How to Keep Your Grants & Loans

Once you have your aid, be sure to keep it

Enrollment in all previous terms, including those in which you withdrew completely from classes, determines whether or not you receive your financial aid. Make sure you’re doing all the right things so you don’t lose any funding, and be aware of what happens if you need to repeat a course.

Maintain required enrollment status

If you are an undergraduate or graduate student, you must be enrolled at least half time during any semester in which you receive financial aid:

  • Undergraduate half time: six credit hours
  • Graduate half time: four credit hours

Some grants require that you maintain full-time status. In those cases, you must be enrolled in at least:

  • Undergraduate full time: twelve credit hours
  • Graduate full time: eight credit hours

Any change to your enrollment may result in a change to your financial aid eligibility. This includes:

If any of these occur, you may be asked to return money you’ve already received, and may not receive money you’re expecting.

Make satisfactory academic progress

We review your academic progress at least once a year. It’s determined by your enrollment in all previous terms (including those in which you withdrew completely from classes), whether or not you received financial aid.

If you are a nondegree student who is eligible for financial aid, you are expected to meet the same standards as an undergraduate student in order to keep your aid.

You must meet the following requirements to make satisfactory academic progress:

You must maintain a cumulative program GPA of no less than the graduation requirements for your academic program. To find specific GPA requirements for your major visit the IU Bloomington Academic Bulletin or contact your department for more information.

Only grades of A+ through F are used to calculate your GPA. Other grades you may see that aren’t included in your GPA include X, FM, FX, I, IM, NC, NR, NY, P, R, S, T, W.

If you repeat a course using the X grade replacement policy, the earlier grade will have an X next to it and will no longer be included in your GPA.

Learn how grade changes are handled for a Incomplete (I) grades.

In order to make satisfactory academic progress, you have to successfully complete no less than 67 percent of your total attempted courses. If you received a grade of W, F, FX, or I in a course, you did not successfully complete that course. These grades are considered to be attempted but not successfully completed.

Transfer, Tested, ACP credit hours are calculated as hours successfully attempted and completed. Letter grades of A+ through F are also calculated as hours successfully attempted and completed.

If you repeat a course using the X grade replacement policy, the earlier grade will have an X next to it and will be calculated as successfully attempted and completed if you previously passed the class. If you previously failed the class, the grade will reflect FX and is calculated as attempted but not successfully completed.

Your completion rate is determined by dividing the hours you successfully completed by the total number of hours you attempted. For SAP purposes, the calculation goes to 3 decimal points and is then rounded. For example, if you take 9 credit hours but successfully complete only 6, that is a completion rate of 66.667% and you would not be meeting the 67% requirement.

You must complete your degree within 150% of the published credit hour length of your academic program. However, once you've attempted 130% of the published credit hour length we'll ask you to outline your plans for graduation to make sure you're completing your degree requirements before you reach the 150% limit.

Transfer, Tested, ACP credit hours are calculated as hours successfully attempted and completed.

Please note that you may only receive financial aid for courses which satisfy degree objectives and requirements.

We’ll notify you by email if you’re making unsatisfactory academic progress. You can also check One.IU to see your status. If you are selected for Too Many Credit Hours, you must complete an academic plan with your academic advisor and submit the completed form to our office.

What happens when you repeat a course?

If you receive less than an A in a course, you may be eligible to retake the course through IU’s X grade replacement policy. However, federal regulations say that repeated courses can’t be included in your enrollment status when we calculate your federal financial aid eligibility in some cases.

If either of the below applies to you, your Title IV Federal Aid eligibility will be affected—including Pell Grants and Federal Direct Loans. If you’re receiving Title IV aid, we’ll let you know if you’re enrolled in non-repeatable coursework during a term.

If you’re enrolled in 12 credit hours during which you repeat a previously passed 3 credit hour course for the second time, only nine of your credit hours can be used to calculate your financial aid eligibility. Your enrollment will be reported as three-quarter time rather than full time, which may affect your federal grants and loans.

Let’s say you enroll in four related classes in the fall and pass only three of them. Your department requires you to take all four courses at the same time, so you have to retake all four in the spring. Only the class you failed would be included in your enrollment status, which means your enrollment would be reported as less than half time. This would cause your Federal Pell Grant to be recalculated and any Federal Direct Loans to be cancelled for the term.

Learn more about managing your financial aid

Manage your financial aid