Withdrawals and Return of Title IV Aid
Federal financial aid is often referred to as Title IV Aid because Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 authorizes it.
Students who receive Title IV Aid and then withdraw before completing 60% of the semester will have their aid adjusted based on the Return of Title IV (R2T4) funds formula. When this happens, some or all of your aid may be returned to the aid program from which it came. MCC performs all R2T4 calculations according to federal regulations.
The R2T4 formula calculates eligibility based on the amount of aid “earned”. The amount of aid earned is related to the number of days in the semester that you have attended prior to withdrawal. MCC must return any unearned aid. The formula dictates the amount of aid that MCC must return and the amount that you must return. Once the calculation is complete, you will be notified in writing of the results and how much, if any, you must return. Additionally, after MCC returns funds, you may be responsible for charges at MCC that were previously paid by financial aid. You will receive written notification of this as well. MCC will email the written notifications to the email address you provide on your FAFSA.
MCC performs R2T4 calculations and adjusts aid whether you withdraw officially or unofficially. If you earn a failing grade in any class, it is assumed that you withdrew unofficially unless it can be documented that you completed the semester. Your course instructor will submit your last date of attendance with any failing grades.
As directed by the federal government, MCC returns Title IV funds in the order below. The amount returned will not exceed the amount disbursed. This order benefits you in the long-term by reducing loan amounts first.
- Direct Unsubsidized Loan
- Direct Subsidized Loan
- Pell Grant
- Any other Title IV programs
If MCC is required to return any unearned aid, you will be billed for any balance due that is created. At this point, the Bursar’s Office will assume the collection attempts. Balances created through the R2T4 process are subject to all policies and procedures governing student accounts.
Determining the Last Date of Attendance
The last date of attendance is determined based on participation in academically related activities. Course instructors provide a last date of attendance for students who receive a failing grade in a class. This date is used to determine a date of withdrawal when necessary. Academically related activities may include:
- attending class, submitting a class assignment
- taking an exam
- attending a study group assigned by the instructor
- participating in an online discussion about academic matters
Simply logging into an online course for a brief amount of time does not constitute attendance.
Determining the Date of Withdrawal
Withdrawals may be official or unofficial. Official withdrawals involve the student notifying MCC before withdrawing. Unofficial withdrawals typically involve a student dropping out without notifying MCC. A student who stops participating in academically related activities is considered to have dropped out. Similarly, a student who earns zero credits for a semester is considered to have dropped out.
The last date of attendance may be used to determine the student’s date of withdrawal when there is no other evidence of the withdrawal date. If a student notifies MCC of their intent to withdraw, either verbally or in writing, the date of that notification will be used as the date of withdrawal regardless of when the student officially withdraws. If MCC determines that a student did not begin the withdrawal process due to illness, accident, grievous personal loss, or other such circumstances beyond the student’s control, then MCC will determine a date that is related to the circumstance. That date will be used as the date of withdrawal.
Determining the Number of Days in a Semester
MCC counts the number of days in the semester minus the days of any break that is longer than five calendar days. 12- and 8-week courses are considered modules. The number of days in a module is shorter than the number of days in the full semester. When performing the R2T4 calculation, the appropriate number of days in the semester will be determined based on the student’s actual enrollment in 15, 12, or 8-week classes.
Determining Whether an R2T4 Calculation is Required
R2T4 calculations may be required any time a student officially withdraws from, or earns zero credits for, a semester in which federal aid was disbursed. An R2T4 calculation is required when the student withdraws prior to the 60% point of the semester, or module. When a student withdraws after the 60% point, no recalculation of funds is required.