financial aid basics
WHAT AFFECTS MY AID?
Bayramian Hall, first floor
(west of the Oviatt Library)
Monday and Thursday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Tuesday and Wednesday, 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Counseling Hours
Monday: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Tuesday and Wednesday: 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
A referral slip is required from the first-floor financial aid window. Visits with a financial aid counselor are limited to 15 minutes. Please have your questions ready.
Please be in line at least 30 minutes before closing; hours are subject to change.
What happens if I withdraw from the university?
If you receive financial aid and withdraw from some or all of your classes within the first 60 percent of the semester, your financial aid eligibility will be recalculated according to a federal formula. Since funds are based on attendance for the entire semester, your aid must be recalculated based on the actual number of days attended. The amount to be repaid, if any, is determined according to your withdrawal date.
Please contact the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department before beginning the withdrawal process to ensure that you understand the financial impact of your withdrawal. Your financial aid may be reduced or canceled, and you may be required to repay funds to Northridge.
How will I know if the withdrawal affects my financial aid?
You will be notified of any aid adjustments through your CSUN Gmail, which will let you know how to check your award on the myNorthridge Portal. Your financial aid may be reduced or canceled, and you may be required to repay funds to Northridge.
Any reduction in aid should be paid to University Cash Services. If you owe a balance to the university, a hold will be placed on your academic records at Northridge. This will affect you in the following ways:
- You will not be able to register for subsequent semesters at Northridge.
- You will not be able to obtain a copy of your academic transcripts.
- Your credit history may be adversely affected when your past due account is reported to an outside credit agency.
- You may not be able to receive Title IV aid at other institutions.
What is the recalculation process?
The university provides the official withdrawal date to the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department, which determines how much of the semester the student attended. This percentage is used to figure out the amount of aid the student is eligible to receive.
If the amount disbursed to you is greater than the amount you are eligible to receive, these funds will have to be returned. The Title IV programs covered by this law include: federal Pell grants, TEACH Grants, Stafford loans, PLUS loans, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOGs), and federal Perkins loans.
Aid will be returned in the following order:
- Unsubsidized federal Stafford loan
- Subsidized federal Stafford loan
- Federal Perkins loan
- Federal PLUS loan (graduate student)
- Federal PLUS loan (parent)
- Federal Pell Grant
- Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
If you received less assistance than your amount earned, you may be able to receive those additional funds. If you received more assistance than you earned, the excess funds must be returned.
The amount of assistance you earned is determined on a pro rata basis. For example, if you completed 30 percent of your payment period or period of enrollment, you earn 30 percent of the assistance you were originally scheduled to receive. Once you have completed more than 60 percent of the payment period or period of enrollment, you earn all the assistance that you were scheduled to receive for that period.
If you did not receive all of the funds that you earned, you may be due a post-withdrawal disbursement. If your post-withdrawal disbursement includes loan funds, we must get your permission before it can be disbursed. You may choose to decline some or all of the loan funds so you don't incur additional debt.
Northridge will automatically use all or a portion of your post-withdrawal disbursement of grant funds for tuition, fees, and room and board charges. Northridge will need your permission to use the post-withdrawal grant disbursement for all other school charges. If you do not give your permission, you will be offered the funds. However, it may be in your best interest to reduce your debt at school by allowing Northridge to keep the funds.
In addition to federal aid, you also may be required to repay all or part of your state or institutional funds received, including Cal Grant, EOP and Tuition Fee Grant.
The funds returned by the school are paid from university resources, which may create an outstanding balance on your university account.
If you have questions about your Title IV program funds, you may visit Student Aid on the Web.
How does the recalculation process work?
Let's consider a hypothetical withdrawal scenario with a student named Mandy. Mandy registered for a 15-week spring semester, which begins Jan. 20, ends May 16, and lasts 105 calendar days. She withdrew on Feb. 9 for personal reasons after completing 21 calendar days of the semester.
Mandy was initially awarded $2,025 in Title IV aid for the spring semester. She was paid $825 for the federal Pell grant and $1,200 in a federal subsidized loan.
Mandy completed 20 percent (days attended, 21, divided by days in the semester, 105) of the period of enrollment. Since she completed 20 percent of the semester, she also earned 20 percent of the Title IV aid for the semester.
This means that Mandy earned $405 in Title IV aid (initial award total, $2,025, multiplied by 20 percent). It also means that Mandy didn't earn 80 percent of her Title IV aid. As a result, $1,620 (initial award total, $2,025, multiplied by 80 percent) is unearned aid that was disbursed and must be returned to Title IV program accounts. Federal funds must be returned in a specific order, first Title IV loans and then Title IV grants.
Do I need to start repaying my student loans if I withdraw?
If your enrollment falls below half time, you should contact your lender immediately to see how the withdrawal will affect your loan repayment. If the withdrawal brings you below half-time status, you will start your grace period. When the grace period ends, you must begin repaying your student loans according to the terms of the promissory note.
What is an unofficial withdrawal and how will it affect my financial aid?
If you receive all "WU" grades for the semester, you are considered unofficially withdrawn. The university records the midpoint of the semester as your withdrawal date and will use this date to determine your refund or repayment amounts. If you unofficially withdraw from a semester, you will not meet satisfactory academic progress for the following semester. Your financial aid may be reduced and you may need to repay financial aid funds to Northridge.
How does withdrawal affect Satisfactory Academic Progress?
If you do not complete your classes, it may affect your ability to receive aid in the next semester or academic year. These units will be counted in calculating the total units attempted, even if the withdrawal is for medical reasons. The calculation is used to determine the maximum unit cap on financial aid and may affect your ability to receive funds in your remaining years of study. Students must meet the campus Satisfactory Academic Progress policy to remain eligible for financial aid.
Where can I find information on the university withdrawal process?
For information on changes to your academic schedule after the start of classes, including the general university policy on partial, complete, and medical withdrawals, please visit the Schedule of Classes Registration Guide.
If your petition for withdrawal is granted, you do not need to notify the Financial Aid & Scholarship Department; the university will notify us. If required, we will recalculate your aid for you.
Where can I find information on the refund policy with the university?
For information on the Northridge refund policy, visit the University Cash Services page.