Tuition Refund Policy

Tuition Refund

To withdraw from a single course, or from all courses (complete withdrawal), it is necessary to process a change of registration via the Penguin Portal – Registration. It is the student’s responsibility to confirm that the withdrawal was correctly processed and the course(s) is/are deleted. Nonattendance of class, or notification to the instructor or department, does not constitute official withdrawal.

If a student is permitted to withdraw from the University or if a student reduces his or her academic load, a refund of the tuition charge, and the nonresident tuition surcharge, where applicable, shall be made in conformity with the following schedule for regularly scheduled courses:

Effective Fall 2019:

Tuition Refund Policy
Length of Course 100% Refund No Refund
More than 8 weeks Through the 14th day of term* 15th day of the term and later*
8 weeks or less Through the 7th day of term* 8th day of the term and later*


* Since access to change of registration is now available online 24/7, every day of the week is counted (including weekends and holidays) when calculating tuition refunds.

Note: for a complete withdrawal from any term, all applicable fees, fines, and penalties will be deducted from any refunds. If fees were paid by scholarship, loan, or grant-in-aid, the appropriate credit will be issued to the fund from which the initial payment was made. Student accounts paid with financial aid awards may be subject to a financial aid repayment. No refunds will be issued until after the 18th day of the term.

If a withdrawal is after the prescribed time limits (as indicated above), all tuition and other applicable fees and charges are forfeited. All applicable fees, fines, and penalties due must be paid before the refund is paid.

If a student withdraws from a study abroad field course within the applicable add/drop period for that term, the student will be refunded the tuition portion of the course per the schedule above. However, the University is not able to guarantee, and does NOT guarantee, that any portion of the program fee for that course will be removed or refunded if the student withdraws from the program for any reason either during or after the close of the add/drop period. If the University has already paid or encumbered funds on the student’s behalf at the time of withdrawal, the student is obligated to pay the amount encumbered or paid by the University.

Any withdrawal, or reduction in academic hours, processed after the tuition refund schedule outlined above will not be entitled to any reduction of charges and/or refund unless an Application for Involuntary Withdrawal is submitted and approved by the Fees and Charges Appeals Board. This form is available at the Office of University Bursar (Rm 227 Meshel Hall). Please be sure to carefully review all information included on the 2nd page of the form. All decisions of the Fees and Charges Appeals Board are final and binding.

Return of Federal (Title IV) Financial Aid

Federal Student Aid (FSA), also known as Title IV funding, is awarded under the assumption that a student will complete course(s) for the entire semester and/or payment period for which the funds were awarded.

When a student ceases attendance, officially and/or unofficially, in a course, regardless of the reason, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of Title IV funds originally awarded.
The return of funds to the federal government is based on the premise that financial aid is earned in proportion to the length of time during which the student attended. A pro-rated schedule determines the amount of federal aid a student has earned while attending. For example, a student who withdraws in the second week of the semester has earned less of his/her financial aid than a student who withdraws in the fifth week.
Once the 60% point in the semester/payment period is reached, a student is considered to have earned all of the financial aid originally awarded and will not be required to return any funds.

Financial aid that is processed for a student who never begins attendance in any class will be canceled.

If a recipient of Title IV funds stops attending Youngstown State University after beginning attendance, the amount of Title IV assistance earned by the student must be determined. If the amount disbursed to the student is greater than the amount the student earned, the unearned funds must be returned to the federal program(s). If the amount disbursed to the student is less than the amount the student earned, and for which the student is otherwise eligible, he or she is eligible to receive a post-withdrawal disbursement of the earned aid that was not received. 

Determination of Federal Aid Earned

Earned aid is determined based on the number of calendar days the student attended classes (i.e., the number of days in the term prior to the date of withdrawal) divided by the total number of calendar days in the term. The result is a percentage of federal aid funds that the student is entitled to keep. For example, a student who attends 20% of the term has earned approximately 20% of their financial aid.
As a result of a withdrawal, students who received federal funds will be required to repay unearned aid. The repayment calculation is performed utilizing the federal government's repayment planner

Determination of Date of Withdrawal

Whether your withdrawal activity happens at once (a drop of all classes) or over a period of time (through series of successive dropping of classes until all have been dropped), a student who has a complete withdrawal from all coursework for a term is evaluated for return of aid based on a date of withdrawal. The date used will be the date associated with the withdrawal from your final course of the term or the last date of official withdrawal, whichever is later.

Official Withdrawals

A student who takes specific action to drop or withdraw from a course for a term is an "official withdrawal." In these cases, Youngstown State University will use the date of the drop or withdrawal.

Unofficial Withdrawals

A student who fails to officially withdraw or drop a course but ceases attendance in his or her coursework will be considered an "unofficial withdrawal" and assigned a NAF for a final grade. Youngstown State University will then use the midpoint of the term as the student's date of withdrawal.

Return of Unearned Federal Aid

The total federal aid disbursed at the point of withdrawal less the earned amount constitutes the unearned aid that must be returned to the federal government within 45 days of the date it has been determined the student has withdrawn. The university will allocate the return of unearned aid in the following order:

  1. Unsubsidized Direct Loan
  2. Subsidized Direct Staff Loan
  3. Direct Graduate PLUS Loan
  4. Direct Parent PLUS Loan
  5. Pell Grant
  6. Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant
  7. FSEOG
  8. TEACH Grant

The total amount of aid returned may result in the student owing Youngstown State University if the remaining aid does not cover charges for that same period of enrollment. For example, if a student lives in on-campus housing or received financial aid refunds prior to withdrawing from classes, a balance may be owed to Youngstown State University even if the course withdrawals all occurred in the 100% tuition refund period. An outstanding balance can prevent future registration.
Once the Office of the University Bursar has completed the return of Title IV calculation, they will send the student written notice by mail.

Disbursements after Withdrawal

Normally a student’s Federal Title IV aid has posted while the student is still enrolled. However, in some cases, students may qualify for a disbursement of federal Title IV aid after completing the withdrawal process if the amount of aid they received was less than the amount they earned based on the return of Title IV calculation. This process is known as a “post-withdrawal disbursement.” If a student is determined to be eligible for a post-withdrawal disbursement of either federal grants or federal loans, the Office of University Bursar will send them a letter to notify them of their eligibility.
Students eligible for grant funds via post-withdrawal disbursement will automatically have those grant funds applied to their bill without needing to take any additional actions. Students who are eligible for a post-withdrawal loan disbursement will have to notify Youngstown State University in writing that they wish to receive the loans. Instructions for this written notification will be included in the letter sent by the Office of University Bursar.
Students eligible for a post-withdrawal disbursement will not necessarily receive those funds as a refund. Youngstown State University will use the post-withdrawal disbursement to cover any charges on the bill related to tuition, housing, or other institutional charges prior to issuing funds to the student. A refund will only be issued if there is a credit balance on the student’s account after the charges have been paid.

Withdrawing from Classes

To fully understand the financial consequences that will occur at (or soon following) the end of the term, students who have federal aid and who completely withdraw from classes (at once or over the course of the term) are required to speak with staff from the Financial Aid Department (Meshel Hall Room 203).

Return of Title IV Funds requirements provided under the CARES Act

Section 3508 of the CARES Act waived the statutory requirement for institutions to return Title IV funds as the result of student withdrawals related to a qualifying emergency. For any student who begins attendance in a payment period or period of enrollment that includes March 13, 2020, or begins between March 13 and the later of December 31 or the last date that the national emergency is in effect, and subsequently withdraws from the period as a result of COVID-19 related circumstances, the University is not required to return Title IV funds. This includes students who withdrew during the applicable period for whom the institution has already performed an R2T4 calculation and returned funds. 

The CARES Act also waives student grant overpayments that result from the R2T4 process for students who withdraw as a result of COVID-19-related circumstances. Per the CARES Act waiver, no notification was sent to NSLDS and no Title IV credit balance was applied to grant overpayments.

In spring 2020, the university underwent a change in educational delivery due to the COVID-19 pandemic from on-campus to online instruction. Per Section 3508 of the CARES Act, students who withdrew during the spring 2020 semester had their Title IV funds re-disbursed and credited to their student account, applicable adjustments made in the COD system, and any necessary funds were requested from G5. In cases where the student withdrew and no returns were made the university performed an R2T4 calculation in order to determine the amount of Title IV funds that would otherwise have to be returned, made no adjustments to the COD system as a result of the withdrawal, and made no adjustments to the amount of Title IV aid credited to the student’s account. If student withdrew prior to all Title IV aid being disbursed, the university proceeded in making any remaining disbursements. Students who withdrew from distance education programs provided a written attestation explaining why the withdrawal was the result of the COVID-19 emergency to be eligible for the re-disbursement of Title IV funds. No changes were made to the university’s tuition refund policy.

A COVID-19 Appeals Committee was formed to review special circumstances submitted by students by email or the Maxient system for COVID-19 related withdrawals. The COVID-19 Appeals Committee reviewed the information and any supporting documents and either approved or denied the appeal. If appeal was approved, the Title IV funds for that semester were re-disbursed and credited to the students account, applicable adjustments made to the COD system, and funds requested from G5. Students were notified by email of the status of their COVID-19 appeal.

Beginning August 2, 2020, the COD website was updated to include a new Coronavirus Indicator. The Coronavirus Indicator is used to indicate that an aid recipient’s actual disbursement qualifies for Direct Loan cancellation (and the exclusion from the Direct Loan annual limits and Subsidized Loan usage calculations), and the exclusion from Pell Grant LEU calculations and TEACH Grant award limits. The university selects/selected the Coronavirus Indicator when applicable.

Important Information Regarding Summer Sessions

Effective July 1, 2021 (Summer 2021), The U.S. Department of Education has revised regulations regarding students enrolled in a semester with multiple sessions. The new rules have added three R2T4 Exemptions that replace the need for a student to earn a passing grade in their last session in order to have earned 100% of their federal aid.  The following exemptions apply to Summer’s "Unofficial Withdrawals":

1) Completing Graduation Requirements:  

  • Student completed all requirements for graduation.
  • May be necessary to recalculate aid based on dropped courses.
  • Example -- Student withdrew from second 7 weeks because they only needed their first 7 weeks enrollment to graduate.

2) Successful Completion of 49% of “Countable” days in One Module or Combination of Modules:

  • Student completed coursework (earned a passing grade) in one session (first 7 weeks or second 7 weeks); Requires a passing grade (ie: "A", "B", "C" or "D").
  • This exemption is satisfied when a student successfully completes any session; students completing one session or any combination results in at least 50% completion of “countable” days.

3) Successful Completion of Half-time Enrollment:

  • If the student earns at least 6 credit-hours in Title IV-eligible coursework (one session or combination of sessions), they are exempt from the R2T4 requirement.
  • May be necessary to recalculate aid based on dropped courses.