AIU Blog

The AIU blog shares ideas, information and tips aimed at helping you get ahead personally and professionally, with topics ranging from online learning success to career development.

How You Can Use Your Military Experience for College Credit

Default Image for AIU Blog Articles

If you’ve served in the military, you’ve probably already earned college credit without even realizing it. The trick is learning how to access it.

Depending on the school you apply to, you might be able to use your experience and training to earn credit toward a degree. Earning a degree is expensive and time consuming, after all, so if you’ve already done the required work for a course, you definitely don’t want to be wasting resources to complete it again.

The first step to figuring all of this out is to secure your military service transcripts. Do this well ahead of the deadline date for applying for classes because you won’t know which ones you may transfer in credit for until your transcripts are reviewed.

Once you have your records in order, you’ll be ready to start using them to see if you can receive college credit. Here’s how.

Look for “Military Friendly” Schools

Before sending your transcripts off to schools, look around for schools that may be the most likely to offer you credit for your military experience. The American Council on Education reviews military programs to recommend to colleges the number of hours that chould transfer over. Even with these suggestions, though, schools have the final say. Some might not grant you any hours for your service. Look up the “military friendly schools” list that’s published yearly before applying anywhere. The schools listed here can be a good source to locate a school that may award credit.

Apply for Transfer Credits*

Once you pick out a few quality military schools, you’ll want to apply for transfer credits. Request that official copies of your transcripts be sent to these colleges. Military services will usually do this for you free of charge. Once the schools receive these, they’ll evaluate them to see if your training has earned you transfer credits that can be applied toward your military degree program.

Different branches of the military use different transcript services:

  • Army/A.C.E. Registry Transcript Service (AARTS)
  • Community College of the Air Force
  • Sailor/Marine American Council on Education Registry Transcript
  • Coast Guard Institute

Request your records from your corresponding program.

Test Out

The College-Level Examination Program® (CLEP) offers you the chance to take an exam on a particular subject to try to test out of it. If you pass, you could be awarded credit for that subject. Most military friendly schools can allow you to test out of general requirement courses, such as English, science, business, math or foreign languages. The great thing about CLEP tests is that you can take them as many times as you’d like if you don’t pass the first time; you just need to wait six months before you retake any test. Remember to always check with your chosen school to confirm which CLEPs, if any, the school accepts for potential college credit.

Getting college credits toward a rewarding educational experience can be easy if you apply to a supportive school. Enroll in a military degree program today at a military friendly school in your area.

This article is presented by AIU. Contact us today if you’re interested in an opportunity to develop knowledge and relevant skills with an industry-current degree program from AIU.