Call Us: 1-800-031-7979

Additions to GI Bill Offer Online Living Stipend

January 20, 2012

The Post-9/11 GI Bill is often updated to include more assistance and aid, or other changes that are sometimes unfavorable for those in the military. However, there were changes that expanded benefits, especially for military students who study online. Distant learners, as referred to in VA policy, had been bereft from benefits that were specifically for living. However, new changes provided for a living stipend even for online students. Previously, only students who were enrolled in at least one course could receive any financial assistance for living expenses. That has since changed thanks to advocacy for online military students. Veterans had often wanted to take their courses fully online but were unable to do so with the loss of the living stipend. There were some military men and women who completely chose not to enroll, unable to go to a traditional classroom setting, others who could not afford to spend the money online classes without financial aid.

However, starting last August, the Post-9/11 GI Bill eligible veterans were able to receive a monthly living stipend without having to take any traditional courses. This drastically changed the educational life of many men and women getting their college education online. However, the stipend is a little different from those who receive a stipend and take traditional classroom education. Online students are eligible to receive half of the national average stipend as listed on the Basic Allowance for Housing for an E-5 with Dependents. You can read more about this form here.

The changes will allow for a full time student who takes 100 percent of their classes in an online environment to get $673.50 a month for living expenses. A full time student who takes at least one classroom course will still get the full stipend rate, but this number is also dependent on the specific location of the school. If the school is near to the student, he may receive less, since conceivably he could take more traditional classroom courses.

Many military students are planning to drop the physical courses to take online courses due to the new ruling. This is a necessary change for those who have families, work and other obligations, but still need that education. Working online allows them to do it all and in less time without the time and energy spent in getting to the classroom. For others, the online school is necessary because of where they live or because of a disability.

There will be certain costs and legislation that comes with the passing of this new addition. Congress is bound by a pay=as=you-go rule, meaning that the costs of any program like the Post-9/11 GI Bill must be offset by new taxes or reductions in other areas. To cover the cost of the reforms, Congress chose to end the practice of paying benefits during school breaks and change the formula for housing stipend payment rate. These changes seem to be a necessary evil if students want to take courses online without going to the physical classroom. However, this may be a bit unfair for those students who have no other choice.

Find Post-Military Education

Many schools set up entire veterans communities with transition assistance, tutoring, prep courses and stable support system. Finding a college that provides services for veterans is simple.

Use our FREE custom search tool to find great military-friendly schools:

Latest News

Tips on Obtaining Your Degree While in the Military

Dec 07, 2012

When you’re in the military, obtaining your degree might seem to difficult but actually it is very possible.

Military Intelligence Degrees

Dec 06, 2012

In each branch of the US military, there are a certain number of intelligence personnel. There are educational requirements in order to be advanced in intelligence personnel.

How to Get a Master's Degree in the Military

Dec 05, 2012

Whether you’re just starting out with your college experience or you already have a bachelor’s degree and are looking to advance the degree, you can get assistance and find the time to complete your master’s degree.

How to Make College Application Process Go Smoothly

Aug 31, 2012

College applications and admissions are key to transitioning into a good environment and securing a better future.