Thank you for joining us for another edition of our career changer’s blog. Here you can find everything you need to make an informed decision about the next step of your career. Today, we are going to cover the Credentialing Assistance program for Active-Duty Army servicemembers.

What is Credentialing Assistance?

Credentialing Assistance (CA) is the Army’s name for the DOD COOL program. There is a COOL program for each military branch as well as for DOD civilians. These programs are designed to provide funding for certifications and credentialing to transitioning service members. CA or COOL programs offer up to $4000 per fiscal year. Military members must be active duty to receive funding. These funds are separate from Tuition Assistance (TA) which is only usable for degree programs. The emphasis for CA is on acquiring industry-standardized certification for the purpose of immediate employment after separation.

At Training Concepts, we offer the following class options for students that are utilizing CA:

Pick Two:
  • PMI – Agile Certified Practitioner
  • PMI – PMP
  • Microsoft Outlook 365 MOS
  • Microsoft Excel Analyst MOS
  • CompTIA A+ Hardware 1001 OR A+ Software 1002
  • CompTIA Network+
  • CompTIA Security+
  • Lean Six Sigma Green Belt
  • Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt
  • ITIL v4 Foundations
  • CompTIA Cloud+
  • CompTIA Cloud Essentials
  • CompTIA Linux+
  • CompTIA IT Fundamentals+
  • SHRM CP/SHRM-SCP
Pick One:
  • CompTIA A+ Hardware 1001 AND A+ Software 1002
  • Cisco Certified Network Associate
  • Lean Six Sigma Black Belt
  • Certified Ethical Hacker
  • CISSP OR CISM
  • CompTIA CASP OR CySA+

3 Important Things to Keep in Mind

  1. Credentialing Assistance can provide funding for certification exams, but they require you to repay the cost of the exam if you do not pass it; a good alternative to this may be the GI Bill Reimbursement program, with which you can be reimbursed for the cost of your certification exams by only spending a few days from your GI Bill benefit. There is no repayment penalty for failing your exam. We do not recommend funding the exam fee with Credentialing Assistance.
  2. Credentialing Assistance can only be applied to classes at least 30 days from the date of application.
  3. Commissioned officers do incur a service commitment for utilizing Credentialing Assistance: Commissioned Officers (CW2, 2LT, and above) may use CA only if the officer agrees to serve a military service obligation, in accordance with current TA requirements. The CA military Service obligation commences on the ending date of each class for which CA was approved. **Officers using CA for testing or recertification (only) of a credential will not incur a service obligation.

Please visit the Credentialing Assistance FAQ page if you have further questions regarding the above.

How to Apply

You can apply for Credentialing Assistance through ArmyIgnitED. Here is the official Army Soldier CA Process Guide for your reference. Below, we’ll include Training Concepts specific steps.

  1. Go to ArmyIgnitED and create or log in with your CAC, DOD, or Login.gov account.
  2. Select the option that says “Other” instead of MOS/AOC/ASI.
  3. When you are searching for the credential that you would like to pursue, type in the provider’s name “Training Concepts” to filter out credentials not offered by TC. **This is an important step – many CA students have erroneously registered for an incorrect training provider by accident.
  4. Choose the credential(s) for which you would like to receive funding. If you wish to choose from our Pick Two course list, do not select the exam: just the training courses. If you do want to take one course and have the exam covered by CA (see above – 3 Important Things to Keep in Mind), then you will have to repeat this process for the exam separately from the course.
  5. Upload your signed registration form when prompted for an invoice or billing statement from the training provider. If you do not have a signed registration, contact us.
  6. Submit your application, and you’re done! Requests will be processed within 30 days.