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Business and Policy Areas
Business and Policy Areas

DoD Posts Clarification of MOU Provisions

October 21, 2011

The Department of Defense has posted an annotated version of its new Memorandum of Understanding for institutions that wish to participate in its Voluntary Education Program after January 1. The clarifications are intended to explain DoD intent and allay the concerns raised by a number of institutions with provisions in the MOU. According to its attorneys, DoD is not free to make changes to the language of the MOU itself without going through a further rulemaking process.
Topics addressed in the clarification include:

  • Membership in the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges Consortium (not required)
  • Accepting transfer credits (decision rests with institution)
  • One single tuition rate (for all branches of service, other differences understood)
  • Course enrollment information (DoD will get appropriate FERPA release, institutions should check security issues with appropriate service)
  • Educational plans (for first enrollment, plan from catalog will suffice)
  • Changes to educational plans (catalog-based tracking of academic requirements for cohorts of students would suffice)
  • Tuition Assistance applied before Pell (not intended as policy change, but to ensure maximum benefit to students)
  • Refundable tuition and fees (to ensure military tuition and fees are included in institution refund policy)
  • Fee structure (understand that public institutions may not have control over when tuition and fees are set, waiver should be requested)
  • Accepting government-issued credit cards (waiver may be negotiated if institution does not accept credit cards for any tuition and fee payments, but other payments may take six months)
  • Army Letter of Instruction (institutions may continue to participate in GoArmyEd as non-LOI schools under existing or newly negotiated agreements)

Institutions are encouraged to discuss these clarifications with their counsel in deciding whether to sign the MOU. Those that decide not to sign should so advise any current students as soon as possible to enable them to make informed future plans.


Anne Gross
Vice President, Regulatory Affairs