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Withdrawal and Allocation of Refunds for Return of Title IV

Definitions for Purposes of this Policy

Return of Title IV 
Title IV funds specifically refers to federal financial aid funds. 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, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of Title IV funds that the student was originally scheduled to receive.  CFR  66.22(l)(4)

Modular Courses
Courses that do not span the full length of a regular semester, such as: Fall Part A and Part B, Fall I and II, Spring Part A and Part B, Wintermester, Spring I and II, Summer I, II, III, and Maymester.

Federal Aid Programs
Direct Subsidized, Unsubsidized, and PLUS loans; Pell Grant, SEOG, TEACH Grant, Iraq Afghanistan Service Grant

State Aid Programs
Hope Lottery, Tennessee Promise, Tennessee Reconnect, TSAA Grant, and other TSAC programs

Institutional Scholarships
Scholarships funded by University or private donor funds

Unofficial Withdrawal
If faculty report a student as stopped attending (Grade of FA) or never attended (Grade of FN) all courses within a semester (or if the student receives all FA's, FN's, and W grades), the student is considered to have unofficially withdrawn from the university. Unofficial withdrawals may have significant financial consequences and impact a student’s eligibility for financial aid.

Official Withdrawal
Formally withdrawing from all courses or from the university. Official withdrawals may have significant financial consequences and impact a student’s eligibility for financial aid.

Pell Recalculation Date
Due to multiple census dates within semesters, Austin Peay State University recalculates Pell and Teach Grant awards twice per semester to ensure all term enrollments are included. The first calculation accounts for full Clarksville Campus, Part A, and Fort Campbell Campus Part I term enrollments. The second calculation accounts for Part B and Fort Campbell Campus Part II term enrollments. These dates are used to determine how much Pell and Teach a student is eligible for. If a student is not enrolled on the Pell Recalculation Date, they are ineligible for Pell or Teach. However, if the student registers for subsequent modular courses during the same period, they may be eligible after the next Pell Recalculation Date.

Institutional Refund Policy
The Return of Title IV Policy does not dictate the Institutional Refund Policy, Policy 1:021, which is located on the APSU Policies webpage.

General Information

Students are awarded grants, loans, scholarships and other types of financial assistance for the purpose of completing a degree. Students who receive federal, state, institutional and other forms of financial assistance may be penalized for not completing the courses in which they enroll. 

When students enroll in courses and subsequently do not complete all or some of these courses, they may be financially liable for the tuition and fees and may be required to pay back the aid awarded. Attempting and not completing courses will impact a student's completion rate, which in turn may impact eligibility for financial aid. Review our Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for more details.

Official and Unofficial Withdrawals

If students drop classes on or before the census date, or if faculty report FA or FN grades, aid may be adjusted. This adjustment may have a serious financial impact that results in the student owing money to the university.

If students receive federal financial aid, they must complete at least 60% of the semester or module to earn 100% of their aid. If a student officially or unofficially withdraws before completing 60% of the semester or module, APSU is required to perform a Return of Title IV funds calculation. This calculation determines if the university is required to return a portion or all of the federal aid to the government. Students may also be responsible for repaying any applicable tuition and fees for the courses that were attempted but not completed. Typically, a Return of Title IV funds will result in a billing and a balance owed to the university. 

If a student who had borrowed loans officially or unofficially drops below half-time status, the APSU Office of the Registrar will notify the Clearing House, which will trigger the six month grace period for loan repayment. The student will also receive notification from APSU to complete the required loan exit counseling.

Modular Course Withdrawals

A modular withdrawal occurs when a student registered in modules does not complete the entire enrollment period. To potentially prevent a Return of Title IV billing, a student may provide confirmation to the Office of Student Financial Aid of plans to attend a future course via the Notification of Enrollment Post Withdrawal form. Modular course withdrawals may result in a significant billing to the student.

Post-Withdrawal Disbursements

A student that receives less Title IV aid than earned will be offered a disbursement for the amount of earned aid that was not received. Any post-withdrawal disbursement made must meet required conditions for late disbursement.

When processing a return of Title IV calculation, include any grant funds that were not disbursed but could have been disbursed as “aid that could have been disbursed”. Loan disbursements that have been originated, but not disbursed are included as “aid that could have been disbursed”, given the student has a signed master promissory note.

Disbursement of Title IV Grant Funds
Post-withdrawal grant disbursements will be credited to a student’s account for outstanding allowable current semester charges or paid directly to the student if their balance is zero. The school is permitted to credit any Title IV grant funds to the student’s account without the student’s permission. The school will post any credit applying to current charges to the student’s account within 180 days of the school’s determination that the student withdrew. If a student has no current allowable charges, the disbursement must be made no later than 45 days of the school’s determination that the student withdrew.

Disbursement of Title IV Loan Funds
Post-withdrawal loan disbursements will be credited to a student’s account for outstanding allowable current semester charges or paid directly to the student or parent for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan. Prior to making any disbursement, the student/parent must be notified in writing within 30 days of the school’s determination that the student withdrew. The letter must identify the type and amount of the funds. If loan funds are available, the school must explain that the student/parent has the option to accept/decline all or part of the loan. The letter must also inform the student/parent that a response must be received within 14 days of the date of notice. If the school does not receive a response, no further disbursement is made. If the response is received in a timely manner, the funds must be disbursed within 180 days. Exceptions can be made at the discretion of the director for responses received after 14 days. If the request is denied due to a late response, the school will send the student/parent notification.


For full details and examples review our Withdrawal & Return of Title IV Funds.