Financial Aid Information



VERIFICATION Icon

Verification

Verification

You are probably on this page because your FAFSA was selected for verification. If your FAFSA was selected for verification you must complete all requirements for this process to receive financial aid.

About 22% of students who file a FAFSA are selected for the verification process. In this process, schools collect documentation from applicants to check the accuracy of FAFSA information. Additional documentation may be requested during the process of verification. If chosen for verification, documents will be requested through your MySam account.

Please do not submit any documents to our office that are not specifically requested.

What happens during verification?

During the verification process, our office collects documentation to compare to the information input on the FAFSA. If there is information that does not match, the financial aid office will submit a correction to the U.S. Department of Education.

It may take 5-10 business days to complete the verification process once we have received all of your requested documentation. Please keep in mind that this process may take longer during peak processing times.

Your financial aid offer can potentially change due to the corrections made during the verification process. If your financial aid offer does change you will be notified that a correction was processed and you can review the new financial aid offer on your account.

What documentation do I need to submit?

The documents required will vary for each student. Forms and requests will be listed in your MySam account.

To see what needs to be submitted:

  1. Log into your MySam account
  2. Find the Financial Aid Requirements box
  3. Click on the Financial Aid Requirements link
  4. Box with financial aid requirements

Note: Make sure you are looking at the correct academic year once in your account.

Why use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool?

  • Easy: Transfers info with the click of a button
  • Fast: Instantly retrieves your information
  • Accurate: Correctly fills in data fields
  • Reduces amount of documents needing to be submitted to our office
Steps to use the IRS tax tool

How do I get an IRS Tax Return Transcript?

If for any reason you cannot use IRS Data Retrieval, you can request a tax return transcript using Get Transcript at irs.gov/Individuals/Get-Transcript.

Please ensure you request the correct document. The Tax Return Transcript should look like the example on the right.

A 1040 and an account transcript are not the same as a tax return transcript

Additional Documentation?

Other documents could be requested due to federal requirements during the verification process or after verification has been completed. Remember to always check your MySam account for the status of your financial aid account and to view any requested documents.

You may be required to submit additional documentation even though you have not been selected for verification. These documents may include but are not limited to;

  • Citizenship/eligible non-citizen status
  • Veteran status
  • High school completion
  • Documentation of independent student status

If requested, please submit the documents immediately to avoid delaying your financial aid. You can access your MySam account by

  1. Logging into your MySam account
  2. Finding the Financial Aid Requirements box
  3. Clicking on the Financial Aid Requirements link
  4. Box with financial aid requirements

How can I submit requested documentation?

Scholarships & Financial Aid accepts documents for students submitted via e-mail, fax, postal mail, or in-person.

E-Mail: FADocuments@shsu.edu

Fax: (936) 294-3668

Mailing Address
Box 2328
Huntsville, TX 77341

What if I don't finish verification?

You must complete verification before your financial aid will apply to your billing account. Your financial aid will not award and/or disburse, if you fail to submit all required documentation

Please respond immediately to any requests from our department.

You will receive a deadline to complete verification, if you were selected for verification after you received financial aid. Your financial aid will be cancelled and you may be required to repay previously awarded aid, if you do not complete verification by your given deadline.



DATES Icon

Priority Dates and Deadlines

Important Dates to Know

Apply early for financial aid. Aid is given to students who have the greatest financial need and have submitted all required documentation to our office. Below are the priority dates for submitting a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Attendance Dates Priority Dates FAFSA Year FAFSA Submission Period Tax Year
Fall 2019
Spring 2020
Summer 2020
November, 1 2018
 
 
2019-2020 October 1, 2018 to June 30, 2020 2017
Fall 2020
Spring 2021
Summer 2021
November, 1 2019
 
 
2020-2021 October 1, 2019 to June 30, 2021 2018

You may apply for financial aid at any time. However, to receive early consideration for all available financial assistance and to determine your eligibility in a timely manner, submit all required forms to our office by the priority dates listed above.

Applications completed after these priority dates will be reviewed on a first-come, first-serve basis and dependent on available funding.

Aid will begin posting by March of each year.


Attendance Dates: The semester(s) you plan to attend SHSU.

Priority Dates: Students who submit their FAFSA by the priority date are given priority consideration for programs with limited funding. The earlier you send in the FAFSA, the better.

FAFSA Year: The academic year the FAFSA will be applied to.

FAFSA Submission Period: The FAFSA is available online for students and parents to complete and send in to the Financial Aid and Scholarships office during the dates listed. If you have not submitted your FAFSA by the last date in this period, you will not be awarded.

Tax Year: The tax year you must use when filling out your FAFSA.



ENROLLMENT Icon

Enrollment and Attendance

Enrollment

Undergraduate Students
Enrollment Fall/Spring Summer*
Full-time 12 or more hours 12 or more hours
3/4-time 9 - 11 hours 9 - 11 hours
1/2-time 6 - 8 hours 6 - 8 hours
Graduate Students
Enrollment Fall/Spring Summer*
Full-time 12 or more hours 6 or more hours
3/4-time 9 - 11 hours
1/2-time 6 - 8 hours 3 - 5 hours

*includes mini-mesters, Summer I, & Summer II


Attendance

Students who receive federal aid must attend all courses. Failure to attend class may result in a reduction or cancellation of aid. As a result, a student may be required to repay any federal aid received and may lose eligibility for future financial aid.

All enrollment classifications are based on Federal requirements. While some programs may utilize different formulas for their enrollment classifications, the charts above are the guidelines used to award all financial aid.



SAP Icon

SAP
(Satisfactory Academic Progress)

SAP is the term used for a student’s successful completion of coursework toward a certificate or degree. The Financial Aid & Scholarships Office must monitor the academic progress of each student per federal and state requirements. Students who fall behind in their coursework or fail to achieve minimum standards for grade point average and completion of classes may lose their eligibility for all types of federal, state and university aid. Evaluations can occur after each fall, spring, and summer terms.

GPA Requirements

At the end of each evaluation period, you have to achieve or maintain a minimum SHSU GPA in order to remain eligible for financial aid.

Degree Program Minimum GPA
Undergraduate 2.0
2nd Bachelors 2.0
Teacher Certification 2.0
Preparatory Students 2.0
Graduate 3.0

Completion Rate Requirements

At the end of each evaluation period, you have to complete 67% of all your attempted hours for your degree program.

Attempted hours include:

  • All hours you enroll in at SHSU or any other college/university
  • Courses you received a grade of F, W, I, U, NC, IP, Q, and X
  • Repeat courses for which credit is not earned

Completion Rate is measured by dividing the total number of hours successfully completed by the total number of hours attempted.

Maximum Hour Limit

Students are eligible to receive financial assistance for a limited period of time while pursuing a degree. Credit hours are cumulative; thus, students working towards obtaining more than one degree in the same category (e.g., two Masters) will likely exceed the maximum allowed hours. All attempted hours are considered in this evaluation, including transfer course work and courses for which aid was not received.

Undergraduate students must not exceed 180 attempted credit hours.

2nd Bachelor students must not exceed 150% of the degree requirements which includes hours from their 1st Bachelors degree.

Teacher Certification students can only be approved for coursework required for state certification.

Preparatory students have 12 consecutive months beginning with their 1st enrolled semester.

Graduate/Doctoral students hours vary by program, review your degree plan.

Professional students hours vary by program, review your degree plan.

Warning Semester & Denial of Aid

Warning Semester

A SAP warning semester is granted to a student that does not meet SAP to give the student a semester to bring up the GPA or complete the hours needed in order to meet SAP and be eligible for Financial Aid for the next semester.

Graduate students are not eligible for any warning semester.

Denial of Aid

At the end of the warning semester, students who do not meet the minimum SAP requirements are not eligible for financial aid.

Students can regain eligibility in subsequent semesters by meeting the minimum SAP requirements.

Students may submit a financial aid appeal if they have mitigating circumstances (see below).

Financial Aid Appeal

Students who fail to maintain SAP due to a mitigating circumstance may submit a written appeal with supportive documentation after they have received official notification of denial.

Example Mitigating Circumstances:

  • Death of an immediate family member (Immediate family member is a parent, child, brother or sister);
  • Illness or Injury which caused an inability to attend or prepare for class for an extended period;
  • Extenuating circumstances beyond your control other than one of the above situations.

Download and follow the steps on the Financial Aid Appeal form.

Repeated Coursework

Per Federal Regulation, a student is not eligible for Title IV (federal) financial aid for any course they repeat more than once if they have previously passed the course.

Download the PDF Undergraduate & Graduate SAP Policy



VERIFICATION Icon

Special Circumstances

Special Circumstances

If you or your family has experienced a significant financial hardship we may be able to help! If you have a qualifying special circumstance, our office may adjust your status to better reflect your current financial situation and increase your financial aid eligibility.

Dependency Override

Dependency Override requests are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Only students who are estranged from their parents due to extenuating or unusual circumstances (example: abuse, family alcoholism, drugs, etc.) with documentation by an objective third party (example: high school counselor, coach, teacher, social services, police, clergy, etc.) may qualify.

A student is NOT independent because:

  • parent(s) refuse to contribute to the student’s education;
  • parent(s) are unwilling to provide information on the FAFSA or for verification;
  • parent(s) do not claim the student as a dependent for income tax purposes;
  • students’ demonstration of total self-sufficiency

If your situation qualifies make an appointment with a financial aid counselor!

Income Adjustments

The Department of Education determines a student’s aid eligibility each academic year, using the student and parent’s reported income from 2 years prior. However, there are special circumstances we can consider to recalculate student eligibility using income from another tax year. The following circumstances may be considered if they apply to you, your spouse, or one or more of your parents:

  • Involuntary Unemployment (proof of unemployment is required)
  • Income will be significantly lower in a following tax year (involuntary reduction of income)
  • Loss of income such as alimony payments, child support, social security benefits, and/or pensions/annuities/worker’s compensation
  • Note: Self-employment or business income must be documented; therefore, the request may not be considered until after the current year tax return is filed.
  • Deduction of one-time payment which is included in AGI; funds cannot be used for every day expenses
  • Paid unusually high medical/dental expenses (in excess of 10% AGI; must be reported on Schedule A of tax return)

To be considered you must already have an aid offer for the aid year being reviewed.

If your situation qualifies make an appointment with a financial aid counselor!

Student/Parent Marital Status Change

Make an appointment with a financial aid counselor to discuss this special circumstance.

Divorce, Separation, or Death of Student’s Spouse or Parents

Make an appointment with a financial aid counselor to discuss this special circumstance.