Dean College Financial Aid Policies

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Aid Recipients

In addition to the academic progress standards published in the Academic Policies section of the catalog, financial aid recipients must meet academic progress criteria established in accordance with federal regulations. The Center for Student Financial Planning & Services will evaluate all students at the end of the spring semester after grades are posted. Students who are placed on probation will be evaluated each subsequent semester until they are no longer on probation. Students who leave the College and are readmitted will be evaluated before aid is offered regardless of the term in which they return to Dean.

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA based on credits attempted as follows:

Number of Attempted Credits* Good Academic Standing Academic Probation Academic Suspension
0–19 Attempted credits 1.800 Cumulative GPA 0.001–1.799 Cumulative GPA 0.000 Cumulative GPA
20-39 Attempted credits 1.900 Cumulative GPA 0.001–1.899 Cumulative GPA 0.000 Cumulative GPA
40+ Attempted credits 2.000 Cumulative GPA 0.001–1.999 Cumulative GPA 0.000 Cumulative GPA

Students must also successfully complete 60% of all attempted coursework. Any course in which a student is enrolled after the regular drop/add period is considered an attempted course. A passing grade is successful completion of a course with a grade of “D–” or better. Failure, withdrawal after the second week (or at any time during which a withdrawal grade of “W,” “WP,” “WF,” “RW,” “RP” or “RF” will be posted to the student’s transcript) or an “Incomplete” (“I”) in a class constitutes an attempted course that is not successfully completed. Repeated courses will be counted when measuring this standard.

Federal aid recipients cannot continue to receive aid after they have attempted more than 150% of the number of credits required for their degree. For example, students who have attempted more than 180 credits for a 120 credit-hour degree will be ineligible for additional aid for subsequent terms. Transfer credits are counted in the total number of credits attempted. Repeated courses will be counted when measuring this standard.

Students not making Satisfactory Academic Progress will be notified in writing by the college. Students who fail to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress standards may not be eligible for financial aid in subsequent academic periods. Eligibility may be regained by submitting an appeal prior to the beginning of the following term. Appeals should contain a signed letter from the student and any documentation that supports claims of extenuating circumstances. Supporting letters from advisors and professors are also encouraged. Grounds for appeal include the student’s documented illness or other extenuating circumstances. Additional documentation may be requested depending on the nature of the appeal. Decisions will be made by the Academic Appeals Committee. Students who regain eligibility will be placed on probation, and their progress will be calculated at the end of each subsequent term until they are in good academic standing.

Students may also regain eligibility by taking coursework to improve their grades or completion rate without the benefit of financial aid. Students can be re-evaluated for eligibility at any time and can be considered for financial aid in the term following the point at which the standards are met. Academic achievements at other colleges can be considered as part of an appeal. Transfer courses can be counted toward the progression calculation but will not affect a student’s GPA record at Dean College.

Institutional Refund Policy

Students who withdraw from all classes will be eligible for a refund of tuition and room charges in accordance with the following schedule, based on the date the student officially withdraws from the college: 

Up to and including the first day of classes 100% of institutional charges, less enrollment and housing deposits

Within the first week* 80% refunded

Within the second week* 60 % refunded

Within the third week* 40% refunded

Within the fourth week* 20% refunded

After the fourth week No refund

*Weeks begin with the first day of class for each term. For example, if classes begin on a Wednesday the first week would end on the following Tuesday.

Students who are suspended or dismissed from the College or residence hall will receive no adjustment of charges. Student who receives scholarship, grant or loan funds from the College will forfeit the same percentage of their awards as the percentage of fees credited based on the number of weeks that have elapsed. For example, a student who has 80% of institutional charges adjusted will forfeit 80% of any Dean Award or other institutional grant awarded by the College. 

Refund of Board Charges

When a student withdraws from all courses after all applicable refund periods have passed, the College will refund a portion of meal plan charges based on the number of complete weeks remaining in the semester. Student dismissed or suspended from the College or residence halls for any reason will receive no refund.

Return of Title IV Funds

Students who withdraw from all classes but attended the College for at least one day during the semester and received or were eligible to receive financial aid, are subject to a Return to Title IV Funds calculation. This calculation is mandated by the federal government. The calculation is done by the following: dividing the number of days the student attended by the days in the semester. Students who remain enrolled through the 60% point of the semester are considered to have earned 100% of their financial aid and will not owe a repayment of the Title IV funds. Title IV funds include the following: Federal PELL Grants, Federal FSEOG Grants, Federal Direct Loans, and Federal Direct PLUS Loans. Federal Work-Study is excluded from the calculation. The calculation will be done within 45 days of the withdrawal from the College. Notification of adjustments will be sent in writing to the student. In circumstances when the College must return funds to the federal government withdrawal calculations may result in an amount owed to the College. The Return to Title IV Funds calculation is independent of the institution’s refund policy.

Federal Title IV aid will be returned in the following sequence:

  • Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
  • Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
  • Federal PLUS Loan
  • Federal Pell Grant
  • FSEOG (Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunities Grant)
  • Any other federal Title IV Assistance

Please note: Federal Work Study funds are not subject to this return policy. And work study earnings paid to the student through the payroll do not need to be returned. 

Return of Commonwealth of Massachusetts Funds

Students who withdraw from all classes but attend the College for at least one day during the semester and received or were eligible to receive Commonwealth of Massachusetts fund, will be subject to a state withdrawal calculation.

Massachusetts funds will be returned in the following sequence:

  • Massachusetts No Interest Loan
  • General Scholarship (MASS Grant)
  • Christian Herter Memorial Scholarship
  • Gilbert Grant
  • GEAR UP Scholarship

Residency Changes

Dean College awards scholarship and financial aid based on a student’s residency status. If a commuter student decides to become a resident within the first four weeks of the semester, they will be responsible for the full room and board charges. The student’s Dean aid will be adjusted to reflect the full resident status. After the first four weeks of the semester, the student’s room and board charges and Dean aid will be prorated on a weekly basis.

If a student decides to become a commuter student within the first four weeks of the semester, the room and board charges and Dean aid will be prorated on a weekly basis. After the first four weeks of the semester, the student would be responsible for the full room and board charges. The students institutional financial aid would remain at the resident level.

Room Changes

If a student changes his or her housing assignment during the semester, the difference in room cost will be prorated based on the effective date of the charge. Dean Aid will not be adjusted based on room changes or associated charges.

Rights and Responsibilities

Financial aid recipients must be aware of both their rights and responsibilities relating to financial aid. It's important to know both your rights and responsibilities of receiving financial aid. Please read through both the rights and responsibilities to make sure you are getting the most from your financial aid. View your Rights and Responsibilities of Receiving Financial Aid.

Title IV Credit Balances

A Title IV credit balance occurs whenever the amount of Title IV funds credited to a student’s account for a payment period exceeds the amount assessed the student for allowable charges associated with that payment period. In those cases, a refund check will be made available to students to pick up or mailed to your permanent address within 14 days of disbursement. You may request a student refund for any portion of any credit balance on your student account. Refunds will only be issued for actual credit balances and will not be issued based on “pending” financial aid. 

Repeat Credit Policy for Financial Aid Recipients

A repeated course may count toward a student’s enrollment status (full-time or part-time status) for financial aid eligibility under the following conditions: 

  • The course is repeatable for credit. Please see specific course descriptions for applicability.
  • The student received a failing grade or withdrawal in the previous attempt and is re-taking the course to receive credit
  • The student received a passing grade and is re-taking the course for the first time in order to achieve an academic standard set by the student’s specific program (such as a minimum grade requirement in Nursing, Education, etc.) or to improve the GPA.   

Repeated courses cannot count toward enrollment status for financial aid eligibility in the following case: 

  • The student has already taken and passed the course and is repeating the course again.  

Please note: Students may not re-take a course without meeting with their academic advisor. 

All repeated courses, regardless of whether they are eligible for financial aid, count toward the student’s attempted credits for the purpose of determining satisfactory academic progress and progress toward degree completion within the maximum allotted timeline for financial aid eligibility.