1. K-State home
  2. »Office of Student Financial Assistance
  3. »Policies
  4. »Dropping or Withdrawing

Office of Student Financial Assistance

Withdrawing from K-State and Return of Federal, Title IV, Funds

Regulations governing federal, Title IV, student financial aid require K-State’s Office of Student Financial Assistance (OSFA) to perform a Return of Title IV (R2T4) funds calculation whenever a determination has been made that a federal student aid recipient has withdrawn prior to the end of a period of enrollment ( 34 CFR 668.22 ). Federal, Title IV, student financial aid includes the Federal Pell Grant, Federal Iraq & Afghanistan Service Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG), Federal TEACH Grant, Federal Perkins Loan, and all varieties of Federal Direct Loan programs. This regulation is premised on the assumption that federal, Title IV, forms of student financial aid are awarded to a student to help her/him pay the costs associated with attending the entire period of enrollment. At K-State the period of enrollment is the term.

Note: When a determination has been made by the OSFA that a student has officially or unofficially withdrawn from the university, a number of mandatory actions are triggered. These actions often carry with them not only academic but also financial consequences for the withdrawn student. Consequently, the OSFA encourages all federal student aid recipients to familiarize themselves with the definitions and procedures set out below 

What’s the difference between an official withdrawal and an unofficial withdrawal? 

An official withdrawal is recorded when a student completes K-State’s official withdrawal process as outlined on the Office of Registrar’s Enrollment Services website under the Withdrawal from K-State bullet.

An unofficial withdrawal is recorded when a student has not completed K-State’s official withdrawal process, but K-State, nonetheless, has reason to believe that the student failed to complete the entire period of enrollment. For example, U.S. Department of Education guidelines require K-State to make the assumption that a federal student aid recipient has unofficially withdrawn if he/she fails to earn at least one passing grade at the end of the term.

What action must a student take to officially withdraw from the university?

To officially withdraw from a period of enrollment (term) a student must follow K-State’s official withdrawal process as outlined on the Office of the Registrar’s Enrollment Services website under the Withdrawal from K-State bullet. To officially withdraw from a fall or spring term the student will, generally, be required to engage the assistance of his/her college’s deans office in in completing the process.

What is K-State’s refund policy for students who officially withdraw from a term? 

K-State’s refund policy can be viewed on the Office of the Registrar’s Enrollment Services website under the Refund Policy bullet. Note: The University’s refund policy is independent of the OSFA’s Return of Title IV (R2T4) funds calculation. If the withdrawing student was the recipient of federal, Title IV, forms of student aid, it is, however, possible that she/he may not receive all or a portion of an expected refund due to the university’s obligation to return all or a portion of federal, Title IV, student aid that was utilized to cover institutional charges. 

What is the purpose of the Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculation once a federal student aid recipient withdraws?

The purpose of the required R2T4 calculation is to determine how much of a student’s federal financial aid was earned and how much was unearned. The amount of federal financial aid that was earned is proportional to the amount of the payment period completed by the student before he/she withdrew.  Conversely, the amount of unearned federal financial aid represents the amount of aid that must be returned to the federal government because the student withdrew.

What makes a student’s withdrawal date so important to the Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculation?

Since the amount of federal aid a student is eligible to have received is directly dependent upon how much of the payment period the student completed before withdrawing, the withdrawal date utilized in the calculation represents the percentage of the payment period completed. Important: Where a student’s withdrawal date occurs on or before the 60% point within the period of enrollment (term), the OSFA is required to calculate how much, if any, of the federal aid has been unearned and must be returned to the federal government. On the other hand, if it is determined that the student’s withdrawal date occurred after the 60% point of the period of enrollment (term), the Office of Student Financial Assistance is still required to calculate a R2T4 but, according to federal regulation, the student is considered to have earned all federal aid received and no obligation exists to return any funds to the federal government.

What happens if the Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculation shows that all or a portion of a student’s federal, Title IV, student aid must be returned to the federal government? 

Once the amount of unearned federal aid has been established by the R2T4 calculation, the amount to be returned is subdivided into the institutional portion that K-State must return and the student portion that the student must return. The institutional portion can never exceed the amount of tuition, fees, and room & board that were assessed to the student for the period of enrollment. In other words, the university is never expected to return more federal aid funds than what could have been covered by the student’s federal student aid.

K-State is obligated to return the institutional portion of the unearned federal aid received by the student. Depending upon when the student withdrew, the university may bill the student for all or a portion of the institutional aid that K-State was required to send back to the federal student aid programs.

The withdrawn student may also be required to repay an amount for the student portion. Generally, the university will not repay any part of the student’s portion of unearned aid back to the federal aid programs on the student’s behalf. 

What withdrawal date is utilized where a determination has been made that a student unofficially withdrew from the university?

Since K-State does not have a mandatory attendance policy, the OSFA will, generally utilize the 50% point within the period of enrollment (term) in performing the mandatory Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculation. 

How is a withdrawn student notified of the results and impact of a Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculation?

As the OSFA processes the mandatory R2T4 calculation for a withdrawn student, she/he is notified of the results of the calculation. The notification will, typically, inform the student of the dollar amount of federal aid that had to be returned to the federal government by K-State premised on the result for the institutional portion of the unearned aid. Additional notification is provided to a student in the event that the student owes a student portion of the unearned aid back to the federal government. 

Why do some Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculations result in a reduced university refund on tuition and fees? 

The university’s institutional tuition/fees refund policy and the required R2T4 calculation for federal aid recipients are independent of each other. However, federal regulations require K-State to return the institutional portion of unearned aid to the federal government. Here’s an example of how this requirement might change the amount of an expected tuition refund a withdrawn student might receive:

James withdraws from the university early in the term when K-State’s refund policy allows for a 100% refund on tuition/fees. Tuition/fees for James amounted to $ 4,100 for the term. Since James was a federal student aid recipient for the term, a R2T4 calculation was performed when he withdrew from the university. The R2T4 calculation determined that K-State’s portion of James’ unearned aid amounted to $2,300 and would have to be returned by K-State to the federal government. Consequently, even though James had expected a 100% refund of $4,100, he will only receive $1,800 in a refund from K-State since his anticipated refund of $4,100 had to be reduced by the $2,300 the university was obligated to send back to the federal government. 

Why do some Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculations result in a university bill for the withdrawn student?

As noted earlier, the university’s institutional tuition/fees refund policy and the required R2T4 calculation for federal aid recipients are independent of each other. However, federal regulations require K-State to return the institutional portion of unearned aid to the federal government. Here’s an example of how this requirement might result in K-State billing the student for the amount of federal aid the university was obligated to return to the federal government:

Trisha enrolls for a spring term and is charged $4,390 in tuition and fees. Trisha withdraws from the university at a point in time where K-State’s refund policy no longer allows for any refund for tuition/fees to be made to the student. Since Trisha withdrew after the university’s institutional refund period, she does not expect a refund on the tuition/fees she was charged. However, because Trisha was a federal student aid recipient who withdrew before the end of the 60% point of the term, a R2T4 calculation was performed by the OSFA. The R2T4 calculation indicates that K-State’s portion of Trisha’s unearned aid amounted is $1,300 and would have to be returned by K-State to the federal government. Consequently, K-State will bill Trisha for the $1,300 it was forced to send back to the federal government.  

Can a Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculation ever result in a withdrawn student receiving federal financial assistance?

As the OSFA processes R2T4 calculations for withdrawn students it may make the determination that a withdrawn student had been eligible to receive federal aid that was never authorized to be disbursed. In such instances federal regulations allow for what is known as a post-withdrawal disbursement of federal Title IV aid to assist with the payment of remaining institutional charges of tuition and fees for the period of enrollment. Students who fall into this category are informed by the OSFA within 30 days of the R2T4 calculation of their rights and options. 

Questions about Dropping Classes or Withdrawing from K-State

I'm thinking of dropping a class. Will this affect my financial aid?

Current and future financial aid eligibility can be affected by dropping credit hours once the term has begun. As part of monitoring each student's Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP), the OSFA tracks the number of attempted vs. completed credit hours. We encourage you to review our SAP policy or contact our office before dropping courses during any given term.