Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) Guide.

Everything you need to know about the MOD’s Enhanced Learning Credits Scheme & ELCAS.

Introduction.

We think that most Service Leavers and Veterans would agree that leaving the Armed Forces can be extremely challenging. There’s so many things to consider and a mountain of decisions to make.

Now, unless you’re lucky enough to retire you’ll need to decide what you would like your second career to be.

Once you’ve made your decision there’re no doubt that you’ll need to take advantage of the MOD’s Enhanced Learning Credit Scheme and acquire some civilian qualifications to bolster your CV ready for landing your perfect new job.

There’s no denying that just like Standard Learning Credits, the Enhanced Learning Credit Scheme is an amazing asset but why is it that only a small percentage of service personnel use their ELC entitlement before their resettlement?  Here’s the absolute tragedy, why do most service leavers only use one of their three allocations, deciding not to use the other two once they’ve left?

From personal experience and speaking to hundreds of Armed Forces Service Leavers and Veterans, the answer is quite clear. The amount of paperwork, planning and communication that is required to use your Enhanced Learning Credits prevents most people from doing so, paticularly as a Veteran when there’s a disconnect.

We believe that more needs to be done to simplify the entire process and give our Armed Forces, Service Leavers and Veterans easier access to the ELC scheme.

We realise that change take time and until then we’ve created this ultimate guide to help you navigate your way through the Enhanced Learning Credit Scheme, answering your questions and giving you everything you that need to know, based on real experience so you can make the most of what you’re entitled to.

Am I eligible to use the ELC Scheme?

The Enhanced Learning Credit Scheme has two tiers: the lower and higher tier, each with its own set of eligibility requirements.

Lower tier.

  • Must be used for a National Framework Qualification (NFQ) Level 3 course or above.
  • The lower tier of funding can be used to cover 80% of the course cost up to £1,000 per claim.
  • You’re entitled to make three ELC claims in total.
  • You can only make one ELC claim per financial year (1st April – 31st March).
  • You must’ve completed 6 years of eligible service but read please JSP 822 if you’ve completed 4 years of eligible service before 1st April 2017.
  • If you’ve served between 6 & 8 years, you may be eligible to aggregate all three lower-tier claims together.
  • Only service accumulated since 1st April 2000 is counted as eligible service to make an ELC claim.

Higher tier.

  • Must be used for a National Framework Qualification (NFQ) Level 3 course or above.
  • The higher tier of funding can be used to cover 80% of the course cost up to £2,000 per claim.
  • You’re entitled to make three ELC claims in total.
  • You can only make one ELC claim per financial year (1st April – 31st March).
  • You must’ve completed 8 years of eligible service.
  • Only service accumulated since 1st April 2000 is counted as eligible service to make an ELC claim.

If you’re unsure about anything at all or what to learn about eligibility criteria in more detail, please consult JSP 822 and your single service representative via the contact details below.

How do I use the ELC scheme?

The steps below cover what needs to be done to use the MOD enhanced Learning Credit scheme, we’ll cover some things to consider when making a claim further on in the guide.

Step 1

Make sure that you’re a registered Scheme Member and have met either the higher or lower tier eligibility criteria detailed above.

Step 2

If you are still serving, you need to speak to your Education Staff or if you’re a service leavers you should contact your Single Service Representative (contact details below). Appropriate checks will be done and you’ll be issued with your account.

Step 3

Once you have an account, search for an ELCAS approved training provider and course, then simply log in to your account and submit your claim.

Step 4

Make sure you complete your course evaluation when requested to do so as it can prevent you from making further ELC claims if you don’t.

How do I choose an ELC training provider?

Choosing a training provider can be tricky and there’s so many to choose from. You’ll want to make sure that you’re getting the best possible learning experience that will set you up for success.

You’ll need to make sure that the training provider you use is ELCAS approved, but please don’t use this alone as a measurement of how good they are because there are certainly some questionable approved providers out there.

We recommend that you do your own research by speaking to other service leavers and people you trust but remember that their experience may be limited to just one training provider and might not be able to offer a comparison. You could look through some (real) reviews or even give them a call but nothing’s better than visiting the provider in person and seeing things for yourself.

BaselineUK has independently reviewed hundreds of providers to compile a list of recommended training providers that meet our extremely high standards, so click the button below to learn more.

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How do I choose an ELC training course?

Choosing the right resettlement training course can either be a straightforward decision or a minefield depending upon what it is that you’re trying to achieve. I’ll use project management as an example because it’s such a wide and varied profession that’s extremely popular among Armed Forces Service Leavers.

Once you’ve decided that becoming a project manager is something that you’d like to do, it’s time to consider what industry you want to work in because the methodology used within engineering for example will differ from that in the IT industry meaning you should choose the appropriate project management qualifications.

We recommend that you do your research by speaking to people that already work in the industry you plan to work in in order to find out what’s the best courses you can do. You might learn that there are several qualifications you need but that shouldn’t put you off as most ELCAS approved training providers will often allow you to create a training package by combing several courses, that’ll help you make the most of your ELC funding.

When researching your resettlement training courses, try to do so with the awarding body of the qualification you stand to gain instead of directly with the training provider, this way you’ll get all the facts without the sales pitch.

Our final piece of advice and probably the most important is that you should ensure that the specific courses that you would like to do are ELCAS approved and don’t assume that just because the training provider that you want to do the course through is approved that the course is too, you can find this out easily on the ELCAS website.

BaselineUK have reveiwed hundreds of resettlement training courses and qualifications that are industry recognised and ELCAS approved, just click the button below to learn more.

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How do I make an ELC claim?

Making an Enhanced Learning Credit (ELC) claim can seem like a tricky process but if you follow the advice below then you should find it fairly straight forward.

Step 1

Ensure that you’re eligible to use the Enhanced Learning Credit scheme and that you have an account set up with ELCA to be able to make the claim.

Step 2

Ensure that the course and training provider you’ve chosen is still MOD approved as the list can change without notice.

Step 3

Submit your claim via your Single Service Representative (SSR) at least 25 working days prior to your course start date, we’ve provide the contact details below. Don’t forget to include the following information with your claim;

  • Evidence of your last day of service.
  • A copy of a utility bill that shows your address.
  • Completed course evaluations of any previous course if this isn’t your first claim.

Step 4

Once your claim has been accepted by ELCAS they will send you a Claim Authorisation Notice (CAN), this will need to be sent to your training provider. You can also now officially book your course and pay your 20% contribution towards the costs. Don’t forget that you can use your Individual Resettlement Training Costs (IRTC) grant to cover some or all of your 20% contribution.

Step 5

Start your course and remember to complete your evalution form when requested because it could prevent you from making another claim in the future.

What if things change?

It’s not very often that everything will go according to plan in life and the same can be said during resettlement. There’s so much to organise and align that things will occasionally go wrong and the need for amending or even cancelling a course and reinstating your ELC claim course may occur.

There are a few things to consider when amending or cancelling a course, particularly when you would like your ELC claim reinstated.

  • ELCAS will only consider reinstating your ELC claim if you have to withdraw from a course because of operational or compassionate circumstances.
  • ELCAS won’t consider reinstating your ELC claim if you withdraw from a course because you’re finding it too difficult or because it doesn’t meet your expectations.

The table below outlines what procedure should be followed in each circumstance, however, you should speak to your education staff or single service representative if you need further guidance.

Type of change Process to follow
Change of course start date (up to 3 months). Amendment.
Change of course start date (more than 3 months). Cancellation / Reinstatement.
Change of course end date. Ed staff / Line manager to agree.
Change of course costs. Amendment.
Change of course Cancellation / Reinstatement.
Change of training provider. Cancellation / Reinstatement.
Change of course code. Amendment.
Change or deletion of a course module. Amendment. *course must still meet eligibility criteria.

*Due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, until further notice, course start dates can be moved more than three months into the future via the amendment process.

Who can I contact about my ELC claim?

If there’s anything that you don’t understand or if you need support regarding Enhanced Learning Credits, you can speak with your Single Service Representative (SSR) using the contact details below.

If you’re still in service, it’s advised that you contact your local Individual Education and Resettlement Officer (IERO) or an authorised member of your education staff, just be aware that each service has there own and that it differs depending on where you’re located.

Armed Forces British Army ELC Enhanced Learning Credits Logo

Learning Credit Scheme Manager

Education Branch Zone 4, Floor 2, Army Personnel Services Group, Home Command
Ramillies Building, Army HQ
Monxton Road, Andover
SP11 8HJ

[email protected]

Armed Forces Royal Navy ELC Enhanced Learning Credits Logo

Portsmouth: [email protected]

West of England: [email protected]

North of England, Scotland and Northern Ireland: [email protected]

Royal Marines: [email protected]

Armed Forces Royal Air Force ELC Enhanced Learning Credits Logo

Learning Credits Administrator

Accreditation and Education Wing
HQ 22 Gp
Room 221B
Trenchard Hall
RAF College Cranwell
NG34 8HB

[email protected]

Frequently Asked Questions?

What’s the difference between the lower and higher tier of Enanced Learning Credits?

The difference is that the lower tier of funding can be used to cover 80% of the cost of a level three or above course up to the maximum of £1000.00, where as the higher tier is up to £2000.00 per ELC claim.

What tier of Enhanced Learning Credits can I claim?

You qualify for the lower tier if you have completed a minimum of four years service prior to 1st April 2017 or no less than 6 years if you enlisted after the 1st April 2013. To be eligible for the higher tier of Enhanced Learning Credits you must have completed more than 8 years eligible service.

How many Enhanced Learning Credits claims can I make?

You can make one ELC claim per financial year (1st April – 31st March) and you have three claims available for you to use in total.

Who signs my Enhanced Learning Credits claim form?

Service leavers and Veterans are required to have section five of their Enhanced Learning Credit form completed and signed by their Single Service Representative (SSR), we’ve provided their contact details above.

How do I cancel / amend my Enhanced Learning Credit claim?

There are several reasons why you might need to cancel or amend your Enhanced Learning Credits claim. Our table in the ‘What if things change?‘ section above explains things clearly but if you’re still unsure then get in touch with your Single Service Representative (SSR), we’ve provided their contact details in the ‘who can I contact about my ELC claim‘ section above.

Can I claim for a course that I’ve already paid for?

Unfortunately not, you can’t use an Enhanced Learning Credit claim retrospectively.

How do I choose the right learning provider?

Take a look at the section above called ‘How do I choose an ELC learning provider?‘ but above all we recommend that you take your time to do your research and remember, the learning provider must be MOD approved, you can check this on the ELCAS website.

How long do I have to use my Enhanced Learning Credits?

Due to a recent update of the Enhanced Learning Credit scheme, you can now submit your final claim before the 10th anniversary of your last day of service if you left before the 16th april 2016.

If you left on or after the 16th April then you only have 5 years from your last day of service to submit your final claim. If you were medically discharged then get in touch with your Single Service Representative (SSR).

ELC scheme updates and further information.

1st April 2021 -Enhanced Learning Credits, Further and Higher Education scheme changes for veterans.

Changes to the Enhanced Learning Credits, Further Education and Higher Education schemes came into effect from 30 March 2021.

Access to the ELC scheme and FEHE scheme has been extended to 10 years for veterans who left the Armed Forces between 1 April 2011 and 31 March 16 (both dates inclusive).

Veterans medically discharged on or after the 1 April 2011 and who receive a disablement pension under the War Pension Scheme, or a guaranteed income payment under the Armed Forces Compensation scheme, will have access to the ELC scheme and FEHE scheme for 10 years after discharge.

Veterans who left the Armed Forces on or after the 1 April 2016 will still have access to the ELC and FEHE scheme for 5 years after discharge.

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