Federal financial aid, or Title IV, is offered based on the assumption that students will remain enrolled in their courses for the entire semester. When a student ceases attendance, withdraws completely, or does not pass at least one of their courses within a semester, the Financial Aid Office is required to calculate a return of the funds.

Please review the questions below for more information.

Can a withdrawal affect my Financial Aid?

Yes, it can. Financial Aid funds are offered based on the assumption that students will complete the entire semester. The Financial Aid Office can only award and disburse aid that is earned. The Department of Education requires the Financial Aid Office to return Federal, or Title IV, funds if a student:

  • Completely withdraws from all courses,
  • Stops attending classes, or
  • Does not successfully complete, and pass, at least one course in a semester.
How will I know if my aid needs to be returned?

The return of funds to the Department of Education, or R2T4, is calculated by using a specific formula. The Financial Aid Office determines how much aid is earned by comparing the reported last date of attendance and the total number of days in the semester. Financial aid funds may be returned if a student fully withdrawals or ceases attendance at or before completing 60% of the semester.

Can I complete the return calculation on my own?

The Financial Aid Office strongly encourages you to visit the One Stop, if you are considering withdrawing from your courses.  The return calculation is complex and will not be completed until your last date of attendance is reported. The following steps are used:

  • Determine the percentage of the enrollment period completed by the student:
    • Days attended / *Days in Enrollment Period = Percentage Completed
    • If the calculated percentage is greater than 60%, then you have earned all of the Federal Student Aid for the semester.
    • All calendar days are included, but breaks that are 5 days or longer are not.
  • Compare the percentage completed to the Title IV awards to determine your eligibility prior to the withdrawal:
    • Disbursed Federal Awards x Percentage Completed = Earned Aid
  • Calculate the amount of unearned aid that will be returned:
    • Disbursed Federal Awards – Earned Aid = Unearned Aid

If the Disbursed Federal Awards and the Earned Aid are the same, then the return is not required.
A post withdrawal disbursement may be issued for qualifying students if their Disbursed Federal Aid is less than the Earned Aid.
If the Disbursed Federal aid is greater than the Earned Aid, the difference must be returned to the appropriate Title IV aid program.
The student is responsible for returning the Unearned Aid, any tuition and fees, and other applicable charges that are not covered to the Gwinnett Tech Business Office.

How is the aid returned?
  • Federal aid is returned in the following order:
    1. Direct Unsubsidized Loan
    2. Direct Subsidized Loan
    3. Pell Grant
    4. Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)

Please note: If you withdraw and you are employed through the Work-Study program, your employment will be terminated.

For more information, please contact the Financial Aid Office at 770-962-7580 or financialaidoffice@GwinnettTech.edu.