Academic Credit for Military Service and Training

Reference Number: S16-031
Senate Approval Date: Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Presidential Approval Date: 
Monday, February 29, 2016
Archival Information: 



San Francisco State University is committed to helping active duty members of the military and veterans of military service attain their educational goals. Therefore, San Francisco State University grants college credit for applicable military experience.

All CSU campuses use the Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experience in the Armed Services and the National Guide to Educational Credit for Training Programs recommendations to determine appropriate units allowed. 



Student Affairs Committee: a standing committee of the San Francisco State University Academic Senate.

Responsible Unit

The San Francisco State University Office of Undergraduate Admissions initially assists students with transfer credits and determines the student’s class level and admission eligibility.

Respective academic units shall assist further in accordance with Executive Order #1036 titled Systemwide Admission Eligibility and/or Baccalaureate Credit Awarded for External Examinations, Experiential Learning, and Instruction in Non-Collegiate Settings.



S16-031: Version 1, Approved 2/23/2016



Table of Contents

I. Purpose

II. Rational

III. Eligibility

IV. Necessary Identification and Documentation

V. Type and Quantity of Units Allowed

VI. Other Benefits



  1. Purpose

SF State grants undergraduate degree credit for successful completion of non-collegiate instruction, either military or civilian, as recommended by the Commission on Educational Credit and Credentials of the American Council on Education. The number of units allowed are those recommended in the Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experience in the Armed Services and the National Guide to Educational Credit for Training Programs.

  1. Rationale

This policy is written to replace the previous policy and bring the current practice and policy into agreement.

  1. Eligibility
  1. The Veterans Administration determines eligibility as to whether students are a veteran or dependent. Students can contact the VA directly at 1-888-442-4551 for any federal educational benefits questions.
  2. To acquire academic credit for military service at San Francisco State University, students must:
    1. be continuing students who are veterans or members of the U.S. armed forces AND have served at least one year of active duty service.
    2. be active duty personnel, veterans, or reservists
  1. Necessary Identification and Documentation
  1. Joint Service Transcripts (Army, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard)
  2. Community College of the Air Force transcript
  3. DD-214
  1. Type and Quantity of Units Allowed
  1. Six semester units of elective credit are awarded for at least one year in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, or Coast Guard.
  2. Three of these units can be used to complete Area E: Lifelong Learning Development (LLD) of the San Francisco State University General Education Program.
  3. San Francisco State University also awards credit for College Level Education Program (CLEP) subject examinations in multiple disciplines. A list of the required scores in each discipline is included in the San Francisco State University Bulletin:
  4. Credit may also be awarded for Defense Activities in Nontraditional Education Support (DANTES) up to a maximum of 24 semester units.
  5. Purely technical lower division coursework may not receive baccalaureate credit.
  6. For information regarding the requirements of faculty and academic units to consider awarding credits, see CSU Executive Order 1036. The following articles are noteworthy:
    1. Article 2.3, titled Verification and Evaluation of Learning, Knowledge, or Skills Acquired through Experience, states, “If campus policy permits award of such credit, the experience must be verified through written examinations, portfolios, personal interviews, demonstrations, and/or other appropriate means of documentation and must be evaluated in accord with legitimate academic standards by faculty who are competent in the appropriate disciplines. Supporting information may be supplied by a field supervisor and/or employer.”
    2. Article 3.1.A states, “Completion of formal instruction in non-collegiate settings, (either civilian or military) as recommended by the American Council on Education publication Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services.”
  7. The American Council on Education (ACE) provides a Military Guide to assist faculty & academic units in the evaluation of military transcripts. That Military Guide can be found on their website:
  1. Other Benefits

Per CSU Chancellor’s Troops to College program, students will be given first-day priority registration starting their 2nd semester whether or not they receive VA educational benefits and while they remain a matriculated or continuing student (this benefit does not extend to registration through College of Extended Learning).

Signed Memo: