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Can I Take Classes Both Online and On-Campus At Two Different Schools?


Q: I understand that starting in August, the revamped Post 9/11 GI bill will pay partial bah for online students. I did not know that people were taking one on-campus class to get the bah if they were taking the bulk of theirs online. My question is if I take one on-campus and the rest online, does it have to be at the same school as I am taking online? If I am taking at least 1/2 time online and sign up for a class at the local college, will that get me the regular bah rate? Or do all my classes have to come from the same school? Thanks for your time.

A: No, not all of your classes have to come from the same school. As a matter-of-fact in many instances, online schools don’t have a brick-and-mortar campus where you could take an on-campus class.

The real key to taking one on-campus class per term and getting the full Post 9/11 GI Bill housing allowance, is the class has to count toward your education goal or degree plan. The way it usually works is you designate your online school as your “parent school”. Your on-campus school is designated as your “secondary school”. Once you decide which class will qualify, your parent school contacts your secondary school telling them which class you will take. You enroll in your secondary school for that class. Once the class at your secondary school is done, they send a transcript of the class to your parent school where it gets posted to your parent school degree plan. If the class will not count toward your degree, then the VA will not pay for it.

Just so everyone is clear, the VA uses a BAH calculator to establish housing allowance amounts, but the Department of Defense is the only one actually paying BAH. They are different in that the VA pays everyone eligible at the pay grade of an E-5 with dependents.


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