Active Military Take Advantage of the GI Bill

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If you’re an active duty service member serving aboard a navy ship, a Coast Guard cutter or somewhere overseas with the ground forces, or even if you’re stationed in the US, chances are you don’t have a lot of free time. Going to college may even seem like it is just too far off in the future. Veterans are eligible for up to $49,000 with the new GI Bill, but really, when are you going to find time to put some of that money to use at your local university or community college?  

Studying online for a degree is not only a great choice for active duty military service members but in many cases it’s the only way to simultaneously study and fulfill a demanding job. In most cases you can take as many or as few classes at a time as you are ok with taking and never worry about making it to school on time.  The new GI Bill provides money for education to any service men and women who did 90 days of service on or after September 11, 2001.

You should remember that the housing allowance is not valid for 100% online courses. To qualify for the housing allowance under the GI Bill you would need to take at least some courses at a traditional bricks and mortar school

Online Coursework is Real College.

Online study courses are led by a professor, will usually require textbooks, homework, exams, and will include all of the things that you expect from a normal college class. The difference is that most of these study material are offered online in a format that you’re probably already familiar with: message boards, e-mail, and chat rooms. Weekly reading assignments are normally posted to a message board or somewhere similar, some classes will require a group online chat time or some other reason to log onto a certain place at a certain time, but for most truly flexible online classes, log-on is only required within a certain time – say within a certain week. That gives busy students a lot of flexibility. Typically, there are other similar deadlines on a weekly basis. Final exams and a written exam or essay usually close out the semester or study term. 

The new GI Bill will pay service members an amount equal to the tuition and other fees charged by many of the online schools up to the maximum charged by the most expensive public university in your state. Many online schools actually cater specifically to military students. Online study is designed for flexibility, but many schools also offer degree programs, specific courses and chances for camaraderie with other military students. The maximum amount is the equal to the in-state tuition at the most expensive public university in your state.  Since online schools tend to have lower overhead costs and fewer fees a Veteran could get the most out of their GI Bill benefits by attending an online school.

Written by James Tomon – Degree Jungle Staff Writer © Degree Jungle 2010

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