Registrar`s Role in Managing Unofficial Withdrawals

Registrar’s Role in
Managing Unofficial Withdrawals
Dennis Hicks, Registrar
Indiana University East
[email protected]
Mary Beth Myers, Registrar
Indiana University-Purdue University
Indianapolis (IUPUI)
[email protected]
Session 3.5
Thursday, November 7, 2013
9:00 – 10:00 am, Metro Suite
Higher Education Agenda
Authorities and Responsibilities
Federal Student Aid Programs
Institution and Program Eligibility
Student Eligibility Requirements
Registration and Enrollment
Attendance Monitoring
Withdrawals (official and/or unofficial)
Gainful Employment
Statutory Authority – Higher Education Act of 1965,
as amended (the HEA).
Regulatory Authority
Institutional Eligibility – 34 CFR Part 600
Student Assistance Programs – 34 CFR Part 668-694
When a college accepts federal financial aid, in lieu of
payment directly from the student, the regulations
require that the college monitor the student's
completion of the courses funded by one of the Title IV
programs. The college must report withdrawals and
failures, if any, and, in some cases, refund the financial
aid. If the financial aid is refunded, the student may
incur a balance on his institution account.
Institution must –
 Be accredited and state approved
 Demonstrate financial responsibility
 Demonstrate administrative capability to …
 Be audited each year
 Be subject to US Department of Education
(DOE) program reviews
 Be recertified every four to six years
Financial Aid Office
Business Office
Admissions Office
Registrar's Office
Public Affairs
A FA eligible program must lead to a degree,
certificate, or other credential awarded by the
It must include certain minimum length in
terms of credit/clock hours and weeks of
instructional time.
In general, it must either lead to a degree or
demonstrate the potential for “gainful
Must be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.
◦ Eligible non-citizen includes permanent residents
and certain refugees, asylum applicants, and
◦ US Dept. of Education (DOE) performs electronic
data matching with Dept. of Homeland Security
(DHS) and Social Security Administration (SSA).
Student must be enrolled as a “regular student”
in an eligible program
◦ Regular student:
 Enrolled in a financial aid eligible program
 Objective is to earn a degree, certificate, or
other credential awarded by the institution.
 Exception for transfer programs and teacher
◦ Student must be making satisfactory academic
progress (SAP) under the institution’s financial
aid SAP policy.
Financial aid may be disbursed only to an
eligible student who is registered.
Student’s grade/class level impacts types and
amounts of aid.
◦ Institution must have a system for notifying the
financial aid office anytime a student’s grade/class
level changes
Special reporting for students with federal
loans when enrollment status becomes less
than half-time.
◦ Institution must have a system of notification if a
student’s enrollment status changes.
Institution must have a system for identifying
students who registered for, but failed to begin
attendance in any or all classes.
If student failed to begin any classes, institution is
liable for any aid disbursed.
If student began attendance in some, but not all,
recalculation is required and institution may be
Does not require institution to take attendance.
Does require institution to have process.
<Again!!!> Institution must have a system for
identifying students who registered for, but
failed to begin attendance in any or all classes.
◦ Faculty add-drop process?
◦ Reviewing grades at end of term?
◦ What “system;” what “process” do you have in place?
If there is no grading system that differentiates
between an earned ‘F’ and an ‘F’ that is the result
of the student never attending or withdrawing,
then the student is considered to have never
attended or to have withdrawn.
Return To Title IV Aid (R2T4)
 In general, the amount of aid a student
“earns” is determined by applying the same
percentage of the payment period that the
student completed before his/her withdrawal
to the amount of aid awarded for that term.
Withdrawal date or date of last attendance is
Institution must have a procedure for
determining whether a federal aid recipient,
who began attendance, completed the term
or should be treated as a withdrawal.
If institution does not have and use
a grading system that differentiates between
an “earned ‘F’ and an ‘F’ that is the result of
the student never attending, then the student
is considered to have never attended or
< Again!!!>
Institutions that require the taking of
attendance are expected to have a procedure
for routinely monitoring attendance records
to determine when a student withdraws.
An institution is required to take attendance
if an outside entity or the institution itself –
◦ Requires instructors to take attendance, or
◦ Has a requirement that can only be met by taking
Official Withdrawals – occur when the student follows
all the steps involved in completing the withdrawal
(drop) process.
Institution must document a student’s official
withdrawal date, as well as the date of the
institution’s determination that the student
Institutions are required to make available to
students a statement specifying the requirements
for officially withdrawing from the institution.
Unofficial Withdrawals – occur when a student does not
attend classes for the full time that his/her federal aid
eligibility covered and said student fails to go through
the institution’s official withdrawal process.
Institutions that are required to take attendance use
those records to determine last date of attendance.
Institutions that do not use attendance records may use
any number of factors/resources to determine a last
date of attendance.
Regardless of whether the withdrawal was done officially
or unofficially, the registrar of the institution determines
the date of withdrawal.
 In the case of unofficial withdrawals, the last date of
attendance is set at either the midpoint of the semester or the
last documented date of attendance, whichever is last.
 The registrar may work in conjunction with faculty in
determining the last date the student was considered in
participation in their classes, if necessary.
Students who attend at least 60 percent of their semester
are exempt from having their financial aid rescinded, even
if they withdraw after that point.
Read more: Definition of Unofficial Withdrawal for Federal Financial Aid |
At the end of each semester, the financial aid office
audits all failing students.
 If the student received financial aid through any
of the Title IV funding programs, regulations
require that the institution refund the financial
aid to the appropriate agency.
 The student will be notified in writing if there
have been any changes to the financial aid
Read more: Definition of Unofficial Withdrawal for Federal Financial Aid |
FLAG ‘em!
FLAGS System (Fostering Learning, Achievement, and
Graduation Success)
IU’s Early Alert System
 In support of campus efforts to increase student retention
and graduation rates, faculty are asked to provide feedback
early and often on student attendance/performance in their
◦ This feedback from the faculty is accomplished online using the
student performance roster as part of the FLAGS System.
◦ Feedback from the faculty allows for quick and intentional
intervention with those students who may need assistance.
◦ Based on faculty roster feedback, reports will be readily available to
advisors and other institution officials to take action.
The student performance roster is also the mechanism for
reporting attendance for Financial Aid compliance, as well as
enrollment information to the Registrar.
The grade of FN is assigned to students who
ceased attending class BUT who did not
officially withdraw.
Faculty must provide a last date of attendance (LDA)
when assigning this grade.
The grade of FN and the last date of attendance are
used by IU in advising students, and to establish a
withdrawal date for the return of unearned student
financial aid.
IU established a "FN" grade
Endorsed by system-wide Academic Officers Committee.
As proposed, the "N" part of the grade would not
appear on the official academic record, but would
appear on internal transcript formats and on
registrar data files.
When "FN" grade is assigned, instructor is
required to supply on the roster a last date of
known class attendance or participation
◦ This date provides a basis for establishing a "withdrawal
date" for return of unearned financial aid.
The "FN" grade policy requires that an instructor
provide the last date of documented class attendance
or participation when awarding the "FN" grade.
◦ Examples of documentation of class attendance include
"records of a student’s presence at class meetings,
examinations, tutorials, computer-assisted instruction,
logging into the learning management system advising or
counseling sessions or study groups."
The grade value of "FNN" was later approved to be
used in cases where students failed for having NEVER
attended the class.
The grade that will appear on the student grade
report and academic record when an "FN" or "FNN"
grade is assigned will be "F“.
Pulling the Data
◦ Two weeks after semester start, FA being to pull
data from the Student Performance Roster (SPR)
◦ Data pulled typically every two weeks
◦ Reports run until one week prior to semester end
◦ Reduce student’s Pell Grant if applicable based on
remaining enrollment
◦ Send student email informing them of reduction
◦ FA checklist and comments placed on student
account indicating what and why a change occurred
◦ If student reported as “no show” in error on SPR, FA
will reverse Pell Grant reduction if the professor
who reported the error sends email to FA with
◦ If student previously reported as “no show” receives
an actual grade at end of semester for the reported
course, previous Pell reductions are reversed along
with elimination of late fees assessed.
Combination of all F, FN, FNN, and/or W at
end of term results in FA examination
 All Title IV financial aid recipients reviewed
F Grade is considered “earned”
◦ This grade alone would eliminate student from
being considered a complete withdrawal
◦ If combined with other FN or FNN grades OR if
faculty made non-attendance report on earlier
student performance roster for this class, FA will
investigate and adjust accordingly.
Thousands of Indiana University students enroll
every semester in hundreds of online courses.
These courses are taught via ONCOURSE, IU’s
online collaboration and learning environment.
Oncourse SITE STATS is a tool for showing statistics by user,
event, or resource. The Site Stats tool is accessible only to
the site owner and assistants; students cannot see Site
Using Site Stats, instructors, teaching online classes via
Oncourse can:
◦ See the number of site visits, overall or by individual students
◦ See the most active students, as well as those who have not
visited the site
◦ See which class resource files students have opened
◦ View customizable charts with weekly, monthly, yearly, or total
◦ Run predefined reports or generate their own custom reports
Some predefined reports include:
◦ All Students and Dates They Logged In
 Comprehensive: use this report to see all the dates
(including the last date) students logged in
◦ Individual Student and Dates Logged In
 Customized to search for an individual student so
you can check visits (including last one)
IU’s FLAGS Early Alert System:
◦ Faculty provide feedback early and often on student
attendance and/or academic performance issues in their
class(es) via the FLAGS student performance roster.
 The grade of “FN” is assigned to students who ceased attending
class BUT failed to officially withdraw. Faculty must provide a
last date of attendance (LDA) when assigning the “FN” grade.
 The grade of "FNN“ is assigned in cases where the student failed
for having NEVER attended the class.
 Online/distance education classes are taught via Oncourse and
student participation is tracked via Site Stats.
FA routinely collects this information, adjusts Pell grants
FA checks course grades at final grade collection for
confirmation or adjustment of Pell and other FA reductions

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