Wittenberg University Return of Title IV funds (R2T4) Policy

Return of Title IV Funds (R2T4) Policy at Wittenberg University: This policy applies to students who withdraw, take a leave of absence, or are academically dismissed from the institution while enrolled during an active semester. The federal government requires the Office of Financial Aid to recalculate federal aid eligibility for any students who enroll in courses during a semester and subsequently withdraw (official or unofficial withdrawal) from all enrolled courses. Students must complete at least 60% of the semester in order to earn 100% of their scheduled aid.

The federal regulations governing R2T4 calculations are as follows: 34 CFR 668.22


Title IV (Four) funds; These are US federal grant and loan fund programs that have been designated for post-secondary education. The term originated in 1965 from the year’s Higher Education Act, signed by Lyndon B. Johnson. At Wittenberg University these funds include Pell, SEOG, TEACH & Iraq & Afghanistan Service Grants, Subsidized, Unsubsidized and PLUS loans as well as Federal Work Study Funds.

R2T4; Return of Title IV funding. The acronym refers to the required calculation of Title IV fund eligibility for any students who drop all classes during a semester and the subsequent return of unearned funds that the University must complete.

Voluntary Withdrawal; When a student initiates a withdrawal from all enrolled courses during a semester due to circumstances unique to the student and obtains written permission from the University to withdraw from classes. Or if a student does not initiate a withdrawal but is subsequently determined to have stopped attending classes during the semester and receives all F grades.

Involuntary Withdrawal; If there is sufficient evidence that a student is engaging in or likely to engage in behaviors that present a real danger of substantial harm to self or others, the University may seek to withdraw the student. The University will determine the date of withdrawal and notify the student and the Office of Financial Aid.

Date of Withdrawal; The date of withdrawal determines the length of attendance during the semester and thus the amount of aid earned for the student. For official withdrawals, the University will use the withdrawal date as notified by the Registrar’s Office. For unofficial withdrawals, the University will use the midpoint of the semester or the last date of attendance as confirmed by an instructor, whichever is of more advantage to the student.

Academic Attendance; Is defined as being physically present for a class meeting, logged into Moodle for online/hybrid classes, lab or other event as assigned by faculty AND directly interacting with faculty and students, taking an exam, submitting an academic assignment or participating in a study group as assigned by faculty.

Post-Withdrawal Disbursement; If the student did not receive all federal aid they were entitled to for the period of enrollment, the school must disburse the earned funds to the student account, even if the student has withdrawn from the university.

R2T4 Calculation: The following formula is used to determine the percentage of unearned aid that has to be returned to the federal government.

  • The percent earned is equal to the number of calendar days completed up to the (determined) withdrawal date, divided by the total calendar days in the payment period (less any scheduled breaks that are at least 5 days long)
  • The payment period is the entire semester.
  • The percent unearned is equal to 100 percent minus the percent earned.

Example; if a student completes 30 days of a 112-day semester, they earn 28% percent of the aid they were originally scheduled to receive (30/112 = 26.78%). This means that 72% of the scheduled awards remain “unearned” and must be returned to the federal government. If the student was awarded a total of $2,750 in federal loans for the semester, $1,980 must be returned to the federal government as unearned aid (2750*72% = $1,980).

Days Attended ÷ Days in Enrollment Period = Percentage Completed
Total Aid Disbursed x Percentage Completed = Earned Aid
Total Disbursed Aid – Earned Aid = Unearned Aid to be Returned

Once 60% of the semester is completed, a student is considered to have earned all of their financial aid and will not be required to return any federal funds.

Students who wish to withdraw from the semester must notify the Office of the Registrar or the Office of Student Development of their intent to withdraw as outlined in the University’s Academic Policies listed in the academic catalog.

Determination of Date of Withdrawal: The school is required to determine an official date of withdrawal in order to accurately calculate the students’ aid eligibility for their period of attendance. There are two types of withdrawals as outlined below:

  • Official withdrawals; This is the date the student initiates the withdrawal by submitting the withdrawal form to the Office of Student Development or the Office of the Registrar.
  • Unofficial withdrawals; This is the mid-point of the term or the last documented date of attendance, whichever is later, for students who stop attending but do not notify the University.

Earned vs. Unearned Aid: If the R2T4 calculation determines that the University must return unearned funds to the federal government, the student will be notified via email of the required fund returns and any subsequent balance due on their student account. The University is required to return any unearned funds to the federal government within 45 days of the withdrawal date.

Student Responsibility: Repayment of any remaining earned loan funds is still the responsibility of the student and will count towards their aggregate loan limits.

Return of Funds: The University will return the percentage of unearned Title IV funds that were disbursed or that could have been disbursed to the federal programs. The funds will be returned no later than 45 days from the date of the official withdrawal or the last date of attendance. The University will return the lesser of the total of unearned aid or an amount equal to institutional charges multiplied by the percentage of unearned aid.

The order in which the federal funds will be returned is as follows:

  • Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans
  • Federal Direct Subsidized Loans
  • Federal Direct Parent or Graduate PLUS loans
  • Federal Pell Grants
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG)
  • Federal TEACH grants
  • Federal Iraq & Afghanistan Service Grants

Post-Withdrawal Disbursements: Students may be eligible for a post-withdrawal disbursement if they have accepted aid that had not been disbursed at the time of withdrawal. If eligible, the Financial Aid Office will send notification of the action required to either accept or decline a portion, or all, of the late disbursement within 30 days of the date of the University's determination that the student withdrew. The student or parent has 14 days to respond instructing the University to make a post-withdrawal disbursement. If the student or parent does not respond within the 14 day timeframe, the University may make the late disbursement upon request at a later date. The student is notified in writing of the outcome of the late request. Post-withdrawal disbursements cannot be made after 180 days of the date of determination that a student withdrew for loans and no later than 45 days for grants. A post-withdrawal disbursement would be made from available grant funds before available loan funds.

Institutional Aid Adjustments: Students who withdraw from the University during an active semester may be eligible for a refund of some costs, as per Wittenberg University's Tuition Refund Policy.

Institutional aid (Wittenberg scholarships and grants) will be prorated at the same rate as tuition & fees, as follows:

Semester Attendance:Percentage of aid applied to account:
One week or less10% of aid retained
Two weeks or less20% of aid retained
Three weeks or less40% of aid retained
Four weeks or less60% of aid retained
Five weeks or less80% of aid retained
More than five weeks100% of aid retained

State of Ohio grant & scholarship adjustments: The Ohio Department of Higher Education establishes policies and procedures for the handling of State of Ohio scholarships, grants, and loans when a student drops courses or withdraws. Policies vary depending on the type of aid. Typically, students must be enrolled full-time to receive State of Ohio grants and scholarships, but not always. State of Ohio scholarships, grants, and loans generally have the same refund policy as Wittenberg University's Tuition Refund Policy.

External Scholarships: Policies and procedures for the handling of external scholarship monies when a student drops courses or withdraws are determined by the external scholarship donor. Always contact your donor if you have any questions.

Alternative (Private) Loans: Pay close attention to the terms and conditions of your alternative loan. Your lender establishes policies and procedures regarding the handling of loan funds when a student drops courses or withdraws. Private loans generally have the same refund policy as Wittenberg University's Tuition Refund Policy.

Veterans Benefits: Students who receive Veterans Benefits must contact the Office of Financial Aid before adding or dropping classes, or prior to withdrawing from the University.  Veteran’s benefits must be terminated or amended based on regulations from the Veterans Administration.

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