Best Online Schools for Military Spouses

Aug 06, 2018

Military spouses who want to pursue their educational goals and obtain an undergraduate or graduate degree may find these online schools as good options. The online schools listed offer scholarships, discounts or grants to military spouses making their educational expenses more affordable as well as support services to aid them in their studies.

School Comparison

School Name Institution Type Location In-State Tuition (2017-2018)* Tuition Assistance/Military Benefits
Pennsylvania State University-World Campus 4-year, Public University Park, Pennsylvania $13,988 Grants, Scholarships
American Military University, American Public University System 4-year, Private Charles Town, West Virginia $6,880 Tuition Grant
Bryant & Stratton College 4-year, Private Orchard Park, New York $14,383 Tuition Assistance
Columbia College 4-year, Private Columbia, Missouri $21,936 Grants
Purdue University Global 4-year, Public West Lafayette, Indiana $9,992 Tuition Assistance and Resources, Scholarship

Source: *National Center of Education Statistics

Best Online Schools for Military Spouses

Online schools are a good option for military spouses who are stationed in a remote area or are suddenly relocated. They can continue their online education with little interruption. The online schools listed here offer tuition and sometimes other forms of assistance for military spouses.

Pennsylvania State University-World Campus

Pennsylvania State University-World Campus is ranked number 7 on the 2018 Best Online Bachelor's Programs list by the U.S. News & World Report. Pennsylvania State offers the Military Grant-in-Aid for military spouses.

All service members in all branches of the military and their spouses are eligible for the Pennsylvania State University-World Campus's Military Grant-in-Aid. It is only offered at the World Campus for undergraduate service members and their spouses. When the Military Grant-in-Aid is combined with the Tuition Assistance (TA), the tuition may be reduced to $82 per credit, though it cannot be combined with VA benefits. Penn State also offers an Academic Military Support Team which may be helpful for military spouses who needs help in their studies due to various factors such as frequent relocations affecting their focus at school.

American Military University

The American Military University, a part of the accredited American Public University System that caters to service members, is 100% online. It offers a tuition grant for military spouses.

The American Military University offers a tuition grant for military spouses that pay $250 per credit towards undergraduate tuition and $325 for graduate tuition. AMU accepts credit from other institutions with 68% of its undergraduates transferring credits. AMU also has a book grant that provides free eBooks for undergraduate students saving full-time students about $250 per semester. Reserve, Guard, active service members and their children also qualify for this tuition grant.

Bryant & Stratton College

Bryant & Stratton College offers 15 online degrees. They created the Salute to Spouses scholarship for spouses of full-time active service members.

The Salute to Spouses scholarship awards a military spouse $6,000 towards the tuition for an online degree at Bryant & Stratton College. The scholarship is awarded each consecutive semester in increments of $600 for part-time enrollment and $1200 for full-time enrollment. Bryant & Stratton College hosts a ''Salute to Spouses Blog'' that is recognized by the Top 100 Military Wife Blogs sponsored by This blog contains information ranging from career and education advice to practical insights for military spouses and is frequently updated to ensure it remains relevant and helpful to its readers.

Columbia College

Designated as a military-friendly school, Columbia College has various grants which offer tuition assistance for military spouses. Some of these grants are the Spouses Opportunity Grant, the Coast Guard Spouse Grant, and the Two-in-Family Grant.

The Spouses Opportunity Grant pays the tuition of one online course for a military spouse. This must be their first course at Columbia and they must be working towards their first undergraduate degree to be able to avail of this grant. On the other hand, the Coast Guard Spouse Grant covers 50 percent of the spouse's online undergraduate tuition, with the total possible grant not exceeding $4000. Lastly, the Two-in-Family Grant awards $75 for each session when at least two immediate family members are taking classes totaling 6 credit hours.

Purdue University Global

The Purdue University Global is an online university that offers 180 online bachelor's degrees. Purdue Global offers the National Military Family Association (NMFA) Scholarship for military spouses of currently active or retired service members.

The NMFA scholarship pays at most 47% of the current tuition costs. All books and course materials are free. In addition, Purdue also offers a 10% per credit tuition assistance to spouses for both undergraduate and graduate programs through their Military Tuition Assistance and Resources. This program also provides course materials for free. Also, it may be helpful for military spouses to know that Purdue Global offers educational resources, military community events and news, as well as information on associations helping military families, among other support services.

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