Financial Aid Terms and Policies
- Scholarship Guidelines
- Students Rights and Responsibilities
- Return of Title IV Aid Policy and Procedures
- Satisfactory Academic Progress
- No formal scholarship application is required for new students to Bethel University, as the awards are determined from high school transcripts and SAT/ACT scores submitted with the application for admission. The highest composite score submitted prior to enrollment will be used.
- Prior to enrollment at Bethel University, if a scholarship is upgraded on the basis of an improved GPA or SAT/ACT scores, the lesser scholarship is dropped.
- Transfer student awards are determined by prior academic performance at an accredited college or university. Official transcripts from every institution previously attended should be sent directly from that institution to the Bethel University admission office.
- Only one academic scholarship/award may be received by a student in a given year. Renewal of the scholarship is automatic if the student is maintaining satisfactory academic progress. If satisfactory academic progress for continued enrollment is not being met, awards are lost at that time, not at the end of the academic year. Summer term credits and grades will be applicable in calculating scholarship eligibility.
- Awards are applied to direct tuition costs for traditional full-time undergraduate students only. In no case will the combination of scholarship and grant assistance (institutional, state and other tuition-restricted programs) exceed full-time (12-17 credit hours) tuition costs. If the total of tuition-restricted scholarships and grants exceed tuition costs, Bethel funding may be reduced to bring the total back to the direct tuition costs. Scholarships and grants are applied to the school bill first. Bethel funds may not be used for off-campus living expenses or textbooks.
- These awards may be used for a maximum of eight semesters of continuous full-time enrollment. A student is no longer eligible for Bethel funding if they drop below full-time enrollment.
- To continue receiving funding, students must maintain satisfactory academic progress to avoid being placed on financial aid suspension. Appeals for the loss of funding may be made to Bethel’s office of financial aid.
Students Rights and Responsibilities
What financial aid is available, including information on all Federal and State programs.
- The deadlines for submitting applications for each of the financial aid programs available.
- The cost of attending the programs and the school's refund policy.
- The criteria used by the institution to select the financial aid recipients.
- How the school determines your financial need. This process includes how costs for tuition and fees, books, and living expenses are considered in your budget.
- What resources (such as employer reimbursement, other financial aid, etc.) are considered in the calculation of your need.
- How much of your financial need, as determined by the institution, has been met.
- An explanation of the various programs in your student aid package. If you believe you have been treated unfairly, you may request reconsideration of the award which was made to you.
- What portion of the financial aid you received must be repaid, and what portion is grant aid. If the aid is a loan, you have the right to know what the interest rate is, the total amount that must be repaid, the payback procedures, the length of time you have to repay the loan and when the repayment is to begin.
Review all information about the school's program before you enroll.
- Complete all application forms accurately and in a timely manner and send to correct address.
- Pay special attention to, and accurately complete, your application for student aid. Errors can result in delays of receipt of your financial aid. Intentional reporting of false information on application forms for federal financial aid is a violation of law and is considered a criminal offense subject to penalties under the U.S. Criminal Code.
- Return all additional information, verification, corrections and/or new information requested by the Bethel University Financial Aid Office, your state financial aid authority or the agency to which you submitted your FAFSA.
- Read and understand all the forms that you are asked to sign and keep copies of them.
- Accept responsibility for all agreements you sign.
- If you have a loan, notify the lender of changes in your name, address or school status.
- Know and comply with the deadlines for application or reapplication for aid.
- Know and comply with Bethel University’s refund policy procedure.
- Know and comply with Bethel University’s Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.
Return of Title IV Aid Policy and Procedures
Title IV funds are awarded to a student under the assumption that the student will attend school for the entire period for which the assistance is awarded. When a student withdraws from Bethel, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of Title IV funds that the student was originally scheduled to receive.
The financial aid office is required to calculate federal financial aid eligibility for students who withdraw, drop out, are dismissed, or take a leave of absence prior to completing a payment period or term. The federal Title IV financial aid programs must be recalculated when the student has not completed more than 60% of a payment period.
If the student leaves the university prior to completing 60% of a payment period or term, the financial aid office recalculates eligibility for Title IV funds. Recalculation is based on the percentage of earned aid using the following Return of Title IV Funds formula:
Percentage of payment period or term completed = number of days completed up to the withdrawal date divided by the total days in the payment period or term. (Any break of five days or more is not counted as part of the days in the term). This percentage is also the percentage of aid earned.
If a student does not provide notification of withdrawal either because of circumstances beyond the student’s control or other instances, he/she is considered to have unofficially withdrawn. In these cases, the student’s withdrawal date is the midpoint (50%) of the payment period (or period of enrollment) if the last date of attendance cannot be determined. If the last date of attendance can be determined, it will be used instead.
If a student earned less aid than was disbursed, Bethel would be required to return a portion of the funds and the student would be required to return a portion of the funds. Keep in mind that when Title IV funds are returned, the student may owe a debit balance to the university.
When students fail to earn a passing grade in any class: If a student receives all Fs at the end of a semester, the university will determine whether those students with failing grades have unofficially withdrawn. If a student who began attendance and has not officially withdrawn fails to earn a passing grade in at least one course offered over an entire period, the institution must assume, for Title IV purposes, that the student has unofficially withdrawn unless the institution can document that the student completed the period (or more than 60% of the period) based on the last date of a student’s documented academic activity.
Post-withdrawal disbursements: If a does not receive all the funds he/she has earned, the student may be due a post-withdrawal disbursement. If the post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, the school must get the student’s permission before it can disburse them. The student may choose to decline some or all of the loan funds so that additional debt is not incurred. The school may automatically use all or a portion of your post-withdrawal disbursement of grant funds for tuition, fees, and room and board charges (as contracted with the school). The school needs a student’s permission to use the post-withdrawal grant disbursement for all other school charges. If the student does not give permission, you will be offered the funds.
However, it may be in the student’s best interest to allow the school to keep the funds to reduce your debt at the school. Bethel will send notification as soon as possible, but no later than 30 calendar days after the date that the school determines the student withdrew. Bethel must disburse any Title IV grant funds a student is due as part of a post-withdrawal disbursement within 45 days of the date the school determined the student withdrew. The school must disburse any loan funds the student accepts as soon as possible but no later than 180 days after the date the school determined the student withdrew.
Overpayments (overawards): An overpayment, or overaward, occurs when the student receives more aid than he/she was eligible to receive. An overpayment can occur when a student withdraws.
Regulations limit the amount of grant funds a student must repay to one-half of the grant funds the student received or could have received during the applicable period. Within 30 days of determining that a student who withdrew must repay all or part of a Title IV grant, Bethel will notify the student that he/she must repay the overpayment or make satisfactory arrangements to repay it. A student’s eligibility for additional Title IV funds may end if the student fails to take action in one of the following ways:
- The student may repay the overpayment in full to Bethel.
- The student may sign a repayment agreement with the Department of Education.
The student should contact Bethel to discuss his/her options.
Unearned Title IV financial aid will be returned to the appropriate programs in the order listed below. The Title IV portion of a refund is repaid to various programs from which the funds were awarded. The repayment is allocated, using the following fixed priority:
- Direct Unsubsidized Direct Loan
- Direct Subsidized Direct Loan
- Perkins Loan
- Direct PLUS Loan
- Pell Grant
If the Title IV portion of the refund is large enough, the entire amount of an award received is first returned to the highest priority program from which an award was made. The full amounts are similarly returned.
For students selected for verification: Unless a student subject to verification has provided all required verification documents in time for the school to meet Return deadlines, the school includes as Aid Disbursed or Aid That Could Have Been Disbursed in the Return calculation only those Title IV funds not subject to verification.
If the student who failed to provide all required verification documents in time for the school to meet the Return deadline later provides those documents prior to the application verification deadline, the school must perform a new Return calculation on all of the aid the student qualified for based on the completed verification documents and make appropriate adjustments.
When a student fails to return from a leave of absence (LOA): If a student does not return to Bethel at the expiration of an approved LOA (or a student takes an unapproved LOA), the student’s withdrawal date is the date the student began the LOA.
Because a student who is granted an approved LOA remains in an in-school status for Title IV loan repayment purposes, the school must report to the loan holder the student’s change in enrollment status as of the withdrawal date.
For more information about Title IV program funds contact the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FEDAID (1-800-433-3243). Student Aid information is also available on the web.
Satisfactory Academic Progress
Students receiving financial aid must maintain good academic standing with the university in order to qualify for continued financial aid awards. This policy applies to all undergraduate students enrolled in all programs. To maintain eligibility for Federal Title IV and/or other university-administered financial aid assistance, the following conditions must be met (students must meet both the quantitative and qualitative progress standards):
A student who changes status within the 12-month period will have his/her status average (e.g., in the fall semester the student is full-time, then in the spring semester the student enrolls for half-time hours. The student would be considered a three-quarter time student for the year and would need to have completed the appropriate number of hours for that status).
The normal time to complete a bachelor’s degree is 8 to 10 semesters of full-time enrollment. A student is allowed a maximum of 12 semesters of full-time study and may receive financial aid up to this maximum. Students enrolled in fewer than 12 hours per semester, but at least 6 hours per semester, are expected to complete their degree requirements in proportion to the full-time requirements. Students in an academic program with a program length of 120-140 hours who have attempted 180 credit hours toward a degree will be ineligible for student financial aid.
Repeated courses: When an “F” is received for a course, that course may be repeated. Courses that are repeated will count in the calculation of hours attempted and completed hours earned if the student receives a passing grade. Only repeated courses taken at Bethel University will affect the grade point average (GPA) and will include the new grade on the transcript. If a course is repeated at another institution, only the actual credit(s) earned will transfer. A maximum of 5 noncredit remedial courses will be considered as successful completions unless enrollment in additional courses is approved by the vice-president of academic services.
Incompletes: Students who enroll in a course and are given an incomplete grade must complete the course requirements no later than the time grades are due the following semester. If the course is not completed, it is counted as hours attempted but not passed (attempted & unearned).
Withdrawals: Classes that a student enrolls in and withdraws from, receiving an authorized grade of “W,” are not counted as hours attempted. After the last date to withdraw has passed, the student may not withdraw from classes regardless of when they last attended. The student will receive the grade earned.
Treatment of grades:
|Grade||Qualitative Treatment||Quantitative Treatment|
|A, B, C, D||Calculated||Attempted & Earned|
|F||Calculated||Attempted & Unearned|
|Incomplete||Not Calculated||Attempted & Unearned|
|Pass (P)||Not Calculated||Attempted & Earned|
|No Pass (NP)||Not Calculated||Attempted & Unearned|
|Withdrawal (W)||Not Calculated||Not Attempted & Unearned|
|Repeat A, B, C, D||Calculated||Attempted & Earned|
|Repeat F||Calculated (but original grade)||Attempted & Unearned|
|Transfer Credits||Not Calculated||Attempted & Earned|
|Remedial Courses||Not Calculated||
Not Attempted & Unearned
A student is limited to two appeals of the SAP policy. Appeals must be presented in writing, addressed to the Financial Aid Committee, stating the reasons that justify the request. Reasons that will be considered include:
- Severe illness, medical condition, or injury
- Death of a family member
- Traumatic life-altering event such as fire, tornado, etc.
- Other circumstance (Must clearly state circumstance and provide supporting documentation)
If it is determined that the student cannot meet SAP requirements within one term, the student must also submit an Academic Plan to accompany his/her appeal letter. The Financial Aid Committee will review the request and will respond through the Director of Financial Aid within 2 weeks of receipt of the appeal. Students are notified via letter of the Committee’s decision.
A student whose appeal is granted is placed on SAP Probation for one term. If at the end of the Probation term SAP is met, either because the student meets the regular SAP standards or because the student has met the criteria outlined in the Academic Plan, the status is SAP Met. If the student fails to meet SAP, either because there was no Academic Plan and the student did not meet regular SAP standards or because the student did not meet the criteria in the Academic Plan, the student’s SAP status is SAP Unmet and the student loses Title IV eligibility.
A student whose appeal is not granted will not be eligible for Title IV aid for the semester indicated on the appeal request. The financial aid office will notify the student of the adverse determination in writing and instruct the student to contact the student account office to discuss the status of his or her student account.
Any student who is not eligible for Title IV aid, based on SAP, can regain Title IV eligibility by meeting all necessary SAP requirements at the end of a semester. If a student meets both the qualitative and quantitative standards during a semester of ineligibility, Title IV eligibility will be restored for the next semester of enrollment. If a student reenrolls at Bethel University after a status of SAP Unmet, he or she has the option to submit a SAP appeal, if the limit of two appeals has not been reached. If granted, the student can regain Title IV eligibility for the applicable semester. If the appeal is not granted or an appeal cannot be submitted, the student must meet SAP requirements before Title IV eligibility can be reinstated.
Students who have unsatisfactory grades at midterm may be at risk for academic probation. In an effort to assist these students in maintaining SAP, the financial aid office will send an email regarding their grades and the potential impact academic probation will have on their ability to receive future financial aid.
|Status||Description||Duration||Title IV Eligibility||Notification|
|SAP met||Qualitative and quantitative measure met||Applicable as long as standards are met||Yes||None|
|SAP warning||Qualitative and/or quantitative measure not met||One term||Yes||Letter|
|SAP probation||Appeal submitted and after review, approved||One term||Yes||Letter|
|SAP unmet||Qualitative and/or quantitative measure not met||Applicable as long as standards are NOT met||No||Letter|