Financial Aid Glossary

Aggregate and Annual Loan Limits

There are limits on the amount in subsidized and unsubsidized loans that a student may be eligible to receive each academic year (annual loan limits) and the total amount that a student may borrow for undergraduate and graduate study (aggregate loan limits). The actual loan amount a student is eligible to receive each academic year may be less than the annual loan limit. These limits vary depending on grade level (year in school) and dependency status, as determined by the FAFSA. Click here for information directly from Federal Student Aid.

Alternative Loan

Alternative education loans (also known as private education loans) are loans that are often used to help bridge the gap between a student’s cost of attendance and the amount of federal, state and institutional financial aid that a student is awarded.  For more information on alternative loans visit FinAid.org.   Please note:  the maximum alternative loan amount that can be certified is the Cost of Attendance minus any other financial aid received.

Bill Estimator

This tool will help you estimate the costs of attending UNCG for a single semester before you receive a bill from the university. Click here for the estimator.

Check Financial Aid Holds

    1. From the UNCGenie Financial Aid page, select Eligibility.
    2. Select the appropriate Aid Year.
  1. Select the Holds tab to view holds on your account.

Confirmed

A student who has registered for classes for the current term and has made full payment or arrangements for full payment of the bill prior to the bill due date will have his/her registration confirmed.  Students can verify through UNCGenie that courses have been “confirmed (payment arrangements are complete).”  Failure to pay for charges not otherwise covered by authorized financial aid by the published bill due date will result in the cancellation of classes.  Questions concerning the confirmation process should be directed to the Cashiers and Student Accounts Office (336-334-5831).

Cost of Attendance

A budget number, which includes estimates for both direct (charges on the bill) and indirect (educational expenses, but not paid to the University) costs, used for financial aid calculations. It is not an estimate of the bill, nor is it an estimate of financial aid.  The Department of Education stipulates that a student may not be awarded more financial aid than his/her Cost of Attendance.  The Cost of Attendance sets a ceiling, over which financial aid cannot be awarded.

Dependency

Dependency status determines whose information must be reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  A dependent student is required to report both student and parent information.  An independent student will report only student (and spouse, if applicable) information. Click here for more information on determining Dependency.

Drop/Add Period (Schedule Adjustment)

The drop/add period, or Schedule Adjustment, is generally the first week of instruction for fall and spring terms, and the first couple of days of each summer session.  Check the current University Calendar for specific dates.

Please note:  the last day to adjust your schedule for financial aid purposes is the last day of the Schedule Adjustment period.  However, this date is different from the last day to drop a course without academic penalty, which occurs at the midpoint of the semester.  Check the University Calendar for these dates.

Eligibility (Outstanding Verification Requirements)

A student may have additional requirements associated with processing the FAFSA that must be completed prior to receiving a financial aid award.  When required to do so, students must submit any requested verification documents or complete any requested actions as soon as they are notified that such requirements are outstanding.

To check Eligibility:

  1. From the UNCGenie Financial Aid page, select Eligibility.
  2. Select the aid year from the drop-down menu and then select submit.

Entrance Counseling (Federal Direct Loans)

The goal of Entrance Counseling is to help a first-time borrower understand what it means to borrow a federal student loan.  All students borrowing Direct Subsidized Loans or Direct Unsubsidized Loans, Graduate students borrowing Direct PLUS Loans, and parents borrowing Parent PLUS Loans are required to complete Entrance Counseling.  Entrance Counseling must be completed before the Financial Aid Office can make the first disbursement of the loan.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC)

An amount calculated by the Department of Education from information/responses provided on the FAFSA. This is the number the financial aid office uses to determine eligibility for need-based financial aid. It is not the amount a student is expected to pay.

Exit Counseling (Federal Direct Loans)

Exit Counseling is a Federal requirement generated when a student graduates, leaves school, or drops below half-time enrollment. Completing Exit Counseling will not begin the repayment process – it is an informational module about the process. If a student does not complete Exit Counseling, it can prevent the disbursement of future aid.

FAFSA

Free Application for Federal Student Aid(FAFSA) is the form that the federal government uses to determine eligibility for federal grants, work-study and federal student loans. States, colleges and other organizations also use it to award need-based grants and scholarships. You must submit it each year that you wish to apply for financial aid.

Full-Time Enrollment

To be considered full-time, an undergraduate student must be enrolled at least 12 hours per semester.  A graduate student must be enrolled 9 hours per semester.  Students enrolled less than full-time will have their financial aid award reduced. For Financial Aid purposes, repeat courses are excluded from credit hour totals.

Financial Aid Warning

  • Students placed on Financial Aid Warning are not required to submit an appeal or any additional documentation to the Financial Aid Office.
  • Students will be eligible for anticipated financial aid disbursements for the upcoming term (if other qualifications are met).
  • Students may be placed on Financial Aid Warning more than once but may not have two consecutive terms with this SAP status.
  • If a student does not meet the requirements for good financial aid standing for a second, consecutive semester, the student will be considered non-compliant with the SAP policy and must file an appeal.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to seek on and/or off campus resources that will help ensure academic success. You can find information about resources at UNCG here.  

FSA ID

Students and parents are required to use an FSA ID, made up of a username and password, to access certain Department of Education websites.  The FSA ID is used to confirm identity when accessing financial aid information and electronically signing the FAFSA.

Graduate PLUS Loan

The Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan is a credit based federal loan that graduate or professional students can use to help pay for college or career school.  Grad PLUS loans can help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid.  Before applying for a Grad PLUS loan, you must complete the FAFSA form.

How to apply:

  1. Go to www.studentloans.gov
  2. Select Apply for a PLUS loan.
  3. Using FSAID and password, log in to complete the Direct PLUS Loan Application for Graduate/Professional Students
    • Select Award Year
    • Complete Borrower Information Section
    • Complete School and Loan Information Section
    • Select Loan Period
    • Review Application
    • Authorize Credit Check and Submit
  4. An electronic confirmation will be transmitted to UNCG’s Financial Aid Office.  If the PLUS loan is credit approved, it will be added to the student’s financial aid award.
  5. If the PLUS loan is credit denied, the student may opt to find an endorser for the PLUS loan.  Please contact the UNCG Financial Aid Office if an endorser will be used.
  6. A separate, Graduate PLUS Master Promissory Note must be completed for all students borrowing a Federal Direct Graduate PLUS loan.  The Graduate PLUS MPN can be completed at www.studentloans.gov.
  7. First time Graduate PLUS borrowers are also required to complete Entrance Counseling at www.studentloans.gov.

Loan Servicer

A loan servicer is a company or bank that handles the billing and other services for Federal student loans. The loan servicer works with students on repayment plans and loan consolidation, and will assist  with other tasks related to Federal student loans.

Master Promissory Note (Federal Direct Loans)

The Master Promissory Note (MPN) is a legal document in which a borrower promises to repay loan(s), along with any accrued interest and fees, to the U.S. Department of Education. There are two types of MPNs in the Direct Loan Program: one for Direct Subsidized and/or Direct Unsubsidized Loans (for students) and one for Direct PLUS Loans (for parents or for graduate or professional students).   The MPN must be signed before any loan funds can be received.

National Student Loan Data System

The National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) is the Department of Education’s central database for student aid.  NSLDS provides a centralized, integrated view of loans (including interest rates and loan servicer information) and Pell Grants that are tracked through their entire cycle, from aid approval through closure.  An FSA ID and password are required to log in.

Outside Scholarships

Funds awarded to a student from any entity other than UNCG are considered outside educational resources. It is the student’s responsibility to notify the Financial Aid Office of any outside resources that have been awarded to them, even if the funds have been given directly to them.  Students should submit scholarship checks and copies of award letters directly to the Financial Aid Office as soon as possible, so that a notation of anticipated funds can be added to the student’s account.  If donors do not provide written instructions to the contrary, scholarship checks will be divided equally between the fall and spring semesters.

Important Note:  A student’s total financial aid package, including outside resources, cannot exceed their estimated Cost of Attendance for the academic year.  In some cases, adding an outside scholarship will necessitate the reduction or cancellation of other, previously awarded financial aid (usually, but not limited to, student loans).

Parent PLUS Loan

The Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loan is a credit based federal loan that parents of dependent undergraduate students can use to help pay for college or career school. Parent PLUS loans can help pay for education expenses not covered by other financial aid.  The FAFSA form must be completed before applying for a Parent PLUS loan.

How to apply:

  1. Go to www.studentloans.gov
  2. Select Apply for a PLUS loan.
  3. Parents, using your FSAID and password, log in to complete the Direct PLUS Loan Application for Parents
    • Select Award Year
    • Complete Borrower Information Section
    • Complete School and Loan Information Section
    • Select Loan Period
    • Review Application
    • Authorize Credit Check and Submit
  4. An electronic confirmation will be transmitted to UNCG’s Financial Aid Office.  If the PLUS loan is credit approved, it will be added to the student’s financial aid award.
  5. If the PLUS loan is credit denied, the parent may opt to get an endorser, appeal the decision, or choose not to pursue the PLUS loan.  If a parent chooses that s/he will not pursue the loan, the financial aid office can offer additional unsubsidized loan funds to the student.
  6. A separate, Parent PLUS Master Promissory Note must be completed for all parents borrowing a Federal Direct Parent PLUS loan.  The Parent PLUS MPN must also be completed at www.studentloans.gov.

Part-Time Enrollment

A part time student can be eligible for financial aid, if enrolled at least half-time.  Undergraduate students must be enrolled at least 6 hours per semester; graduate students must be enrolled at least 4.5 hours per semester, at the 500-level or above.  Students enrolled less than full-time will have their financial aid award reduced.  For Financial Aid purposes, repeat courses are excluded from credit hour totals.

Professional Judgement

A request for a review of special circumstances that a student feels may change their financial aid eligibility.

Repeat Course (Grade Replacement)

If a student has earned credit for a class (A+ through D-) and then retakes it,  that is considered a repeat course.  If a student has not earned credit for a class (failed or withdrew) then it is not considered a repeat course.  Financial aid cannot be used for repeat courses.

Return to Title IV

If a student completely withdraws from UNC Greensboro prior to completing 60% of the semester, the school must perform a Return to Title IV (R2T4) calculation to determine the amount of Title IV assistance earned by the student.   If the amount disbursed to the student is greater than the amount the student earned, the school must return the unearned funds. A student who fails to earn a passing grade in all of his/her classes will have dates of his/her last date of academic activity reported.  If all reported dates are prior to the 60% point, then an R2T4 calculation will be completed. A student who remains enrolled beyond the 60% point has earned all the aid awarded for the term.

Satisfactory Academic Progress

All students who wish to qualify for financial aid while attending UNCG must meet the following standards regarding Satisfactory Academic Progress:

  • Minimum grade point average
  • Minimum semester credit hour completion rate
  • Minimum cumulative credit hour completion rate
  • Completion of a degree within a maximum number of credit hours

Important Notes – Satisfactory Academic Progress:

  • If you adjusted your credit hours prior to the end of the drop/add period for financial aid, your aid may be adjusted to reflect your change in enrollment.
  • Some courses may have withdrawal dates that are different from the normal add/drop deadline – you are responsible for understanding these dates.
  • Winter session courses are counted toward your locked hours for the spring term.
  • Withdrawing from all of your courses makes you subject to the Return to Title IV policy. Your hours will be locked based on your enrollment at the time of complete withdrawal.
  • Adding courses after the drop/add period has ended will not increase your financial aid. Per Federal regulations, locked hours cannot be adjusted once the drop/add period has concluded.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (view status)

  1. From the UNCGenie Financial Aid page, click on Eligibility.
  2. Select the Academic Progress tab

Shopping Sheet

The Financial Aid Shopping Sheet is a consumer tool that participating institutions use to notify students about their financial aid package.  The Shopping Sheet is available upon completion of the FAFSA at FAFSA.gov as well as on UNCGenie.

Special Exception for Graduate Students

Graduate students can receive a student loan even though they are below half-time enrollment with an exception based on the fact that the student is enrolled in a course for writing his/her thesis/dissertation. For more information click here.

Title IV Authorizations

The Cashiers Office requires that students complete the two authorization sections on the electronic Title IV Authorization form to authorize Title IV aid funds to pay for charges other than tuition/fees, residence hall, and meal plan charges and/or prior term charges up to $200. Charges that cannot be paid for using Title IV aid without the authorization on file include parking permits, bookstore bucks, health insurance premium, and miscellaneous fines and charges. If a student does not complete the authorization form or elects not to agree to the authorizations, charges that cannot be paid using Title IV aid must be paid for with another form of payment. FAILURE TO PAY FOR CHARGES NOT COVERED BY AUTHORIZED AID WILL RESULT IN CANCELLATION OF CLASSES.  Students may change their Title IV Authorization choices at any time.

View Locked Hours

  1. From the UNCGenie Financial Aid page, select Locked Hours for Financial Aid Eligibility.
  2. Select the current term and submit.