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VA Education Benefits User Checklist

How to Use Your VA Benefits

Follow the steps below to get started with using your VA education benefits. 

If you get stuck or need additional guidance, we are here to help! Contact the Military and Veterans Programs (MVP) office at mvp@pikespeak.edu. Please include your student number (S#) each time you email us.

You are responsible for understanding how your benefits work. For the most current information, or a status check on your payments, contact VA directly at www.gibill.va.gov or 1.888.442.4551.

How to use your VA Education Benefit

As a VA Benefits user, much of what you will have to do is accomplished through the VA. Check your eligibility for certain benefits, and then submit your VA Education Benefits application. 

How to apply with VA

College Opportunity Fund (COF) is a tuition discount provided by the State of Colorado. As a PPSC student, you should authorize or decline COF each semester. 

If you are a veteran using Chapter 31 VR&E, you must apply for and authorize COF. Otherwise, you will be responsible for a portion of your tuition bill. 

If you identified as a veteran or active duty service member on your admission application, you should be eligible to receive COF, regardless of what state you are currently located in. 

How to apply for and Authorize COF

All students using VA education benefits for the first time at PPSC are required to attend a VA Education Benefits Briefing. 

We know that starting college and also navigating the VA education benefits process can be stressful and sometimes frustrating. To help alleviate this, we have developed briefings for students using VA education benefits at PPSC for the first time. 

This is an opportunity to provide you with valuable information regarding the support services PPSC provides and help guide you through the transition to college student.

View Available Times and Register

You must submit your Certification Request Form (CRF) through your myPikesPeak Portal in order to use your benefits.

How to submit your CRF

If you have attended college before, request an official transcript be sent to PPSC from your previous school. This will ensure that you get credit for the classes you've already completed, and will help place you in the right level of math and English courses. 

Joint Service Transcripts will be requested, evaluated, and applied on your behalf  automatically. 

Send Transcripts to PPSC

If you do not have previous college credits, you can take placement tests to help place you in the right level of math and English courses. 

Note: If you need developmental courses, the VA will not pay for them without a placement test on file. Learn more about required placement testing for developmental courses

Schedule a placement test

Academic Advisors can discuss programs that match your goals, identify transfer options, develop academic plans and evaluate unofficial transcripts.

MVP Staff can help with understanding course registration but are not trained as academic advisors.

Learn more about Advising

After you have completed the above steps, you will be ready to register for classes! An academic advisor can help you register, or you can browse our on-demand resources for additional support. 

Learn more about registering for classes

Even if you are using military benefits, you may be eligible for other financial aid programs to help cover the costs that your benefits don't cover, or to give you additional money for your education that you can use on books, supplies, technology, and other costs. 

Financial aid begins with submitting your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). After your FAFSA is complete, you may qualify for grants, loans, work study, and/or scholarships to supplement your military benefits. 

Apply for Financial Aid

PPSC has many scholarship opportunities available to students, and there are also some military and veteran specific scholarships you may qualify for. Scholarships are money that you do not have to pay back, and they can also be used to supplement your military benefits. 

Browse PPSC Scholarships

Browse Scholarships for Military and Veteran Students

VUB can assist qualified veterans with transition assistance, developmental classes, tutoring and more. 

Learn More about VUB

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Attendance Verification

Students using the following benefits will receive a text or email from the VA at the end of each month, and must respond to verify attendance in order to continue receiving payments: 

  • Chapter 30
  • Chapter 33
  • Chapter 35 (if pursing a certificate)
  • Chapter 1606

Download instructions and additional information on the VA's enrollment verification requirements. 

Important Reminders about your benefits

Classes the VA Will Pay For

The VA only pays for courses that are applicable to your program of study. The VA only pays for developmental courses (numbered 0001 to 0099) if: a placement test score is included in the student record that justifies the need, and the method of instruction is 100% classroom based.

How the VA Pays

For CH31 and CH33: Tuition and fees are sent directly to PPSC. Housing, books, or monthly allowance/subsistence are given to the student. Note: If the military member is still active duty, there is no monthly housing allowance for the spouse or the service member. For CH30, CH35, and CH1606: All payments are sent to the student, and you are responsible for paying PPSC.


 Instructional Methods and Your CH31 or CH33 Benefits

When registering for courses, it is important to keep in mind that we report instructional methods to the VA based on the chart below.

Being enrolled in all "online" courses will reduce your monthly housing allowance to 50% of the national average.
Instructional Method Navigate Display Reported to VA As
CL - Classroom Based On-Campus: In-person On-Campus
HY - Hybrid  Hybrid On-Campus
CB - Competency Based Competency Based On-Campus
HL - Hyflex with Lab Live: Remote with in-person lab On-Campus
WC - Webcast Global Delivery  On-Campus
ON - Online Online Online
RM - Remote Real-Time Live: Remote Only Online
RH - Remote Hybrid Live: Remote/Online Hybrid Online
HF - Hyflex Live: Remote or In-person Online*

*Under certain conditions we might be able to report Hyflex as on-campus. Email us for more information if you are considering a Hyflex class: mvp@pikespeak.edu

Important Exception:

Developmental education courses (math and English college-prep courses like that typically start with a 0, like MATH 0085) must be 100% classroom based. The VA will not pay for developmental education courses under any other instructional method. 


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Helpful Tip: Your PPSC Email

This is the primary way we contact you. You will receive access to your Pikes Peak State student email via your student portal after you are registered for courses.

Full-Time vs. Part-Time Enrollment and Your Benefits

The amount that your benefits will pay out depends on the number of classes you are enrolled in. 

For fall and spring semester, VA considers full-time enrollment to be 12 credit hours. For summer semester, 7 credit hours is considered full-time. 

To receive the full benefit, you must be considered full-time for the entire semester. 

View the chart below to understand how your enrollment level might impact your benefit amount. 



CH31 & CH33

CH30, CH35, and CH1606


Full housing/subsistence allowance with one in-person course. This amount is greatly reduced if you are taking all online courses.

Monthly rate based on number of credits you're enrolled in and the amount of the month you're enrolled. View the rate tables for the most accurate information:

More than Half-Time

Prorated monthly housing/subsistence amount.

Monthly rate based on number of credits you're enrolled in and the amount of the month you're enrolled. View the rate tables for the most accurate information:

At or Below Half-Time

Only tuition and fees paid, no housing/subsistence allowance. 

Monthly rate based on number of credits you're enrolled in and the amount of the month you're enrolled. View the rate tables for the most accurate information:

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Need help?

Not sue where to start or need some additional support? We are here to help! If you have not found what you are looking for, contact MVP or return to our home page.