One of the best programs to assist active duty Servicemembers in attending college while on active duty is the Tuition Assistance program. It provides active duty tuition funding at the rate of 100 percent for courses that are taken during off duty hours. It has a limit of about $250 dollars per credit hour, and a yearly limit of about $4,500 dollars per year, but it is difficult to reach either of those limits anyway if you are serving full time in the military. All courses that are taken at any of the five United States Armed services Tuition Assistance have to be at accredited schools or colleges, but other than that, it is a funding method that is very excellent for the average enlisted Servicemember.
Many people believe that the Tuition Assistance program in the Armed Services only pays for classes that are taken in person, but this is a large misconception. There are limits, but many distance learning programs and independent study programs, even courses taken by correspondence are eligible for the TA program, within certain limits. The limits tend to be
-You have to be on active duty for more than a 120 day period on active service.
-You have to serve on active duty for the entire length of the course.
-It has to be a program recognized by the college office of your individual branch of the Armed Forces.
-If you are a commissioned Officer in the Armed Forces, you have to agree to stay on active duty for at least two years after the end of the course.
Tuition assistance pays for tuition, and that is basically all it pays for. It will pay for some other things in certain situations, but it is mainly to pay 100 percent of eligible tuition costs as defined by the limits of the program.
In the last couple of years the program has been expanded, previously it would not pay for programs longer than 24 weeks, but that has since changed, it will now pay for programs of a longer length as long as they otherwise qualify for the program. Each of the services is slightly different but each of the five services, Navy, Army, Coast Guard, Air Force and Marine Corps feature a variation of the Tuition Assistance program.