Armed Forces Tuition Assistance (TA) is a benefit paid to eligible members of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard. Congress has given each service the ability to pay up to 100% (Up to $250 per semester hour) for the tuition expenses of its members.
Each branch has its own criteria for eligibility, obligated service, application processes and restrictions. Funds are transferred directly to the educational institution by the applicable branch of the military. Additionally, active-duty members may elect to use the MGIB "top-up" in addition to their service-provided TA to cover courses when TA is almost exhausted.
If utilizing Military Tuition Assistance, all eligible service members must seek approval from an Educational Service Officer (ESO) or counselor within the military service prior to enrolling.
Military Branch Resources
Choose your service branch below to learn more about its specific tuition assistance initiatives:
- Air Force Tuition Assistance
- Army Tuition Assistance
- Navy Tuition Assistance
- Marines Tuition Assistance
- Coast Guard Tuition Assistance
- National Guard Tuition Assistance
- Reserve Tuition Assistance
Chapter 30 and "Top-up"
Individuals on active duty who are eligible for Chapters 30 (MGIB) and approved for TA are eligible for Top-up.
What is Top-up?
Top-up allows VA to pay the difference between what TA pays and the cost of the course. The law prohibits active duty students from receiving regular Chapter 30 benefits and TA for the same course; however, VA students, to include National Guardsmen and Reservists who earned Chapter 30 benefits while on Active duty, in receipt of TA may receive the Chapter 30 Top-up benefit.
Detailed information about Tuition Assistance Top-up and about applying for Top-up is available on the GI Bill® website.
NOTE: Normal certification procedures should be followed for courses for which a National Guard or Reserve service member will receive TA under Chapter 30 if they are in M-Day status and not AGR status. Top-up only applies to individuals on active duty.
Tuition assistance is available to active-duty and active Guard/Reserve, and military and civilian personnel of the Army National Guard through the Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES). Tuition assistance will cover the majority of tuition costs for most active-duty military. Each branch of service has established an annual cap for tuition assistance.
Check with your installation’s education center for more information concerning how to apply for tuition assistance. Reserve component members are also eligible for tuition assistance under this policy. However, each service component has established specific guidelines, limits, and policies for their members that may be different than the typical active-duty policy. Before registering for any courses, Reservists should check with their local Education Services officer for information about the limits of tuition assistance coverage.
To learn more about DANTES, call (850) 452-1111 or visit the DANTES website.
GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web sitehttps://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.