College Options for Military Students

A student military member at a computer

Whether you want to work toward a promotion as an active-duty military member or open up job opportunities after your service, earning a college degree can provide many benefits. While getting on track with your education, applying to military-friendly colleges is essential to ensure you get the support you deserve as a US military member.

If you’re looking to compare military-friendly colleges, you’re in the right place. On this page, you can find advice for choosing military-friendly colleges and a list of schools that have demonstrated substantial support for military students.

How To Find the Best Military-friendly Colleges

What should you look for when deciding the best colleges for military students? Below are a few factors to consider when comparing military-friendly colleges:

  • Accreditation. Accredited colleges must meet higher standards for education, faculty, and student learning outcomes. Additionally, students can only qualify for federal financial aid programs when attending an accredited school.
  • Cost. Choosing a school with affordable costs will ensure your military benefits cover as much of your college expenses as possible. It’s important to compare the costs of the entire program, including courses, books, housing, etc., to the amount of financial aid you have available.
  • Credit transfer policies. Many schools offer college credit for military experience and training, so it’s essential to determine the school’s policies on military experience credit and transfer credit.
  • Learning format. Depending on whether you’re attending school as an active-duty service member, before starting your service, or as a veteran, you should look for colleges that can support your schedule. Flexible learning options to look out for include asynchronous classes and online programs.
  • Veteran and military member services. Check for the school’s military and veteran services, such as academic advisors and counselors for military members and veterans.
  • Degrees available. Whether you’ve decided on your area of study or are still considering your options, it’s best to research a college’s degree options and available concentrations.

Top Online Colleges for Military Students

We searched for the top military-friendly universities based on essential factors like whether they accept military benefits, provide military student support services, and offer college credit for military experience.

Southern New Hampshire University

SNHU offers an extensive online program with a diverse range of degrees available. Tuition is $9,600 on average and military members and their spouses qualify for a 30% discount. SNHU accepts financial aid from many military assistance programs and up to 90 transfer credits for military education and job training.

Liberty University

Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, offers hundreds of online programs, including bachelor’s and master’s degrees in subjects like art, aviation, law, cybersecurity, science, and education. The school supports military students through tuition discounts, GI Bill assistance, and transfer credits. The average tuition in and out of state is $14,791.

University of Central Florida

UCF is a military-friendly college offering military scholarships, tuition assistance for service members, and free tuition for Florida National Guard members. In-state tuition is around $4,478, but out-of-state tuition is $19,810 on average. The school also offers transition plans for military students, career support, and academic advising.

Averett University

With an average tuition of $11,520, Averett University is one of the top schools in our military-friendly college rankings because it offers 25-50% discounts on tuition for military students, military scholarships, and benefits like the Yellow Ribbon Program, GI Bill, etc. Military students can qualify for up to 90 transfer credits for training and experience.

Arizona State University

ASU strongly supports its military students with access to military tuition assistance, spouse and dependent program benefits, and specialized student services for veterans and active-duty members. The college has almost 300 online programs and an average tuition of around $10,710.

University of Massachusetts Global

UMass Global is one of the top military-friendly schools, providing GI Bill and Yellow Ribbon Program benefits, military transition programs, tuition discounts of up to 50%, and support for military spouses and dependents. The college offers online programs for undergraduate and graduate degrees, and tuition is typically $12,000.

University of Maryland Global Campus

At UMGC, military students can benefit from transfer credits for service experience, reduced tuition, and financial aid. Students also have access to military advisors online or at military bases nationwide. The average tuition is $7,200 for in-state and $11,976 for out-of-state students, and the school offers over 90 online degree programs.

Syracuse University

Syracuse University is a private college with an average tuition of $53,432 and helped create the original 1944 GI Bill, establishing the institution as a firm supporter of military students. The college has almost 60 online programs and provides access to military tuition assistance.

Thomas Edison State University

TESU has a wide range of degree options available through online classes and offers discounted tuition and financial assistance opportunities to military students. The school offers GI Bill benefits and VA support for military spouses and dependents, and it accepts transfer credits for training and experience you earned during service. 

Financial Support Services for Military Students

Enrolling in military-friendly colleges gives you access to certain benefits as a service member or veteran. The following are the most common military education benefits:

  • Tuition assistance (TA): offers financial aid to active-duty members for tuition, but benefits and eligibility depend on the military branch.
  • GI Bill: helps cover tuition, fees, housing, books, relocation, etc., for qualifying service members and dependent children. 
  • Yellow Ribbon Program: provides additional expenses the GI Bill doesn’t cover for qualifying military members.
  • Scholarships: military students can apply for many different scholarships for veterans, students going into service, and active-duty members. 

Find Out How To Access Your Military Education Benefits

At, we provide comprehensive guides for navigating college admissions as a military student, including how to find out what financial aid and assistance programs are available in recognition of your service. We make it easier to access valuable education opportunities by putting all the information you need in one convenient and user-friendly resource.

Visit to learn what you should know before you apply to military-friendly colleges.