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Principles of Excellence program

The Principles of Excellence program requires schools that get federal funding through the GI Bill and other programs to follow certain guidelines. Learn about these guidelines.

Summary of costs

Your school must give you a written personal summary of the total cost of your educational program. This summary must include these items: 

  • Costs covered by your benefits
  • Financial aid you may qualify for
  • Your expected student-loan debt after you graduate
  • Other information to help you compare aid packages at different schools

Other guidelines 

Schools must also follow these guidelines:

  • Give you an educational plan that shows how and when you can fulfill all graduation requirements
  • Assign you a point of contact for academic and financial advice, including access to disability counseling
  • Allow active-duty service members and Reservists to take time off to fulfill their service obligations
  • Make sure all new programs are accredited (officially approved) before enrolling students
  • Make sure their refund policies follow Title IV rules
  • End fraudulent and aggressive methods of recruiting

Find out which schools follow the guidelines

You can use the GI Bill Comparison Tool to learn which schools are part of the Principles of Excellence program. You can also compare benefits available at different schools.

Use the GI Bill Comparison Tool

These types of schools don’t need to follow the Principles of Excellence guidelines:

  • Foreign schools
  • High schools
  • On-the-job training and apprenticeship programs
  • Residency and internship programs
  • Schools that don’t charge tuition and fees