Policies

Graduate Programs

Master of Education Financial Aid Policies

Since your financial aid eligibility is determined by the number of hours you enroll per term/semester, you should report any change in enrollment to your graduate office. You are not eligible for Federal Direct Loan funds unless you take at least 3 hours per semester. Life experience, audit, or CLEP credit will not be acknowledged in determining financial aid eligibility.

If you plan to “skip” one or more terms and enroll for a later term during the year, be sure to notify your program director or the Office of Financial Assistance so that your aid for the later term(s) may be reserved for you. Please keep in mind that if you have a previous federal loan, your lender and/or the Department of Education will be notified that you were not a Buena Vista student for any term/semester you were not enrolled.

Federally Funded Programs

  • Be enrolled at least half-time* and as a regular student.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
  • Make satisfactory academic progress.
  • Sign various educational statements and submit any 
    required documentation.
  • Be current on all previously-borrowed educational loans 
  • Release FAFSA data to BVU while still enrolled

Students who withdraw completely from a course at BVU will have their tuition reduced on a percentage basis. Correspondingly, a student’s institutional aid will be returned based on their official date of withdrawal and the same percentage. The Business Office will notify the student of their final billing information after all of the appropriate adjustments have been made. Any additional fees a student accrues will not be adjusted and the student will be fully charged.

The following schedules will determine the calculation for students’ tuition for the particular courses the withdrawal applies to. Refunds are based on the official start date of the term and not the first day of class.

Term 1 – Term 6 courses:

  • Prior to the end of the 4th calendar day of the term: 95% return of charges & institutional aid
  • Prior to the end of the 10th calendar day of the term: 75% return of charges & institutional aid
  • Prior to the end of the 15th calendar day of the term: 50% return of charges & institutional aid
  • Prior to the end of the 18th calendar day of the term: 25% return of charges & institutional aid

Military Deployment Policy – Buena Vista University

The following options are applicable to a student who is a member or the spouse of a member if the member has a dependent child, of the Iowa National Guard or Reserve Forces of the United States and who is ordered to National Guard duty or federal active duty:

  • Withdraw from the student’s entire registration and receive a full refund of tuition and mandatory fees.
  • Make arrangements with the student’s instructors for course grades, or for incompletes that shall be completed by the student at a later date. If such arrangements are made, the student’s registration shall remain intact and tuition and mandatory fees shall be assessed for the courses in full.
  • Make arrangements with only some of the student’s instructors for grades or for incompletes that shall be completed by the student at a later date. If such arrangements are made, the registration for those courses shall remain intact and tuition and mandatory fees shall be assessed for those courses.

Any course for which arrangements cannot be made for grades or incompletes shall be considered dropped and the tuition and mandatory fees for the course refunded.

As used in this lettered paragraph, “dependent child” means the same as defined in section 260C.14, subsection 14, paragraph ‘b’, subparagraph (2), subparagraph division (a).

Readmission following Call to Active Duty and/or Deployment

  • Upon receipt of notice from students of their intent to return to Buena Vista University, they will be promptly readmitted with the same academic status they had when last attending or when accepted for admission.
  • Additionally, students will retain the catalog rights that were in place at the time of their deployment as long as readmission is within seven years of the initial admission. If after the seven year window, current catalog requirements will be followed.

SOURCE: Iowa College Student Aid Commission, Payment Certification for the 2015-16 Academic Year Accredited Private Institution

You must reapply for financial aid each year you expect to attend Buena Vista University. Financial aid is not automatically renewable and may fluctuate from one year to the next. It is important to be aware of all deadline dates.

To calculate the amount of assistance earned by a student, BVU will first determine the percentage of assistance the student earned. The percentage of assistance earned is equal to the percentage of the period of enrollment that was completed as of and including the day the student withdrew, up to the 60 percent point in time. The percentage will be calculated using calendar days completed as of the day the student withdraws divided by the number of days in the enrollment/payment period.  All scheduled breaks of five or more days, including Saturdays and Sundays, will be taken out of the calculation. The calculated earned percentage is applied to the total amount of assistance that was disbursed or could have been disbursed to the student (allowable post withdrawal disbursements included), or on the student’s behalf, for the period of enrollment, as of the withdrawal date. If the withdrawal occurs after the 60 percent point, then the percentage of aid earned is 100 percent.

BVU must return the lesser of the unearned amount of Title IV (federal) and state aid, or an amount equal to the total institutional charges the student incurred for the enrollment period, multiplied by the unearned percentage of Title IV and state assistance (which is the complement of the earned percentage). The student is required to return federal funds when the total amount of unearned assistance exceeds the amount the school must return. The student returns the difference between the total amount of unearned assistance minus what BVU returns. However, a student is not required to return 50 percent of Title IV grant assistance received. If it is determined that a student must return federal grant assistance, the student will be given 45 days from the day the calculation is performed to submit the owed amount to, or make satisfactory arrangements with, the Buena Vista University Business Office. If payment or an arrangement for payment is not made within 45 days, the Department of Education will be notified of the overpayment and the student may face losing consideration for future financial assistance until payment is received.

The order of the return of Title IV funds will be as follows:

  • Unsubsidized Direct Loan
  • Direct Graduate PLUS Loan
  • Federal Teach Grant
  • Other Title IV assistance for which return of funds is required

If a student or parent feels that individual circumstances warrant exceptions from stated policy, the following appeal order can be followed:

1. Accounts Receivable Manager

2. Director of Financial Assistance

3. Assistant Controller

4. Director of Business Services/Controller

5. Vice President for Business Services

6. President of Buena Vista University

Contact the Office of Student Affairs for a copy of BVU’s Leave of Absence Policy. Contact the Office of Financial Assistance for an example of a refund calculation.

SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS IN GRADUATE PROGRAMS 

Graduate students are required to establish and maintain an overall program cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 3.0.  To maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP), graduate students must also continue to complete courses at an appropriate pace.  For full-time students in GPS the normal pace of course completion is one course per term or 6 courses (18 credits) per year. 

The Standards for Satisfactory Academic Progress

  1. Cumulative grade point average

All courses completed in a graduate program at BVU are included in the analysis of academic standing. Incompletes are not a grading option. If a course is repeated, the repeat(s) will count in the CGPA calculation and the attempted hours for pace calculation. The same is true for courses from which the student withdraws. Up to 9 credits of graduate work may be transferred from other accredited institutions. Only course work with an obtained grade of B- (2.7) or better may be transferred. The student’s CGPA will not include the grades for courses completed elsewhere. 

  1. Pace and Duration of Eligibility for Financial Assistance

Full-time students who fail to complete at least 66.667% of their attempted hours will be deemed to be progressing at an unsatisfactory pace and will lose eligibility for financial aid, pending a decision on an appeal (see Appeal Process, below). Credits transferred into the BVU program will be included in the SAP pace analysis when the transfer credits are recorded in the Office of the Registrar. 

 Review Process 

  1. Academic Standing

The Committee on Graduate Academic Standing (CGAS) is composed of the Associate Dean of the Faculty as Chair, the Registrar, the Director of Financial Assistance, one Dean of a school with graduate courses, and one faculty member with Graduate Faculty status.   This committee will review students’ progress at the end of each semester (Fall, Spring, Summer or Terms 2,4,6).  Students with a CGPA lower than 3.0 will be placed on academic probation for the next semester.  Failure to achieve a CGPA of at least 3.0 by the end of the next semester will result in suspension from the program.  Students in this situation will be notified in writing by the Academic Standing Committee, as will the Office of Financial Aid and the Registrar’s Office.  An appeal of suspension process is described below. 

At the end of each semester (Terms 2,4,6) the CGAS will also notify, in writing, students who are failing to meet the expected pace of course completion (66.667% of attempted courses) in their graduate program that they are in danger of being suspended if they fail to meet the required pace by the end of the next semester of attendance.  It will direct those students to their academic advisor to develop a written plan to come into full compliance with requirements for SAP. 

  1. Financial Aid Eligibility

  The committee will complete its annual review for Financial Aid Eligibility following the end of the summer semester (Term 6).  All students, including those who have been enrolled in a program for less than a full year, will be evaluated based on an analysis of courses attempted and completed to date, along with CGPA progress.  Graduate students who fail to meet the pace requirements will be suspended from their graduate program.  Students in this situation will be notified in writing by the CGAS, as will the Office of Financial Aid and the Registrar’s Office.  An appeal of suspension process is described below.

Appeals Process

A student who has been suspended and has faced extenuating circumstances such as his/her injury or illness, the death of a relative, or other special circumstances may appeal a suspension.  A student who wishes to appeal a suspension must consult with her/his academic advisor and/or a financial aid advisor to develop an appeal.    All appeals must be in writing and received by the chair of the CGAS within one week of notification of suspension because of an unsatisfactory CGPA or failure to maintain a satisfactory pace.  The written appeal must include and document the extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented the student from meeting the CGPA and/or pace requirements, what has changed in the student’s situation, and a plan with specific steps that will be taken to ensure future success, including a schedule of classes to be taken, where those classes will be taken, what grades must be earned, and if there will be transfer work.

If the appeal with its plan is approved, the student will be allowed to continue to take classes and receive financial assistance. Students in this situation will continue to be eligible for financial assistance and to continue to take courses as long as they are meeting the standards in the plan. A student whose appeal is unsuccessful will be suspended from the academic program and will have financial aid suspended.

If a student does not appeal or an appeal is not approved, the student will be dropped, without financial liability or academic record, from any class(es) in which he/she is currently enrolled. 

If the appeal is not approved and the student has evidence of failure to follow policies or procedures or of arbitrary or capricious treatment in the appeals process, the student may further appeal to the VPAA and Dean of the Faculty.  The decision of the VPAA and Dean of the Faculty is final.

Re-establishing SAP

A previously suspended student may apply for readmission to BVU.  The application will be reviewed by the CGAS.  For an application to be successful it must include documentation of actions the student has taken to assure success upon re-entry into a program.   Neither paying for classes nor sitting out any length of time affects a student’s academic standing, so neither is sufficient to re-establish eligibility.  The appeal must also include an academic plan that would bring the student back into SAP if it were successfully followed.  The previously suspended student is strongly encouraged to consult with an academic program advisor when developing an application for readmission.

If a previously suspended student is readmitted to a graduate program, the student will be allowed to resume taking classes and will be eligible for financial assistance. The readmitted student will be on financial aid probation. The student will continue to be eligible to take classes and receive financial assistance as long as the conditions of the academic plan are being met.   Should the student fail to meet the conditions of the academic plan, the review process, above, will determine the student’s standing.

Registration for each course must be validated by attending at least one of the first two class sessions for face-to-face courses. Validation of enrollment for hybrid courses must occur within the first week of the course. For online courses, students must be logged into the course and actively participating (including, but not limited to, submitting an academic assignment whether graded or ungraded; taking an exam, an interactive tutorial or computer-assisted instruction; participating in an online discussion about academic matters; or initiating contact with an instructor to ask a question about the academic subject matter of the course) within the first seven calendar days of the start of the course. To validate enrollment for directed studies, internships, or other non-classroom experiences, students are expected to communicate with the site office and the instructor within the first week of the course. If a student is not planning on completing the requirements for directed studies, internships, or other non-classroom experiences, the student must contact the site office in writing via email or by completing an add/drop form within the first week of the term. Permission to start or add a class late requires submission of a special academic action form, which must be signed by the instructor, advisor, and enrollment manager.

Failure to obtain permission for an intentional late start or to validate enrollment in the time frame described above, will result in a student being administratively dropped from the course(s). Being administratively dropped means that no tuition charges will be accrued, and all financial aid will be returned according to regulations and policies.

Students are expected to make payment or make payment arrangements for each term prior to the first day of class.

This policy will assist students who feel the need to completely withdraw from the university after a semester has begun but before its conclusion. A student is considered to be withdrawn from a credit hour program if the student does not complete all of the days in the payment period that the student was scheduled to complete.

For a student who officially withdraws, the withdrawal date will be the earlier of the following (unless a later date can be documented):

• The date the student begins the official process mentioned below, or

• The date the student officially notifies the institution of intent to withdraw.

If a student triggers both definitions above of official withdrawal on different dates, we will use the earlier date, unless we can document academically related activity later. Academically related activity is defined as one that has been confirmed by an employee of BVU, such as taking an exam, actively logging into the coursework, turning in a class assignment, attending a study group or class, etc.

Official notification can come in written form, via telephone, in person, or through e-mail and should be made with the BVU Graduate Studies Office. This process must also be followed for withdrawal from online courses.

If a student begins but does not complete coursework for a term/semester, but does not officially withdraw as described above, they will be considered to have unofficially withdrawn. The withdrawal date for a federal aid recipient who unofficially withdraws will be the midpoint of the payment period or the last documented day of academically related activity, whichever is later. No federal aid will be returned for a withdrawal that occurs after sixty percent of the payment period (which could be based on one term or two, depending on enrollment at the time of withdrawal).  The withdrawal date will be communicated to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).  This date will be used to determine loan repayment when necessary.  If an unofficial withdrawal is calculated using the 50% point of a term/semester, the date associated with the 50% point will be communicated to NSLDS.

If a student unofficially withdraws, the student will be fully charged for tuition. If a student left without notification because of circumstances beyond the student’s control, such as those mentioned below, the BVU Graduate Studies program staff might determine a withdrawal date related to those circumstances.

  • Illness
  • Accident
  • Grievous personal loss
  • Or other circumstances beyond the student's control

The appeal request should be made through Graduate Program staff.  The student or an interested party can initiate this process.

A student can rescind a withdrawal by providing a written request to the Graduate Program office.

The withdrawal date for a student that withdraws (officially or unofficially) from both terms in a modular semester will be calculated using the actual days of documented attendance in each term.  The withdrawal date communicated to the NSLDS will be the last withdrawal date/last documented day of academic related activity.

Students who cease to be academically engaged may also be administratively withdrawn.  Administrative withdrawals will be treated as an unofficial withdrawal.  The full administrative withdrawal policy can be found under the academic program policies and particulars section of the catalog.

If a student wishes to request a leave of absence instead of withdrawing, he/she should contact the Graduate Program office to begin the process.  Under this policy, a leave of absence will be treated as an official withdrawal.

If disciplinary action results in the loss of any college or college-contracted service for the student, there will be no refund of charges. Federal aid may be returned based on the Return of Title IV Funds/State Aid Policy. The Office of Financial Assistance can be contacted with questions concerning the withdrawal process or the refund calculation. A copy of the Return of Title IV Funds/State Aid Policy can be found in the financial assistance section of this catalog and our web site, or can be requested from the Office of Financial Assistance or the Business Office.

Master of Science in Education Financial Aid Policies

Since your financial aid eligibility is determined by the number of hours you enroll per term/semester, you should report any change in enrollment to your graduate office. You are not eligible for Federal Direct Loan funds unless you take at least 3 hours per semester. Life experience, audit, or CLEP credit will not be acknowledged in determining financial aid eligibility.

If you plan to “skip” one or more terms and enroll for a later term during the year, be sure to notify your program director or the Office of Financial Assistance so that your aid for the later term(s) may be reserved for you. Please keep in mind that if you have a previous federal loan, your lender and/or the Department of Education will be notified that you were not a Buena Vista student for any term/semester you were not enrolled.

Federally Funded Programs

  • Be enrolled at least half-time* and as a regular student.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
  • Make satisfactory academic progress.
  • Sign various educational statements and submit any 
    required documentation.
  • Be current on all previously-borrowed educational loans 
  • Release FAFSA data to BVU while still enrolled

Students who withdraw completely from a course at BVU will have their tuition reduced on a percentage basis. Correspondingly, a student’s institutional aid will be returned based on their official date of withdrawal and the same percentage. The Business Office will notify the student of their final billing information after all of the appropriate adjustments have been made. Any additional fees a student accrues will not be adjusted and the student will be fully charged.

The following schedules will determine the calculation for students’ tuition for the particular courses the withdrawal applies to. Refunds are based on the official start date of the term and not the first day of class.

Term 1 – Term 6 courses:

  • Prior to the end of the 4th calendar day of the term: 95% return of charges & institutional aid
  • Prior to the end of the 10th calendar day of the term: 75% return of charges & institutional aid
  • Prior to the end of the 15th calendar day of the term: 50% return of charges & institutional aid
  • Prior to the end of the 18th calendar day of the term: 25% return of charges & institutional aid

Military Deployment Policy – Buena Vista University

The following options are applicable to a student who is a member or the spouse of a member if the member has a dependent child, of the Iowa National Guard or Reserve Forces of the United States and who is ordered to National Guard duty or federal active duty:

  • Withdraw from the student’s entire registration and receive a full refund of tuition and mandatory fees.
  • Make arrangements with the student’s instructors for course grades, or for incompletes that shall be completed by the student at a later date. If such arrangements are made, the student’s registration shall remain intact and tuition and mandatory fees shall be assessed for the courses in full.
  • Make arrangements with only some of the student’s instructors for grades or for incompletes that shall be completed by the student at a later date. If such arrangements are made, the registration for those courses shall remain intact and tuition and mandatory fees shall be assessed for those courses.

Any course for which arrangements cannot be made for grades or incompletes shall be considered dropped and the tuition and mandatory fees for the course refunded.

As used in this lettered paragraph, “dependent child” means the same as defined in section 260C.14, subsection 14, paragraph ‘b’, subparagraph (2), subparagraph division (a).

Readmission following Call to Active Duty and/or Deployment

  • Upon receipt of notice from students of their intent to return to Buena Vista University, they will be promptly readmitted with the same academic status they had when last attending or when accepted for admission.
  • Additionally, students will retain the catalog rights that were in place at the time of their deployment as long as readmission is within seven years of the initial admission. If after the seven year window, current catalog requirements will be followed.

SOURCE: Iowa College Student Aid Commission, Payment Certification for the 2015-16 Academic Year Accredited Private Institution

You must reapply for financial aid each year you expect to attend Buena Vista University. Financial aid is not automatically renewable and may fluctuate from one year to the next. It is important to be aware of all deadline dates.

To calculate the amount of assistance earned by a student, BVU will first determine the percentage of assistance the student earned. The percentage of assistance earned is equal to the percentage of the period of enrollment that was completed as of and including the day the student withdrew, up to the 60 percent point in time. The percentage will be calculated using calendar days completed as of the day the student withdraws divided by the number of days in the enrollment/payment period. Interim will be included with the Spring semester when appropriate. All scheduled breaks of five or more days, including Saturdays and Sundays, will be taken out of the calculation. The calculated earned percentage is applied to the total amount of assistance that was disbursed or could have been disbursed to the student (allowable post withdrawal disbursements included), or on the student’s behalf, for the period of enrollment, as of the withdrawal date. If the withdrawal occurs after the 60 percent point, then the percentage of aid earned is 100 percent.

BVU must return the lesser of the unearned amount of Title IV (federal) and state aid, or an amount equal to the total institutional charges the student incurred for the enrollment period, multiplied by the unearned percentage of Title IV and state assistance (which is the complement of the earned percentage). The student is required to return federal funds when the total amount of unearned assistance exceeds the amount the school must return. The student returns the difference between the total amount of unearned assistance minus what BVU returns. However, a student is not required to return 50 percent of Title IV grant assistance received. If it is determined that a student must return federal grant assistance, the student will be given 45 days from the day the calculation is performed to submit the owed amount to, or make satisfactory arrangements with, the Buena Vista University Business Office. If payment or an arrangement for payment is not made within 45 days, the Department of Education will be notified of the overpayment and the student may face losing consideration for future financial assistance until payment is received.

The order of the return of Title IV funds will be as follows:

  • Unsubsidized Direct Loans
  • Subsidized Direct Loans
  • Perkins Loan
  • Direct PLUS Loans
  • Pell Grants
  • FSEOG
  • Federal Teach Grant
  • Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant

Other Title IV assistance for which return of funds is required

If a student or parent feels that individual circumstances warrant exceptions from stated policy, the following appeal order can be followed:

1. Accounts Receivable Manager

2. Director of Financial Assistance

3. Assistant Controller

4. Director of Business Services/Controller

5. Vice President for Business Services

6. President of Buena Vista University

Contact the Office of Student Affairs for a copy of BVU’s Leave of Absence Policy. Contact the Office of Financial Assistance for an example of a refund calculation.

SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS IN GRADUATE PROGRAMS 

Graduate students are required to establish and maintain an overall program cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 3.0.  To maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP), graduate students must also continue to complete courses at an appropriate pace.  For full-time students in GPS the normal pace of course completion is one course per term or 6 courses (18 credits) per year. 

The Standards for Satisfactory Academic Progress

  1. Cumulative grade point average

All courses completed in a graduate program at BVU are included in the analysis of academic standing. Incompletes are not a grading option. If a course is repeated, the repeat(s) will count in the CGPA calculation and the attempted hours for pace calculation. The same is true for courses from which the student withdraws. Up to 9 credits of graduate work may be transferred from other accredited institutions. Only course work with an obtained grade of B- (2.7) or better may be transferred. The student’s CGPA will not include the grades for courses completed elsewhere. 

  1. Pace and Duration of Eligibility for Financial Assistance

Full-time students who fail to complete at least 66.667% of their attempted hours will be deemed to be progressing at an unsatisfactory pace and will lose eligibility for financial aid, pending a decision on an appeal (see Appeal Process, below). Credits transferred into the BVU program will be included in the SAP pace analysis when the transfer credits are recorded in the Office of the Registrar. 

 Review Process

  1. Academic Standing

The Committee on Graduate Academic Standing (CGAS) is composed of the Associate Dean of the Faculty as Chair, the Registrar, the Director of Financial Assistance, one Dean of a school with graduate courses, and one faculty member with Graduate Faculty status.   This committee will review students’ progress at the end of each semester (Fall, Spring, Summer or Terms 2,4,6).  Students with a CGPA lower than 3.0 will be placed on academic probation for the next semester.  Failure to achieve a CGPA of at least 3.0 by the end of the next semester will result in suspension from the program.  Students in this situation will be notified in writing by the Academic Standing Committee, as will the Office of Financial Aid and the Registrar’s Office.  An appeal of suspension process is described below. 

At the end of each semester (Terms 2,4,6) the CGAS will also notify, in writing, students who are failing to meet the expected pace of course completion (66.667% of attempted courses) in their graduate program that they are in danger of being suspended if they fail to meet the required pace by the end of the next semester of attendance.  It will direct those students to their academic advisor to develop a written plan to come into full compliance with requirements for SAP. 

  1. Financial Aid Eligibility

  The committee will complete its annual review for Financial Aid Eligibility following the end of the summer semester (Term 6).  All students, including those who have been enrolled in a program for less than a full year, will be evaluated based on an analysis of courses attempted and completed to date, along with CGPA progress.  Graduate students who fail to meet the pace requirements will be suspended from their graduate program.  Students in this situation will be notified in writing by the CGAS, as will the Office of Financial Aid and the Registrar’s Office.  An appeal of suspension process is described below.

Appeals Process

A student who has been suspended and has faced extenuating circumstances such as his/her injury or illness, the death of a relative, or other special circumstances may appeal a suspension.  A student who wishes to appeal a suspension must consult with her/his academic advisor and/or a financial aid advisor to develop an appeal.    All appeals must be in writing and received by the chair of the CGAS within one week of notification of suspension because of an unsatisfactory CGPA or failure to maintain a satisfactory pace.  The written appeal must include and document the extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented the student from meeting the CGPA and/or pace requirements, what has changed in the student’s situation, and a plan with specific steps that will be taken to ensure future success, including a schedule of classes to be taken, where those classes will be taken, what grades must be earned, and if there will be transfer work.

If the appeal with its plan is approved, the student will be allowed to continue to take classes and receive financial assistance. Students in this situation will continue to be eligible for financial assistance and to continue to take courses as long as they are meeting the standards in the plan. A student whose appeal is unsuccessful will be suspended from the academic program and will have financial aid suspended.

If a student does not appeal or an appeal is not approved, the student will be dropped, without financial liability or academic record, from any class(es) in which he/she is currently enrolled. 

If the appeal is not approved and the student has evidence of failure to follow policies or procedures or of arbitrary or capricious treatment in the appeals process, the student may further appeal to the VPAA and Dean of the Faculty.  The decision of the VPAA and Dean of the Faculty is final.

Re-establishing SAP

A previously suspended student may apply for readmission to BVU.  The application will be reviewed by the CGAS.  For an application to be successful it must include documentation of actions the student has taken to assure success upon re-entry into a program.   Neither paying for classes nor sitting out any length of time affects a student’s academic standing, so neither is sufficient to re-establish eligibility.  The appeal must also include an academic plan that would bring the student back into SAP if it were successfully followed.  The previously suspended student is strongly encouraged to consult with an academic program advisor when developing an application for readmission.

If a previously suspended student is readmitted to a graduate program, the student will be allowed to resume taking classes and will be eligible for financial assistance. The readmitted student will be on financial aid probation. The student will continue to be eligible to take classes and receive financial assistance as long as the conditions of the academic plan are being met.   Should the student fail to meet the conditions of the academic plan, the review process, above, will determine the student’s standing.

Registration for each course must be validated by attending at least one of the first two class sessions for face-to-face courses. Validation of enrollment for hybrid courses must occur within the first week of the course. For online courses, students must be logged into the course and actively participating (including, but not limited to, submitting an academic assignment whether graded or ungraded; taking an exam, an interactive tutorial or computer-assisted instruction; participating in an online discussion about academic matters; or initiating contact with an instructor to ask a question about the academic subject matter of the course) within the first seven calendar days of the start of the course. To validate enrollment for directed studies, internships, or other non-classroom experiences, students are expected to communicate with the site office and the instructor within the first week of the course. If a student is not planning on completing the requirements for directed studies, internships, or other non-classroom experiences, the student must contact the site office in writing via email or by completing an add/drop form within the first week of the term. Permission to start or add a class late requires submission of a special academic action form, which must be signed by the instructor, advisor, and enrollment manager.

Failure to obtain permission for an intentional late start or to validate enrollment in the time frame described above, will result in a student being administratively dropped from the course(s). Being administratively dropped means that no tuition charges will be accrued, and all financial aid will be returned according to regulations and policies.

Students are expected to make payment or make payment arrangements for each term prior to the first day of class.

This policy will assist students who feel the need to completely withdraw from the university after a semester has begun but before its conclusion. A student is considered to be withdrawn from a credit hour program if the student does not complete all of the days in the payment period that the student was scheduled to complete; the days in the payment period would include all the days in both terms in a semester made up of modules if the student is registered for both at the time of withdrawal.

In addition to withdrawing from a course(s), a student also has the opportunity to drop a course.  It is possible to drop a course in which there has been no academic activity.  It is possible for a student to drop a course(s) or for staff to drop a student through validation.  There will no charges for a dropped course.  However, if a student in a modular program drops all hours in a term after having completed a prior term (all in the same semester), a Return to Title IV calculation will be required and all days in the semester will be used in the Return to calculation.  If a student drops all hours in a subsequent term in a semester during the current term and completes that current term, this is not considered a withdrawal and no Return to Title IV calculation will be required.

If, on the same day, a student withdraws from all courses in the first term of a modular semester and drops all courses in a subsequent term in the same semester, all of the days in the semester will be used in the Return to Title IV calculation.

If a student who is registered for both terms in a modular semester withdraws from the first term, we will request documentation of the student's intent to return for the second term.  If the student fails to indicate their intent or indicates they will not return for the second term in that semester, the student will be considered to have withdrawn from the semester as of the withdrawal date and a return of funds calculation will be performed.  If the student indicates that they will return for the second term, the student will not be considered to have withdrawn.  A return of federal aid calculation will only be required if the student later does not return as indicated.

For a student who officially withdraws, the withdrawal date will be the earlier of the following (unless a later date can be documented):

  • The date the student begins the official process mentioned below, or
  • The date the student officially notifies the institution of intent to withdraw

If a student triggers both definitions above of official withdrawal on different dates, the university will use the earlier date, unless a later academically related activity can be documented. An academically related activity is defined as one that has been confirmed by an employee of BVU, such as taking an exam, actively logging into the coursework, turning in a class assignment, attending a study group, etc.

Official notification can come in written form, via telephone, in person, or through e-mail. If a graduate student finds the need to completely withdraw within a semester, the withdrawal process should be initiated with the Office of Graduate Studies.  This process must also be followed for withdrawal from online courses.

If a student begins but does not complete coursework for a term/semester, but does not officially withdraw as described above, they will be considered to have unofficially withdrawn.  The withdrawal date for a federal aid recipient who unofficially withdraws will be the midpoint of the payment period unless a later last day of academic related activity can be documented; this date will be used in determining how much federal aid must be returned.  No refund of federal aid will be required for a withdrawal that occurs after sixty percent of the payment period (which could be based on one term or two, depending on enrollment at the time of withdrawal).  The withdrawal date will be communicated to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).  This date will be used to determine loan repayment when necessary.  If an unofficial withdrawal is calculated using the 50% point of a term/semester, the date associated with the 50% point will be communicated to the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).

If a student unofficially withdraws, he/she will be fully charged for tuition, regardless of any aid that is returned. If a student left without notification because of circumstances beyond the student’s control, such as those mentioned below, BVU might determine a withdrawal date related to those circumstances. In addition, a withdrawal date determination can be appealed for extenuating circumstances such as:

  • Illness.
  • Accident.
  • Grievous personal loss.
  • Or other circumstances beyond the student’s control.

The appeal request should be made through, and will be approved by the Office of Graduate Studies. The student or an interested party can initiate this process.

A student can rescind a withdrawal by providing a written request to the Office of Graduate Studies.

The withdrawal date for a student that withdraws (officially or unofficially) from both modules in a modular semester will be calculated using the actual days of attendance in each term.  The withdrawal date communicated the the NSLDS will be the last withdrawal date/last documented day of academic related activity in the semester.

Students who cease to be academically engaged may also be administratively withdrawn. Administrative withdrawals will be treated as an unofficial withdrawal. The full administrative withdrawal policy can be found under the academic program policies & particulars section of the catalog.

If a student wishes to request a leave of absence instead of withdrawing, he/she should contact the Office of Graduate Studies to begin that process. Under this policy, a leave of absence will be treated as an official withdrawal.

If disciplinary action results in the loss of any college or college-contracted service for the student, there will be no refund of charges.  Federal aid may be returned based on the Return of Title IV Funds Policy. 

The Office of Financial Assistance can be contacted with questions concerning the withdrawal process or the refund calculation. 

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