Military Education Benefits and Financial Aid
Many military students have questions about the educational benefits they may have earned through their service and if they can use these benefits at Kaplan University.
On this page you will find information about the primary military educational benefits and financial aid options available to servicemembers (including guard and reserve units), veterans, and military spouses. If you have questions, our military advisors can assist you with the following:
- Obtaining information on the Montgomery GI Bill and the Post-9/11 GI Bill
- Understanding how military tuition assistance programs work
- Reviewing tuition costs and how these compare to military education benefits
- Determining how to apply for military benefits
- Exploring other financial aid options if you are not eligible for or are not using military benefits
- Military Tuition Assistance
Military Tuition Assistance may pay up to $166 per quarter credit hour to a maximum of $4,500 per year. For example, Kaplan University’s undergraduate tuition rate for servicemembers, including members of the Guard or Reserve, is $165 per credit hour. If a servicemember was approved for the $4,500 maximum, the tuition assistance would cover 27.27 credits per year ($165 x 27 = $4,500). Please note you must be approved for tuition assistance before enrolling and must apply for additional courses each term. Your Educational Service Officer will inform you regarding your eligibility.
Steps to apply for federal military tuition assistance:
- Speak with a Kaplan University Military Admissions Advisor or review the branch-specific tuition assistance eligibility requirements and benefits
- Apply for conditional acceptance to the University
- Apply for tuition assistance and speak to your Educational Service Officer or complete the online application
- If approved, begin classes; should your Educational Services Officer not approve your tuition assistance request and you are not approved by your start date, you will be liable for any tuition and fees due. We highly recommend you verify your tuition assistance before beginning courses.
If you exhaust your tuition assistance, you may be eligible to use a portion of your GI Bill to cover the difference for the term in which the benefits are exhausted. This is called “Top Up.” We recommend you speak with your Financial Aid Advisor or the VA as this will reduce your remaining VA/GI Bill benefits.
- Post-9/11 GI Bill
You may be eligible if you served at least 90 aggregate days on active duty after September 10, 2001, and you are still on active duty or were honorably discharged from active duty, or released from active duty and placed on the retired list or temporary disability retired list, released from active duty and transferred to the Fleet Reserve or Fleet Marine Corps Reserve, or released from active duty for further service in a reserve component of the armed forces.
You may also be eligible if you were honorably discharged from active duty for a service-connected disability and you served 30 continuous days after September 10, 2001.
The amount of benefit you can receive is based on your level of service as shown below.
Aggregated Period of Active Duty Served After September 11, 2001 Percentage of Maximum Benefit Payable At least 36 months 100 At least 30 continuous days and discharged due to service-connected disability 100 At least 30 months < 36 months 90 At least 24 months < 30 months 80 At least 18 months < 24 months 70 At least 12 months < 18 months 60 At least 6 months < 12 months 50 At least 90 days < 6 months 40
Members have 15 years to use their Post-9/11 GI Bill benefit from the time they leave service. The benefits are paid for 36 months. However, this term may be adjusted depending on your rate of pursuit. For example, students attending less than full time will receive benefits over a longer period of time.
Tuition and Fees
At the 100% benefit level, the Post-9/11 GI Bill covers all tuition and fees at any in-state public institution. If a student wishes to attend a private or foreign institution, the Post-9/11 GI Bill will provide up to $21,084.89 in tuition and fees for the VA 2015–2016 Academic Year from August 1, 2015 to July 31, 2016. Kaplan University's tuition and fees for all undergraduate programs falls within this limit as do the majority of our master's degree programs. For veterans who have less than the 100% entitlement, the Post-9/11 GI Bill will pay the percent of tuition and fees outlined above. Tuition and fees are paid directly to the institution of higher learning.
Monthly Housing Allowance
The Post-9/11 GI Bill also provides a maximum housing allowance for students attending school with over a half-time course load. The benefit is based on the Basic Housing Allowance for an E-5 with dependents based on the location of the school. For students attending online programs, the benefit is equal to 50% of the National Base Housing Allowance for an E-5 with dependents or $783 per month.
The housing allowance may be adjusted by the percent of benefit you are entitled to and your course load. For example, the housing allowance for a student attending Kaplan University at the 90% entitlement level and taking two courses totaling 10 credits would be calculated as follows:
- Maximum online housing allowance of $783 x 90% benefit level = $704.70 per month.
- 10 credits equals 83.3% of a full twelve credit course load; 83.3% will be rounded down by the VA to 80%. 80% x $704.70 = $563.76 per month
Books and Supplies Stipend
Students may receive up to $1,000 per year based on their level of entitlement and course load.
The Yellow Ribbon Program
The Yellow Ribbon program covers tuition and fees above the $21,084.89 limit through a VA match of a school's reduction of tuition and/or fees that are above the cap. This program is only available for those at the 100% benefit level. Kaplan University participates in the Yellow Ribbon program and we have no cap on the number of students or the amount of tuition covered by the program.
Transfer of Benefits
The Post-9/11 GI Bill may allow the transfer of all or a portion of educational benefits to a spouse or dependent. This is available to members with at least 6 years of service and a commitment of an additional 4 years of service, or members with 20 years of service.
For additional information please visit www.gibill.va.gov. You should also contact the VA to determine your eligibility and benefit level.
- Montgomery GI Bill
The Montgomery GI Bill Chapter 30 (Active-Duty Benefits) provides up to $1,789 per month for 36 months for eligible members. In some cases, such as those who participated in the $600 buy up program, an additional $5,400 may be available in total benefits.
The amount received each month is determined by your rate of pursuit, or course load. For example, a veteran eligible for Montgomery GI Bill benefits taking six credits per term (half time) would receive 50% of the monthly GI Bill benefit ($894.50), but the veteran would receive the benefit for 72 months rather than 36 months.
For servicemembers who served 3 years or more or 2 years plus 4 in the Selected Reserve, the current benefits are shown in the table below. For those who served less than 3 years, the full-time monthly rate is $1,454.
Training Time Monthly Rate Full Time $1,789.00 3/4 Time $1,341.75 1/2 Time $894.50 Less than 1/2 time, more than 1/4 time $894.50 1/4 time or less $447.25
Those who served after September 11, 2001, currently using Montgomery GI Bill benefits may elect to transfer their remaining months of eligibility to the Post-9/11 GI Bill. The Montgomery GI Bill must be used within 10 years after separation.
Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR/Chapter 1606)
The Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve program may be available to you if you are a member of the Selected Reserve. The Selected Reserve includes the Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Air Force Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, Coast Guard Reserve, Army National Guard, and Air National Guard.
You may use this education assistance program for degree and certificate programs. Eligibility for this program is determined by the Selected Reserve components. VA makes the payments for this program. You may be entitled to receive up to 36 months of education benefits.
Your eligibility for the program normally ends on the day you leave the Selected Reserve. One exception to this rule exists if you are mobilized (or recalled to active duty from your reserve status). In this case, your eligibility may be extended for the amount of time you are mobilized plus 4 months. For example, if you are mobilized for 12 months your eligibility period is extended for 16 months (12 months active duty plus 4 months). So, even if you leave the reserves after mobilization, you may have additional eligibility under the Montgomery GI Bill Selected Reserve.
If your unit was deactivated during the period beginning on October 1, 2007, through September 30, 2014, or you are involuntarily separated (for reasons other than misconduct) you will retain your original period of eligibility, which is 14 years from the date of your first 6-year obligation with the Selected Reserves.Click here for more information from the VA website.
- Scholarships (Spouses and Children)
Kaplan University offers various scholarships in support of the military community.
- The ThanksUSA Scholarship
Kaplan University is proud to offer a full undergraduate scholarship through ThanksUSA for eligible military spouses. In addition, Educational Support Scholarships, which reduce tuition by a maximum of 50%, are also available to eligible military spouses. The scholarships are offered through ThanksUSA.
ThanksUSA Scholarship Website
- The American Freedom Foundation/Kaplan University Full Scholarship
This is a full undergraduate scholarship for a military spouse. Eligible military spouses may also receive partial scholarships that can cover over 50% of the tuition costs for a Kaplan University undergraduate degree.
Visit American Freedom Foundation for additional information or to apply.
- The Scholarship and Financial Aid Explorer website
This site was established to assist military members in locating scholarships and financial support for education. The site is open to all veterans and members regardless of branch.
Scholarship and Financial Aid Explorer Website
Policy Regarding Combining Kaplan University Scholarships and Special Military Tuition Rates: Kaplan University offers several scholarships that provide reduced tuition rates. Military and veteran students are eligible to apply; however, Kaplan University scholarships cannot be combined with special military tuition offers for servicemembers, their spouses, and veterans. The student would be awarded the greater value between the scholarship and the special military tuition rates.
- The ThanksUSA Scholarship
- MyCAA (Military Spouse)
Kaplan University’s online degree programs allow you to continue your education, no matter where in the world your family is stationed.*
In 2010, the Department of Defense announced the return of the Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA) program. The MyCAA program is open to all eligible spouses under the new program guidelines. All spouses are subject to the new eligibility criteria and revised funding limits below:
- Spouses of an Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine servicemember, or active reserve member in the pay grades of E-1 to E-5, W-1 and W-2, or O1 and O-2 are eligible.
- National Guard and/or AGR sponsors must be on federal Title 10 active duty orders as reported in DEERS.
- Spouses of Guard/Reserve members in an Alert, Transition Assistance, or Post-deployment status are not eligible.
- MyCAA accounts are limited to the new $4,000 maximum benefit with a $2,000 fiscal year cap. Waivers will be available for spouses pursuing licensure or certification up to the total maximum assistance of $4,000.
- Spouses must finish their program of study within 3 years from the start date of the first course.
- Funding is limited to only associate's degrees, certifications, and licensure programs.
Military One Source—Resource provided by the Department of Defense to provide information about education, relocation, parenting, stress, and other issues military families face.
- Federal Financial Aid
Federal student aid for military students not eligible for military tuition assistance or GI Bill benefits may be available to those who qualify. Kaplan University can help determine if you are eligible for federal financial aid, including grants and loan programs.Paying for School
Request More InformationTo receive the Kaplan University Program Guide, including areas of study and associated career paths, please complete this information form.
*Per-credit tuition reductions are based on the standard undergraduate tuition rate of $371.00 multiplied by the number of credits required to complete the degree.
†Military spouses enrolled in Kaplan University Tuition Cap programs are not eligible for this reduction.
‡Some Kaplan University programs are not 100% online; some programs require you to gain hands-on experience in a real-world work environment