FINANCIAL AID OFFICE
University Hall 146
Financial Aid refers to a wide variety of programs designed to assist students in meeting the cost of attendance at California State University, Fullerton. These programs include gift aid in the form of scholarships and grants which do not require repayment or performance of work; student loans, which require repayment over a period of time at a specified interest rate; and employment programs through Federal Work-Study. The Emergency Loan program also provides students with resources to meet unusual or unexpected emergencies through a short-term loan.
For general information including application procedures, deadlines, workshops offered, and types of aid available, visit our website at www.fullerton.edu/financialaid. If you have questions or need further information, contact the Office of Financial Aid.
The following eligibility requirements apply to federal and state financial aid programs. Separate requirements apply to emergency loans and scholarships.
Demonstration of financial need is a primary requirement for many types of financial aid. A federal need analysis formula establishes the “expected family contribution” based on the size of the family, the number in college, tax filing status, income and assets. Financial need is that portion of the CSUF cost of attendance that is not met by the expected family contribution and any outside resources such as veteran’s benefits, scholarships and fee waivers.
Some financial aid programs, including unsubsidized student and parent loans, private education loans, emergency loans and some scholarships do not necessarily require the demonstration of financial need. We encourage all students to apply for need-based financial aid first and to explore other options as well.
All applicants for federal and state financial aid are required to:
- be a U.S. citizen, national or permanent resident of the U.S. Eligible students also include some citizens of the Marshall Islands and permanent residents of the Trust Territories, as well as other eligible non-citizens who can document their status in the United States as other than for a temporary purpose;
- be enrolled or accepted for enrollment to an eligible program of study leading to a degree, certificate or recognized credential offered by the institution. Many financial aid programs require at least half-time enrollment (the equivalent of 6 undergraduate units).
- maintain satisfactory academic progress in the course of study according to the standards and practices of the university;
- have no student loan in default or refund owed on a federal grant previously received for attendance at any college or university;
- complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and submit all documentation requested by the Office of Financial Aid;
- be registered for the Draft with the Selective Service or certify that he/she is not required to register. The federal Military Selective Service Act (the “Act”) requires most males residing in the United States to present themselves for registration with the Selective Service System within thirty days of their eighteenth birthday. Most males between the ages of 18 and 25 must be registered. Males born after December 31, 1959, may be required to submit a statement of compliance with the Act and regulations in order to receive any grant, loan or work assistance under specified provisions of existing federal law. In California, students subject to the Act who fail to register are also ineligible to receive any need-based student grants funded by the state or a public postsecondary institution. Selective Service registration forms are available at any U.S. Post Office, and many high schools have a staff member or teacher appointed as a Selective Service Registrar. Applicants for financial aid can also request that information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) be used to register them with the Selective Service. Information on the Selective Service System is available and the registration process may be initiated online at http://www.sss.gov;
- provide valid Social Security number; and
- have a high school diploma or recognized equivalent.
SCHOLARSHIPS AND INSTITUTIONAL GRANTS
CSUF scholarships and awards are given to students to honor outstanding achievement and may or may not take financial need into consideration. Some CSUF scholarships are open to all students; these are known as “university scholarships.” Other scholarships are open only to students who meet certain specific requirements such as major, career goal, or who live in a certain geographical area. In accordance with the laws of the State of California, CSUF is committed to providing equal opportunities to all students without regard to their race, ethnicity, gender or national origin.
Most scholarship applications are due the last weekday in February. Generally, recipients are selected during the spring semester for the next academic year. For full details regarding scholarship requirements and deadlines, visit our website at www.fullerton.edu and click on the “scholarships” link.
Educational Opportunity Program Grant (EOPG)
The Educational Opportunity Program Grant of the California State University system is available to undergraduate students who are residents of California and who are officially enrolled in EOP (contact the EOP Office for program enrollment procedures). EOP grants range from $200 to $800 per year.
State University Grant (SUG)
The State University Grant of the California State University system is available for graduate and undergraduate students who are residents of California. All applicants who file a FAFSA will be considered for this grant.
Cal Grant A, B & T
The State of California, through the California Student Aid Commission, administers grant programs for undergraduates seeking a post-secondary education. To qualify for Cal Grant A or B, a student must be a California resident attending an eligible school or college within the state, must be making satisfactory academic progress, and must not owe a refund on any State or Federal grant or have defaulted on a student loan.
Applicants for Cal Grant funds are required to complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) no later than March 2 prior to the fall semester for which the grant will be used. First-time applicants must verify their GPA by March 2.
Cal Grant A is designed to assist low- and middle-income students with the cost of tuition and fees. Recipients are selected on the basis of financial need and grade point average. This grant is to be used for registration fees but may not cover full fees.
Cal Grant B is available to low-income students with at least a 2.0 GPA. An access grant of up to $1,551 is provided to help with such educational expenses as books, transportation, and room and board. Second, third and fourth year Cal Grant B recipients generally receive assistance with tuition and fees in addition to the $1,551 access grant.
Federal Pell Grant
The Federal Pell Grant program is the largest of all federal student grant programs and is the "foundation'' of all forms of student assistance. Pell Grants are available to undergraduates who have not already obtained a bachelor's degree. The amount of the grant is based on family contribution and ranges from $400 to $4,050 for students enrolled full time. Part-time undergraduates are also eligible. Students who file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) are automatically considered for a Federal Pell Grant.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant supplements other forms of financial assistance offered to an eligible student. Applicants must meet all other eligibility requirements. Although designed to meet the needs of undergraduate students with the greatest amount of need, FSEOG funds are provided to schools and colleges by the federal government, and awards to students are made according to the school's awarding practices. Priority in awarding FSEOG funds must be given to Pell Grant recipients. Award amounts to CSUF students range from $100 to $800.
Academic Competitiveness Grant
The Academic Competitiveness Grant is available to students in their first and second years of undergraduate study. To qualify, a student must (1) be a U.S. citizen, (2) be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant, and (3) have completed a “rigorous high school program.” In addition, second-year students must have maintained a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0. Eligible first year students may receive up to $750; eligible second year students may receive up to $1,300.
National SMART Grant (National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant)
The National SMART Grant is available for up to $4,000 for each of the third and fourth years of undergraduate study. To qualify, a student must (1) be enrolled full-time, (2) be a U.S. citizen, (3) be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant, (5) be majoring in physical, life or computer sciences, mathematics, technology, or engineering or in a foreign language determined critical to national security, and (6) have maintained a grade point average of at least 3.0.
Federal Perkins Loans
Federal Perkins Loans are low-interest loans (5 percent interest) available to undergraduate and graduate students. Based on their demonstrated financial need, students may borrow up to $4,000 each academic year and up to a maximum borrowing limit of $20,000 for completing an undergraduate degree. The combined borrowing limit for completion of undergraduate and graduate study is $40,000. Students borrow through the Federal Perkins Loan program at their school or college, and availability of funds is dependent on repayment of the school's previous borrowers and annual federal allocations to the program. Generally, Perkins loan awards at CSUF range from $200 to $2,400. Interest does not accrue on the loan, and no repayment is due while the student is enrolled at least half-time. Repayment begins nine months following graduation, withdrawal, or enrollment below half-time status.
The Federal Work-Study program provides students with employment opportunities both on and off campus. Eligibility for the program is determined by the school or college based on the student's demonstrated financial need. Students awarded Work-Study receive an allocation of funds to be earned through part-time employment with an approved employer. The hourly wage will depend on the type of job and placement assistance is provided by the school or college. Students can take advantage of this employment opportunity to work in areas related to their studies or to perform community service work to minimize their student loan borrowing. Undergraduates and graduate students are eligible to participate in the program.
Subsidized Federal Stafford Student Loan
The Federal Stafford Student Loan is a long-term loan that students borrow from banks, credit unions or other lending agencies. The loans are guaranteed by the State of California and insured by the federal government.
Federal Stafford loans are available both “subsidized” and “unsubsidized.” To qualify for a subsidized loan, the student must demonstrate financial need according to the federal need analysis formula. The federal government pays the interest on subsidized loans while the student is enrolled at least half-time and during the six month grace period prior to repayment. Unsubsidized loans are available to all eligible students regardless of income and assets. Borrowers may choose to pay the interest on the unsubsidized loan while in school or to allow the interest to accrue and be paid along with the principal when repayment begins.
The amount and type of Federal Stafford Loan a student may borrow depends on the student’s dependency status, financial need, and year in school. Effective July 1, 2007:
- dependent undergraduate students may borrow up to $3,500 for the freshman year, up to $4,500 for the sophomore year, and up to $5,500 for the remainder of the undergraduate program. The aggregate loan limit for dependent undergraduates is $23,000.
- independent undergraduates may borrow up to $7,500 for the freshman year (with no more than $3,500 subsidized), up to $8,500 for the sophomore year (with no more than $4,500 subsidized), up to $10,500 for the remainder of the undergraduate program (with no more than $5,500 subsidized), and up to $12,500 for students enrolled in course work necessary for a professional credential or certification for employment as a teacher (with no more than $5,500 subsidized). The aggregate loan limit for independent undergraduates and teaching credential students is $46,000 of which no more than $23,000 may be subsidized.
- graduate students may borrow up to $20,500 annually (with no more than $8,500 subsidized). The aggregate loan limit for graduate students is $146,500, including amounts borrowed for undergraduate study, of which no more than $65,500 may be subsidized.
Federal PLUS Parent Loans
The PLUS Parent Loan program is a loan designed to assist parents in meeting the educational costs of their dependents. The parent is the borrower and is responsible for repayment of the loan. The PLUS program is designed for families who generally do not qualify for other forms of financial assistance and who can meet the additional burden of loan payments.
Parents who do not have an adverse credit history may be eligible to borrow up to the total cost of the student's education, minus any other financial aid received by the student. The PLUS interest rate is fixed at 8.5 percent. Repayment of the loan begins within 60 days of the disbursement of the loan. Parents must repay both interest and principal and should check with their lender concerning deferment options.
Graduate PLUS Loans
Graduate PLUS loans are available to eligible graduate and professional students who do not have an adverse credit history. Students may borrow up to the cost of attendance minus other financial aid. The Graduate PLUS loan interest rate is fixed at 8.5 percent. Repayment begins within 60 days of the disbursement of the loan; however, graduate students may request a PLUS Loan forbearance while in school.
March 2 is the deadline for priority processing for the following academic year. Consult with the Office of Financial Aid for more specific deadlines.
Emergency loans are available from the first day of classes until 30 days before the end of the semester.
Bureau of Indian Affairs Grants
Consult with the BIA for exact dates. The application deadline is usually in mid-June.
RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
OF STUDENTS RECEIVING AID
All students are entitled to and are guaranteed fair and equitable treatment in the awarding of financial aid. In addition, there shall be no discrimination of any kind. Appeals procedures exist for anyone who feels that a violation has occurred; consult with the director of financial aid for details.
All students have the right to receive full and open information about various financial aid programs and their eligibility. In addition, they have the right to know the selection and review processes used in awarding financial aid.
All students have the right to know the costs of attending the institution, the refund policies in case of withdrawal from the university, the academic programs offered by the university, the faculty and physical facilities of the institution, and data regarding student retention at the university.
The following information concerning student financial assistance may be obtained from the Director of Financial Aid, University Hall 146, phone: (714) 278-3125:
- Student financial assistance programs, including state grants, available to students who enroll at CSU, Fullerton;
- The procedures and forms by which application for student financial assistance is made;
- The student eligibility requirements for financial assistance and the criteria used in determining how financial assistance is distributed among eligible applicants who enroll at CSU, Fullerton;
- The right and responsibilities of receiving financial assistance, including aid provided under federal Title IV student assistance programs, and criteria for continued student eligibility under each program;
- The standards the student must meet to make satisfactory progress for the purpose of establishing and maintaining eligibility for financial assistance, and the criteria to reestablish eligibility;
- The method by which financial assistance disbursements will be made to students and the frequency of those disbursements;
- The terms of any loan received as part of the student’s financial aid package, a sample loan repayment schedule, and the necessity for repaying loans;
- The general conditions and terms applicable to any employment provided as part of the student’s financial aid package;
- CSU Fullerton’s responsibility to provide and collect exit counseling information for all student borrowers under the federal student loan programs; and
- The terms and conditions for deferral of loan payments for qualifying service under the Peace Corps Act, the Domestic Volunteer Service Act of 1973, or comparable volunteer community service.
The following information concerning the cost of attending California State University, Fullerton, is available from the director of Financial Aid, University Hall 146, phone: (714) 278-3125:
- Fees and tuition (where applicable);
- Estimated costs of books and supplies;
- Estimates of typical student room and board costs and typical commuting costs;
- And, if requested, additional costs for specific programs.
All students have the right to receive full and open information about various topics as provided by law. The following information may be obtained from departments as indicated:
- Information regarding special facilities and services available to students with disabilities may be obtained from the Disabled Student Services Office, University Hall 101 or by calling (714) 278-3117.
- Information concerning CSU, Fullerton policies, procedures and facilities for students and others to report criminal actions or other on-campus emergencies may be obtained from the University Police, Temporary 1200, at (714) 278-2515.
- Information concerning CSU, Fullerton annual campus security report may be obtained from the University Police, Temporary 1200, at (714) 278-2515 or referencing police.fullerton.edu on the Web.
- Information concerning the prevention of drug and alcohol abuse and rehabilitation programs may be obtained from the health educator in the Student Health Center, at (714) 278-2800.
- Information regarding student retention and graduation rates at CSU, Fullerton and, if available, the number and percentage of students completing the program in which the student is enrolled or has expressed interest may be obtained from the Office of Institutional Research and Analytical Studies in McCarthy Hall 136.
- Information concerning athletic opportunities available to male and female students and the financial resources and personnel that CSU, Fullerton dedicates to its men’s and women’s teams may be obtained from the Athletics Department, Titan House, at (714) 278-3058.
- Information concerning grievance procedures for students who feel aggrieved in their relationships with the university, its policies, practices and procedures, or its faculty and staff may be obtained from the Vice President for Student Affairs Office, Langsdorf Hall 805, at (714) 278-3221.
- Information concerning teacher preparation programs at CSU Fullerton, including the pass rate on teacher certification examinations, may be obtained from the data analyst in the College of Education, EC-190, at (714) 278-3411.
All financial aid recipients agree to carry and complete a specific number of units each semester, to report graduation or withdrawal from the university, and to notify the Office of Financial Aid of any changes in their financial or marital status. Students who accept financial aid agree to report to the Office of Financial aid any additional resources received including, but not limited to, scholarships, stipends, fee waivers or reimbursements, and grants from outside sources.
Recipients of financial aid must use the funds only to meet education costs. Any other use of the funds is prohibited by law.
Students who are receiving financial aid must maintain satisfactory academic progress. See the section below for details.
SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS STANDARDS
All students, including financial aid recipients, must maintain scholastic academic progress as outlined in the California State University, Fullerton catalog.
Federal and state regulations governing student financial aid programs require the university to ensure that each student who is receiving financial aid maintains satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward a degree objective. These regulations allow the institution to set the standards of SAP as long as "those standards are reasonable, are applied consistently and are at least as strict as the requirements for all students, and measure progress toward the degree for all periods of enrollment regardless of whether the student is receiving financial aid." As required, a quantitative and qualitative measurement has been defined. (See below for complete information).
At CSUF, all undergraduate programs are four-year programs but for purposes of defining the quantitative measurement for SAP, a maximum time frame of six academic years of work attempted is allowed. Students are expected to complete their educational objective, degree or certificate according to the following schedule:
|Required for Degree
||Max. Attempted Units
|Undergraduate: 120 units or more, depending upon program (B.A.)
|Graduate: 30 or more depending upon Program
Students are not eligible to receive financial assistance at CSUF once they have reached or exceeded the maximum number of attempted units as described above. Undergraduate students are allowed a maximum of 186 units; graduate or post-baccalaureate students are allowed a maximum of 45 units. The unit maximum for undergraduates includes all units attempted at CSUF, as well as all transferable units attempted at other colleges and universities, even those in excess of the number accepted by CSUF for transfer credit. Some academic programs require more than the standard number of units; a list of those programs and their maximum allowed units is available in the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy available on the Financial Aid website at www.fullerton.edu/financialaid. A student who cannot complete his/her objective within the maximum attempted units is not eligible for any financial aid from any federal or state source, including loans. A unit cap appeal process is available for students who have reached the maximum. As described on the Unit Cap Appeal form, the appeal requires a detailed statement of extenuating circumstances leading to excess units, evidence of progress toward completing the academic program, and documentation of remaining course work to complete the program.
CSUF uses a 90 percent completion percentage (90 percent rule) applied to attempted units each term on an annual basis for its qualitative measurement to determine if SAP is being maintained.
CSUF does not impose a minimum number of units each semester, although most financial aid programs require at least 6 units per semester (half-time status) to receive funds. Therefore, a student may decide each semester how many units to attempt. In deciding, factors such as employment, course difficulty, family responsibilities and academic probation should be considered. There is a four-week period each term to establish an enrollment status. On census date, the 20th day of instruction, units are "frozen," and it is on this basis that satisfactory academic progress is calculated.
The 90 Percent Rule
The student's census attempted units ("frozen units") for the preceding fall and spring semesters are added together, and grades are reviewed to calculate percentage of earned units. The percentage is calculated on a maximum of 12 units per semester or 24 units per academic year. TO MAINTAIN UNRESTRICTED ELIGIBILITY FOR FINANCIAL AID, 90 PERCENT OF ATTEMPTED UNITS MUST BE EARNED.
Determination of Units Completed
The following grades will be counted in determining units successfully completed: A, B, C, D, CR (credit).
RP (Report in Progress) grades are considered as units completed for all courses numbered 100 or above. A grade of RP in remedial courses, i.e., those numbered below 100, is not considered completed units.
The following grades will count as units attempted but will not count as units completed: F, NC (No Credit), W (Withdrawal), I (Incomplete), WU (Withdrawal Unauthorized).
If a grade is changed after the official posting for a semester, it is the student’s responsibility to bring verification of the change to the Office of Financial Aid.
A repeated course in which the student initially received a D or better will not count as units attempted or completed since an improved grade will only result in a grade change and not additional unit credit. A repeated course in which a student withdrew or received an unofficial withdrawal or grade of “F” will count as units attempted and completed.
Remedial courses will be considered as units completed for purposes of reviewing a student’s satisfactory academic progress only when the university or department requires a student to take a remedial course(s) as part of his/her program whether or not the student receives unit credit towards graduation. A maximum of 30 units is allowed.
If at least 70 percent (but less than 90 percent) of attempted units is earned, the student will be allowed to receive financial aid for one semester on “warning” status; if less than 70 percent of attempted units are earned, the student’s eligibility is terminated until the student re-qualifies.
The student is still eligible to receive financial aid for one semester while on warning; however, the student must meet the following conditions to be taken off warning status:
- attempt a minimum of 6 units;
- complete 100 percent of attempted units (12 units is the maximum requirement); and
- earn at least a 2.0 semester grade point average (GPA).
At the end of the warning semester, if the student has not met the conditions stated above, eligibility will be terminated until the student re-qualifies.
If a student earns less than 70 percent of attempted units, the student’s eligibility is terminated until satisfactory academic progress is demonstrated in a subsequent semester or summer term as follows:
- attempt a minimum of 6 units;
- complete 100 percent of attempted units (12 units is the maximum requirement); and
- earn at least a 2.0 semester grade point average (GPA).
Successful Completion Requirement
In order to maintain satisfactory academic progress, each student must have a minimum cumulative C average or an academic standing consistent with the institution's requirements for graduation. This requirement is in addition to the requirement that a student maintain scholastic academic progress at the end of each semester as defined by California State University, Fullerton. CSUF academic probation and disqualification standards permit students to enroll while on probation with the following minimum grade point averages: Seniors must have a cumulative grade point average of 1.85 or higher (fall) or 1.95 or higher (spring); juniors must have a cumulative grade point average of 1.70 or higher (fall) or 1.85 or higher (spring); sophomores must have a cumulative grade point average of 1.40 or higher (fall) or 1.70 or higher (spring); and freshmen must have a cumulative grade point average of 1.0 or higher (fall) or 1.5 or higher (spring).
As a result, a student who meets these minimum grade point averages will be considered to be making satisfactory academic progress.
Semester Grade Review
Even though California State University, Fullerton will measure satisfactory academic progress according to the number of units successfully completed at the end of each academic year, federal financial aid program regulations require each college and university to determine that a student is maintaining satisfactory academic progress each payment period and each time it certifies a Stafford Loan. To meet this requirement, a student will have been certified as having made satisfactory academic progress for payment purposes at the end of the fall semester if the student meets the "qualitative standards'' as outlined above.
Failure to Maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress
A student who fails to maintain the qualitative or quantitative measurement standards will be defined as having failed to maintain satisfactory academic progress and will be ineligible to receive any federal or state financial aid.
Re-qualification of Financial Aid Eligibility
Students may re-qualify for a future semester by meeting the following conditions:
In a single semester:
- attempt a minimum of 6 units*;
- complete 100 percent of attempted units (12 units is the maximum requirement); and
- earn at least a 2.0 semester grade point average (GPA).
*Transferable courses at another school may be used to re-qualify, provided they are accepted for unit credit toward graduation at CSUF.
Students have the right to appeal a financial aid eligibility termination or unit cap termination by presenting a written appeal with documentation of mitigating circumstances. Complete a SAP appeal form and:
(1) explain the circumstances which contributed to failure to make SAP;
(2) document the circumstances;
(3) state the steps that have been taken to improve future academic performance. Allow 2-3 weeks for the SAP Appeals Committee to evaluate and to provide a written response.
CSU, Fullerton's policies regarding refunds for financial aid recipients are in accordance with federal Title IV student assistance program regulations. Information concerning the refund policies for the return of unearned tuition and fees or other refundable portions of institutional charges is available from the director of Financial Aid in University Hall 146, phone (714) 278-3125. As stated in the appropriate CSUF Class Schedule, a student may be entitled to a refund of fees if he/she withdraws from the university or drops units. However, if the student received financial aid, the fee refund may be credited partially or completely to the appropriate financial aid account(s).
FEE REFUNDS AND RETURN OF TITLE IV FUNDS
Information on policies regarding fee refunds and the return of federal Title IV student assistance as required by regulation is available from the director of Financial Aid in University Hall 146, phone (714) 278-3125. Financial aid recipients who are considering withdrawal should visit the Office of Financial Aid for an estimate of the amount of financial aid that would have to be repaid.
Since financial aid funds are awarded to help students meet their educational costs, financial aid is first used for direct institutional costs (fees). If a student withdraws before completing at least 60 percent of the term*, he or she may have to repay any "unearned" portion of the financial aid received. (Unearned aid is calculated using the percentage of days in the term following the last date of attendance.) A financial aid student who withdraws on or before the 60 percent point in the term is eligible to receive a fee refund; however, the refund may be applied to reduce the amount of unearned aid the student is required to repay. See examples below.
In these examples, the student received $2,425 in federal grants and $2,750 in subsidized Federal Stafford Loan. The following examples illustrate the amount the student would owe based on three different withdrawal dates (dollar amounts shown are approximate).
|TOTAL federal aid disbursed:
|Earned financial aid
|Minus amount returned to lender by CSUF
|Remaining unearned aid
|STUDENT MUST REPAY THESE AMOUNTS:
|Reimbursement for loan funds returned by CSUF
|Plus repayment of unearned federal grant funds
|Total student owes to CSUF
|Minus fee refund** (reduces balance student owes)
|Balance student owes to CSUF
|In addition, student must repay unearned Federal Stafford Loan per terms of promissory note
|A HOLD IS PLACED ON CSUF SERVICES UNTIL STUDENT REPAYS THIS AMOUNT:
*Students who withdraw after the 60 percent point in the term are considered to have “earned” all financial aid received.
**If registration fees were paid in part or in full by a Cal Grant and/or State University Grant, any fee refund will be returned to the state grant program and will not be available to reduce the amount of unearned federal aid the student must repay.