Online Master's Degrees for Military Members

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  Online Master's Degrees for Military Members

How to choose the best online master's degree program for military members. Plus the top 10 military-friendly online graduate programs!


Online Master's Degrees for Military Members
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Are you an active member of the military constantly traveling from station to station? Have you already earned your bachelor's degree? Are you ready for a new phase in your education career, but don’t know how you are going to find the time to pursue a master's degree with your busy schedule?

If you answered yes to these questions, you should consider earning your master's degree online. Most traditional graduate schools will not accommodate your unique schedule. However, online master's degree programs are a great option for service members who want to earn a graduate degree.

You need to make sure that the online school you are considering accepts the financial aid programs that you are eligible for.

Online Master's Degree Programs for Military Members

Being in the military, you probably already have strict discipline skills. These will transfer great over to the online course structure. Other skills common to military life, such as leadership can also be strengthened in your online courses. When searching for an online graduate program, you should try to find schools that accept transfer credits from military training or work experience.

Many online graduate schools are working on becoming more military friendly because of the increasing number of active members and veterans pursuing their master's degrees. While a school may not have programs geared specifically for the military, it might offer several programs that can be transferred to the military life such as criminal justice, leadership and management, nursing administration, and more.

While you may pursue an online master's degree program in a non-military related major, there are also master's degree programs for students who plan on having a military career, such as the master of military operational art and science offered at Air University’s Air Command and Staff College. These online degree programs teach officers who plan on advancing their military career the leadership and management skills needed to be successful in achieving their goals. In these online master's degree programs, you will take courses such as leadership in warfare and warfare studies.

Financial Aid for Master's Degree Programs Online for Military Members

As a “thank you” for your service to our country, many states offer ample financial aid assistance to veterans and current members of the military. You should always first look for military scholarships and grants before applying for student loans, as these forms of financial aid do not need to be repaid.

You may be wondering if you are eligible for federal financial aid while you are in the military. The short answer is yes. However, you must still meet the same eligibility requirements that a citizen needs to meet in order to receive benefits.

You need to make sure that the online school you are considering accepts the financial aid programs that you are eligible for. Examples of some programs that you may be able to apply to include:

Visit Campus Explorer's Paying for College Guides for a comprehensive list of military financial aid for college.

Top 10 Military Friendly Online Graduate Schools

According to the Military Advanced Education 4th Annual Guide, ten of the top online graduate schools for military members include:

  1. American Military University is an online school dedicated to educating people who serve their country including military, public safety and national security members. The school offers relevant, affordable programs with courses starting each month to meet your strict schedule. Online masters degrees are offered in business, criminal justice, education and technology.
  2. Western Governors University – Online School offers a variety of online masters degree programs that are approved for Veterans Administration (VA) education benefits under the Montgomery GI Bill. At this grad school, you may choose to get a masters degree in education, business or nursing.
  3. American Sentinel University – Online School offers online masters degree programs in the fastest growing careers today, including technology, business and health care. The school also has a military-friendly transfer credit policy.
  4. Capella University – Online School is committed to supporting military personnel by providing such benefits as tuition grants up to 15%, transfer credit for military training, military leave policy and more. The school offers online masters degree programs in technology, business, education, public service leadership, and social and behavioral sciences.
  5. Kaplan University – Online School has a unique program that allows military members to preview the school by taking a few classes for real credit, while a financial aid advisor determines your financial aid package. After a five-week introductory period, you may choose to continue with your degree program. If not, you only need to pay the $95 application fee.
  6. Strayer University – Online School has military benefits for transfer credits and financial aid. If you are considering attending their online program, you will meet with an admissions officer who will assist you in finding out which military courses can transfer to your online masters degree program. This online graduate school offers courses in public administration, education, health services administration and business administration.
  7. University of Phoenix – Online School provides a number of incentives for active and veteran military members including, special tuition rates for active members and their spouses; and credit for experiential, documented, and military learning. Online masters degree programs are offered in business and management, criminal justice and security, education, human services, nursing and healthcare, psychology and technology.
  8. Ashford University – Online School boasts one of the lowest tuition costs online and is approved for several military financial aid programs. They offer military credit transfers and . The online masters degrees granted by this school include education, healthcare administration, organizational management, teaching and learning with technology, business administration and public administration.
  9. Saint Leo University Online has been providing graduate degrees to members of the military for over 36 years. They are approved to offer several military financial aid benefits, such as the Montgomery GI Bill. They offer online masters degrees in education, criminal justice, business, social work and theology.
  10. Jones International University - Online offers masters degree programs to service members in the fields of education and business.

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