Policies and Procedures
Bradley is committed to fair and consistent management of its financial assistance program and full compliance with all applicable federal, state, and institutional policies and procedures. This information is important for you to review and understand.
- General Eligibility for Bradley University Undergraduate Grants and Scholarships
- General Appeal for Student Financial Aid Recipients
- Enrollment Requirements and Financial Assistance
- Financial Assistance and Minimum Grade Point Requirements
- Policy for Packaging Financial Assistance
- Policy and Procedure for Satisfactory Academic Progress-Undergraduates
- Policy and Procedure for Satisfactory Academic Progress-Graduate Students
- Policy and Procedure for Packaging External Assistance
- Consumer Information
- Code of Conduct for Bradley Aid Administrators
- Statement of Ethical Principles
- Policy on Student Aid Refunds
- Policy and Guidelines for the Handling Confidential Information
Bradley University offers a broad menu of need-based grants, merit scholarships, and special criteria awards. While each program may have unique selection and renewal requirements, the following eligibility criteria apply universally:
- All Bradley undergraduate financial assistance programs require continuous full-time enrollment (12 or more hours per semester) through the third week of each regular semester.
- All Bradley University undergraduate financial assistance programs are limited to the first Bachelor's degree. Students in graduate or 2nd degree undergraduate programs are not eligible for these programs.
- With the exception of summer school, Bradley-directed off-campus programs, and approved Leaves-of-Absences, eligibility for Bradley-funded undergraduate grants and scholarships generally requires continuous enrollment at Bradley University. Students who reenter the university as classified readmits do not automatically receive their previous eligibility for Bradley grants and scholarships. However, reinstatement may be granted on appeal.
- Bradley undergraduate grants and scholarships are not available during summer sessions, January, or May Interim enrollment periods.
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The Office of Financial Assistance provides all students who have applied for financial aid the right to pursue an appeal under a recognized procedure. Students covered by this policy are all regular full and part-time students who have applied for financial aid at Bradley University. The appeal process must follow these steps:
- A student aid applicant who has cause for appeal shall first meet with the Director of Financial Assistance and/or another member of the financial assistance professional staff.
- If the action taken by the Office of Financial Assistance is not satisfactory, the student shall have the right to a final appeal to the Vice President for Student Affairs.
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The University and federal regulations require financial assistance recipients to maintain their initial full or part time registration through the second full week of each semester, otherwise, a reduction in financial assistance may occur. A partial drop in credit hour load after the second full week of the fall or spring terms will not result in reduction of aid because full costs of tuition and related fees have been incurred by this date.
Effective July 1, 2011, students will not be eligible to receive federal aid for any course that they have previously taken and passed more than two times. For example, a student enrolled in 12 semesters hours that includes a 3 credit hour course previously taken and passed twice will be considered to have 9 credit hours (3/4 time) for the purpose of federal financial assistance.
All University funded programs require continuous enrollment of at least 12 credit hours through the second full week of the fall and spring terms. Therefore, a drop below 12 credit hours before the end of the second full week will result in a 100% reduction in Bradley financial assistance programs.
Federal regulations stipulate a schedule of reduction for government-funded financial assistance when a partial drop in credit hours occurs before the end of the second full week of the fall or spring terms for the following federal programs:
- Federal College Work-Study Program
- Federal Perkins Student Loan
- Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant
- Federal Pell Grant
|For federal Title IV programs, the schedule of reduction is:|
|If initial credit hour load is:||But, credit hour load at the end of the 2nd full week is:||The amount of federal assistance will be:|
|12 or more||9 to 11||75% of original credit|
|6 to 8||50% of original credit|
|less than 6||Varies|
|9 to 11||6 to 8||66% of original credit|
|less than 6||Varies|
|6 to 8||less than 6||Varies|
Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP Grant)
Payment for each term is made according to the equivalent number of credit hours eligible for MAP payment, with a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 15 MAP Paid Credit Hours. The MAP Grant amount is fixed at the end of the second full week and a partial drop in credit hours after the second full week will have no effect on the award amount.
If a student finds it necessary to withdraw from all classes after completing registration but before classes begin, there will be a complete refund of all fees to their original sources - family and/or financial assistance programs. In all cases, the student will be required to pay a registration fee, $50 for first semester freshman and part-time students and $100 for all other full-time students. This fee must be paid from resources other than financial assistance credits.
Students who totally withdraw from the University and/or cease attending all classes after classes begin will have their charges and financial resources adjusted proportional to the duration of their enrollment up to the 60% point in each semester after which 100% of charges are incurred and full assistance is credited.
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Recipients of financial assistance are expected to meet the same all-university academic standards (cumulative grade point average) as required of all other students. Recipients of university-funded scholarships are held to higher standards of academic performance.
Evaluation of cumulative grade point average is performed no less than once per year at the conclusion of the Spring Semester. Depending on individual situations, including “conditional” renewals, the Office of Financial Assistance will evaluate cumulative grade point average more frequently. Students failing to meet the grade point renewal standard may appeal the non-renewal decision to the Financial Assistance Appeal Committee.
The Following are the cumulative grade point average requirements by sources and types of financial assistance:
- Federal Title IV Programs (FCWSP, FSEOG, Perkins Loan, Stafford Loans, PLUS Loans, Pell Grant): 2.0 cumulative grade point average at the conclusion of two years of college.
- State of Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP Grant): 2.0 cumulative grade point average at the conclusion of two years of college.
- Bradley University Grants and Scholarships:
- Bradley Grant, Achiever Grant, Legacy Scholarship: 2.0 cumulative grade point average.
- University Grant, Achievement Grant, Project Lead the Way (PLTW), all transfer scholarships, Neighbor State/Out of State/Go Far scholarships, Caterpillar Employee Dependents scholarship: 2.5 cumulative grade point average.
- Deans scholarship, Deans Excellence scholarship, Continuing Student Excellence scholarship, Endowed and Annual scholarships: 2.8 cumulative grade point average for automatic renewal, 2.6 cumulative grade point average for conditional renewal.
- Tuition Exchange scholarship, Presidential scholarship, Presidential Excellence scholarship, FIRST Robotics scholarship: 3.0 cumulative grade point average for automatic renewal, 2.8 cumulative grade point average for conditional renewal.
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Bradley University attempts to meet the demonstrated financial need of all qualified applicants in an equitable manner. It is the University's policy to maintain consistency in award packaging through the completion of the student's program of study. However, changes in federal, state, and institutional assistance may occur due to changes in family circumstances (reported via the FAFSA) or reduction of funding sources.
The amount or total need met and the composition of the total aid award (gift aid versus student loans and employment) is established at the point of initial enrollment by assigning applicants to a packaging model. All applicants meeting the criteria specified by the model receive similar award packages. The criteria used for the packaging assignment include class rank, grade point average, standardized test score results, level of financial need, and geographic origins.
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Federal and state regulations require educational institutions to determine that all students who receive state and federal financial aid are in good academic standing and are making reasonable progress toward completion of their academic programs. Bradley University's standard stipulates that undergraduate recipients of financial aid must meet the following conditions:
1. Academic Progress: Students must make measurable progress toward completion of their academic programs. Students who enroll "full-time" (12 or more credit hours) must successfully earn at least twelve credit hours in that semester or must have a minimum number of hours which, when averaged, total at least twelve per semester. The policy gives reasonable latitude to students who may encounter personal or academic difficulties by allowing them to be within six credit hours (termed leeway) of the minimum total number of hours. All students enrolling for less than a full-time credit hour load must complete at least six hours.
2. Time Frame (Duration of Eligibility): The policy permits financial aid eligibility up to a maximum of six full-time years (or part-time equivalent) of enrollment. Summer or interim sessions of six hours or less will not count toward the six year time frame. A separate statute limits the receipt of the Illinois MAP Grant to 135 credit hours. In accordance with federal and state regulations, once a student meets the requirements for a baccalaureate degree, eligibility ceases. Enrollment at other schools will be counted toward the required time frame based on a full-time equivalency of twelve hours. However, the Office of Financial Assistance may use discretion when determining the countable semesters of enrollment.
4. Appeal Procedure: Students who are denied financial aid because they failed to make measurable progress or have reached the end of their duration of eligibility may appeal the decision. All appeals must be made in writing to the Director of Financial Assistance. They must fully explain the extraordinary circumstances which prevented minimum progress. A student whose appeal has been granted is considered to be on financial aid probation.
- The Bradley University Office of Financial Assistance is responsible for evaluating the academic progress policy. Any questions must be addressed to that office.
- The academic progress of recipients of financial aid will be evaluated at least annually and usually (but not always) at the conclusion of Spring Semester. Students not making progress will be notified by mail prior to the first day of classes of the next semester.
- In determining progress, the Office of Financial Assistance derives a completed credit hour in the same manner as the Registrar's Office. Therefore, students should refer to the Bradley University Academic Handbook and Catalog for clarification of University policy regarding course withdrawal, incomplete courses, courses in progress, and repeated courses.
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To receive federal funds administered by the Financial Assistance Office at Bradley University, students must be making measurable academic progress toward completion of an eligible degree program. Satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards are the same for all categories of graduate students including those enrolled in online programs.
Guidelines for Academic Progress
The academic year at Bradley University consists of fall, spring, and summer enrollment periods. The measurement of academic progress is made at the end of each spring semester and the status is effective with the summer enrollment period.
Students enrolling at Bradley University for the first time (including transfers) are considered initially to be meeting SAP. Students who have been academically suspended from a Bradley graduate program and who are readmitted are not eligible for financial aid unless meeting the SAP policy. Students who are readmitted may follow the appeal policy if consideration for financial aid is desired. Students may change majors/programs but all attempted credit hours and all earned grades will be considered as part of the evaluation of academic progress for financial aid; change of major may be considered as part of an appeal.
All periods of enrollment will be included in the measurement of satisfactory academic progress. Terms in which the student enrolled but did not receive financial aid are included in the measurement.
Students must meet a qualitative standard of academic progress measured through cumulative grade point average. Graduate students are considered in “good standing” for academic and federal financial aid purposes if they maintain a 3.0 overall GPA. Graduate students who do not maintain 3.0 overall GPA are placed on academic probation but retain federal aid eligibility for two additional semesters so long as they have a minimum 2.0 overall grade point. The GPA review will be conducted at the conclusion of each semester.
Students must meet a quantitative standard of academic progress measured by a percentage completion rate. Students must successfully complete 70% of all attempted credit hours. The calculation is made as follows: earned credit hours divided by attempted credit hours = completion rate (result will be rounded to closest whole number). Courses with grades of “W”, “F”, “IN”, “IP” and repeated courses are included in attempted credit hours but are not included in earned credit hours.
Maximum Time Frame for Degree Completion:
The total number of credits required for degree completion will vary by program. The University catalog provides information on the number of required credits for program completion. In instances where additional research hours are required, the student’s academic advisor/department chair can indicate if the student is making satisfactory progress toward the degree objective. Students who are meeting the required 70% of attempted credits will complete degree objective within 150% of expected time frame. Students who are pursuing a course of study with greater credit hour requirements need to notify the Financial Aid Office in order to have a review done on a case-by-case basis.
Financial Aid Probation Period:
“Probation” is the status assigned to a student who fails to meet SAP standards and who has appealed and had the appeal granted. A student on financial aid “probation” may receive financial aid for one enrollment period. At that point, the student must meet SAP standards to retain their financial assistance.
There may be extenuating circumstances encountered by a student which impact on his/her ability to be successful during an enrollment period. These circumstances include personal injury or illness which occurs during an enrollment period; death of an immediate family member or legal guardian during an enrollment period; or other documented circumstances that were unexpected in nature and beyond control of the student. In these cases, cumulative grade point average or completion rate may decline resulting in the student not meeting the minimum qualitative and quantitative standards previously described. Students who are denied financial aid because of failure to meet SAP standards may appeal the decision. All appeals must be made in writing to the Director of Financial Assistance. They must fully explain the extraordinary circumstances which prevented minimum progress. A student whose appeal has been granted is considered to be on financial aid probation.
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Consistent with Title IV regulations, in cases where federal aid recipients receive additional assistance from sources outside of the University after an initial award has been made, the external aid will be packaged in the following manner:
1. When an unmet need exists, the outside assistance will be used to fill the gap.
2. If the gap is filled (or no gap exists) the remaining external aid will result in a reduction of the Federal Direct Stafford Loan or a shift from a subsidized to an unsubsidized loan.
3. When no gap or Federal Direct Stafford exists, then reductions will be made to the following programs in the order listed: Federal Perkins Loan, Federal College Work Study or Federal SEOG/Pell Grant.
4. If the scholarship or stipend is reported on an IRS 1099 or W-2, it will be considered taxable income and not a resource against other assistance.
5. If a "scholarship" has a repayment or employment obligation it will be considered a replacement of expected family contribution.
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Federal regulations require all universities to make available to prospective and current students and employees information including but not limited to financial assistance opportunities, graduation rates, student loan default rates, crime statistics, campus safety programs, policies related to alcohol and illegal drugs, average student indebtedness and data pertaining to NCAA athletic participation. All of the required disclosure information specific to Bradley University is available by clicking here.
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A Bradley University financial aid professional is expected to maintain exemplary standards of professional conduct in all aspects of carrying out his or her responsibilities, specifically including all dealings with any entities involved in any manner in student financial aid, regardless of whether such entities are involved in a government sponsored, subsidized, or regulated activity. In doing so, a Bradley University financial aid professional should:
- Refrain from taking any action for his or her personal benefit.
- Refrain from taking any action he or she believes is contrary to law, regulation, or the best interest of the students and parents he or she serves.
- Ensure that the information he or she provides is accurate, unbiased, and does not reflect any preference arising from actual or potential personal gain.
- Be objective in making decisions and advising his or her institution regarding relationships with any entity involved in any aspect of student financial aid.
- Refrain from soliciting or accepting anything of other than nominal value from any entity (other than an institution of higher education or a governmental entity such as the U.S. Department of Education) involved in the making, holding, consolidating or processing of any student loans, including anything of value (including reimbursement of expenses) for serving on an advisory body or a part of a training activity of or sponsored by any such entity.
- Disclose to his or her institution, in such manner as his or her institution may prescribe, any involvement with or interest in any entity involved in any aspect of student financial aid.
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This Statement of Ethical Principles provides that the primary goal of Bradley University’s financial aid professionals is to help students achieve their educational potential by providing appropriate financial resources. To this end, this Statement provides that Bradley University financial aid professionals shall:
- Be committed to removing financial barriers for those who wish to pursue postsecondary learning.
Make every effort to assist students with financial need.
- Be aware of the issues affecting students and advocate their interests at the institutional, state, and federal levels.
Support efforts to encourage students, as early as the elementary grades, to aspire to and plan for education beyond high school.
- Educate students and families through quality consumer information.
- Respect the dignity and protect the privacy of students, and ensure the confidentiality of student records and personal circumstances.
- Ensure equity by applying all need analysis formulas consistently across the institution’s full population of student financial aid applicants.
- Provide services that do not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, disability, age, or economic status.
- Recognize the need for professional development and continuing education opportunities.
- Promote the free expression of ideas and opinions, and foster respect for diverse viewpoints within the profession.
- Commit to the highest level of ethical behavior and refrain from conflict of interest or the perception thereof.
Maintain the highest level of professionalism, reflecting a commitment to the goals of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators.
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The Bradley University Office of Financial Assistance is committed to safeguarding the confidential information of financial aid applicants and current and past aid recipients. Confidential information is considered to be any non-public information belonging to a student or in some cases parent(s) that if disclosed could place the student or parent(s) at risk of damaging their financial standing, privacy, or reputation. The University is bound by law to protect many types of confidential information. While inclusive of those protections the Office of Financial Assistance operational policy is particularly sensitive to information related to:
- Social Security numbers, driver's license numbers, state identification card numbers, passport numbers, other documents related to immigration status
- Credit and debit card information, and financial account information
- Student records, including but not limited to student education records within the meaning of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
- Information on federal and state income tax returns and associated schedules and forms
Guidelines and Procedures
All employees of the Office of Financial Assistance must safeguard confidential information and use it and disclose it only as authorized or required in the course of performing job duties.
The Office of Financial Assistance will gather and retain confidential information only to the extent required by federal and state regulations pertaining to the administration of student financial assistance.
Confidential information will be disposed of in a secure and safe manner at the conclusion of mandatory retention periods as dictated by federal and state regulations.
The Office of Financial Assistance will safeguard confidential data on paper documents by securing the information in individual files locked in restricted storage; confidential information that has been digitize or otherwise presented in an electronic media will be stored in secure and encrypted formats.
Access to the Office of Financial Assistance data management system will be limited to employees who have direct responsibility for the administration of student aid as determined by the Director of Financial Assistance. Individuals given access to electronic records will be given unique access credentials and will be required to regularly update passwords.
Employees who have any reason to believe or suspect that someone else is using their personal access codes must immediately notify the Director of Financial Assistance.
Student education records are governed by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and applicable University policy. FERPA-protected student education records must not be disclosed under any circumstances without the written consent of the student (or former student) or as authorized by the University's Registrar.
Employees who have access to confidential information will be trained to know and understand associated security requirements and take measures to protect the information.
Any employee of the Office of Financial Assistance who is willfully negligent in the handling of confidential information is subject to discipline up to and including termination of employment.
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