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Military Spouse Online College: Programs & Benefits

08.17.2023 • 8 min read

Lizann Lightfoot

Editor and Military Spouse

Here's a list of recommended online colleges for military spouses, including tips on what to consider when choosing a military-friendly college.

In This Article:

  1. Military Online Colleges in the US

  2. 11 Recommended Online Colleges for Military Spouses

  3. Degrees & Programs Offered by Military-Friendly Colleges

  4. Educational Benefits for Military Spouses

  5. Tips for Choosing a College for Military Spouses

  6. Study Online With Outlier’s Military Benefits

What are the best online colleges for military spouses? The answer depends on who you ask.

Some military spouses need an online school with a flexible schedule so they can work around a service member’s unpredictable hours.

Other spouses are primarily concerned with the cost: how much is tuition, and are there military discounts?

And for spouses stationed overseas, the best colleges for military spouses are those without set schedules. They want to complete courses on their own time, even if that’s the middle of the night in America.

So let’s look at some of the online degree programs popular in the military community and explore military spouse college benefits.

Military Online Colleges in the US

Approximately 2 million active-duty service members are in the U.S. military, and 18 million veterans. Since almost 60% of them are married, there are 12 million military spouses in total; nearly 1 million are married to active-duty military service members.

While many military spouses work toward a college degree and want a meaningful career, they also struggle with unemployment due to frequent moves.

To improve your resume and get ahead in your career, military spouse certification programs and college degrees can help you reach your goals.

This article will explore the best online colleges for military spouses, discuss scholarship options, and review military spouse college benefits that will make a difference for you.

The following colleges are all accredited and offer online degree programs for military spouses. These military-friendly schools will save you money with online courses, and they accept military financial aid programs like the G.I. Bill or MyCAA. See if there’s a good fit for you!

1. Golden Gate University

Located in San Francisco, GGU offers hybrid and online courses available anywhere in the world. Through the Helen Diller Center on campus, they support military and veteran students working on degrees or career advancement. The Degrees+ program, powered by, offers several online degrees for military spouses.

Online Programs:

Format: Degrees+ is fully online; GGU also offers On-Campus classes

Tuition: $149 per credit hour for Degrees+

2. Georgia State University

With flexible classes and a Military Outreach Center, GSU caters to military spouses who haven’t been in school for a while. GSU offers hundreds of degrees and certificate programs, including online programs for an associate, bachelor, or master’s degree.

Online Programs:

  • Business

  • Education

  • Health

  • Humanities

  • Arts

Format: Online or Hybrid programs

Tuition: $3,350 per year for fully-online students

3. Amridge University

This private non-profit college lowers tuition for military spouses, making it a Military Friendly School for courses from associate to Ph.D. level.

Online Degree Programs:

  • General Studies

  • Business Administration

  • Education and Human Services

  • Theology

Format: Online or On-Campus

Tuition: $250 per undergraduate credit hour for military spouses

4. University of Arizona Global Campus

This military-friendly Yellow Ribbon school is popular for its flexible online courses lasting 5 or 6 weeks, and personalized support for their mobile apps.

Top Online Programs:

  • BA in Business Administration

  • BA in Organizational Management

  • BA in Early Childhood Education

  • BA in Health Care Administration

Format: Fully Online

Tuition: $250 per credit hour for military spouses

5. Penn State World Campus

This Yellow Ribbon School has military spouse scholarships and VA benefits. Penn State offers some free online classes and counseling programs for service members and spouses.

175 Accredited Programs, including:

  • BS in Business

  • BS in Engineering

  • BA in Education

  • BSN in Nursing

Format: Fully Online

Tuition: $626 per credit, with military grants and scholarships available

6. University of Southern Mississippi

This is a Yellow Ribbon School offering affordable college options for military spouses and service members, including military discounts and scholarships.

Popular Undergraduate Programs:

  • BSBA in Business Administration

  • BS in Construction Management

  • BS in Industrial Engineering Technology

Format: Online or On-Campus

Tuition: $401 per undergraduate credit hour for online students

7. California State University

This military-friendly college offers flexible online education programs with small class sizes using faculty from its 23 campuses throughout the state.

Online Programs:

  • BA in Arts & Letters

  • BA in Child and Adolescent Development

  • BS in Civil Engineering

  • BS in Career and Technical Studies

  • BS in Criminal Justice

Format: Online or On-Campus

Tuition: $2,595 per undergraduate semester

8. University of Alabama-Birmingham

With a focus on online learning and socially conscious education, UAB offers numerous military scholarships for service members and military spouses.

Popular Online Programs:

  • BS in Accounting

  • BS in Finance

  • BS in Community Health and Human Services

  • BS in Healthcare Management

  • BS in Information Systems

Format: Online or Blended (Hybrid) degree options

Tuition: $458 per credit hour for undergraduate online degrees

9. Southern New Hampshire University

Known for its affordable degrees and 200+ flexible online programs, SNHU is popular for military spouse grants and financial aid.

Popular Online Programs:

  • BA in Psychology

  • BS in Business Administration

  • BS in Healthcare Administration

  • BS in Accounting

Format: Fully Online, Flexible Schedule

Tuition: $330 per credit hour for online undergraduate courses

10. Liberty University

This private Christian college supports military family members with scholarships, military benefits, and flexible online courses towards all degrees, from associate to doctoral.

Popular Online Programs:

  • BS in Business Administration

  • Nursing Dual Degree

  • BS in Criminal Justice

  • BS in Religion

  • B. Ed. in Elementary Education

Format: Online or On-Campus

Tuition: $250 per undergraduate credit hour for military spouses

11. University of Maryland Global Campus

Formerly called UMUC, this popular online program has a history of supporting military personnel around the world. They offer financial aid and military discounts to service members and military spouses.

Popular Online Programs:

  • BA in Liberal Arts

  • BS in Business

  • BS in Cybersecurity

  • BS in Healthcare

Format: Fully Online

Tuition: $250 per undergraduate credit hour for military spouses

Degrees and Programs Offered By Military-Friendly Colleges

Although the list above mostly focuses on bachelor degree programs, the best online colleges for military spouses offer a range of degrees and certificates.

Associate Degree

An associate degree is awarded to a student who has completed 60 credits, or about 20 courses. Usually a 2-year program for a full-time student, an associate degree can stand on its own for resumes and job qualifications.

For part-time students working toward a bachelor’s degree, an associate degree is a useful way to lock in credits before they expire or to change schools without losing transfer credits.

Bachelor’s Degree

This is the traditional 4-year degree from an undergraduate program. Most colleges expect students to complete 120 credits (or 40 courses) for a bachelor’s degree.

Let’s group hundreds of ‌bachelor’s degrees into 2 main categories:

  1. Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree

  2. Bachelor of Science (BS) degree

Master’s Degree

Sometimes called a graduate degree, a master’s degree demonstrates additional study in a specific field after earning an undergraduate degree. Full-time students can complete a master’s degree in 1-2 years.

Master’s programs vary by school and subject area. The average master’s degree requires 36 credit hours, but some programs require more credits or a thesis project.

Certificate Programs

Some colleges now offer flexible online certificate programs to help students earn credentials and boost their resumes quickly. You can complete coursework within one year of enrollment. This leads to job opportunities when military spouses move to a new duty station.

Educational Benefits for Military Spouses

Wondering how to pay for your online college degree? Many schools offer scholarships and discounted tuition for military-affiliated students in all branches of the armed forces.

Below are the benefits online colleges typically offer to military spouses:

Flexible Scheduling

Military spouses live in different time zones and have unpredictable schedules if they work around their service member’s hours. The best online colleges for military spouses allow you to learn on your own schedule.

Financial Aid

Whether they offer military discounts on tuition or cooperate with military programs like the G.I. Bill and My Career Advancement Account (MyCAA), online colleges know the importance of financial aid for military spouses.

Military Spouse Scholarships

Many online schools for military spouses offer scholarships and financial assistance ‌to the military community. You can also find scholarships and tuition assistance programs through your service member’s branch or unit. Tip: check out our list of military spouse scholarships.

Military-Friendly Advisors

Online schools catering to military students provide advisors familiar with the challenges of military life. You should be able to speak to an advisor about an upcoming deployment, PCS move, or G.I. Bill paperwork.

Tips for Choosing a College for Military Spouses

Not all colleges for military spouses are created equally. You can get a legitimate degree from hundreds of schools, but you’ll find a huge difference in price, the quality of the education, and the military spouse college benefits available.

How can you choose the best online college for you? Start your research by asking these questions about each school:

Are they accredited?

Accreditation is a quality check to make sure educational programs meet high standards. A non-accredited institution may still offer college degrees, but they will be worthless for employment in certain career fields.

What courses do they offer?

Every school offers a unique combination of courses and degrees. Ask questions related to your ‌area of interest to learn the exact courses you’ll take and what careers they will prepare you for.

Is the cost worth it?

Online college tuition rates vary, so consider:

  • Can you use college grants to lower your cost?

  • If you’ll need student loans to pay for your degree, how long will it take to pay them back?

  • Will your potential salary increase make it worthwhile?

Study Online With Outlier’s Military Benefits

Ready to begin your college degree online? Check out Golden Gate University’s Degrees+ program, powered by

Degrees+ is purposefully affordable: just 1 ⁄ 3 the average U.S. college tuition. So you can get your degree fully funded with military spouse programs like MyCAA or the G.I. Bill benefits.

Here’s why Degrees+ is a great program for military spouses:

Flexible Associate Degree Programs

Choose from 3 programs, and earn an accredited associate degree from Golden Gate University.

Built-In Career Certificates

Develop in-demand skills and earn a professional certificate from top companies like Google as part of your degree program.

Learn On Your Schedule

The courses are entirely remote and can be completed any time, no matter where the military moves you!

Transferable Credits

In just 2 years, you’ll earn 60 credits transferable to the bachelor’s program of your choice.

Learn more about the military benefits available through Degrees+ and take the next step toward your career goals!

Degrees+: Discover Online College Unlike Anything You’ve Experienced

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