Last Revision: October 26, 2023
General Admission Policies
Admissions Identification Verification
In order to verify the identity of and protect the privacy of APUS students and applicants, identity verification will be required of all students applying for admission to any program type. Identity can be verified by submitting the following documents:
- For non-military applicants and all doctoral applicants: a legible copy of a valid government issued photo ID such as a driver’s license, state ID or passport.
- For undergraduate military and veteran applicants: a government issued Joint Services Transcript (JST) or Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) transcript. APUS will request the JST on behalf of the applicant and will request the Community College of the Air Force transcript upon submission of a Transcript Release Authorization (TRA) form
- For master’s and graduate certificate military and veteran applicants in the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard: APUS will request the JST on behalf of the applicant.
- For master’s and graduate certificate military and veteran applicants in the Air Force: a legible copy of a valid government issued photo ID such as a driver’s license, state ID or passport.
- For graduates of public safety academies: academy issued documentation of completion of a post-certification program OR a legible copy of a valid government issued photo ID such as a driver’s license, state ID or passport.
- For international applicants: a legible copy of a driver’s license, foreign military ID or passport.
Undergraduate Admission with No Prior College
Individuals must have earned a high school diploma or its equivalent in order to enroll in an undergraduate program at APUS.
- APUS will not accept a high school diploma if it is not conferred by an institution recognized by the county or state Board of Education in which the degree granting institution is based, or by a regional accrediting body.
- High school equivalents such as GED certificates or state-issued certificates are accepted.
Students who have earned a diploma from a school that does not meet APUS admissions standards but who have earned 9 or more hours of college credit may be admitted to APUS on a case by case basis but may not be eligible for certain forms of financial assistance, such as Federal Student Aid (FSA) benefits.
New applicants to an undergraduate level program (associate/bachelor/certificate), whose highest level of education is a high school diploma or equivalent, will be required to submit documentation of a high school diploma or equivalent. Registration will not be permitted until this documentation is received.
The following groups are exempt from providing high school documentation under this policy:
- Military (Active Duty, Reserve, National Guard)
- Public Safety Academy graduates
- Students entering a non-degree-seeking program (audits, courses for transfer, learning tracks, and Transportation Security Administration (TSA) students who enter the Foundations of Homeland Security certificate program)
- Students changing degree programs or applying for readmission to APUS (high school documentation is already on file)
The following items are considered acceptable documentation to support having earned a high school diploma or its equivalent:
- Copy of high school diploma
- Unofficial or official high school transcript
- Unofficial or official GED certificate
- Unofficial or official State-awarded certificate evidencing a passing score on the High School Equivalency Test (HiSET) or the Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC)
Unofficial transcripts/certificates must be uploaded through the MyDocuments portal. We can accept the following types of files: PDF, JPEG, TIFF, BMP, and PNG. Official transcripts must follow standard protocol of postal mail or electronic delivery. Admission may be revoked if it is discovered that an individual does not have a high school diploma or its equivalent that meets these criteria or if they have submitted false information on their application. If this happens, any current registrations will be dropped, admission status will be denied, and any financial aid canceled.
Any instances where we question the validity of the student’s high school credential, we will not accept self-certification as documentation.
Military and Veteran Policies
All Military Students and Veterans
APUS requires that all current and prior military students submit a Transfer Credit (TCE) Application, regardless of previous college experience, in order to maximize transfer credit. APUS will request the Joint Services Transcript or Community College of the Air Force transcript on the individual’s behalf for evaluation.
All Veteran Students and Those Using VA Benefits
APUS requires most students who are veterans or who use veteran’s benefits to pay for tuition to review, sign and submit a Veteran Student Acknowledgement prior to enrolling in courses. The Acknowledgment serves as affirmation that, in accordance with the Principles of Excellence and statutory requirements, the student has been provided information, and the opportunity to ask questions, regarding education benefits that may potentially be available to them. Veterans who are enrolling in doctoral programs are exempt from this requirement.
One of the criteria for approval of any school for Veterans' training is that the school reviews prior credit and grants credit as appropriate toward a veteran student's current program (see 38 C.F.R. §§ 21.4253(d)(3), 21.4254(c)(4)). Schools must evaluate prior credit, grant credit as appropriate, notify the student of the evaluation, and shorten the program certified accordingly. Whenever a student initially enrolls at APUS or changes programs at APUS, a credit evaluation must be completed. Credit evaluations are not completed for doctoral level programs.
All veteran and military students will have a Joint Services Transcript (JST) automatically requested on their behalf. Community College of the Air Force transcripts will be requested on the student’s behalf upon submission of a Transcript Release Authorization (TRA) form. Students who are using or plan to use Veterans Benefits at APUS must disclose all instances of prior credit received, per Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) regulations.
Notwithstanding the above:
- Students in a certificate program will disclose prior credits earned to their Admissions Representative who will determine if prior credit can be applied toward the program.
- Students in the Courses for Transfer program (i.e., Undergraduate Individual Courses program) will not have prior credits evaluated until a program of study is declared. Students who have not declared a major cannot be certified for VA benefits beyond their sophomore year and only general education courses can be certified prior to the declaration of a major.
- Graduate level students with no prior graduate level credits are not required to submit a transcript for credit evaluation.
Active, reserve or national guard Army students will also be required by the Army to create an Army IgnitED account. In order for us to create the required student agreement plan, students will need to have their tuition assistance approved, and will also need to submit a Transfer Credit (TCE) Application, even if they have never taken any prior college courses.
Air Force Students
Active or reserve Air Force students will need to submit a Transfer Credit (TCE) Application and their CCAF transcript to us, even if they have never taken any prior college courses. The Air Force requires this in order for us to create the student agreement plan needed for tuition assistance approval.
Undergraduate Admission with Prior College
Individuals must have earned a high school diploma or its equivalent in order to enroll in an undergraduate program at APUS. If an individual applies to enroll in one of our undergraduate degrees and has also taken some college courses at an accredited university without yet earning a bachelor’s degree, the individual will be considered a transfer student and will be required to submit a Transfer Credit (TCE) Application. If enrolling in an undergraduate certificate program, the individual will not be required to submit the TCE Application but may do so if they believe they have college credit that could apply towards their certificate program here at APUS.
Master's and Graduate Certificate Admission
Individuals must have already earned a bachelor degree or higher. The degree must have been conferred by an institution whose accreditation is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) or the U.S. Department of Education (ED). The CHEA’s database or ED’s database may be used to verify if a college’s accreditation will be accepted. If individuals have prior graduate credit, they may submit a TCE Application to have credit evaluated toward their degree, but it is not required.
APUS may verify information that individuals submit, including information provided in the application for admission. APUS may request additional documentation for purposes of verifying information submitted to it or for other purposes, and individuals will be required to respond within a specified deadline to these requests to avoid being denied admission. If APUS determines that information submitted is inaccurate or false or if APUS is unable to verify the accuracy of information submitted, individuals may be denied admission, denied registration in additional courses, and/or expelled from APUS, as applicable.
If an individual is denied admission or expelled due to inability to verify information on the original student application, they will be unable to register for courses and will be withdrawn from all courses in which they are currently registered. If they have been awarded a financial aid package, including Pell Grants and Direct Loans, such financial aid may be adjusted based on the percentage of the semester completed. Please refer to the Federal Student Aid section for more information on the Return of Federal Financial Aid Funds process. For more information regarding general admission requirements, students may contact us at [email protected].
Denial of Admission
To protect its character and standards and in furtherance of its mission, APUS reserves the right to deny or revoke admission to any applicant or student for the following reasons:
- APUS determines that an application or admission forms, documents, or materials contain or appear to contain false, fraudulent, or incomplete statements.
- APUS determines that an individual has communicated information to APUS that constitutes a misrepresentation, fraud, or potential fraud with respect to any matter.
- APUS determines that unresolved discrepancies exist with respect to the individual’s application or admission materials or information.
- APUS determines that information submitted in support of establishing identity or previous education is false, or APUS is unable to verify the accuracy of information submitted after having provided multiple opportunities for the individual to supply the requested documentation.
- APUS determines that the individual does not meet applicable admissions requirements for a program.
- APUS determines that denial or revocation of admission is otherwise in the best interest of APUS or the individual.