Texas A&M as a Military Friendly Institution State Law: College Credit for Military Service Texas A&M Policy & Procedures for Awarding Military Service Credit Challenge: Application of Military Credits into degree plans Q&A / Discussion Overview
> 2,000,000 US troops deployed to Iraq /Afghanistan since 2001. • They are eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill that removes financial barriers to higher education • They will transition to civilian life in the coming years • They will enroll at universities in large numbers Why The CURRENT Interest in Veterans? Cook & Kim (2009). From Soldier to Student: Easing the Transition of Service Members on Campus. Washington, DC: American Council on Education.
SERVICEMEMBERS OPPORTUNITY COLLEGES (SOC) • Washington D.C. agency funded by Department of Defense (DoD) • Consortium of Military-Friendly institutions with flexible policies that allow mobile servicemembers to complete degrees rather than just accumulate course credit • Texas A&M is a designated SOC “Military-Friendly” institution • Committed to awarding credit for military educational experience • Use ACE’s Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services in evaluating & awarding academic credit
AMERICAN COUNCIL ON EDUCATION (ACE) • Established: 1918 • 1,800 accredited institutional members • Provides leadership & unified voice on higher education issues • Administers General Educational Development (GED) program • Reviews military educational experiences and makes recommendations for the award of equivalent college credits to members of the Armed Forces
Guiding Philosophy of the American Council on Education: “What an individual learns is more important than when, where, and how the individual learned it.”
ACE CREDIT Course Review • A Content Review Committee examines military course descriptions and determines appropriate content and academic disciplines. • A Review Team of faculty evaluators is selected from relevant academic disciplines. • The Team travels to training locations and evaluates course.
ACE CREDIT Course Review • Evaluative criteria includes: • Course content • Learning outcomes • Depth and breadth of material • Level of difficulty • Applicability to postsecondary programs • Evaluative instruments • Outside assignments. • If appropriate, recommendations are made as to the amount & level of college credit equivalency for possible transfer into degree programs (at university discretion). • Team consensus must be 100%
Texas H.B. No. 269, Ed. Code, Sec. 1, Subchap. F, Chap. 51, Sec. 51.3042 (b) An institution of higher education shall award to an undergraduate student … course credit for all physical education courses required by the institution … and for additional semester credit hours, not to exceed 12, that may be applied to satisfy any elective course requirements for the student's degree program for courses outside the student's major or minor… (c) This section does not prohibit an institution of higher education from awarding additional course creditfor a student's military service as the institution considers appropriate. Signed into law 19 June 2009 Award of Course Credit for Military Service Texas Legislature Online: http://www.legis.state.tx.us/billlookup/text.aspx?LegSess=81R&Bill=HB269
Student provides proof of eligibility to Admissions (DD214) • Admissions determines eligibility, not advisor • Minimum one year active duty (365 days) and honorable discharge, or • Less than one year active duty and medical discharge, or • Current A&M students on active duty (commissioning programs) • KINE 198/199 and up to 12 general electives • Advisor determines need based on degree analysis • Military Service Credit Request Form submitted • Credits are irrevocable once awarded TEXAS A&m POLICY EFFECTIVE FALL 2011
“Academic advising is a critical piece of a holistic approach for working with student-veterans.” Importance of Academic Advising Di Ramio, Ackerman, & Mitchell (2008). From Combat to Campus: Voices of Student-Veterans. NASPA Journal, Vol. 45, no.1, p. 94.
MILITARY SERVICE CREDIT REQUEST FORM • Accessible on Registrar website • Allows selective award of credit for KINE 198/199 and up to 12 hours of electives • Signed by student and departmental academic advisor • Approved by Admissions
MILITARY EDUCATIONAL EXPERIENCE OLD POLICY: NEW POLICY:
Challenge: Application of Military Credits into degree plans • REMEMBER: • Texas Law: “does not prohibit an institution of higher education from awarding additional course credit for a student's military service as the institution considers appropriate.” • American Council on Education: “What an individual learns is more important than when, where, and how the individual learned it.” • Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges: Allow them to complete degrees rather than just accumulate course credit.
WHERE ARE STUDENT VETERANS’ RECOMMENDED CREDITS DOCUMENTED? • Army:Army ACE Registry Transcript System (AARTS) • summarizes recommended credits from military educational experiences • Navy/Marine Corps: The Sailor / Marine ACE Registry Transcript (SMART) • summarizes recommended credits from military educational experiences • Air Force: The Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) • Summarizes military educational experience and standardized test scores. • Coast Guard: The Coast Guard Institute (CGI) • requires each individual to submit documentation of all training, along with an enrollment form, to receive a transcript. • Veterans: If not eligible for AARTS, SMART, CCAF, or CGI systems, must use forms DD-295 and DD-214 to have educational experiences evaluated.