Subject to subsection (b), an educational assistance program established under section 2141 of this title shall provide for payment by the Secretary concerned of educational expenses incurred for instruction at an accredited institution by a person entitled to such assistance under this chapter. Expenses for which payment may be made under this section include tuition, fees, books, laboratory fees, and shop fees for consumable materials used as part of classroom or laboratory instruction. Payments under this section shall be limited to those educational expenses normally incurred by students at the institution involved.
The Secretary concerned shall establish the amount of educational assistance for a standard academic year (or the equivalent) to which a person becomes entitled under this chapter at the time of an enlistment described in section 2142 of this title. Depending on the needs of the service, different amounts may be established for different categories of persons or enlistments. The amount of educational assistance to which any person is entitled shall be adjusted in accordance with section 2145 of this title.
The amount of educational assistance which may be provided to any person for a standard academic year (or the equivalent) may not exceed $1,200, adjusted in accordance with section 2145 of this title.
In this section, the term “accredited institution” means a civilian college or university or a trade, technical, or vocational school in the United States (including the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands) that provides education at the postsecondary level and that is accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency or association or by an accrediting agency or association recognized by the Secretary of Education.