Policies

  • Annual Application

    Financial aid awards are for one academic year only. A new financial application and other required forms must be submitted each year. A separate application may be required for summer school assistance and is usually available by March 1.

  • Enrollment Status

    Students must be enrolled at least half-time in a degree seeking program to receive Federal Unsubsidized Loans.  Full time at the graduate level is 9 hours, half time is 4.5 hours.

    If you drop below half time, you may no longer be eligible to defer repayment on loan/s borrowed for prior periods of enrollment. To receive any federal loan, a student must be accepted or enrolled in a degree or certificate program. Admittance to a graduate program as a “Special Student” does not meet the admissions criteria to qualify for federal financial aid. Renewal students must be in good academic standing and making satisfactory academic progress in order to receive financial aid.

  • Satisfactory Academic Progress – Divinity Students

    Federal regulations require that schools monitor the academic progress of each applicant who applies for and/or receives federal aid. Students must be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) towards their academic objective in order to maintain their eligibility for financial aid.  This federal regulation is to ensure students receiving federal aid will meet the minimum GPA requirement as determined by their department to receive their degree.  The GPA required for graduation may differ from the minimum GPA allowed for continuation in the School of Divinity.

    POLICY ON SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS FOR FINANCIAL AID ELIGIBILITY

    Evaluation of students’ satisfactory academic progress for purposes of federal financial aid eligibility is made at the end of each term (fall, spring, summer), to determine eligibility for the following term. Evaluation is also made upon students’ readmittance and/or return to active status following a period of continuous enrollment status.

    The receipt of federally-controlled aid requires half-time enrollment (4.5 or more hours) during the fall and spring semesters and a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.50 on work attempted in the Wake Forest School of Divinity. Institutional aid is generally not awarded for summer sessions, and not awarded beyond the sixth (fall or spring) semester; this limit can be prorated for transfer students. Certain institutional aid programs have higher academic and/or other requirements, which are communicated to students through the Curriculum and Academic Policy Committee. The Committee may revoke institutionally-controlled financial aid for violation of University regulations, including its honor code, or for violation of federal, state, or local laws.

    FEDERAL FINANCIAL AID

    The Higher Education Act mandates that institutions of higher education establish minimum standards of satisfactory academic progress for students receiving federal aid. Wake Forest University makes these minimum standards applicable to all programs funded by the federal government. Certain federal aid programs have higher academic and/or other requirements, which are communicated to recipients. To maintain academic eligibility for federal aid, a student must:

    • Complete the requirements for a Master of Divinity degree in the maximum time frame as defined in the Wake Forest School of Divinity Bulletin section ‘Requirements for Degrees’ for his/her program. A student becomes ineligible for aid at the point it is determined that they can no longer complete degree requirements within the remaining maximum time frame, which is 150% of hours attempted for the degree program.
    • Pass at least two-thirds of those hours attempted (including pass/fail courses, and hours attempted as a visiting or unclassified student) in the School of Divinity. Incompletes count as hours attempted, unless from a non-credit course. Audited classes do not count as hours attempted. During a semester in which a student drops courses or withdraws, hours attempted includes those hours attempted as of the earlier of (1) the withdrawal date, or (2) the last day to drop a course without penalty (as published in the academic calendar). For purposes of this policy, hours attempted also include all instances in which a course is repeated.
    • Maintain the following minimum cumulative grade point average on all graded hours attempted (including incompletes from graded courses, but excluding pass/fail courses) in the School of Divinity:

    for graded hours attempted:                                  a minimum cum. GPA of:

    at least 9, fewer than 117                                       2.50

    The Wake Forest University grade point average calculation also excludes pass/fail courses. In cases where a student repeats a course for which he or she received a grade of C- or lower, the cumulative grade point average is calculated by considering the course as attempted only once, with the grade points assigned reflecting the highest grade received. However, this provision does not apply to any course for which the student has received the grade of F in consequence of an honor code violation. During a semester in which a student drops courses or withdraws, all graded hours attempted in the School of Divinity includes those graded hours attempted as of the earlier of (1) the withdrawal date, or (2) the last day to drop a course without penalty (as published in the academic calendar).

    The policy on satisfactory academic progress applies only to the general eligibility for aid consideration. There are other federally-mandated requirements a student must meet to receive federal aid. For instance, certain federal loan programs also require either the passage of a period of time or the advancing of a grade level between annual maximum borrowing, regardless of general eligibility for aid. Other general student eligibility requirements for a student to receive federal financial aid are listed in Funding Education Beyond High School:  The Guide to Federal Student Aid, a publication of the U.S. Department of Education.

    A student not meeting the minimum standards of satisfactory academic progress for purposes of federal financial aid eligibility when evaluation is done at the end of each term (fall, spring, summer), is placed in financial aid warning status for the following term of enrollment. The financial aid warning status lasts for one term of enrollment, during which the student may continue to receive federal student aid funds. A student still not meeting the minimum standards after a term in financial aid warning status loses eligibility for the next term of enrollment, unless the student successfully appeals and is placed on financial aid probation, which may include the approval of an academic plan.

    APPEAL PROCEDURE

    Denial of aid under this policy may be appealed in writing to the financial aid committee via email at gradfinaid@nullwfu.edu.

    A student’s appeal request must include the following:

    • Information regarding why the student failed to maintain satisfactory academic progress
    • What factors have changed that would allow them to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress at the next evaluation.

    Please note that the Committee cannot access students’ health or academic records from other University offices. Students must provide directly to the Financial Aid Committee, any records or documentation necessary to support their request.

    The Committee may grant a probationary reinstatement to any student, upon demonstration of extenuating circumstances documented in writing to the satisfaction of the Committee. Examples of extenuating circumstances and appropriate documentation may include but are not necessarily be limited to the following:

    • Injury or illness of the student or immediate family members— statement from physician that injury or illness interfered with opportunity for satisfactory progress
    • Death in the family— statement of student or minister
    • Temporary or permanent disability —statement from physician.

    During a probationary period, students may continue to receive aid. Reinstatement after probation can be made only after the student has received credit for the appropriate percentage of work attempted with the required cumulative grade point average. For students on a probationary federal aid semester, federal aid can only be granted one semester at a time. Student financial aid will reevaluate Satisfactory Academic Progress at the end of each semester.

  • Satisfactory Academic Progress – Graduate Students

    Federal regulations require that schools monitor the academic progress of each applicant who applies for and/or receives federal aid. Students must be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) towards their academic objective in order to maintain their eligibility for financial aid.  This federal regulation is to ensure students receiving federal aid will meet the minimum GPA requirement as determined by their department to receive their degree.  The GPA required for graduation may differ from the minimum GPA allowed for continuation in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

    POLICY ON SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS FOR FINANCIAL AID ELIGIBILITY

    To determine continuing financial aid eligibility, the financial aid committee evaluates students’ satisfactory academic progress at the end of each semester. The receipt of federally‐controlled aid requires half‐time enrollment (4.5 or more hours on the Reynolda Campus and 4.0 or more hours on the Bowman Gray Campus) in a degree seeking program during the fall and spring semesters and a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on work attempted in the Wake Forest University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Certain programs have higher academic requirements, which are communicated directly to the students by the departments.

    During a semester in which a student drops courses or withdraws or begins continuous enrollment status, the number of hours attempted includes those hours attempted as of the earlier of:

    1. the withdrawal or continuous enrollment status effective date, or
    2. the last day to drop a second part-of-term course without penalty (as published in the academic calendar).

    The Dean may revoke institutionally controlled financial aid for violation of University regulations, including its honor code, or for violation of federal, state, or local laws.

    FEDERAL FINANCIAL AID

    The Higher Education Act mandates that institutions of higher education establish minimum standards of satisfactory academic progress for students receiving federal aid. Wake Forest University makes these minimum standards applicable to all programs funded by the federal government. Certain federal aid programs have higher academic and/or other requirements, which are communicated to recipients. To maintain academic eligibility for federal aid, a student must:

    • Complete the requirements for a master’s degree or a Doctor of Philosophy degree in the maximum time frame as defined in the Wake Forest Graduate School of Arts and Science Bulletin section ‘Requirements for Degrees’ for his/her program. A student becomes ineligible for aid at the point it is determined that he/she can no longer complete degree requirements within the remaining maximum time frame.
    • Maintain a minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average on all graded hours attempted
      • Incompletes count as hours attempted, unless from a non-credit course.
      • Audited classes do not count as hours attempted.
      • The grade point average calculation excludes satisfactory/unsatisfactory and pass/fail courses.
      • In cases where a student repeats a course for which he or she received a grade of B‐ or lower, the cumulative grade point average is calculated by considering the course as attempted only once, with the grade points assigned reflecting the highest grade received. However, this provision does not apply to any course for which the student has received the grade of F in consequence of an honor code violation.
      • During a semester in which a student drops courses or withdraws, all graded hours attempted in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences includes those graded hours attempted before:
        1. the withdrawal date, or
        2. the last day to drop a course without penalty (as published in the academic calendar).
      • Maintain a grade of Satisfactory “S” in research courses. Adequate progress is determined by the standards of the department or program in which the student is enrolled.
    • Complete the requirements for a graduate degree within 150% of hours attempted for the degree program. A student is ineligible when it becomes mathematically impossible to complete his/her degree within a maximum number of hours within 150% of hour required for the degree. Refer to the Graduate Bulletin for specific hours required for degree programs.
    • Pass at least two-thirds of those hours attempted in the graduate school. Incompletes count as hours attempted, unless from a non-credit course. Audited classes do not count as hours attempted.
    • When assessing Satisfactory Academic Progress for federal financial aid, the University reviews all terms of enrollment at Wake Forest University as well as transfer work accepted toward degree requirements at Wake Forest University, regardless of whether the student received financial aid during those terms.

    EVALUATION OF SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS

    Evaluation of students’ Satisfactory Academic Progress for purposes of financial aid eligibility is made at the end of each term (fall, spring, summer), to determine eligibility for the following term. Students who have grade or other academic changes for a previous term, after an end-of-term evaluation has occurred, may request an additional evaluation by writing to the Committee on Scholarships and Student Aid at gradaid@nullwfu.edu. Evaluation is also made upon students’ readmittance and/or return to active status following a period of continuous enrollment status.

    The policy on Satisfactory Academic Progress applies only to the general eligibility for aid consideration. There are other federally‐mandated requirements a student must meet to receive federal aid. For instance, certain federal loan programs also require either the passage of a period of time or the advancing of a grade level between annual maximum borrowing, regardless of general eligibility for aid. Other general student eligibility requirements for a student to receive federal financial aid are listed in Funding Your Education: The Guide to Federal Student Aid, a publication of the U.S. Department of Education.

    A student who is not making satisfactory academic progress due to one of the reasons outlined above will be placed on warning semester for federal aid by the financial aid office.  Students placed on academic warning semester will be notified in writing.

    Students placed on financial aid warning for one semester will remain eligible to receive federal and institutional assistance during that semester (except when they have exceeded their degree deadline).  At the end of the warning period, academic progress will be reviewed.  If a student cannot re-establish satisfactory academic standing during the warning semester, the student will become ineligible to receive federal financial aid and may be dismissed or withdrawn from the Graduate School.

    APPEAL PROCEDURE

    Denial of aid under this policy may be appealed in writing to the financial aid committee via email at gradfinaid@nullwfu.edu.

    A student’s appeal request must include the following:

    • Information regarding why the student failed to maintain satisfactory academic progress
    • What factors have changed that would allow them to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress at the next evaluation.

    Please note that the Committee cannot access students’ health or academic records from other University offices. Students must provide directly to the Financial Aid Committee, any records or documentation necessary to support their request.

    The Committee may grant a probationary reinstatement to any student, upon demonstration of extenuating circumstances documented in writing to the satisfaction of the Committee. Examples of extenuating circumstances and appropriate documentation may include but are not necessarily be limited to the following:

    • Injury or illness of the student or immediate family members— statement from physician that injury or illness interfered with opportunity for satisfactory progress
    • Death in the family— statement of student or minister
    • Temporary or permanent disability —statement from physician.

    During a probationary period, students may continue to receive aid. Reinstatement after probation can be made only after the student has received credit for the appropriate percentage of work attempted with the required cumulative grade point average. For students on a probationary federal aid semester, federal aid can only be granted one semester at a time. Student financial aid will reevaluate Satisfactory Academic Progress at the end of each semester.

  • Verification

    The federal government requires schools to verify certain financial information of aid applicants who are selected for review and verification on the basis of certain prescribed computer edit checks. If your application is selected for verification, you must verify that the information you reported is correct. Therefore, it is important that you keep copies of your financial records, including your and/or your spouse’s U.S. income tax returns (from the previous year), records of benefits received from the Social Security Administration (Form SSA-1099), Department of Veteran Affairs, and other agencies. We may also ask you to complete a Federal Verification Worksheet. If we request documentation, you must submit it promptly, as we cannot disburse any financial aid funds until the verification process has been completed.

  • Professional Judgment

    Any substantive changes in a student’s financial situation should be reported immediately in writing to the Office of Student Financial Aid. Examples of such changes are a significant decrease in income, unusual medical expenses, or a change in marital status. If warranted and carefully documented, adjustments may be made to the expected family contribution, cost of attendance, and satisfactory academic progress.

  • Outside Scholarships

    Any recipient of additional aid from any source which is not included in his/her financial aid award letter (North Carolina Baptist Association, private church funding, outside scholarships, etc.) is required to notify the Office of Student Financial Aid. The receipt of additional aid may result in a reduction of any need-based award if total resources exceed computed financial need (except for unsubsidized loans, in which case, all sources of financial aid may not exceed the Cost of Attendance).

  • Wellness Fee

    Graduate and Divinity Students have the option to waive the Wellness Fee charge from their WIN Accounts.  To access the Waiver, log into WIN and click on the Personal tab.  Waiver Request for the Wellness Fee will be the last option under the Personal tab.

  • Withdrawal Related

    Students who wish to withdraw from the Graduate School must complete the appropriate form, which requires approval from the program and the Dean of the Graduate School. Students who leave without following this procedure will receive a grade of F in each course in progress. Students on the Reynolda campus who were issued a Graduate School laptop computer are required to return it to Information Systems. Students on the Bowman Gray campus are required to return their laptop computers to the Academic Computing office. During the academic year, all students, full and part time, receive tuition refunds according to the stated schedule on Student Financial Services Policies site. This policy applies to students dropping courses as well as to those withdrawing. Withdrawals must be official and students must turn in their identification cards and laptop computer before claiming refunds. A student who withdraws by the drop date for the semester, as established by the academic calendar, will not have a grade recorded for courses in progress. A student who withdraws after the drop deadline will be assigned a grade of withdraw-passing or withdraw-failing for each course in progress. The withdrawal date for a student enrolled in an on-line program will be determined by the last time the student participated in an online discussion or made contact with a faculty member. Simply logging in to a course is not determinative of participation in the course.

  • Return of Title IV Program Funds Policy

    A withdrawal, official or otherwise, or grant of continuous enrollment status also affects financial aid eligibility, as outlined in the federal Return of Title IV Program Funds Policy and the Return of Non-Title IV Program Funds Policy. A student using scholarships, grants, or loans to pay educational expenses, whose account was paid-in-full prior to withdrawal or grant of continuous enrollment status, is likely to owe the University after withdrawal or grant of continuous enrollment status.

    The 1998 amendments to the Higher Education Act (HEA) of 1965 (Section 484B), and subsequent regulations issued by the United States Department of Education (34 CFR 668.22), establish a policy for the return of Title IV, HEA Program grant and loan funds for a recipient who withdraws. Wake Forest University’s continuous enrollment policy does not exempt any student from the requirements of the Return of Title IV Funds policy; nor does it extend federal student loan deferment benefits. Title IV Funds subject to return include the following aid programs:  Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, Iraq & Afghanistan Service Grant, Teacher Education Assistance for College & Higher Education Grant, Federal Direct Loan (subsidized and unsubsidized), and Federal Direct PLUS Loan.

    Title IV aid is awarded and paid on a payment period basis. For students enrolled in a single session or module of a payment period (such a summer), the single session or module is the payment period. For students who are awarded Title IV aid based on a reported registration in multiple sessions or modules of a payment period, the payment period is the beginning (start date) of the first session or module through the end (last day of exams) of the last session or module. Students who do not complete a payment period upon which Title IV aid was awarded, are considered to be withdrawn from the payment period and are subject to the Return of Title IV Program Funds Policy.

    The percentage of the payment period completed is determined by dividing the total number of calendar days comprising the payment period (excluding breaks of five or more consecutive days) into the number of calendar days completed. The percentage of Title IV grant and loan funds earned is:

    1. up through the 60% point in time, the percentage of the payment period completed,
    2. after the 60% point in time, 100%. The amount of Title IV grant and loan funds unearned is the complement of the percentage of earned Title IV funds applied to the total amount of Title IV funds disbursed (including funds that were not disbursed but could have been disbursed, i.e., post-withdrawal or post-grant of continuous enrollment status disbursements). If the amount earned is less than the amount disbursed, the difference is returned to the Title IV programs. If the amount earned is greater than the amount disbursed, the difference is treated as a late disbursement in accordance with the federal rules for late disbursements.

    A student who completes all the requirements for graduation from his or her academic program before completing the payment period, is not considered to have withdrawn.

    In a program offered in modules, a student is not considered to have withdrawn if the student successfully completes one module that includes 49 percent or more of the number of days in the payment period, excluding scheduled breaks of five or more consecutive days and all days between modules.

    In a program offered in modules, a student is not considered to have withdrawn if the student successfully completes a combination of modules that when combined contain 49 percent or more of the number of days in the payment period, excluding scheduled breaks of five or more consecutive days and all days between modules.

    In a program offered in modules, a student is not considered to have withdrawn if the student successfully completes coursework equal to or greater than the coursework required for definition of a half-time student for the payment period.

    Institutional charges (costs) include tuition and required fees, on-campus room rental, and on-campus dining plan. The federal Return of Title IV Funds policy requires that federal aid be considered as first applied toward institutional charges, regardless of other non-federal aid received.

    Unearned funds, up to the amount of total institutional charges multiplied by the unearned percentage of funds, are returned by the University; the return of Title IV Program funds may be rounded to the nearest dollar for each aid source. The student returns any portion of unearned funds not returned by the University. A student (or parent for PLUS loans) repays the calculated amount attributable to a Title IV loan program according to the loan’s terms. If repayment of grant funds by the student is required, only 50% of the unearned amount must be repaid. A student repays a Title IV grant program subject to repayment arrangements satisfactory to the University or the Secretary of Education’s overpayment collection procedures.

    Funds are returned in the following order: Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans, Federal Direct Subsidized Loans, Federal Direct PLUS Loans, Federal Pell Grants, Iraq & Afghanistan Service Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants, Teacher Education Assistance for College & Higher Education Grants, and other Title IV funds for which a return of funds is required.

    The Office of Student Financial Aid calculates the amount of unearned Title IV grant and loan funds, and has available examples of the application of this federal policy and a copy of the relevant Code of Federal Regulations section (CFR 668.22).

  • Rights and Responsibilities

    You have the right to know:

    • The cost of attendance
    • The refund policy for students who withdraw
    • What financial assistance is available from federal, state, and institutional sources
    • Procedures and deadlines for submitting applications for financial aid
    • How financial aid recipients are selected
    • How your eligibility was determined, including all resources the aid office considered available to you
    • An explanation of each type of award you receive and how and when funds will be disbursed to you
    • For any student loan you receive: the interest rate, total amount you must repay, when your repayment begins, the length of your repayment period, and the cancellation or deferment provisions of your loan
    • For any Federal Work-Study job, a description of the job, the hours you must work, the rate of pay, and how and when you will be paid
    • The satisfactory academic progress policy
    • How to appeal a decision by the Office of Student Financial Aid concerning your aid award
    • Campus crime statistics (See Annual Crime and Fire Reports)

    It is your responsibility to:

    • Read directions thoroughly, complete all application forms accurately, and to comply with all deadlines
    • Provide any supplemental information or documentation required by the Office of Student Financial Aid (or other agency if applicable)
    • Read, understand, and keep copies of any forms you are required to sign
    • Repay any student loans you may receive
    • Complete an entrance interview and an exit interview if you receive federal, state, or other loans while in attendance at Wake Forest University
    • Notify the Office of Student Financial Aid of any change in your enrollment status or financial status (including any scholarships or grants received from outside sources)
    • Changes of address and enrollment status must also be reported to your lender, if you have a loan
    • Satisfactorily perform the work agreed upon in a Federal Work-Study job
    • Know and comply with all requirements for continuation of financial aid, including satisfactory academic progress requirements