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Aid can be explained in 2 categories:
Need-based Aid and Self-help Aid.
Explore all below.
Need-Based aid will include what we call “free money” because they do not need repaid. Grants and scholarships are two types of aid that do not need repaid. They are described in this section below. Please visit the Scholarships page for specifics about scholarship opportunities.
Federal Pell Grants are funds that may be awarded to eligible undergraduate students who have not yet received a Bachelor’s degree and who are U.S. citizens or eligible noncitizens. The amount of these awards is determined by the federal government and is based on each student’s eligibility, need and the number of hours in which they are enrolled.
Eligible students may now receive a Pell Grant year-round for fall, spring, and summer even if they received a full Pell Grant during the fall and spring semesters. Year-round Pell Grant availability can provide students with an excellent opportunity to accelerate program completion, possibly saving on overall degree cost and limiting student loan debt.
As an example of how Year-Round Pell will work: An eligible student receives a full-time Pell Grant of $2960 in the fall semester and another at $2960 for full-time again in the spring. This student can now also receive up to another full-time Pell Grant of $2960 for the summer semester even though they have technically received 100% of their annual Pell award during fall and spring. This would mean that the student may now be eligible to receive a total of $8880, or 150% of their scheduled Pell Grant during one academic year.
Note: All Pell Grant payments continue to count toward lifetime limits.
Effective July 1, 2012, students can receive a Pell Grant for no more than 12 full-time semesters, or the equivalent, during their lifetime. This rule applies to all students regardless of when or where they received their first Pell Grant. Students that have already reached their lifetime limits for Pell Grant eligibility will no longer be eligible to receive a Pell Grant.
If you have received the Pell Grant for a number of semesters, you may be in jeopardy of exhausting your lifetime limit of Pell Grant eligibility.
Students who have used 450% or more of their Pell Grant Lifetime Eligibility are notified by the Department of Education after submission of their FAFSA.
To learn more about the Federal Pell Grant, Lifetime Limits and how your eligibility is calculated please visit https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/types/grants-scholarships/pell
Students can review their Pell Grant disbursements and Lifetime Eligibility Used (LEU) at www.studentaid.gov
Students who have exhausted their Pell grant eligibility will not be eligible for state aid such as CCRG grants or other federal grants such as SEOG, regardless if they meet other qualifications such as Satisfactory Academic Progress or Expected Family Contribution (EFC) criteria. Please contact our office if you need additional clarification.
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG) are federal funds awarded to undergraduate students who have not yet received a bachelor’s degree and who are U.S. citizens or eligible noncitizens. This type of grant is usually awarded to students demonstrating exceptional need. The amount of SEOG awards awarded at MSU Denver are $300 per semester. Students must be enrolled at least half-time to receive the disbursement of SEOG. This award will prorate according to the student’s enrollment.
Students who have exhausted their Federal Pell Grant lifetime eligibility used (Pell LEU) are no longer eligible to receive SEOG. If you lose the Federal Pell Grant during the academic year, future grants will be canceled and not disbursed.
Funding is limited and is awarded on a first-come first-served basis to eligible students with a complete financial aid file.
Colorado Student Grant (CSG) are funds given to the school by the Colorado General Assembly and awarded to undergraduate students who have not yet received a bachelor’s degree and who are Colorado residents for tuition purposes. The amount of CSG awards are up to $2000 per semester.
Eligibility criteria for CSG are specific to MSU Denver. The University’s criteria are a modification of the State of Colorado regulations. Students must be enrolled at least half-time to receive the disbursement of CSG. This award will prorate according to the student’s enrollment.
Students who have exhausted their Federal Pell Grant lifetime eligibility used (Pell LEU) are no longer eligible to receive CSG. If you lose the Federal Pell Grant during the academic year, future grants will be canceled and not disbursed.
Funding is limited and is awarded on a first-come first-served basis to eligible students with a complete financial aid file.
MSU Denver Need Based Grant (MNEED) are institutional funds awarded to undergraduate students who have not yet received a bachelor’s degree and who are Colorado residents for tuition purposes. The amount of MNEED awards are typically $500 per semester and is awarded based on a student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC). Students must be enrolled at least half-time to receive the disbursement of MNEED. This award will prorate according to the student’s enrollment.
Students who have exhausted their Federal Pell Grant lifetime eligibility used (Pell LEU) are no longer eligible to receive MNEED. If you lose the Federal Pell Grant during the academic year, future grants will be canceled and not disbursed.
Funding is limited and is awarded on a first-come first-served basis to eligible students with a complete financial aid file.
The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program provides grants of up to $4,000 per year to students who agree to teach for four years at an elementary school, secondary school, or educational service agency that serves students from low-income families and to meet other requirements.
Only students who are completing their first Bachelor’s Degree are currently eligible at MSU Denver. Other eligibility requirements include:
If you feel you may qualify for and are interested in receiving the Federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant, contact MSU Denver’s Office of Financial Aid in order to complete a Pre-Application.
Important Notice: The Federal TEACH Grant is not need based and is awarded in amounts of up to $4,000/academic year and is subject to an undergraduate maximum of $16,000. The Grant is pro-rated based on the student’s enrollment status. Students receiving the Federal TEACH Grant agree to teach full time for at least four years in a Title I school in a high-need field within eight years of receiving their teacher licensure. If the student fails to do so, the Federal TEACH Grant is converted to an unsubsidized loan, accruing interest as of the date of the first disbursement.
Students who have exhausted their Federal Pell Grant lifetime eligibility used (Pell LEU) are no longer eligible to receive TEACH. If you lose the Federal Pell Grant during the academic year, future grants will be canceled and not disbursed.
For more information, please visit the Federal Aid website on the TEACH Grant.
Loans are types of financial assistance that must be repaid. Be sure that you understand the terms of any loans you borrow for your education. It is important that you and your family consider the amount of loans you truly need for your education related costs.
Federal Direct Loans are available for undergraduate and graduate students and are made through the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program.
*These are federal loans offered to anyone with an official FAFSA record on file here at MSU Denver.
The Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan (Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students) is a loan designed to help parents pay for their child’s education. The Federal Direct PLUS Loan is offered to a birth parent, stepparent or an adoptive parent of a dependent student. MSU Denver offers PLUS Loans through the Direct Lending program.
If a student has completed with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), a Federal Direct PLUS Loan may be possible if they are also a dependent student.
A Federal Direct PLUS Loan will be awarded to a credit-worthy applicant. Eligibility for PLUS Loans is not based on household income so parents at all income levels are welcome to apply. With a Federal Direct PLUS Loan you may borrow up to the entire cost of attendance (including books, room, board, fees, tuition, etc.). The school will certify the actual dollar eligibility based on the student’s cost of attendance minus any other financial aid awarded. Direct PLUS Loans not only offer a great low interest rate but the interest payments may be tax deductible. Parents are advised to consult with their tax advisor for details.
Institutional Emancipation and Taking out a Parent PLUS Loan
If a student has been approved for institutional emancipation through the Office of the Registrar, PLEASE be advised of the following:
IF UPON PERIODIC RE-EXAMINATION OF AN INDIVIDUAL’S STATUS AS AN EMANCIPATED MINOR IT APPEARS THAT THE STUDENT IS NO LONGER EMANCIPATED, THE STUDENT IS SUBJECT TO BEING RE-CLASSIFIED AS OUT-OF-STATE FOR TUTITION PURPOSES. EVIDENCE THAT A MINOR IS NO LONGER EMANCIPATED MAY INCLUDE SUPPORT BY PARENT(S), LOANS FROM PARENTS, OR BEING CLAIMED AS A TAX EXEMPTION BY PARENT(S). THE FEDERAL PLUS LOAN IS CONSIDERED SUPPORT.
We encourage you to borrow only what you need. If you have an award notice from the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships you are not required to borrow the full amount for which you are eligible.
Step 1: Parent must go to Federal Student Aid Plus Loans
Step 2: Sign in with their FSA ID. If parent does not yet have an FSA ID please go to Create FSA ID.
Step 3: Complete the “Request a Direct PLUS Loan” application.
Step 4: Complete the Master Promissory Note for Parent PLUS loan if approved. A Master Promissory Note is the contract that the borrower must sign before the loan can be disbursed. This contract states that the borrower agrees to repay the loan and accepts the terms and conditions of the loan.
Step 5: Disbursement of the funds. Once all of the necessary forms are completed the funds will be disbursed to the school. Your loan funds will be disbursed in two equal disbursements for fall/spring requests. For a one-term loan, it will be in a single disbursement. The funds will be applied to your student’s Tuition and Fee charges. Any excess funds will be issued in a refund to the student or as a paper check mailed to the parent depending on the method selected at the time of application.
Please visit https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types/loans/plus/parent for additional information on PLUS loans.
For current interest rates and loan fees please go to Federal Student Aid.
The Federal Direct PLUS Loan requires that the parent borrower not have any “adverse credit.” This can include, but is not limited to, a recent bankruptcy, excessive delinquencies, and certain court judgments. This credit check will occur at the time of the online application submission.
Note about credit denials: If the Federal Direct PLUS Loan is denied because of the credit check the parent may do the following:
The additional Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan borrowing limits are:
How to Accept Additional Unsubsidized Loan Funding: The student must still apply for the additional Unsubsidized funds via the MSU Denver Online FDLA. The student will have 180 days from the date of the PLUS Loan denial to accept the additional Unsubsidized Stafford Loan. After the 180 days, the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships will be unable to process the additional Unsubsidized Loan and a new PLUS Loan credit check will have to be made. Other limitations and eligibility requirements may apply.
For Student: The student must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 credit hours in a degree seeking program and must be making Satisfactory Academic Progress (as determined by the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships). The student cannot be in default on an educational loan and cannot owe any education grant refunds.
Please note: If you are a non-resident for tuition purposes, the Parent PLUS loan may prevent you from qualifying for in-state residency in future semesters. Please contact the Office of the Registrar to learn how the Parent PLUS loan may affect you.
For Parents: A parent may not be in default on an educational loan or owe any education grant refunds, and must be a natural parent, adoptive parent, legal guardian, or stepparent.
Parents must be a Citizen/Eligible Non-citizen: You must be one of the following to receive federal student aid:
If you do not fall into one of those categories, you must have an Arrival-Departure Record (I-94) from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) showing one of the following designations in order to be eligible:
If you have only a Notice of Approval to Apply for Permanent Residence (I-171 or I-464), you are not eligible for federal student aid. If you’re in the United States on an F1 or F2 student visa only, or on a J1 or J2 exchange visitor visa only, you cannot get federal student aid. Also, persons with G series visas (pertaining to international organizations) are not eligible for federal student aid.
Borrowing Limits: For each undergraduate child, parents may borrow up to the student’s cost of attendance minus all other financial aid awarded. The cost of attendance may include tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, transportation, and miscellaneous expenses. The student’s school will determine and certify this amount.
Once the loan is approved, the funds will be sent to the school. Loans are made co-payable to both the parent and the school, with any excess funds being issued in a refund to the student. To view budget information, please click the following link: Student Budget (Cost Of Attendance).
All repayment plans can be found at: https://studentaid.gov/manage-loans/repayment/plans
Deferment: Parent may opt through the PLUS loan application to have the loan deferred while the student is in school for 6 or more credit hours.
Repayment: usually begins within 60 days of full disbursement. Under the Standard Repayment Plan, borrowers will pay a fixed amount each month for up to 10 years. Choosing the Extended Repayment Plan will lower the monthly payment and extend the repayment period. Parents who choose the Extended Repayment will pay more interest over the life of the loan. Under both of these plans, the monthly payment will be at least $50.
For specifics on repayment options, please contact your direct loan servicer through Federal Student Aid website.
If a Parent wants to cancel a loan that has been submitted or processed they must submit a LNEVL Form (found on our Student Forms page). If your loan has already disbursed and you have received a check and want to cancel your loan, you must return the check with a written statement requesting cancellation of your loan and a legible copy of your parent’s driver license. If you have cashed the check and still wish to cancel the loan, you must contact the Loan Department at the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships to learn how to cancel this loan. A representative from the Loan Department at the Office of Financial and Scholarships can let you know how to make the payment back to the school.
Alternative Loans, also known as Private Loans, can help a student cover the difference between their cost of attendance and financial aid. Alternative Loans should only be considered after careful review of your financial aid package. Please visit the Alternative Loans Webpage for additional information.
This loans program expired in September 2017 and is no longer available for awarding. If you borrowed Perkins Loans in previous years at MSU Denver please contact the Perkins Loan Office to inquire about repayment at 303-615-0072. Email: [email protected]
Colorado Need-Based Work-Study:
Colorado No-Need Work-Study:
PLEASE NOTE: If you are awarded work-study, you may not begin your employment until the work-study form confirming your employment is turned into the OFA and all paperwork is submitted and approved in the Human Resources Office.
1. What steps must DACA/undocumented students complete in order to be considered for institutional financial aid at your college?
2. What steps must ASSET students complete in order to qualify for in-state tuition?
3. How are the above processes communicated to ASSET students?
4. What support services and resources does the institution provide to ASSET students?
5. For more information on Colorado ASSET please visit:
6. To complete a CASFA (Colorado Application for State Financial Aid) please visit:
7. Additional Scholarship Resources:
1. What is DACA?
2. You May Request DACA if:
3. Age Guidelines:
4. For More Information About DACA:
Should undocumented students submit a paper or online FAFSA?
If a student is planning on attending MSU Denver then it is always best for students to submit the paper dreamer application (DDAIA/IDAIA), in place of the FAFSA. If a student is planning on attending a different university, the student should contact the university’s financial aid office about their policies regarding a paper or electronic FAFSA.
What if an undocumented student has already submitted an electronic FAFSA online? Should they still submit the paper application?
Yes – Students who are undocumented and have submitted an electronic FAFSA, still need to submit the dreamer application, with all tax information, to the Office of Financial Aid at MSU Denver.
When undocumented students submit a FAFSA that clearly indicates they are ineligible for federal student aid, will the centralized FAFSA processing system calculate an Expected Family Contribution for them?
No – When the SSA verification shows a mismatch, or confirms that a student with a DACA SSN is ineligible for federal student aid, an EFC is not calculated by the central processor. The FAFSA is rejected, but processed and the information will be sent to the colleges included on the form. MSU Denver students can fill out the Dreamer Application (DAIA), and the institution will be able to calculate an accurate EFC.
Verification is the process of confirming that information reported by you and your parents or spouse on the FAFSA is accurate. MSU Denver does not manually select, we are notified by the Department of Education whom is selected and what is required to complete the verification process.
If selected for verification, the Office of Financial Aid will notify you through your MSU Denver email account. Details of what is needed will be at the BOTTOM of the Missing Information Letter email.
If selected for verification, a copy of your, your spouse’s (if applicable), and your parents’ (if considered to be a dependent student) U.S. IRS Income Tax Returns or Tax Return Transcripts, W-2s, and/or other information must be submitted to our office. By signing the FAFSA, you have agreed, if asked, to provide information that will verify the accuracy of your completed form. If this information is not provided, you will not receive financial aid. If you were awarded and received financial aid based on incorrect information, you will have to repay the funds.
Students who are selected for verification in the 2020-2021 aid year are required to submit 2018 Tax Return documentation.
For the 2021-2022 aid year, 2019 Tax Return documentation is required.
To fulfill Federal Tax Return documentation requirements, our office can accept either signed Tax Return Transcripts or copies of signed federal Tax Return forms (1040, 1040A, 1040EZ, etc.)
If you are having difficulties obtaining copies of your tax returns, you can request a Tax Return Transcript. You can request a Tax Return Transcript from the IRS after taxes have been filed by calling 1-800-908-9946 or by visiting this IRS link. When you contact the IRS for the appropriate form, please remember to request a Tax Return Transcript.
Below are examples of the acceptable and unacceptable forms.
|Sample Tax Return Transcript||Sample Account Transcript|
|Sample 1040 Tax Return Form|
Students and parents who are involved in legal same-sex marriages must submit a copy of their marriage certificate or Certificate of Civil Union to the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships in order for their spouses to be counted in the household. Married students and parents, if applicable, are also required to report both incomes, regardless of the ability to file federal taxes as married.
Per FAFSA notes for questions 16 and 17: “Consistent with the Supreme Court decision holding Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional, same-sex couples must report their marital status as married if they were legally married in a state or other jurisdiction (foreign country) that permits same sex marriage, without regard to where the couple resides.”
Per federal guidelines, MSU Denver is not able to consider same-sex couples for common-law marriage.
The U.S. Department of Education has established regulations to prevent fraud and abuse in the Federal Student Aid program by identifying students with unusual enrollment histories. Some students who have an unusual enrollment history have legitimate reasons for their enrollment at multiple institutions. However, such an enrollment history requires our office to review your file in order to determine future federal financial aid eligibility. If selected by the Department of Education, this must be resolved before you will receive financial aid.
At times, students are selected for unusual enrollment history after their financial aid has already been awarded. In these cases future financial aid disbursements will be held until your file is reviewed and resolved. If it is determined that you are ineligible for financial aid based on unusual enrollment history, any previous awarded and disbursed financial aid for the academic year will be returned to the appropriate sources and future disbursements will be cancelled. You will be provided with the opportunity to complete a semester of 6+ hours out of pocket to demonstrate your ability to earn academic credit successfully, at which point your unusual enrollment history can be re-appealed.
The specific pattern the Department of Education uses to select students includes those students who have received a Federal Pell Grant and/or Federal Direct Loans at multiple institutions during the past four academic years. Once the Department of Education has indicated that a student has an unusual enrollment history, the Financial Aid Office must take action and review the academic history prior to determining federal financial aid eligibility for that student.
If selected to complete an Unusual Enrollment History Appeal (UEHAP), our office will notify you of what is required via a Missing Information Email sent to your msudenver.edu student email account. You are required to have received academic credit at any institution you received the Federal Pell grant or Federal Direct Subsidized/Unsubsidized loan while attending in those relevant academic years. If you are uncertain which schools will be relevant to your appeal you may review your Federal financial aid history at www.nslds.ed.gov.
Students that have been denied federal student aid based on an Unusual Enrollment History Appeal have the ability to regain financial aid eligibility by successfully completing one semester of at least 6 credits with at least a 2.0 semester GPA (2.25 GPA for students who do not have a good SAP status). Students can also obtain at least half time credit receiving at least a 2.0 GPA at another institution, at which point you may submit another UEHAP. If credit was obtained at a college other than MSU Denver, you must submit a transcript for review.
Bankruptcy cannot include student loans, however our system still notifies us & students currently. If this is the case, we will update this as DEFAULT to confirm that your student loans are in good standing.
Default occurs when a student who is required to repay their student loans fails to do so for several months and becomes delinquent. If the loan delinquency exceeds 270 days the student is considered to be in default. Default makes the loan due in full immediately. Default appears on the student’s NSLDS record and prevents the student from receiving any federal aid until the default is cleared. Clearing default requires communication between the company holding the loans and the student. It typically requires a nine (9) month consecutive payment plan.
Note: Default is damaging to a student’s credit and it can lead to the garnishment of wages, withholding of tax refunds and possible legal action.
All financial aid funds can be used for your educational expenses, including living expenses, while you are in school.
It is our intent to have your financial aid credited to your student account as early as 10 business days before the first day of class for each term. In accordance with federal regulation, this is the earliest date that aid can be disbursed. You must, however, have a complete application on file in our office to have your aid disbursed. If you apply late or do not complete your file promptly, your financial aid funds may be delayed. Almost all financial aid awards (with the exception of out-of-state loan checks, alternative loan checks, consortium checks, and some scholarship funds) are disbursed into your student account by the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships. Contact our office for more information regarding the schedule of disbursements.
All students will initially receive an aid package quote that is based on full-time enrollment status (12 or more credit hours each semester) even if you indicated three-quarter time (9 to 11 credit hours) or half-time (6 to 8 credit hours) anticipated enrollment on your FAFSA. However, if you make any changes to your enrollment status prior to the census date (which is the “Last Day to Add/Drop Full-Semester Classes with 50% Refund” date as published in MSU Denver’s Academic Calendar for each semester) your entire aid package will be prorated if your enrollment status drops to less than full time. Likewise, if you increase your enrollment status upward from half- or three-quarter time enrollment prior to the census date, your award package will be prorated to the appropriate enrollment level. Please note that each time you adjust your enrollment status before census date, your aid award will be prorated and your student account will be adjusted for necessary increases or decreases in tuition charges and financial aid awards. The example below illustrates the proration of a full-time award package. Note that the amount of your actual financial aid award package depends upon your calculated need.
A late start class is a class that starts AFTER the regular semester has already begun. Please be advised that if you drop a late start class after census date and it is removed from your academic record, The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships will determine if you established attendance in that course. If it is determined that you did not establish attendance in the course, you may be subject to grant proration and bill back along with potential bill back of your student loans. Please remember you MUST be at least a part-time student in order to receive student loans and part-time status for an undergraduate is 6 credits per semester.
Offered grants and institutional scholarships will automatically be accepted for you once you are registered for a given term.
Any aid not disbursed by census date for a semester, will be cancelled and awarded to another eligible student. This date typically falls within the third week of any given semester.
Work-Study is offered to students. To have this award accepted, you will need to turn in an annual work-study (WK) form after it is filled out by your supervisor and yourself. This form can be found on the Forms Page.
As of July 1, 2012 Financial Aid no longer covers 030 remedial courses. This means that if you tests into a 030 level course in Math, Reading, and/or English you will be required to pay for the course out-of-pocket.
If you hope to avoid this out-of-pocket expense, the following is suggested:
Free tutoring is offered by The MSU Denver Tutoring Center in SSB 220.
Retest on the Accuplacer and place into a higher level class. This can be done by going to the Assessment and Testing Center Tivoli 347 (303) 615-1700.
After you have retested and placed into a higher level course, please contact your advisor (Advisor Contact Information Here) for more information on adding your new course.
You can see how this effects financial aid awards that prorate on the Proration section (below).
Per federal regulations (34 CFR Section 668.2) schools are required to keep track of students repeating courses while on financial aid. Repeated courses count toward a student’s enrollment status, changing their possible eligibility for enrollment based programs.
Repeated coursework that falls under the following conditions cannot be included in a student’s enrollment status for Title IV Federal Aid eligibility:
The awards that are effected by this regulation are:
The following external scholarships are also effected:
Federal Title IV aid will be recalculated based on the student’s adjusted enrollment status. This recalculation will be applied regardless of whether a student received aid for previous course enrollments.
For example: A student is enrolled in 12 credits and 3 credits of her enrollment is for a financial aid ineligible repeated course. The student’s grants will be prorated to ¾ time amounts instead of full-time amounts.
If a student enrolls in 6 credits and 3 of those credits is for a financial aid ineligible repeated course, the student will not be able to receive Stafford Loans and grants will pay out at less than half-time amounts.
Some courses are repeatable per university policy and are not restricted by these regulations. Students will be notified if they are receiving Title IV aid and enrolled in non-repeatable coursework for a term.
See the below examples for how the Repeated Coursework Policy affects financial aid:
Example 1: A student has received an “F” in a class. He receives an “F” in the same class next semester, and the semester following that. Financial aid will count those courses toward his enrollment for programs that require certain enrollment statuses. After the fourth try, the student receives a “D”. The student decides that he will try to get a better grade next semester. The following semester, he receives another “F”. Financial aid will no longer pay for that course for subsequent semesters.
Example 2: A student has received a “C” in a class. She takes the class again in hoping to achieve a better grade but then receives an “F” in the same class next semester. Financial aid will not pay for the course again. The student would be responsible for payment of the course if they register for it again. NOTE: Last Grade Stance will take effect and the “C” will be replaced by the “F”.
You may request that the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships review your registered hour status if you are actually enrolled in more hours than our office indicates as frozen on your file. Federal regulations dictate that you may only have your frozen hours reviewed if you did actually begin your attendance in your classes prior to census date but due to a registration issue you were not able to have the credit hours posted onto the system before census date.
Repeat courses are covered by financial aid if the course has not been already completed once with a passing grade and then completed again. 030 remedial courses such as MAT 030 (math), EGL 030 (English), are not covered by financial aid. Please visit the highlighted pages for more information.
To obtain a Frozen Hours Appeal (FRHRS) please contact our office directly.
Before receiving a Federal Direct Loan, borrowers are required to complete a student loan entrance counseling interview. This quick and easy interactive counseling session provides useful tips and tools to help you develop a budget for managing your educational expenses. It also helps you understand your loan responsibilities when you enter repayment.
The Master Promissory Note (MPN) is required to be completed by each borrower. The MPN is a legal contract that binds you to the federal government. Signing this document indicates that you promise to repay the student loan you are taking out. The master promissory note also includes important language about rights and responsibilities as a borrower. Both subsidized and unsubsidized Direct Loans are covered under the master promissory note.
In order to receive federal financial aid, you will need provide information to the federal government and have the information processed by our office. Once this has occurred, your aid may be awarded once your file is considered complete.
Undergraduate students will be awarded based on full-time enrollment each aid year. Full-time enrollment for an undergraduate students is based on 6 credit hours each semester. Undergraduate students must be enrolled in at least half-time to be eligible for Federal Direct Stafford Loans.
*Non-FAFSA Eligible Students: Please submit a CASFA application.
All students will initially receive an aid package quote that is based on full-time enrollment status even if you indicated three-quarter time or half-time anticipated enrollment on your FAFSA. However, if you make any changes to your enrollment status prior to the census date (which is the last day of each semester that you can drop a full-semester course and have it deleted from your academic record), your entire aid package will be prorated. If you increase or decrease your enrollment status from half- or three-quarter time enrollment prior to the census date, your award package will be prorated to the appropriate enrollment level. Please note that each time you adjust your enrollment status before census date, your aid award will be prorated and your student account will be adjusted for necessary increases or decreases in tuition charges and financial aid prorations.
Proration of aid ceases after each semester’s census date. At that time, your aid package and the amount of aid credited to your student account will be held at the appropriate amounts based on your recorded enrollment status on census date. No increases or decreases to your aid award will be made after the census date based on changes to your enrollment status. However, if you reduce your enrollment hours after the census date, you will be subject to the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) regulations governing the completion rate for that term. All aid proration activities will be reflected on your student account billing statements. Therefore, we encourage you to change your enrollment status as little as possible.
Please note: If our office receives your FAFSA after the census date of the semester, aid will be disbursed according to your current enrollment rather than frozen hours. Federal Stafford Loans are ALWAYS disbursed according to current enrollment.
Note: Summer awards may vary.
Undergraduate students Enrollment Level by Credits:
Full-Time Enrollment: 12+ credit hours
3/4 Time Enrollment: 9-11 credit hours
Half-Time Enrollment: 6-8 credit hours (6 CREDITS IS MINIMUM FOR FEDERAL LOANS TO DISBURSE)
Less than Half-Time Enrollment: 1-5 credit hours
While completing the aid application (FAFSA/CASFA) & General Scholarship Application annually is the first step, you must maintain it by keeping your grades up & performing well each semester. Life happens – read more about our Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy below!
UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS MUST REMAIN ENROLLED IN A MINIMUM OF 6 CREDIT HOURS TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR FINANCIAL AID. SOME GRANTS/SCHOLARSHIPS WILL PRORATE IF LESS THAN 12 CREDIT HOURS IN A SINGLE SEMESTER.
SUMMER AID IS NOT GUARANTEED & IS ONLY AWARDED AFTER SUMMER ENROLLMENT – USUALLY AROUND MAY.
You have the right to:
It is your responsibility to:
The U.S. Department of Education has required institutions and students to repay or refund unearned student aid funds. Student aid may be considered unearned if a student withdraws completely during a term in which federal Title IV money was received. Refund and repayment regulations specify, in complex formula, exactly how much is due back to the federal programs from the institution and/or the student. The Return of Funds calculation determines how much aid a student earned based on how many days the student attended classes. The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships uses the date the student withdrew from MSU Denver to determine the date of withdrawal in the calculation. The definition of what constitutes a student’s withdrawal date is below.
The Higher Education Amendments of 1998 adopted a new approach for the return of unearned federal funds. The new approach became law on October 7, 1998 and was implemented in the 2000/2001 year.
Federal Regulations require that all or a portion of a student’s Title IV financial aid be returned to the appropriate aid program following the student’s complete withdrawal from classes. Following withdrawal, any credit balance in the student’s tuition and fees account will first be refunded to the aid programs from which funds were awarded. Any remaining credit balance will be refunded to the student. The student may owe the school money if funds were disbursed directly to the student.
For information on how to withdraw from your classes or to provide official notice of your intent to withdraw, please follow this link to the Office of the Registrar: https://www.msudenver.edu/registrar/student/dropandwithdrawal/
For important dates to consider for withdraw and tuition refund policy, please visit this Bursar Office webpage: https://www.msudenver.edu/bursar/importantdates/
Schools have certain responsibilities if a student with Title IV funds
A student’s withdrawal date is
A student is considered an unofficial withdrawal
The Office of Financial Aid’s responsibilities in regard to the return of Title IV funds follow
The student’s responsibility in regard to the return of Title IV funds include
Return of Title IV funds to the Federal government will be in the following order
A student may be eligible for a post-withdrawal disbursement based on certain eligibility requirements and the Return of Funds calculation. Written authorizations to disburse any Federal Stafford loans will be sent along with the amount and any additional steps that need to be taken by the borrower. The student has 14 days from the date of the notification to confirm that they would like the school to make a post-withdrawal disbursement.
In addition to a complete withdrawal or unofficial withdrawal for Return of Title IV purposes, the summer semester at MSU Denver has several parts of terms, or, different start and end dates for classes. Therefore, federal regulations have mandated separate policies regarding classes that begin and end at different times during the course of a semester. A Return of Title IV calculation may be done even if a student passes one course but fails to complete another and the student may be billed because he did not attend the entire duration of the courses for which he registered.
For example, if a student registered for two courses that ran consecutively and are 4 weeks long each and he withdraws on day 13 of the second course, a Return of Title IV calculation must be performed because he did not attend the entire 8 weeks of both courses, even though the student completed the first class. If the student completes the first course but did not establish attendance in the second course, no Return of Title IV calculation will be performed, however, his financial aid will be adjusted and prorated based on the number of credit hours the student actually attended which can result in a bill and a balance due to MSU Denver. If both classes began and ended at the same time and he successfully passes one class, a Return of Title IV calculation will not be performed and no billing will occur.
For students traveling abroad it is very important to have your transcripts sent to MSU Denver within 30 days after completion of the semester abroad. If we received information that you have not completed any of your courses or never received transcripts, you will be subjected to the Return of Title IV funds process for the semester traveling abroad.
Your financial aid will likely be delayed the semester following your study abroad term. The Office of Financial Aid cannot calculate your release your unofficial withdrawal hold until your official academic transcript from the study abroad program has been received and reviewed by the University. All financial aid will be held until this transcript has been evaluated. You may submit an unofficial transcript to our office but that does not guarantee that we can update your status and release your financial aid.
When students apply for financial aid, the government uses standard formulas to determine financial aid eligibility and dependency status. All students are treated equally by the formula that determines aid eligibility. Since the federal government understands that not all student and family situations are similar, they have given schools the authority to make individual adjustments to a student’s file on a case-by-case basis.
This process of adjustment is called professional judgment, and MSU Denver has a Professional Judgment Committee made up of full-time staff. Students can appeal to this committee regarding any unusual circumstances they can document which may affect their financial aid eligibility.
The Office of Financial Aid can make adjustments in some cases for loss of income or benefits, death, divorce or separation of a parent or spouse, unusually high medical bills or problems obtaining parental data due to family situation.
In some circumstances, you may be able to borrow additional loan funds to help cover the cost of uninsured and paid medical expenses that occur during the academic year.
To request that we evaluate your medical expenses and bills, you must complete a Medical Expenses Reevaluation Appeal (MEDCAL) Form available from our Forms Page. Documentation showing that you have paid the medical expenses will be required for us to adjust your income based on this appeal.
If you or your parents experience a change in income and/or financial situation after you have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), we may be able to make an adjustment to your financial aid eligibility.
To make an adjustment of this type, you must complete an Income Adjustment Appeal Form (INCOME) available from our Forms Page. Please read the form carefully and be sure to provide all the necessary documentation. We will consider income adjustments for the following circumstances that occur after the FAFSA has been submitted to the federal processor:
If you are unable to obtain your parental information for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or for our office, you may apply for a Family Situation Appeal (DEPFAM) located on our Forms Page.
These appeals will only be considered for students who have a documented situation of extreme abuse, neglect, etc. A student cannot be independent based on the fact that they pay their own bills and live on their own.
SAP status is calculated at the end of each term. All credit hours (including transfer credit hours) are used in this calculation.
You are in good standing during the first 130 credit hours of course work you attempt:
You will be placed on alert status (which will not affect your financial aid for your next term of enrollment) if:
You will be placed on warning status (which will not affect your financial aid for your next term of enrollment) if:
You will be placed on SAP and will not be eligible to receive financial aid at MSU Denver for one or more of the following reasons:
You will be considered ineligible for financial aid, without the option to appeal, if:
“PROBATION” You will be placed in a probation status for one term (which makes you eligible for financial aid) if:
If you are in a SAP or INELIGIBLE status, you have the right to submit a written appeal to our office.
If you are a Freshman or Sophomore who has below a 2.0 cumulative GPA and below a 50% cumulative completion rate, you will be required to submit an Academic Plan (APLAN) as well as a Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal (SAPAP). An academic plan must be completed with your advisor. You can schedule an appointment with your advisor in Navigate Student. The SAPAP cannot be reviewed without the academic plan and vice versa.
If you were previously on probation (PROB) for SAP, we require you to:
If you fail to meet those conditions, you will automatically be put back on SAP suspension.
If your appeal is denied, you do still have options.
NOTE: SAP policy is for FINANCIAL AID ONLY & is independent of Academic Probation.
If you are working on a first degree at MSU Denver and are classified as TLIC – you MAY be approved up to 195 attempted credits as long as you are completing 100% of attempted courses with a GPA of 2.20 each semester.
For both appeals, students are required to submit a Degree Works report to show successful completion of courses, as well as any remaining coursework. Also, the OFAS will review course selection per term to ensure that all courses attempted are pertinent to your selected degree program.
If you have received your first MSU Denver degree and have now come back to get a second undergraduate MSU Denver degree you MAY BE ELIGIBLE for up to 240 attempted credits.
For both appeals, students are required to submit a Degree Works report to show successful completion of courses, as well as any remaining coursework. Also, the OFAS will review course selection per semester to ensure that all courses attempted are pertinent to your selected degree program.
Your financial aid will likely be delayed the semester following your study abroad term. The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships cannot calculate your SAP status until your official academic transcript from the study abroad program has been received and reviewed by the University. All financial aid will be held until this transcript has been evaluated. You may submit an unofficial transcript to our office but that does not guarantee that we can update your status and release your financial aid.