(a)Payments of educational assistance are usually based on pursuit of a program of education. In order to receive educational assistance under 38 U.S.C. chapter 30, a veteran or servicemember must—
(1) Be pursuing an approved program of education;
(2) Be pursuing refresher or deficiency courses;
(3) Be pursuing other preparatory or special education or training courses necessary to enable the veteran or servicemember to pursue an approved program of education;
(4) Have taken an approved licensing or certification test, for which he or she is requesting reimbursement; or
(5) Be an individual who has taken a course for which the individual received tuition assistance provided under a program administered by the Secretary of a military department under 10 U.S.C. 2007(a) or (c), for which the individual is requesting tuition assistance top-up.
(b)Approval of a program of education. VA will approve a program of education under 38 U.S.C. chapter 30 that a veteran or servicemember selects if:
(1) It meets the definition of a program of education found in § 21.7020(b)(23);
(2) Except for a program consisting of a licensing or certification test, has an objective as described in § 21.7020(b)(13) or (22);
(3) The courses, subjects, or licensing or certification tests in the program are approved for VA training; and
(4) Except for a program consisting of a licensing or certification test designed to help the veteran or servicemember maintain employment in a vocation or profession, the veteran or servicemember is not already qualified for the objective of the program.