Jul 09, 2020  
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog 
    
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Financial Aid



The Anderson University Office of Financial Services exists to inform and assist students with the financial aid process enabling students to attend Anderson University. Services offered include informing, counseling and assisting students in a timely and equitable manner. All functions of the Office of Financial Services are tailored to enhance the overall learning and spiritual objectives of Anderson University. Email communication to the student’s AU assigned email address is the official form of communication from the Office of Financial Services about awards, adjustments, notifications, and deadlines.

The Office of Financial Services awards financial aid to qualified applicants without regard to race, religious creed, national origin, sex, age, disability or ethnicity.

When and How to Apply

To determine whether a student is eligible for a federal financial aid program, the student must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The address for FAFSA on the Web is https://fafsa.gov. The student should apply for a FSA ID prior to starting FAFSA on the Web so that the application can be signed electronically and tax information can be transferred from the IRS. Anderson University’s (S.C.) Title IV school code is 003418.

How Does the Process Work

Complete the FAFSA and include Anderson University’s (S.C.) Title IV school code, 003418. Simplify the process by using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (IRS DRT) when tax return data is requested. The IRS DRT saves you time and expedites the application process. After submitting the FAFSA, the student will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR), and Anderson University will receive the application data electronically. If additional information is needed to complete a student’s file, he or she will receive a letter. Items needed may also be viewed through Self Service under Financial Aid and then Documents. Submit the requested information as soon as possible and make sure all documents are signed. Forms are available at http://www.andersonuniversity.edu/documents. Once the student’s file is complete, he or she will receive an award notice. The student may also view all financial aid awards through Self Service.

Communication with Students

The majority of communications from the Office of Financial Services will be sent to the student’s AU email account. To ensure you receive all communication from the Office of Financial Services, please remember to keep your mailing address and email address updated. The Office of Financial Services staff is here to assist you with any questions you may have. You may call us at 864.231.2070, option 1, or email finaid@andersonuniversity.edu. Please allow one business day for a response.

Eligible Courses, Enrollment Status and Repeated Courses

Enrollment status can only consist of those courses required for graduation or as a prerequisite for courses required in the program. Audited classes will not be considered in determining a student’s enrollment status. For federal aid programs only, once a student has completed a course two times, that course cannot count in the enrollment status.

The amount in the original award notification is based on full-time enrollment. A student who is not full-time will have his or her award reduced based on the actual number of credit hours enrolled.

A student’s enrollment status is determined at the end of the add/drop period for each term. Full time status consists of enrollment in a minimum of 6 credit hours. Half-time status consists of enrollment in 3-5 credit hours.

How a Student Receives Assistance and Purchases Textbooks

A student who applies in time and is eligible can use financial aid award(s) to pay direct costs and to make book purchases. Funds available after direct costs have been paid will be disbursed by the Business Office. All financial aid awards are considered estimated or anticipated until aid disburses to student accounts in the Anderson University Business Office.

Summer Aid

Financial aid for summer is available to those students who qualify and will be awarded separately from the fall and spring semesters. Students do not have to complete another FAFSA just for summer if they have already applied for the previous award year. If a student begins classes during a summer semester, he or she must complete the FAFSA for the current award year and complete the FAFSA for the next award year which begins with the fall semester. Unless the student is in a program that requires summer enrollment, to be considered for aid during a summer semester the student must complete a Summer Application for Financial Aid.

Summer funding is limited and not all funds are available during the summer. If during the previous fall and spring semesters the student borrowed the annual loan limit, he or she will not have any Direct Loan eligibility but can consider Grad PLUS or a private loan.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Students receiving financial assistance through a federal program must be making satisfactory academic progress toward a degree. The Office of Financial Services must monitor the progress of all students to ensure that they are making satisfactory progress toward completion of their program in a reasonable period of time. This policy is in addition to the academic standards required by the University. The cumulative review determines the student’s eligibility for financial assistance based on his or her academic history. Whether the student has received financial assistance previously is not a factor in determining eligibility. A student’s SAP status will be evaluated each year when the initial Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is received and then at the end of an academic year (after spring semester grades are posted) in which the student attended.

Qualitative Standard (Completion Rate and Grade Point Average)

  • The minimum completion rate requires a student to earn at least 67% of the cumulative credit hours attempted.
  • Courses with grades of F, W, WP, WF, IP and I are not considered completed courses.
  • Graduate students are required to maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) that is required for graduation for the student’s program/discipline.
  • A student may repeat a course, but all attempts count in the completion rate calculation. Repeat coursework will be calculated in the GPA based on AU academic policy.
  • Students are placed on financial aid suspension if the completion rate and/or the cumulative GPA fall below the minimum requirements. To re-establish eligibility, a student must have an approved appeal and be placed on financial aid appeal probation. (See Appeals below.)

Quantitative Standard (Length of Eligibility)

  • Students may receive financial aid for 150% of the published length of the program of study.
  • Transfer hours are added to the total hours attempted at Anderson University to assess the length of eligibility.
  • A student may repeat a course, but repetitions will count toward the length of eligibility.
  • A student who completes the academic requirements for a program but does not yet have the degree is not eligible for additional financial aid funds for that program.
  • Once the maximum number of hours is attempted, a student is placed on financial aid suspension.
  • To re-establish eligibility, a student must have an approved appeal and be placed on financial aid appeal probation. (See Appeals below.)

Appeals

  • Appeals for suspension of financial aid are reviewed by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee.
  • The number of appeals will be limited to two (2) per student and forms may be obtained from the Office of Financial Services.
  • All appeals must include an explanation from the student of why satisfactory progress was not made and what has changed that will make it possible to meet standards. Examples of acceptable extenuating circumstances include prolonged hospitalization during the academic year, death in the family during the academic year, change in work hours that conflicted with the class schedule during the academic year or other extenuating circumstances directly affecting academic performance. Documentation of extenuating circumstances is required, and the student’s appeal will not be considered without sufficient documentation.
  • Appeals for length of eligibility (attempted maximum number of credit hours) must also include an academic plan signed by the academic advisor that details the requirements the student must meet to ensure SAP standards are met by a specific time or to ensure the student graduates. Appeals for length of eligibility should include the remaining classes needed to graduate and an anticipated graduation date. The academic advisor must sign this plan.
  • If the Committee determines that justifiable evidence of extenuating circumstances exists, a student may receive an extension of financial aid eligibility and be placed on financial aid appeal probation.

Financial Aid Appeal Probation

  • During the probationary period, a student must complete 100% of the attempted hours, earn the minimum GPA required for graduation for the student’s program/discipline, and meet all stipulations set by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee. If a student does not meet these stipulations, he or she will be placed on financial aid suspension. (See Suspension for Failing to Meet Probationary Stipulations below.)
  • If a student meets the probationary stipulations but has a minimum cumulative GPA or a completion rate that does not meet minimum requirements, he or she will remain on financial aid appeal probation and must continue to meet probationary stipulations.
  • If a student meets the probationary stipulations, has a minimum cumulative GPA  and a completion rate that meets minimum requirements and has not attempted 150% of the hours required to graduate, he or she will be removed from financial aid appeal probation and must continue to meet the SAP policy.

Suspension for Failing to Meet Probationary Stipulations

  • To reestablish eligibility a student must submit and have an approved appeal after completing a semester at Anderson University without financial assistance. During the semester attended without financial assistance, an undergraduate student must take at least 6 credit hours, complete 100% of the attempted hours and have at least a 2.0 semester GPA.  A graduate student must complete 100% of the attempted hours and earn the minimum GPA required for graduation for the student’s program/discipline.
  • Exceptions to this policy will only be allowed if the student encountered some type of extenuating circumstance during the probationary period that hindered him or her from meeting the stipulations. Documentation of extenuating circumstances is required, and the student’s appeal will not be considered without sufficient documentation.
  • Examples of acceptable extenuating circumstances include:  prolonged hospitalization during the probationary period, death in the family during the probationary period, change in work hours that conflicted with the class schedule during the probationary period or other extenuating circumstances directly affecting academic performance.  Because a student is aware prior to the probationary period that he or she must meet the stipulations, extenuating circumstances do not include being a single parent or working full-time while attending school.
  • Students are advised to solve difficulties prior to registering for a probationary period.

Sources of Financial Aid

Funding for programs is contingent on federal approval. These guidelines may not be inclusive of all eligibility criteria and are subject to change. To apply you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

Federal Direct Loans

The Federal Direct Loan is a low interest loan made by the U.S. Department of Education. To determine eligibility, a student must complete a FAFSA and the University’s financial aid process.

An Unsubsidized Direct Loan is not awarded on the basis of financial need. The student will be charged interest from the time the loan is disbursed until it is paid in full. If interest is allowed to accumulate, it will be capitalized which means the interest will be added to the principal amount. Then interest will be charged based on this higher amount. Capitalization will increase the amount that must be repaid. If the student chooses to pay the interest as it accumulates, loan payments will cost less.

A student must be enrolled in at least 3 credit hours each semester. Repayment begins six months after graduating or dropping below half-time enrollment. This six month period is referred to as a grace period.

Before a loan is available, the student must complete an online entrance loan counseling session and sign a Master Promissory Note (MPN). These requirements are completed online at https://studentloans.gov using the student’s FSA ID and password.

Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant Program (TEACH)

The TEACH Grant Program provides grants to students who intend to teach full-time in high-need subject areas at a public elementary or secondary school that serves students from low-income families. In exchange for receiving a TEACH Grant, the student must agree to serve as a full-time teacher in a high-need field in a public or private elementary or secondary school that serves low income students. The student must also teach at least four academic years within eight calendar years of completing the program of study for which the TEACH Grant was received. If the student fails to fulfill this obligation, all amounts of the TEACH Grant received will be converted to a Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan. Interest will be charged from the date the original grant was disbursed, and the student must repay this loan to the U.S. Department of Education. Federal TEACH Grant counseling and an Agreement to Serve are required.

Grad PLUS Loan

The Grad PLUS Loan is a federal student loan available to students attending graduate or professional school. The Grad PLUS offers a fixed interest rate and flexible loan limits. The student must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and pass a simple credit check. There is a loan origination fee which changes every October 1. The amount you can borrow cannot exceed the cost of attendance less other aid awarded. Students must apply online at https://studentloans.gov using the student’s FSA ID and password.

S.C. Teachers Loan Program (SCTL)

This loan is available to South Carolina residents who plan to teach in the public sector in South Carolina upon graduation from a college or university. Students must meet the academic criteria of the program, and financial need is not a factor. For additional information visit www.scstudentloan.org.

Company Reimbursement

Students who are eligible for company reimbursement through their employer have the opportunity to participate in the Company Reimbursement program at Anderson University. Tuition that is 100% covered by reimbursement will be deferred until 30 days after grades are issued for a class. If the company reimburses less than 100% of the total tuition or makes payment directly to the employee/student, the student must pay or take a student loan to cover the balance owed by the first day of class. It is the student’s responsibility to review and understand their company policy regarding company reimbursement. Invoices provided to students by Anderson Central will reflect grants and/or scholarships and loans received. It is the student’s responsibility to submit invoices to their employer. Participation in this program is voluntary, and the terms and conditions of this agreement are not contingent upon the grade received by the student. The agreement is based on the company making payment directly to Anderson University.

Veterans Educational Benefits

Eligible veterans can apply for their educational benefits through the Veterans Administration’s website at www.va.gov. Once an application has been approved, the veteran will receive a VA Certificate of Eligibility. Please submit a copy of the Certificate of Eligibility to the VA Certifying Official at the University. Anderson University’s VA Certifying Official is in the Office of Financial Services. The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs is the only agency that can determine eligibility for and award this benefit. For questions about eligibility, call the VA Regional Office at 888-442-4551, then contact the Office of Financial Services to obtain the appropriate forms for certification.

The following is a synopsis of Veterans Assistance (VA) Program Chapters:

Chapter 30     The Montgomery GI Bill®. This program provides educational benefits to individuals entering military service after June 30, 1985.

Chapter 31     Vocational Rehabilitation for Service Disabled Veterans. This program is for individuals who have a compensable service connected disability and the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs determines that training and rehabilitation services are needed to overcome an employment handicap.

Chapter 35     Dependents Educational Assistance Program. This program is for dependents (spouse or children) of individuals who die or are permanently disabled from service connected causes.

Chapter 1606 Montgomery GI Bill®-Selected Reserve. This program is available to members of the Selected Reserve, including the National Guard.

Chapter 1607 Reserve Educational Assistance Program. This program is available to members of a reserve component who serve on active duty on or after September 11, 2001, for a contingency operation.

Chapter 33     Post 9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Act of 2008. To be eligible, the service member or veteran must have served at least 90 aggregate days on active duty after September 10, 2001.

Academic Requirements

A student receiving VA benefits is required to maintain the same academic progress standards to be considered in “good standing” by the University. See the Academic Policies in this Catalog. A student receiving VA benefits who is academically suspended and subsequently relieved by the Provost and allowed to register for classes must have documentation that the student has a reasonable likelihood to maintain satisfactory attendance, progress and conduct in the future. This documentation is used to support a statement required to be submitted with the re-certification of enrollment to VA.

Address Changes

VA students must notify the Certifying Official of any address change by completing the address change form.

Class Attendance

VA students must adhere to the attendance policy established by the University. VA students who accrue more than the allowable number of absences will have VA benefits terminated.

Drops and Withdrawals

VA students must report course drops or a term withdrawal to the Certifying Official. To ensure timely notification to VA, reports will be run monthly to identify VA students who have dropped courses or withdrawn from the term. At the end of each semester, VA students who earn a grade of “WF” are reported to VA with the last date of attendance.

Eligible Courses

VA students may receive benefits only for those courses that are required for graduation or are a prerequisite for courses required in the program of study. When additional courses beyond the courses required for graduation are needed to overcome a grade point deficiency, the additional courses may be approved with required documentation outlined in VA regulations.

Internet/Online, Hybrid and Video Courses

Anderson University offers a variety of course delivery methods. Non-traditional course delivery methods are listed in Self Service. Anderson University expects students to participate in all instructional activities since these courses are comparable to resident (traditional classroom) courses. Anderson University requires that each course offered in one of these non-traditional formats meets prescribed academic standards.

Each course delivery method must include:

  • a provision for an assigned instructor;
  • a provision for instructor-student interaction on at least a weekly basis and a stipulation that this interaction is a regular part of the course program;
  • a statement that appropriate assignments are required for completion of the course;
  • a grading system similar to the system used for resident (traditional classroom) courses;
  • a schedule of time required for the course that demonstrates that the student will spend at least as much time in preparation and training as is normally required for resident (traditional classroom) courses.

Non-punitive Grades/Mitigating Circumstances

Regulations prohibit payment of VA benefits for a course from which the student withdraws. Unless the student submits to VA documentation of mitigating circumstances, the student must repay to VA all the money paid to him or her for the pursuit of that course from the start of the term - not just from the date he or she dropped the course.

Pending Payment Compliance

In accordance with Title 38 US Code 3679 subsection (e), Anderson University adopts the following additional provisions for any students using U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) Post 9/11 GI Bill® (Chapter 33) or Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (Chapter 31) benefits, while payment to the University is pending from the VA.  Anderson University will not:

  • Prevent the student’s enrollment;
  • Assess a late penalty fee to;
  • Require student secure alternative or additional funding;
  • Deny their access to any resources (access to classes, libraries, or other institutional facilities) available to other students who have satisfied their tuition and fee bills to the University.

However, to qualify for this provision, such students may be required to:

  • Provide Chapter 33 Certificate of Eligibility* (or its equivalent) or for Chapter 31, VA VR&E’s contract with the school on VA Form 28-1905* by the first day of class.
  • Provide written request to be certified;
  • Provide additional information needed to properly certify the enrollment as described in other institutional policies.

*Note: Chapter 33 students can register at the VA Regional Office to use E-Benefits to get the equivalent of a Chapter 33 Certificate of Eligibility.  Chapter 31 student cannot get a completed VA Form 28-1905 (or any equivalent) before the VA VR&E case-manager issues it to the school.

Prior Credit

VA students who have attended another college/university must submit all collegiate transcripts to the Anderson University Admissions Office even if transfer credit is not requested.

Program Changes

VA students who change programs must complete a change of program form in the Office of Financial Services. Credit hours earned that fulfill requirements in the new program must be transferred as required by regulations.

Repeated Courses

There is no limit on the number of times a course may be repeated for which a failing grade (or a grade which does not meet the minimum requirements for graduation) was received as long as the grade assigned to the repeated course at the end of the term is punitive.

Tutorial Assistance for Veterans

VA students may receive monetary assistance from the VA to pay for a tutor if one is required.

South Carolina National Guard College Assistance Program (NGCAP)

This program was established to provide financial assistance to members of the South Carolina Army and Air National Guard. NGCAP covers the cost of attendance as defined by federal regulations up to a maximum amount each award year. The maximum amount will be determined annually by the S.C. Commission on Higher Education (CHE). Students who have earned a bachelor’s or graduate degree are not eligible. To qualify, the student must be in good standing with the active National Guard at the beginning of each academic year and remain a member in good standing throughout the entire academic year, maintain satisfactory academic progress, be a U.S. citizen or a legal permanent resident and satisfy additional eligibility requirements as may be promulgated by CHE. The S.C. National Guard is responsible for providing a list of all eligible Guard members to CHE which will in turn notify the University. To be awarded, the student must be on the list from CHE.