoring.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers a GI Bill® comparison tool to help veterans compare benefits at different schools.

Does the VA Pay for Online School?

The VA offers GI Bill benefits that can help veterans pay for college, graduate school, and training programs, including online college for veterans. Benefits vary depending on veterans' state of residency and their school's location. Veterans who use their GI Bill benefits wisely can possibly earn a degree online for free.

What Schools Accept Military Tuition Assistance?

Military personnel can use military tuition assistance to help pay for college, graduate school, and vocational programs. They can also use it to pay for independent study and online programs. Tuition assistance can fund up to 100% of college tuition and fees for active-duty service members. VA education benefits, on the other hand, provide tuition assistance to veterans.

Why Veterans Should Consider Online Degrees

Online learning provides flexibility. Veterans can balance school with full-time jobs or other responsibilities. Attending classes in person may be challenging for injured veterans.

When researching online degrees, veterans should look for accredited programs. Accreditation evaluates a school's credibility by determining whether it meets certain quality standards. Veterans should also look for military-friendly colleges with support resources for veterans. See below for benefits of online college for veterans.

1. Highly Transportable

Attending online college allows veterans and military personnel to earn their degree from anywhere with internet access. This flexibility makes online college the best college for military members.

2. Transition to Civilian Life

The best colleges for military veterans offer resources to help enrollees transition to civilian life. These resources may include special military transition teams and mental health resources. Some colleges also offer clubs or organizations for veteran students.

3. More Secure Employment

Getting an online degree can lead to more job opportunities for military veterans. Graduates gain the skills needed for jobs in a variety of fields.

4. Improve Professional Options

Earning an online degree can also help military personnel advance in their careers. Degree-holders may qualify for promotions and pay increases.

5. Improve Education Options

Military personnel who earn an online undergraduate degree may continue on to graduate school. A graduate degree can further improve veterans' professional options.

Do Online Schools Have Requirements for Veterans?

Veterans must meet the same application requirements as all other applicants. These may include high school credential requirements and testing requirements. Some schools waive the application fee for veterans.

The GI Bill can help veterans pay for online courses. The GI Bill also provides veteran students taking online classes exclusively with a housing allowance. This allowance is based on 50% of the national average.

Montgomery GI Bill

The Montgomery GI Bill provides education benefits that can help learners pay for online college for military personnel. The bill includes two programs: Chapter 30 and Chapter 1606.

The Montgomery GI Bill Active Duty program, also known as Chapter 30, provides military personnel with up to 36 months of education and training benefits. After their release from active duty, veterans can receive these benefits for 10 years.

The Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve program, also known as Chapter 1606, provides up to 36 months of education benefits to current members of the Selected Reserve, such as the Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Army National Guard, and Air National Guard.

Post-9/11 GI Bill

The Post-9/11 GI Bill offers education benefits to military personnel who served on active duty after September 10, 2001. This bill also offers benefits to children of military personnel who died in the line of duty after that date. Benefits include tuition and fee payments and a monthly housing allowance.

The Yellow Ribbon Program provides additional support to help students cover tuition at out-of-state or private schools. The Post-9/11 GI Bill may not cover these costs. However, the Post-9/11 GI Bill may cover all in-state tuition and fees at public degree-granting schools for up to 36 months.

Additional Resources for Veterans and Military Personnel

This resource helps connect active-duty service members, veterans, and military spouses with high-earning jobs. This resource helps students understand their GI Bill benefits. Students can compare how they can apply their benefits at different schools and employers. This organization offers scholarships, grants, and fellowships for veterans. The group also offers advocacy and mental health resources.

Scholarships for Veterans and Military Personnel

Veterans and military personnel can explore a variety of scholarships to pay for school. Some scholarships can also help veterans pay for their children's college education. See below for some scholarships for military students.

AFCEA War Veterans Scholarships

Amount: $2,500

Amount: Active-duty service members and military veterans who served in one of the Overseas Contingency Operations may apply. Applicants need sophomore or junior status in an undergraduate STEM program. They also need a minimum 3.0 GPA.

AMVETS Scholarships

Amount: $4,000

Amount: American Veterans offers several online scholarships for military personnel and veterans. Applicants must demonstrate financial need and submit proof of enrollment or acceptance to an approved program.

Army Women's Foundation Legacy Scholarships

Amount: $1,000-$3,000

Amount: Retired and active-duty women soldiers in the U.S. Army, U.S. Army Reserve, and Army National Guard may apply. Direct descendants can also apply. The program allots funds for degrees and certificate programs. Applicants must show academic promise and demonstrate financial need.

Related articles that may interest you

AffordableCollegesOnline.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Do this for you

Explore your possibilities- find schools with programs you’re interested in and clear a path for your future.