The G.I. Bill provides great value to military personnel when considering higher education. There are a wide variety of options available to military personnel, one of the best options being the pursuit of an online degree, which can be done in part or whole while deployed or on active duty from anywhere around the world, as well as for a certain allotted time after a given period of service. Note: All links on this page are sponsored for lead generation purposes. These schools are not endorsed by any branch of the military or the United States Government. They were selected by our editors after careful consideration and based on an assortment of criteria that we define below.
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This is a list of the top ten online schools participating the in G.I. Bill and offering bachelor degree programs developed by the editors of OnlineMilitaryEducation.org. All schools listed participate in the Yellow Ribbon G.I. Bill and are regionally accredited. Some schools offer further scholarship support for military personnel and this is one of the primary factors taken into account for the rankings. Other factors include the variety of degrees offered, the variety of degree specialization, and the reputation of the school in question.
The focus of this list is on those schools offering an array of bachelor level programs. While all schools on this list participate in the Yellow Ribbon G.I. Bill program, the eligibility of individual degree programs is determined by the U.S. Military.
Ranking The Top 10 Best Online Colleges for Current and Former Military
1. Strayer University
This University is included in Military Advanced Education’s Annual Guide of Best Military-Friendly Higher Education Institutions for 5th consecutive year. Strayer offers 100% tuition assistance for military personnel in addition to its GI Bill participation which makes it one of the best available online options. Strayer offers a wide array of business, technical and criminal justice degrees with many specializations offered within each area of study. The programs offered synergize well with military experience. [Click for more information from Strayer University.]
2. Capella University
This well established and respected online university offers a wide range of options within the business and technical areas of study as well as programs in criminal justice and homeland security. Capella was recognized 2007-2010 as a Military Advanced Education Top Military-Friendly Colleges and Universities Honoree by Military Advanced Education Magazine. Capella was also recognized by G.I. Jobs Magazine as a Military Friendly School in 2010. Capella was also named a Yellow Ribbon organization by the State of Minnesota at the 2010 Yellow Ribbon Summit for its outstanding support of service members, veterans and their families. With a history of well respected programs and support of military personnel, those of the military looking to pursue a degree here will find themselves in good hands. [Click for more information from Capella University.]
3. Colorado Technical University
The primary focus at Colorado Technical University is on business and technical degrees with strong offerings in criminal justice and security as well. While it does not offer as wide a selection of areas to study, CTU does offer a wide variety of specialization within the degree programs they do offer. The institution is very focused on what it offers and as such the programs are high quality and well regarded. CTU has an entire department devoted to military personnel. They have special tuition rates for Active Duty, Reservists, National Guard and spouses. Application fee and cost of books are waived, and eligible military experience is considered for transfer credit. This level of support is rare and makes CTU one of the best choices available for members of the military. [Click for more information from Colorado Technical University.]
4. Drexel University
Drexel has been offering online degree programs since 2003 and is a respected university both on and off line. The strongest offerings from Drexel are in business and technology but they also offer programs in criminal justice, education, communications, and general studies as well as other niche areas of study such as property management. Drexel is highly focused on professional competency and has a strong reputation among businesses.
5. University of Massachusetts
UMass offers a surprisingly wide selection of programs online. The University has all the business and technical degree offerings of other schools but also offers liberal arts, journalism and other programs for those more interested in non-business or non-technical degrees. Some of the programs are extremely individualized in the course of study and allow the student to decide what he or she most needs to learn. All this flexibility, variety and convenience offered with the reputation and respect afforded a strong state university makes UMass a very strong choice especially for those living within the state of Massachusetts.
6. Walden University
Another online only university, Walden University offers a wide array of choices and a flexible online education program for those that need flexibility and convenience. Business, communications, interdisciplinary studies, are just a few among the choices offered by Walden. Walden University is also another school with a tradition of supporting military personnel and veterans and was designated by G.I. Jobs as one of its 2011 Military Friendly Schools, which honors the top 15% of colleges, universities, and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America’s veterans as students.
7. Rasmussen College
With a strong focus on business, and justice studies Rasmussen may not offer the most variety but they offer quality programs in areas of study that synergize well with military experience. Rasmussen also offers a wide array of specialization within those degree programs. Rasmussen also offers a 10% discount to military personnel and their spouses and dependents ages 18-21. They are also a member of the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges and as such offer various other modes of financial assistance.
8. Northcentral University
Northcentral presents strong offerings in business and psychology with a variety of specializations within each. Northcentral also offers a degree completion program for those looking to finish a degree already started. They have a special preferred tuition pricing program for military personnel, making the costs even more affordable. [Click for more information from Northcentral University.]
9. Bryant and Stratton
While Bryant and Stratton does not offer as wide an array of programs as many other schools, the programs they do offer in Business, Accounting, Criminal Justice, Financial Services and Health Services Administration present strong profession degree programs that open a variety of doors. Bryant and Stratton offers financial aid under several different military G.I. Bill programs. [Click for more information from Bryant and Stratton College.]
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There are many different options for military personnel wishing to pursue any number of applicable degree programs. Different schools have different strengths and weaknesses and there are many options that offer strong support for current and former members of the military. Some institutions go above and beyond in their service to our military personnel. A number of different factors may play in to one’s choice of school. While online universities and colleges may often not offer as wide an array of choices as their brick and mortar counterparts, they do offer an amount of flexibility and customization that many traditionally modeled schools do not. If online education is right for you, then the schools on this list represent the top choices available, not only due to academic excellence, but also their support of and commitment to military personnel and providing them with quality, affordable advanced education opportunities.