Modular Awarding Beth Rinderknecht & Mindi Bucklin
What is a Modular Program? • A program that has a course or courses in the program that do not span the entire length of the payment period or period of enrollment.
Academic Calendars • Standard Term • Non-standard Term • Non-Term • Clock-hour • Credit-hour Volume 3, Chapter 1, pages 3-4 – 3-5
Standard Term • Semesters • 15 to 17 weeks • Trimesters • 15 to 17 weeks • Quarters • 10 to 12 weeks • Terms are the payment period for all Title IV programs • Summer may be an exception
Non-Term • If a program measures in clock-hours, it is always treated as a non-term program Characteristics: • Courses that do not begin and end within a set period of time • Courses that overlap terms • Self-paced and independent student courses that overlap terms • Sequential courses that do not begin and end within a term
Non-Term • Payment periods are determined by the student completing ½ of the hours AND ½ of the weeks of instruction in the program’s defined academic year for Title IV.
Non-Standard Term • Non-standard terms have terms • Terms that do not fit the definition of standard terms • May be shorter or longer than standard terms • May or may not be substantially equal to each other (substantially equal means no more than 2 weeks difference in length)
Non-Standard Term • The length of the term is not necessarily associated with the type of credit-hours awarded. • Examples: • A non-standard term may be 14-17 weeks in length but award quarter credits • A non-standard term may be 10-12 weeks in length but award semester credits
Non-Standard Term • The non-standard term is the payment period • An exception occurs in the Direct Loan program when the non-standard terms are not substantially equal in length • In this case the payment period would work exactly like non-term programs, but only for Direct Loans
Pell Formulas • Standard Term – primarily use Formula 1 • 12 hours is always full time • Non-Standard Term – must use Formula 3 • Enrollment status is determined by the formula • Non-term – must use Formula 4 • All awards are taken from the full-time pell payment schedule
Direct Loan – Standard Term • Normally use a scheduled academic year (SAY) • Can use BBAY 1 • BBAY 2 must be used for credit-hour programs that do NOT have a scheduled academic year but are using standard terms
Direct Loan – Non-Standard Term • Credit-hour programs not offered in SAY, but have non-standard SE9W terms must use BBAY 2 • Programs with non-standard terms that are not SE9W must use BBAY 3
Direct Loan – Non-term • Must use BBAY 3 • Student becomes eligible for new annual loan limit only after successfully completing the clock or credit hours AND weeks of instructional time in the BBAY 3 Volume 3, Chapter 5, page 3-98
Standard Term • All courses begin and end on the first and last day of the term respectively • Courses cannot overlap from one term to the next • Payment period is always the term for all Title IV programs • May originate single term loans without SE9W considerations • Summer can be treated as a standard term
Standard Term Examples • Semester based, academic year is 30 weeks, consisting of two 15 week semesters, made up of three five week modules • Intercession must be linked to a semester • January term can be linked to either fall or spring • May term typically linked to spring
Standard Term Examples • Semester based, academic year is 32 weeks, consisting of two 16 week semesters, made up of two 8 week modules • Quarter based, academic year is 36 weeks, consisting of three 12 week quarters, made up of three 4 week modules or two 6 week modules
Standard Term Examples • Payment period is the entire semester, regardless of the student’s enrollment in classes over the entire semester, modules or both. • Pell Grant – enrollment status includes all credits the student is enrolled in for the semester
Standard Term Examples • Pell Grant Considerations: • Pell grant recalculation policy may affect enrollment flexibilities: • Census Date affects the ability to increase pell award • Census date is September 10th. At this point the student is enrolled in 9 credits and is paid pell as a ¾ time student. • On September 12th the student adds 3 credits for a later module. Pell enrollment status may NOT be changed to add the additional credits.
Standard Term Examples • Single Census Date: • Student must begin every class used to determine enrollment status • Student enrolls in modules 1, 2 and 3 for a total of 9 credits • After the census date of September 10th, the student notifies us they will finish module 1, but not take modules 2 and 3. • Pell must be recalculated to less than half time status because they did not begin attendance in all courses
Standard Term Examples • Multiple Census dates: • Must recalculate Pell up to the census date for the last class the student begins – includes both increases and decreases in enrollment • Example: last class begins on April 28th for the spring semester. • Student enrolls for all 3 modules in the semester for 9 credits, pell is paid as ¾ time. • Student completes module 1, begins module 2 and drops it mid-way through the course, but will retain enrollment for module 3. • Must recalculate pell to ½ time status because they did not complete module 2
Standard Term Examples • Direct Loan Considerations: • Shortest period for which a loan may be originated is the term • Loan eligibility for a term only loan is the COA – EFC – EFA up to the applicable annual loan limit NOT ½ or some other portion of annual loan limit • Census Date: is NOT applicable to DL, only Pell and TEACH Grant.
Standard Term Examples • Direct Loan Considerations: • Enrollment Status • Recalculations are not required. • Enrollment status is checked at the time of disbursement.
Non-standard Terms • Three types • Non-standard terms that are substantially equal and at least 9 weeks (SE9W) • Substantially equal means no term is more than two weeks longer than any other term in the program • Non-standard terms that are substantially equal (SE) • Non-standard terms that are not substantially equal (NSE)
Non-standard Terms – SE9W • Pell • Must use Formula 3 & terms are payment periods • Direct Loan • Can use as a 1 term loan period • SAY or BBAY 1 if the program has scheduled AY • If no scheduled AY, must use BBAY 2 • Terms are the payment periods • Student completes AY based on calendar time, not successful completion
Non-standard Terms - SE • Pell • Must use Formula 3 & terms are payment periods • Direct Loan • Cannot use as a 1 term loan period • Must use BBAY 3 • Terms are the payment periods • Student completes AY when they have successfully completed hours AND weeks in the Title IV AY definition
Non-standard Terms - NSE • Pell • Must use Formula 3 & terms are payment periods • Direct Loan • Cannot use as a 1 term loan period • Must use BBAY 3 • Terms are NOT the payment periods • Student receives 2nd DL disbursement after successful completion of ½ the weeks and credits in loan period • Student completes AY when they have successfully completed hours AND weeks in the Title IV AY definition
Compliance Issues • Standard term but classes begin before the established start of the standard term and/or finish after the established end of the standard term. • Example: School publishes one calendar, but has both modular and traditional programs. The modular program begins 4 days prior to the traditional. In this case, school would need to have separate published calendars for the 2 different programs in order to follow standard term rules.
Compliance Issues • Standard term but the terms overlap with each other • Result is non-term because the overlapping terms create a non-term environment • Example: Final module in Fall semester ends on January 15th, but spring semester begins on January 13th. • Example: January intercession ends on January 28th, but spring semester begins on January 23rd.
Compliance Issues • Standard term with an intercession between two standards terms that the school chooses to treat as a free standing payment period • Result is the intercession is a non-standard term due to its length • Result is the entire program of study should be treated as a non-standard term program Fix to this: link the intercession to either fall or spring semester and treat the entire combined term as one payment period
Compliance Issues • R2T4 • Determining when the student should be considered a withdrawal or if you only need to recalculate aid based on a change in enrollment • Written confirmation of future enrollment for courses in the same payment period • Make sure the student’s enrollment status is correctly reported to the clearinghouse
Compliance Issues • Pell Grant recalculation policy and census date • If your census date is the start of the last module for the semester make sure you are taking into consideration all pell grant changes – increases and decreases. This allows students to start at any module within the semester • If your census date is within 7-10 days after the semester starts (single census date), students may not add courses and receive pell for those additional courses.
Questions? • Beth Rinderknecht • Director of Financial Aid, Mount Mercy University • firstname.lastname@example.org • Mindi Bucklin • Assistant Director of Financial Aid, Mount Mercy University • email@example.com