FAQs

Can I receive college credit for my military training?

Any military training you received that may qualify for college credit is evaluated by Western’s Veteran Specialist. While credits earned for military-related training do not factor into the admissions process, the academic content expert for the program may accept some or all of that credit and apply it toward your degree requirements. Provide the Veteran Military Center (VMC) with your official military transcripts, which may be ordered through this website, along with a copy of your DD214 (military discharge document).

Is there a discounted tuition rate for veterans?

Federal and state laws extend the in-state tuition rate to honorably discharged veterans, veteran dependents, and members of the National Guard and Reserve, regardless of their state of residency, provided they are living in Wisconsin while they attend Western. 

Veterans Affairs (VA) educational benefits are divided into different “chapters.” How do I know which chapter I qualify for?

An outline of the different VA educational benefit chapters may be found toward the bottom of this VA web page. Note that the exact VA education benefit(s) you qualify for (you may qualify for more than one, and will need to decide which one it would be best for you to accept) can only be determined by the VA. However, Western’s VMC can provide assistance.

How many months of VA educational benefits (or entitlement) do I have left?

You can access your remaining entitlements by going to the VA eBenefits page and work through these steps:

  • Login to your existing account or register for an account (be sure to write down your username and password)
  • When a security warning pops up while navigating through the site, follow these steps:
  1. Choose “I understand the risk”
  2. Choose “add exception”
  3. Confirm security exemption
  • At the “Create your DS logon today” section, answer the questions, then begin “Basic Registration Lev. 1.”
  • Once your registration has been completed, upgrade your account and go through Remote Proofing.
  • When proofing has been completed, go to eBenefits and click Manage Benefits, then Education,
  • At that point, Chapter 33 Post 9/11 recipients should be able to view and print your Post 9/11 GI Bill enrollment information, which will serve as your Certificate of Eligibility (COE).
  • Should you have trouble completing steps 5-6, try logging out and logging back in.

Do I need to reapply for my VA educational benefits every semester?

After your initial semester has been completed, you will only need to resubmit a Certification Request form each semester.

Will VA educational benefits cover the cost of remedial or deficiency courses?

Most VA educational benefit programs (or “chapters”) cover the cost of remedial or deficiency courses, but only if a placement test indicates that you need to take that type of course, or if the course is required as a prerequisite for another course in your program.

What happens if I change my schedule after I submit my certification request form?

Notify the VMC right away via email so your new schedule can be reviewed to make sure the replacement course(s) are applicable to your program. (VA educational benefits only cover courses that fulfill the degree requirements for your program.)

What is the deadline for submitting my Certification Request form?

You have up to one year after the start of a semester to submit your form. However, if you wish to receive federal and state educational benefits, or have the VA pay for your tuition (the latter applies only to those who qualify for Chapter 33 and Chapter 31 educational benefits), the sooner you submit your form the better. Remember that veterans receive priority registration, so you should be able to arrange and finalize your schedule well in advance.

When do I start to receive my VA educational benefits?

The VA will process your benefits as quickly as possible, but this can take several weeks from the first time you apply. Once you are in the VA system, though – and if you submit your Certification Request form before the start of each semester – your benefits should be provided to you continuously (with any monthly stipends paid at the end of each month during a semester).

I qualify for Chapter 33 benefits. When can I expect to receive my textbook stipend and housing allowance?

The textbook stipend is paid as soon as your claim is processed so you should not wait for the stipend to arrive before ordering your textbooks. The Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH), meanwhile, and all other monthly stipends are paid at the end of each month during a semester. Keep in mind that partial months are paid at a prorated rate. For example, if a fall semester begins on August 26, your BAH payment will only be for the four days between August 26 and August 30 (provided your BAH certification was submitted in advance of August 26).

How many credit hours do I need to take to be classified as a full-time student?

Western requires students to take a minimum of 12 credit hours a semester to be classified as full-time. However, you should also check the credit-hour requirements to be classified as full-time by the VA educational benefits program through which you receive your benefits, as well as for any financial aid purposes. 

What level of VA educational benefits am I entitled to if I’m not classified as a full-time student?

The VA calculates your benefit amount based on this “rate of pursuit” formula:

Chapter 33 (Post 9/11 G.I. Bill) All other VA educational benefits (or Chapters)
11 credit hours = 90% of all educational benefits 12 credit hours or more = Full-time
10 credit hours = 80% 9 to 11 credit hours = Three-quarter time
9 credit hours = 80% 6 to 8 credit hours = Half-time
8 credit hours = 70% 4 and 5 credit hours = Less than half, more than one quarter
7 credit hours = 60% 1 to 3 credit hours = Quarter-time

Do I have to maintain a certain GPA to keep my VA educational benefits?

All students utilizing VA educational benefits must maintain certain standards of progress as detailed in the student handbook. If you do not meet Western’s standards of progress, VA educational benefits will be terminated. Student using WIGI bill must have a cumulative GPA of a 2.0 or above.  

If I fail a class, will I have to pay anything back to the VA?

No, you do not have to pay the VA back if you do not pass a course. You may repeat a course if it is required for your degree program and the VA will pay for it a second time. However, if you drop or withdraw from a class after the deadline for doing so, you will have to pay the VA back if you received money for that course.

How do I drop or withdraw from a class, and will doing so affect my VA educational benefits?

If you need to drop or withdraw from a course, consult Western’s Veteran Certifying Official in the VMC.

we're here to help
Veteran Military Center
Academic Resource Center, Room R202
400 7th Street North
La Crosse, WI 54601

Phone: 

Fax: 

608-785-9159

Email: