College Planning for Military Families

Our tools and resources on BigFuture can guide military families through the college planning process.

Services for Military-Connected Students

The Military Child Education Coalition (MCEC) is a nonprofit organization that offers programs, services, and professional development to assist military families and educators. MCEC supports all military-connected students by addressing education challenges associated with the military lifestyle. Learn about MCEC’s programs and services.

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The Big Picture with BigFuture

It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you think of everything you need to do to plan for college. BigFuture, our online college planning website, can help you make important college decisions, one step at a time.

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Finding a College That Fits

Military families don’t often have a lot of say as to where they live from one year to the next. Not so with college! There are thousands of colleges and universities to choose from, and you get to decide where you apply and where you enroll. BigFuture features articles, interactive tools, and interviews with real college students that will help you think about your college options and apply to schools that fit you well—academically, financially, and socially.

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Paying for College

Multiple moving days can result in extra expenses for military families and less money for college. Thankfully, there are lots of scholarships, financial aid, and savings plans to help you continue your education. BigFuture has practical, easy-to-understand information to help you manage your college costs. You’ll also find tips and resources that make it easier for anyone to plan for college.

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College Credit Opportunities

With AP and CLEP, you can reduce the amount of time and money you’ll need to spend at college to earn a degree—no matter where or how many times you move.

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AP for Students

Nearly all U.S. colleges and universities (and many others worldwide) give you college credit for qualifying AP Exam scores. This means you’ll have fewer credits to earn (and pay for) once you’re in college. If your school doesn’t offer AP, talk to your school counselor about taking AP courses online.

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CLEP for Everyone

College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) exams allow anyone to earn college credit for what they already know at a fraction of the cost of the corresponding college course. There are 34 subjects to choose from, and free online refresher courses to help sharpen your skills.

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Find a CLEP Test Center

You can take CLEP exams at over 2,000 test centers around the world—including many on military bases. Our search tool will help you find the on-base test center nearest you.


Anyone thinking about going to college should take the SAT. It’s accepted at every U.S. college, and it can help you qualify for scholarships.

Free Online Practice for the SAT

Whether on base or off, you can get ready to succeed on the SAT with Official SAT Practice on Khan Academy®. It’s the only SAT study plan directly connected to College Board.

Benefits of Official SAT Practice

  • It’s free.
  • It’s accessible anywhere there’s an internet connection.
  • It provides personalized SAT study plans based on previous test scores or online quizzes.
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Find an SAT Test Center

We’ve set up SAT test centers around the world to make it easier for you to take the SAT, qualify for scholarships, and get into college. Once you find a test center, you can register online. Bonus: If you qualify for an SAT fee waiver, you can take the test for free.