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General FAQ's


General Answers

Q:Can I start my program at any time?

Students can enroll at Thomas Edison State University at any time by applying to the University. To apply, the Sailor would complete the Navy College Program Distance Learning Partnership (NCPDLP) application either online or by via mail or fax. A $75 fee is required at the point of application. After acceptance, the student will receive an academic program evaluation outlining how previous college level credit and military training has been applied to degree requirements.

New terms begin each month, 12 times a year. Students register by phone, fax or email according to the registration periods outlined in the registration bulletin that students receive upon acceptance to the University. When registering, students must also submit their tuition assistance form to the Office of the Registrar.

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Q:Will I be assigned an advisor, and will I be able to communicate with that person on a regular basis?

Although we do not assign students to a specific advisor, Thomas Edison State University has a long-standing tradition of providing academic advisement to students at a distance. We have a comprehensive advisement center staffed with professional advisors who specialize in one of our degree programs. The hallmark of our program is the program plan. All Navy College students will be provided with an academic program evaluation when they apply to the University. With this evaluation the student will work with an advisor to develop a program plan which maps out the courses, exams and military training they need to complete their remaining degree requirements. This program plan will also help the student develop a timeline for completion of their degree.

Students can access advisement services in a variety or ways. Many of our military students choose to use email as their primary form of contact with our advisors. Students can email their questions at a convenient time for them twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week without concern for time zones or daytime hours. The advisors can then thoroughly research the questions and provide a personalized response to the student. In addition, we have a toll-free contact center available to students from 8:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. EST Monday -Friday. Students may also schedule an appointment with an academic advisor in their degree program during the hours of 7:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Friday who specializes in his or her area of study. Some students mail or fax their questions as well. By allowing this multitude of methods to receive advisement, students can choose what is most comfortable and convenient for them.  We also encourage students to use our Web site as a resource for self-assessment, frequently asked questions, and direction on resources which will assist in their degree completion.

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Q:How much of the degree has to be taken through a partnership school to meet residency requirements?

Students must complete at least twelve (12) credit hours toward an associates degree at Thomas Edison State University and 24 credit hours toward a bachelors degree to meet our residency requirements for the Navy College Program Distance Learning Partnership.

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Q:Will courses from other colleges transfer into your partnership school degree plan?

Courses taken at SOC member institutions are fully transferable as appropriate to the selected program of study. In addition, Thomas Edison State University will accept in transfer all courses applicable to a selected degree program providing that credit is earned at an institution accredited by one of the following regional accrediting agencies:

  • Commission on Institutions of Higher Education: Commission on Technical and Career Institutions, New England Association of Schools and Colleges
  • Commission on Higher Education: Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Commission on Institutions of Higher Education: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Commission on Colleges: Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges
  • Commission on Colleges: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and University: Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges

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Q:How will courses be delivered?

Courses are delivered in a wide variety of ways that are designed around the unique needs of service members. Learn more.

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Q:Is there a placement test?

No. There are no placement tests required to be admitted to the Navy College Program Distance Learning Partnership (NCPDLP).

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Q:Do you have study guides for the courses offered?

All course materials, including books, electronic media (videos, DVD, CD-ROM, etc.), and course manuals are distributed through MBS Direct. Students can purchase their materials by Internet, phone, fax or mail. Students have options in how these materials are sent that include priority mail and UPS ground, 2nd day, and next day. Students receive information on the name and office hours of their course mentor one week prior to the start of the term.

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Q:Do I have to own a computer to take part in a distance learning program?

Students are not required to use a computer for distance learning unless they plan to take online courses or Guided Study with e-mail.

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Q:Does your school accept credits from foreign institutions?

International Credit Evaluations
The University will accept credit recommendations from a required course-by-course evaluation completed by any of the following agencies:

Academic Credentials Evaluation Institute, Inc.

Center for Applied Research, Evaluations & Education, Inc.

Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. (ECE)

World Educational Services, Inc. (WES)

SDR Educational Consultants

SpanTran Evaluation Services

Transcript Research

All costs associated with the international credit evaluation are the responsibility of the student. The College reserves the right to make its own determination on the amount and type of credit to be awarded based on the evaluations provide by these agencies. Students may select one of the evaluations prepared on their behalf by one of the agencies identified above. There will be no mixing and matching of evaluations. Only courses with a grade of C or better, or “Pass” for pass/fail courses will be accepted in transfer.


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Q:Can I take CLEP and other tests for credit toward a degree?

Thomas Edison State University has no limit on the acceptance of credit by examination and recognized DANTES, CLEP and Regents College Examinations. In addition the University offers examinations for credit through its TECEP® program.

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Q:Can I continue my degree while at sea?

Yes. Guided Study courses can be completed while at sea. Sailors will need to request their exams be sent before they depart so they are on file with the Test Control Officer (TCO) when they are ready to take them.

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Q:How many courses can I take at a time?

Distance education courses are very demanding and require at least as much time and commitment as a classroom based course. Students may take no more than 12 semester hours at a time, without special permissions from the Academic Dean of the University and are recommended to begin with no more than 6 semester hours.

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Q:Will tuition assistance cover the costs for this type of study?

Yes, tuition assistance will cover all Thomas Edison State University courses. You must submit your completed tuition assistance form with your course registration.

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Q:How do I apply for grants and/or financial aid?

To apply for financial aid, students must complete:

    A Thomas Edison State University Application for Financial Aid and return it to:
    Office of Financial Aid
    101 West State Street
    Trenton, NJ 08608

    A Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and mail it to:
    Federal Student Aid Programs
    PO Box 4008
    Mt. Vernon, IL 62864-8608

Learn more.

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Q:Does the University offer scholarships to military and family members?

Thomas Edison State University has several scholarship programs available.  Learn more.

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Q:How do I use my VA benefits?

To use your VA benefits, you must establish your eligibility by completing VA Form 22-1990, "Application for Education Benefits", or if you have previously attended College and received veterans' benefits, it is necessary that you complete VA Form 22-1995, "Request for Change of Program or Place of Training".  Learn more.

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Q:Does the student pay in-state or out-of-state fees?

Students in enrolled in the Navy College Program Distance Learning Partnership pay from a special tuition schedule only for students enrolled in the partnership that cover all non-nursing undergraduate degree programs. Students enrolling in any nursing programs or any master's degree programs will pay nursing or graduate tuition rates. Learn more.

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