What is Financial Aid Census?
The Census Date is the point at which your enrollment is locked for financial aid purposes. During the fall, winter, and spring terms, the census coincides with the last date you can drop classes for a full tuition refund at OSU. At this point in the term, credit hours are locked and financial aid for the term is adjusted to reflect the student's official enrolled credits. For example, if the student received aid at the beginning of the term based on full-time enrollment and then dropped credits, aid is then revised to match their eligibility based on the number of credits enrolled in as of the Census Date and types of aid that were awarded. If a student withdraws from all courses after the census date, further aid adjustments may be required.
How Does the Census Work for Summer Term?
During the summer term, the census coincides with the last date you can add courses in session one. Dropping courses after the summer Census Date may result in a reversal of your Pell Grant. You must participate all of your courses in order to earn the federal financial aid that is disbursed for that term. If you drop a course before that course began or if we are unable to verify your participation in a course, we are required to reverse any Pell Grant payments made for that course. Reversed Pell will be returned to the Department of Education. This reversal of aid may create a new bill on your OSU student billing account.
What if Late Credits are Added?
Credits added after the Census Date cannot be used towards Pell Grant and Oregon Opportunity Grant eligibility. There is an appeal process for cases where there was an administrative error or exceptional circumstance that prevented the student from being enrolled by the Census Date. Students should contact the Office of Financial Aid if they wish to pursue a Census Appeal.
If loans were reduced or canceled based on the census enrollment level, students may submit an Enrollment Revision Form to request the loans be restored based on the added credits.
What if I am Less Than Halftime?
A student whose Census Date enrollment is less-than-half-time is not eligible for any federal student loans. In this case, the entire loan amount for the term must be returned to the Department of Education. The return of loan funds may create an outstanding balance on a student's OSU account, but also reduces the outstanding principal balance of the student loan.
Why are Some of My Credits Excluded?
There are 3 main reasons why credits may be excluded from counting towards your aid eligibility:
- Graduate level credits are not counted for Undergraduate federal financial aid eligibility. An exception is made for cases where your academic advisor has contacted the Office of Financial Aid to verify that those graduate level credits will be counting towards your undergraduate degree.
- Federal aid may only be used to repeat a course one time after a passing grade (D- or better) is received. We are unable to make exceptions even in cases where the grade earned does not meet departmental requirements.
- In the Degree Partnership Program credits are only aid eligible at OSU if they transfer to OSU and count towards your bachelor’s degree. For example, courses such as Life Skills and Welding will not count for financial aid purposes, because OSU does count these courses in any of our degree programs.
Important Note to Degree Partnership Program Students: If a student drops all OSU courses before the census date, they will lose all financial aid eligibility at OSU for that term. This full reversal of aid will take place even if a student continues to be enrolled at their partner school.
Census Dates by Term
Summer 2017 - Friday, July 7th
Fall 2017 - Sunday, October 1st
Winter 2018 - Sunday, January 14th
Spring 2018 - Sunday, April 8th