Withdrawal, Refunds and Reduction of Hours
Withdrawing from the University may have both academic and financial aid consequences. You are encouraged to understand the consequences before you decide to withdraw. Detailed information about the cancellation of registration and withdrawal from the University is available in the Student Code. If you decide to withdraw, you must follow established withdrawal procedures beginning with completion of a Withdrawal Form available from your college dean's office or graduate department.
How Withdrawing Affects Your Financial Aid
* If you complete 60% or less of the term prior to withdrawing, you may be required to repay a substantial portion of your financial aid.
* All students must successfully complete at least 67% of cumulative attempted hours to remain eligible for financial aid under the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements. Withdrawing from classes will affect your percentage of hours earned. If you withdraw while on SAP Probation, you will be denied financial aid for the upcoming term until an appeal has been submitted, evaluated and approved. For additional information, please review SAP.
* You may become ineligible for part or all of the assistance from other sources, such as merit based scholarships and scholarships from private donors. The donor and/or organization will be contacted to determine how they wish the funds to be handled.
Return of Funds
The Federal Return of Title IV Funds policy mandates that students who officially or unofficially withdraw from all classes may only keep the financial aid they have “earned” up to the time of withdrawal. State and institutional programs require similar treatment. Financial aid funds that were disbursed in excess of the amount “earned” must be repaid.
Financial aid in excess of the amount “earned” is reduced in the following priority:
- Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
- Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
- Federal Perkins Loan
- Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan
- Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan
- Federal Pell Grant
- Federal National SMART Grant
- Federal Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG)
- Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
- State of Illinois programs
- Institutional and departmental funds
- Private financial resources
Calculations are done on a case-by-case basis after the withdrawal date is established.
If you stop attending all classes during a semester and do not go through the University’s withdraw process, you are treated as an “unofficial withdrawal”. At the end of each semester, OSFA identifies all students who did not pass at least one class. OSFA will work with colleges, departments and instructors to document your last date of attendance. Using that information, you will be reviewed under the Return of Funds calculation. This date will also be reported to NSLDS and your enrollment status will be updated.
Federal Pell Grant Attendance Requirement
Federal regulations require that you begin attendance in each class you are enrolled in for purposes of the Federal Pell Grant Program. If you do not begin attendance in all of the classes you are enrolled, your Federal Pell Grant may be reduced.
Tuition Refund Policy
If you cancel your classes or withdraw from the University, you may be eligible for a tuition and fee refund. The Office of Admissions and Records determines the amount of refund you might be eligible to receive following the University’s Pro-Rata Refund Policy and the determined last date of attendance.
Click here for additional procedures regarding University tuition and fee refunds.
Click here for additional information about University refund schedules.
Housing Refund Policy
Housing refund policies may differ. If you live in a University Residence Hall, University Housing will determine the assessed charges involving your room and board. Depending on where you live, you should contact University Housing or Private Certified Housing about your withdrawal.
Reduced Hours of Enrollment
The amount of your aid eligibility is dependent upon the number of hours in which you are enrolled and billed. This is normally established on the tenth day of classes. If you add classes after the tenth day, your bill may be increased. If you drop classes after the tenth day, your bill will not be adjusted unless you totally withdraw and are subject to the pro-rata refund policy. There are some exceptions to these general rules for students who are enrolled in courses that only meet for part of the semester (such as eight week courses) that start after the tenth day of classes.
- Federal Pell Grant: You must be enrolled and billed for at least 12 credit hours in a semester to receive the full amount of the Pell Grant awarded. If you are billed for fewer than 12 credit hours, the Pell Grant amount will reduce according to your hours of registration.
- ISAC MAP Grant: You must be enrolled and billed for at least 15 credit hours in a semester to receive the full amount of the MAP Grant awarded. The grant will reduce by 1/15 for each credit hour below 15 hours of registration. For example, if you are registered for 16 credit hours when classes begin and receive all of your financial aid, including the full MAP Grant award, but drop a three hour course before the tenth day of the semester-long course or before the fifth day of a second eight week course, your “billed” hours change and your MAP Grant will reduce accordingly. This change may create a bill in the middle of the semester.
- Most other grants and scholarships, the Federal Perkins Loan, and the University Loan: You must be enrolled and billed for at least 12 credit hours. If you are billed for less than 12 credit hours, many grants and scholarships, the Federal Perkins Loan, and the University Loan will be revoked.
- Federal Direct Loans: You must be enrolled and billed for six or more credit hours of enrollment to establish eligibility.
If there is a larger reduction of financial aid than reduction in tuition, you will be billed for the difference.