Policy International US Federal Student Aid-SAP & Return to Title IV Policy

US Federal Student Aid-SAP & Return to Title IV Policy


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Intent

To address the regulatory requirements associated with the universities participation in the United States (US) Federal Student Aid program specific to Satisfactory Academic Progress and the treatment of Title IV funds when a student withdraws.

Scope

This policy applies to all students who are US citizens or eligible US non-citizens, who apply for US Federal Student Aid while studying at James Cook University (JCU) Townsville or Cairns campus.

Definitions

Except where otherwise indicated in this policy, the definitions used in this policy are found in the Policy Glossary or the various Procedures related to this Policy.

SAP: The acronym for Satisfactory Academic Progress which is required to complete the course in accordance with the applicable Award requirements and within the context of US Federal Student Aid.

Title IV: The part contained within the United States Higher Education Act of 1965 that provides for financial assistance programs to help eligible US post-secondary students.

US Federal Student Aid: A suite of student loan programs funded by the United States government, authorised under Title IV of the US Higher Education Act of 1965, and reauthorised by the US Higher Education Opportunity Act 2008.

Policy

This policy outlines the specific requirements, as governed by the Federal Regulations of the Offices of the Department of Education, which JCU must abide with when monitoring and administering US Federal Student Aid in relation to a students’ Satisfactory Academic Progress and the return to Title IV funds when a student withdraws from study.

These specific requirements apply in addition to, and in some cases overlap with, existing university policies established for academic course progress and the refund of fees.

  1. Section 668.16 of the Regulations specifies that to continue to participate in any Title IV program, JCU must demonstrate how it will meet the standards established in this section.

    To demonstrate this, JCU must establish, publish, and apply reasonable standards for measuring whether an otherwise eligible student is maintaining satisfactory academic progress in his or her educational program.  Reasonable standards must be in accordance with section 668.34 of the Regulations.

    JCU must also provide students with information about the requirements for the treatment of Title IV program funds when a student withdraws which are governed under section 668.22 of the Regulations.

  2. Section 668.34 (Satisfactory Academic Progress for Title IV recipients) of the Regulations specifies that an institution must establish a reasonable satisfactory academic progress policy for determining whether an otherwise eligible student is making satisfactory academic progress in his or her educational program and may receive US Federal Student Aid.

    The JCU Academic Progression policy serves to meet part of this requirement but does not cover the additional criteria specific to US Federal Student Aid. This criteria is detailed in the Satisfactory Academic Progress for US Federal Student Aid procedure and includes:

    (a) When a student's academic progress is evaluated for US Federal Student Aid continuity;

    (b) The pace at which a student must progress through his or her educational program to remain eligible for US Federal Student Aid;

    (c) How eligibility may be affected by course incompletes, withdrawals, repetitions, or advance standing;

    (d) When unsuccessful progression will impact eligibility for US Federal Student Aid;

    (e) When JCU must place students on a financial aid warning, or on financial aid probation;

    (f) When, and the basis on which, the institution permits a student to appeal a determination by the institution to suspend eligibility for US Federal Student Aid;

    (g) How the student may re-establish eligibility to receive US Federal Student Aid.

  3. Section 668.22 (Treatment of title IV funds when a student withdraws) of the Regulations determines how US Federal Student Aid funds must be treated by JCU when a student withdraws during a payment period or period of enrolment in which the student began attendance.

The JCU Student Fee Payments and Refunds policy sets out fee and refunds relating to regular students however the treatment of title IV funds includes additional requirements, as detailed in the Return to Title IV for US Federal Student Aid procedure. This includes:

(a) When the student has ceased attendance and is considered withdrawn from the payment period or period of enrolment;

(b) The calculation of the amount of title IV assistance earned, and unearned;

(c) The total amount of unearned title IV assistance to be returned to the US Department of Education, and when it is the responsibility of the student, and when it is the responsibility of JCU;

(d) The timeframe and method required to return funds;

(e) The amount of title IV assistance which can be refunded to and retained by the student;

(f) Where a post-withdrawal US Federal Student Aid disbursement can apply;

(g) When a student can take an approved leave of absence and continue to defer repayments of US Federal Student Aid;

(h) Where a student can rescind a withdrawal notification or leave of absence.

Related policy instruments

Return to Title IV for US Federal Student Aid Procedure

Satisfactory Academic Progress for US Federal Student Aid Procedure

Academic Progression Policy

Coursework Enrolment Procedure

HDR Variation and Extension of Candidature Procedure

Student Fee Payments and Refunds Policy

Related documents and legislation

The Higher Education Act of 1965, re-authorised by The Higher Education Opportunity Act - 2008

  • Code of Federal Regulations (34, Subtitle B, Chapter VI, parts 668.16)
  • Code of Federal Regulations (34, Subtitle B, Chapter VI, parts 668.34)
  • Code of Federal Regulations (34, Subtitle B, Chapter VI, parts 668.22)

Administration

NOTE: Printed copies of this policy are uncontrolled, and currency can only be assured at the time of printing.

Approval Details

Policy Sponsor

Vice Chancellor

Approval Authority

Academic Board

Date for next Major Review

17/06/2024

Revision History

Version

Approval date

Implementation date

Details

Author

21-1

17/06/2021

27/07/2021

Policy established.  Replaces  'Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Requirements for US Federal Aid Loans Eligibility Policy' and 'US Federal Aid Loans-Return to Title IV Policy'.

International Compliance Officer

Keywords

US Federal Student Aid, R2T4, SAP, United States financial aid

Contact personManager, International Compliance