2023-2024 Graduate Bulletin

Financial Aid Policies

aid-eligible coursework

The U.S. Department of Education requires institutions to ensure that federal financial aid funds are only used to pay for courses that apply to a student’s degree program. Beginning with the 2023 fall term, courses that do not count toward a student’s degree program may be ineligible for federal or state financial aid.

Types of Aid Affected

All types of federal and state financial aid are impacted by this policy. For graduate and law students, this includes Direct Unsubsidized and Grad PLUS loanswork-study, the TEACH Grant, and the Colorado Graduate Grant.

Institutional aid (including scholarships, assistantships and fellowships) is not impacted by the aid-eligible coursework policy.

Determining Courses in Degree Program

A student’s degree program is defined by the course and credit requirements listed in the bulletin. You can use the degree audit tool to view the courses you must complete for your degree and monitor your academic progress toward graduation. Please contact your academic advisor with any questions about program requirements.

Courses Eligible for Federal & State Aid

Your financial aid enrollment status may be different from your actual enrollment status. To be eligible for all types of federal and state aid, graduate and law students need to be enrolled in at least 4 credits that count toward their degree. So, even if you’re enrolled in a class that doesn’t count toward your degree, you may still be eligible for federal and state aid.

Notifications and Adjustments

Students whose aid eligibility is impacted by the aid-eligible coursework policy will be notified after class registration via their DU student email. If you’re no longer eligible for federal or state aid, your financial aid will be adjusted prior to disbursement for that term.

Visit the financial aid website for much more information.

Satisfactory Academic Progress

In order to continue receiving financial aid, you must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).

Federal regulations require us to monitor the academic progress of all graduate students—including Ph.D. students—receiving financial aid toward the completion of their degree. (Please note: this policy pertains only to financial aid and is separate from other academic policies published by the institution.) SAP is monitored on a yearly basis—usually in mid-to-late summer—and is effective the following fall term. Certificate program students are an exception; their SAP is monitored at the end of every term. As a financial aid recipient, you must maintain the following minimum standards to continue receiving financial aid:

  • You must maintain a Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 3.00.
  • JD law students must maintain a CGPA of 2.3 (2.70 for all other law students, including master's, certificate, LLM, and graduate tax).
  • You must complete and pass a minimum of 66.6% of all courses attempted. This is known as your Cumulative Completion Rate (CCR).
  • You must complete your degree within 150% of the minimum credits required to graduate. This is known as the Maximum Time Frame (MTF) limit.

Visit the financial aid website for more information.

Withdrawal and Financial Aid

Any student who begins classes at DU, applies for financial aid, completes all of the requirements to obtain aid, and then withdraws from classes may have their financial aid adjusted according to federal, state, and institutional regulations. Students must contact the Office of the Registrar to withdraw officially from the University and must contact Academic Advising after withdrawing to complete leave of absence information. Leave of absence affects financial aid status upon return to the University; it does not affect withdrawing from the University.

Students who withdraw during the 100 percent refund period (drop/add) for any term may have all of their aid for that term canceled and returned depending on the type of withdrawal. Students who drop below the number of hours reflected in their financial aid budget during the drop/add period will have their budget adjusted to reflect the new hours and aid will be adjusted accordingly.

Return of Title IV (R2T4) Funds Policy

Title IV (Federal) funds are awarded to you under the assumption that you will attend school for the entire period for which the assistance is awarded. When you withdraw from all courses, for any reason including medical withdrawals, you may no longer be eligible for the full amount of Title IV funds you were originally scheduled to receive.

If you withdraw from all courses prior to completing at least 60% of the term, you may be required to repay a portion of the federal financial aid you received for that term. A pro-rata schedule is used to determine the amount of federal student aid funds you will have earned at the time of withdrawal.

The return of funds is based upon the concept that students earn their financial aid in proportion to the amount of time in which they are enrolled. Under this reasoning, a student who withdraws in the second week of classes has earned less of his/her financial aid than a student who withdraws in the seventh week. Once 60% of the term is completed, you are considered to have earned all of your financial aid and will not be required to return any funds. If you withdraw during the 100% refund (add/drop) period for any term, all of your aid for that term will be canceled and returned.

Visit the financial aid website for more information.

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