Best Online Colleges for Military in 2022

These best online colleges for military in 2022 might be worth looking into if you’re trying to earn your degree with the support you need.

TCM Admin

29th June 2022

If you’re currently serving in the military, or even if you are a veteran, there’s no doubt that earning a degree can help you prepare for life outside the military. Education in a field that complements your skills and interests can help you successfully and smoothly transition into civilian life.

There are many benefits to earning a degree after or even during your time in the military. These benefits can include improved career opportunities and potentially higher salaries. If you choose a major that builds upon your passions and strengths, it can help you improve your chances of securing a great career in the future.

When you do start looking around for schools, it might be a good idea to consider an online military college. The list below has some of the best online universities for military in 2022.

Best Military Friendly Online Colleges [2022]

Norwich University

Institution Type: Private, Non-Profit

Accreditations: CIHE

Admission Rate: 74.2%

Annual Tuition Costs: Here

Graduation Rate: 61%


Norwich University was established in 1918 and was the very first private US military college. It offers a wide range of online degrees (bachelor’s and master’s) and certificates for those who aren’t looking to commit to a degree.

Norwich’s flexible online learning platform is top-notch, allowing its students 24/7 access so they can learn whenever and wherever they need. This round-the-clock access to assignments and lessons also comes with the ability to contact instructors and classmates. The classes are held in a convenient asynchronous format, allowing students to participate at any time that’s best for them.

This institution has a generous credit transfer policy that allows veterans to transfer as many as 90 credits from their prior training and military experience, contributing to a bachelor’s degree. In partnership with the VA, Norwich is part of the Yellow Ribbon program that can help students pay for their education.


Georgia State University | Perimeter College

Institution Type:  Public, Non-Profit

Accreditations:  SACS COC

Admission Rate: 82.4%

Annual Tuition Costs: $3,930

Graduation Rate: 55%


The Perimeter College, which is a part of the GSU (Georgia State University), offers associate degrees and online courses. Graduates of this institution can earn an Associate of the Arts or Sciences degree and move on from there. However, those looking to continue their education can transfer to GSU to complete a bachelor’s degree.

Students can access GSU online classes through iCollege, an online learning management system that allows students to access materials and submit their assignments.

Often recognized as one of the country’s best, GSU’s Military Outreach Center provides its military-affiliated students with an advocate who provides guidance and support from application to graduation. GSU Participates in the Yellow Ribbon program and accepts tuition assistance for students currently in the military.


University of Alabama | UA Online

Institution Type: Public, Non-Profit

Accreditations: SACS COC

Admission Rate: 80.4%

Annual Tuition Costs: $11,250

Graduation Rate: 71%


University of Alabama Online’s Bama by Distance is the online “campus” where students can earn their bachelor’s, graduate, and post-graduate degrees. Here, there are fifteen undergrad degrees available, including Mechanical Engineering, Early Childhood Education, and even a BS in Nursing.

UA Online’s courses follow the on-campus semester schedule, which means it may not be the best option for those seeking complete flexibility. Students receive coursework through Blackboard, a place for students to view their lectures, participate in the discussions, submit their assignments, and view their grades.

UA is a part of the Yellow Ribbon program for veterans. Tuition assistance is available for those currently serving. There is also a veteran affairs counselor coordinator available for military students, as well as health services.


Auburn University

Institution Type: Public, Non-Profit

Accreditations: SACS COC

Admission Rate: 85.1%

Annual Tuition Costs: $10,526

Graduation Rate: 76.6%


Auburn University has a robust catalog of online courses and degrees that students can earn wherever they are. They have online courses as well as bachelor’s and master’s degrees. This institution’s renowned online graduate business programs include business administration, information systems, and finance.

Students looking for flexibility can look elsewhere as Auburn follows a semester system. However, online coursework is made available in asynchronous format through the Canvas platform to allow for some flex.

AU has a VRC (Veteran Resource Center) that offers support and services to current military members and veterans and their dependents. The University offers 20+ scholarships to its veteran students, participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program, and honors tuition aid for active-duty military.


University of Arizona

Institution Type: Public, Non-Profit

Accreditations: HLC

Admission Rate: 85.1%

Annual Tuition Costs: Here

Graduation Rate: 63.2%


Students are spoiled for choice at the University of Arizona, which offers more than 100 fully online degrees, flexibility in class schedules, and six start dates a year. They offer undergraduate and master’s degrees, with some of their accounting and business administration graduate degrees being highly regarded by the public.

The University of Arizona’s D2L online learning system offers students lectures on-demand. It also allows students to interact with peers and instructors and submit assignments. Courses are held in an asynchronous format, with guidance from an academic advisor available.

VETS (Veterans Education and Transition Services) and SERV (Supportive Education for Returning Veterans) provide services to veterans to help them transition into civilian life. UA accepts military tuition assistance and participates in the Yellow Ribbon program.


Pace University | Online Experience

Institution Type: Private, Non-Profit

Accreditations:  MSCHE

Admission Rate: 82.9%

Annual Tuition Costs: Around $20,000

Graduation Rate: 53.8%


Pace University is a private institution that offers more than 20 undergraduate and graduate degrees online. They also offer some post-graduate certificates. Pace uses Blackboard to teach classes asynchronously, allowing students to follow at their pace.

Pace has a Veteran Services Director who acts as the primary contact for military students and veterans. The Office of Student Assistance has a Veteran Services Team working directly with the US VA. Pace is part of the Yellow Ribbon Program and accepts tuition assistance for military students. The University also offers merit scholarships for qualifying veterans and their dependents.

Palo Alto University

Institution Type: Private, Non-Profit

Accreditations: WSCUC

Admission Rate: Around 30%

Annual Tuition Costs: $17,456

Graduation Rate: 76.9% graduate within six years


Palo Alto University is a bit more selective with who they admit, considering its admission rate sits around 30%. However, PAU is well-known for its counseling and psychology programs. Both the Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees are synchronous and quarter-based, where students are required to log in and attend weekly lectures through video conference. This format may not be the best option for those seeking complete flexibility.

PAU is a Yellow Ribbon school and accepts tuition assistance for those currently serving (and their dependents). Palo Alto University awards transfer credit to those who have eligible educational experiences or military training.

PAU has Veteran and Military Student Services, which provides military students with resources and support. The advocacy group Student Veteran Organization also acts as a support group for veterans (and non-veterans interested in veteran-specific challenges).


University of Missouri at Saint Louis

Institution Type: Public, Non-Profit

Accreditations: HLC

Admission Rate: 57.6%

Annual Tuition Costs: Here

Graduation Rate: 60.7%


The UMSL (University of Missouri at Saint Louis) has bachelor’s and master’s degrees available entirely online. Graduate certificate programs are also available. Students can access online coursework through Canvas, the online learning platform where students can take quizzes, upload assignments, check grades, and access course materials.

UMSL has a Veterans Center that assists military students and veterans through admissions and GI Bill certification. It also provides tutoring and advising to help students further. Other resources are available, including a student veteran group that can help veterans transition into civilian life. 

The UMSL has a credit transfer policy that awards academic credit for past education and military training. The University participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program, accepts military tuition assistance, and provides priority enrollment to veterans.


Indiana University – Bloomington

Institution Type: Public, Non-Profit

Accreditations: HLC

Admission Rate: 80.4%

Annual Tuition Costs: Here

Graduation Rate: 77.3%


Indiana University has plenty of online certificates, bachelor’s, and master’s degree programs. On-campus faculty teach the online classes through the Canvas learning platform in an asynchronous format. Students enjoy extra flexibility thanks to IU-Bloomington’s suite of resources and tools for online students, including one-on-one academic coaching, an interactive orientation, financial services, career services, and support through the 24/7 contact center.

IU-Bloomington’s Center for Veteran and Military Students help veterans transition to civilian life during their education by providing resources and support. The Center also assists students with understanding their benefits and processing the paperwork associated with them. Additional benefits are provided to veterans who qualify for the Yellow Ribbon Program. Students may also receive as much as $2,000 yearly from the Veteran Family Support Grant.


Colorado State University - Fort Collins

Institution Type: Public/Private

Accreditations: HLC

Admission Rate: 83.5%

Annual Tuition Costs: Here

Graduation Rate: 70.7%


Colorado State University - Fort Collins has various programs available online. Students can earn their bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degrees, as well as post-graduate certificates.

Like many other institutions, CSU-FC conducts online classes through the online learning platform Canvas. Students can access course material such as video lectures, interact with peers and instructors, submit assignments, etc. Most group discussions and lectures occur asynchronously to allow for the most flexibility. Online students have the same resources that on-campus students get, including writing consultation services, the University’s library, and veteran student resources.

CSU-FC provides its veteran and military-affiliated students with support and assistance through OALVS (Office of Adult Learner and Veteran Services) and VEBO (Veterans Educational Benefits Office). Both offices help active military personnel and veterans as well as their dependents with obtaining GI Bill benefits while also connecting them to additional assistance and resources. Colorado State University - Fort Collins has a program called A New Start for Veterans, which helps veterans assimilate into civilian life.

CSU-FC participates in the Yellow Ribbon Program and accepts military tuition aid benefits.

Why Choose Online Colleges for Military

When choosing a school for your higher education, it’s always a good idea to select a military-friendly college or university. Military-friendly educational institutions make an effort to actively support veterans, those currently serving in the military, and their families. But beyond simply choosing a military-friendly school, another thing to consider is finding an online program.

There are many pros and cons to choosing online schools for military. Online schooling tends to be best for those looking for a more flexible way to acquire their education. Online programs also tend to be more affordable, simply since far fewer costs are included in distance learning. However, if you are more of a practical learner or prefer to sit in a classroom, online programs may not be for you.

Nowadays, so many schools have made their programs available online. Many of these colleges and universities have made these programs available, especially for those affiliated with the military. Military-affiliated students often have different schedules and responsibilities compared to the average civilian student. As you start looking for the best school for you, you may want to consider online college military programs.

It’s important to know that military-friendly schools understand the unique needs of those who have served in the military. They provide specific support systems to help military personnel, such as counseling and health services. They also accept financial assistance that is mainly available to military personnel, on top of providing supplemental aid. Some schools even grant college credit for military experience and previous work experience.

What are the Requirements for Military-Friendly Online Colleges

When you’re applying to college, one of the things you’ll likely wonder — what exactly do you need to apply?

Unfortunately, being in the military or a veteran doesn’t necessarily save you from having to qualify for admission the same way as everyone else. Indeed, most colleges will require you to complete the freshman (or transfer student) application process. You’ll be asked to meet the exact academic requirements and minimums as everyone else.

However, if you have your paperwork and qualify for military financial aid, you’ll be able to take advantage of these discounts and grants to pay for your education.

Qualifying for a Military Degree

Military is a study that focuses on improving an individual's capabilities in the training academy. The course not only focuses on-field activities but has an equal focus on basic knowledge/ intelligence.

The subjects which are taught to Military students are mainly theoretical, but it also includes a lot of fieldwork/training. Some of the common subjects taught in Military courses include Mathematics, English, Social Sciences, Science, and Foreign Languages and it also includes many special programs.

  • An Associate’s degree in Military Science is a two-year degree program that mainly focuses to build a foundation of military knowledge and carry on to a Bachelor’s degree level. This course consists of major field activities along with academics. This course mainly requires a high-school diploma.
  • A Bachelor’s degree in Military Science is a four-year degree program. The candidate must have a high-school diploma and must be an American citizen or must have permanent citizenship of America.
  • A Master’s degree in Military Studies is a two-year degree program through which the students may pursue advanced positions within the U.S. Armed Forces. This course mainly requires a bachelor’s degree in Military studies.

There are a few requirements that need to be fulfilled before one applies for admission to Online Military Colleges. The student should have a high school diploma with a minimum of 2.0- 3.0 GPA.

With a Military degree, a student will have a deeper knowledge of critical analysis, problem-solving activities, survival strategies, and combatting tough/harsh situations.

Frequently Asked Questions

What online college is best for military?

Choosing the best online college is typically subjective. If you want to compare schools, The VA (U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs) has a comparison tool for the GI Bill that can help you compare schools' benefits. The tool allows you to search for schools by name. However, you can also search for schools by location.

Look for military-friendly colleges that offer you the flexibility you need through year-round admissions to online programs. Also, ensure that the school provides veteran-specific support.

Will military pay for online college?

The GI Bill’s benefits can help veterans pay for their degrees, whether undergraduate, graduate, or postgraduate. It also helps veterans pay for online college. The benefits may differ depending on the school’s location and the student’s state of residency.

If you use your GI Bill benefits wisely and seek additional financial aid through your school or other sources, you may be able to earn your online degree entirely for free.

What colleges cater to the military?

An online college for military will accept military-related financial assistance like the GI Bill or Yellow Ribbon Program. These financial assistance programs can often fund most or 100% of a student’s education. A military-friendly school will also provide services that support veteran-specific needs. Look for colleges that offer counseling or peer support services and health services.

Is Harvard military friendly?

Yes. This page on Harvard’s website outlines everything you need to know about applying to Harvard as a veteran. This page details the requirements for applying to this Ivy League school. Depending on your eligibility, you can either apply as a first-year student or a transfer student. Harvard waives the application fee for all military veteran applicants, so don’t let this fee discourage you.

Harvard offers financial aid in the form of the Yellow Ribbon Program. They also have a generous need-based financial aid program that can significantly lower the costs involved in acquiring your education.

How long do I have to be in the military to get free college?

If you would like to qualify for the GI Bill benefits, you need to have at least 90 days of active-duty service under your belt, and you must have been honorably discharged. If you were discharged due to a service-related disability, you must have at least 30 days of active-duty service racked up.

However, it’s also important to know that you’ll most likely be required to sign up for eight years in the military, with four on active duty and four years in the reserve. 

Wrapping Up

A college degree can help you transition from active duty to civilian life. If the costs of acquiring a degree deter you from pursuing an education, remember that your time in the military can most likely provide you with the financial assistance you need to pay for part or all of your degree. Consider an online military college that can provide you with the flexibility and support you need.

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