Transfer Credit: The Best-Kept Secret of University Life

By Wes O’Donnell

American Military University Alumnus and Managing Editor of In Military, InCyberDefense and In Space News. Veteran, U.S. Army & U.S. Air Force.

Active-duty servicemembers, veterans and military spouses can earn college credits from multiple sources. A management class earned at one base, a history class at another base and successful CLEP exams means that some non-traditional students may start school with dozens of credits gained from all over the country.

When I first settled down to my university of choice, American Military University (AMU), I came in with no less than 70 credits. I earned these academic credits from over a dozen different institutions over my 10-year military career.

On average, most non-traditional students transfer approximately 36 credits toward a degree at AMU. This results in a huge savings in money and time.

The Transfer Credit Evaluation Process

At AMU, my process involved applying to the University first and then completing out a Transfer Credit Evaluation once I was admitted. Each of my completed courses, training, and some of my service experience were thoroughly reviewed for potential transfer credit toward my chosen program, International Relations/Russian Studies. Many colleges and universities have similar process.

I then filled out a Transcript Release Authorization (TRA) form so that the university could request transcripts on my behalf. Two weeks later, I was notified what credits could be applied to my degree program. It was that simple.

Coming to AMU with dozens of credits earned outside of the university allowed me to maximize my GI Bill education benefits and empowered me to earn my bachelor’s degree in much less time than a traditional brick-and-mortar university. The cost of your degree decreases the more transfer credits you are awarded.

If you have previous academic credit, military service, job experience or professional training or certifications, and you are interested in one of AMU’s many degree programs for working professionals, I highly encourage you to reach out to the admissions professionals at the institution or whichever college or university you are considering.

I went on to earn an MBA with American Military University. Thanks to transfer credits I still have plenty of GI Bill education resources to pursue a law degree at a local law school. Whether you are just starting your career or seeking to prepare for life after you leave military service, I encourage you to reach out and discover educational opportunities.

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