Tuition Refund Policy


Tuition Refund Policy

Western University of Health Sciences has adopted the Department of Education refund policy for all students who find it necessary to withdraw from the University or take a leave of absence during the academic year. It is a universal policy that applies to all students, those receiving and not receiving financial aid. Students who elect to withdraw or take a Leave of Absence during the academic year must submit prior written notification to the appropriate Academic Dean according to the procedures specified in the Catalog for their program. Western University may amend its institution refund policy at any time. Amendments will become effective for the academic year that follows official notification of the amendment, unless the Department of Education mandates a regulatory change. Any questions concerning Western University’s refund policy should be directed to the Financial Aid Office.


General Requirements

Federal Student Aid funds are awarded to a student under the assumption that the student will attend school for the entire period for which the assistance is awarded. When a student withdraws, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of Title IV funds that the student was originally scheduled to receive. If a recipient of Federal Student Aid loan funds withdraws from school after beginning attendance, the amount of Federal Student Aid loan assistance earned by the student must be determined. 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 for the earned aid that was not received.

For the purpose of Return to Title IV (R2T4) students that are considered to be enrolled in module-based enrollment periods (DMD, DMD-IDP, MSMS, MSPA – Year 2, OD, DO/DONW, PharmD, IPBP, DPM, DPM-AS, DVM – Years 3 & 4) are able to take up to a 45 daybreak in enrollment without having to complete an R2T4 or considered to be on a leave of absence (LOA).  However, the student must have been enrolled in one module prior to the 45 day break and have completed a module prior to the end of the academic term.  

If the student does not meet the above criteria, the student will be considered on a LOA and a R2T4 will be calculated.  Also, the Registrar’s Office will be required to report a LOA to the National Clearinghouse.


Definition of a Title IV Recipient

A recipient of loan assistance is a student who has actually received Title IV funds or has met the conditions that entitle the student a late disbursement. If the student never actually began attendance for the payment period or period of enrollment, the refund policy does not apply. Similarly, if a student began attendance, but was not and could not have been disbursed Title IV funds prior to withdrawal, the student is not considered to have been a Title IV recipient and the requirements of this refund policy do not apply.


Calculation of Amount of Eligible Tuition Refund

The amount of tuition refund for which the student is eligible is computed as follows:

  1. If the day the student withdrew was on or before the student completed 60 percent of the enrollment period for which tuition was paid, the percentage refund is computed as one hundred percent minus the percentage of the enrollment period that has elapsed up to the date of withdrawal.
  2. Students who withdraw after completing 60 percent of the enrollment period for which tuition was paid are not entitled to a refund.

Return to Title IV Exemptions and Tuition Refund Exemptions

For Return to Title IV purposes, students who are enrolled in a program with module(s) are exempted from the Return to Title IV process and will not qualify for a tuition refund if they have successfully completed one of the following: 

  1. A student is not considered to have withdrawn if the student successfully completes one module that includes 49 percent or more of the number of days in the payment period, excluding scheduled breaks of five or more consecutive days and all days between modules.
  2. A student is not considered to have withdrawn if the student successfully completes a combination of modules that when combined contain 49 percent or more of the number of days in the payment period, excluding scheduled breaks of five or more consecutive days and all days between modules.
  3. A student is not considered to have withdrawn if the student successfully completes coursework equal to or greater than the coursework required for the institution’s definition of a half-time student for the payment period.
  4. A student who completes all the requirements for graduation from his or her program before completing the days or hours in the period that he or she was scheduled to complete is not considered to have withdrawn. (This exemption applies to all types of programs, with or without modules). 

Determining the Withdrawal Date

The withdrawal date is:

  1. The date the student begins the withdrawal process prescribed by the respective College;
  2. The date that the student otherwise provided official notification to the respective College of the intent to withdraw; or
  3. The midpoint of the enrollment period for which Student Financial Aid Programs Assistance was disbursed or a later date documented by the respective College, if the student did not begin the withdrawal process or otherwise notify the respective College of the intent to withdraw.

If the College determines that a student did not begin the withdrawal process or otherwise notify the respective College of the intent to withdraw due to illness, accident, grievous personal loss, or other circumstances beyond the student’s control, the College may determine the appropriate withdrawal date.

For additional information regarding refund policies for student participating in Student Financial Aid Programs, see Financial Aid below.


Title IV Aid Disbursed

The calculation of earned Federal Student Aid includes all Title IV loan funds that were disbursed or could have been disbursed to a student. This includes the net amount of loan funds from the Unsubsidized Direct Stafford and Direct Graduate PLUS loan programs.

A student’s Title IV funds are disbursed when the school credits a student’s account with the funds or pays a student directly with Title IV funds received from the U.S. Department of Education. A student’s aid is deemed as disbursed if it is disbursed as of the date of the institution’s determination that the student withdrew.


Percentage of Title IV Aid Earned

The withdrawal date is used to determine the point in time that the student is considered to have withdrawn so the percentage of the enrollment period completed by the student can be determined. The percentage of Title IV Aid earned is equal to the percentage of the enrollment period completed. If the day the student withdrew occurs on or before the student completed 60 percent of the enrollment period for which the assistance was awarded, the percentage earned is equal to the percentage of the enrollment period that was completed. If the day the student withdrew occurs after the student has completed more than 60 percent of the enrollment period, the percentage earned is 100 percent.


Determining a Student’s Withdrawal Date at a School That is not Required to Take Attendance

The chart below lists the withdrawal date for the various types of withdrawals, as well as the date of the institution’s determination that the student withdrew for each type of withdrawal.

Withdrawal Type

Circumstance

Student’s Withdrawal Date*

Date of the Institution’s Determination that
the Student has Withdrawn

Official Notification

The student begins the school’s withdrawal process, or the student otherwise provides official notification to the school of intent to withdraw.

The date the student begins the schools withdrawal process, or the date that the student otherwise provides the notification. (If both circumstances occur, use the earlier withdrawal date.)

The student’s withdrawal date, or the date of notification, whichever is later.

Official Notification Not Provided

Official notification not provided by the student because of circumstances beyond the student’s control. All other instances where student withdraws without providing official notification.

The date that the school determines is related to the circumstance beyond the student’s control. The midpoint of the payment period or period of enrollment, as applicable.

The date that the school becomes aware that the student has ceased attendance. **

Leave of Absence Related

The students does not return from an approved leave of absence, or the student takes an unapproved leave of absence.

The date that the student began the leave of absence.

The earlier of the dates of the end of the leave of absence or the date the student notifies the school he or she will not be returning to that school. (In the case of an unapproved absence, the date that the student began the leave of absence.)

Withdrawal After Rescission of Official Notification

The student withdraws after rescinding a previous official notification of withdrawal.

The student’s original withdrawal date from the previous official notification.

The date the school becomes aware that the student did not or will not complete the program period or period of enrollment.

 

* In place of the dates listed, a school may always use as a student’s withdrawal date the student’s last date of attendance at an academically related activity, if the school documents that the activity is academically related and that the student attended the activity.

** For a student who withdraws without providing notification to the school, the school must determine the withdrawal date no later than 30 days after the end of the earliest of the (1) payment period or period of enrollment (as appropriate), (2) academic year, or (3) education program.


Title IV Aid to be Returned

If a student receives more Federal Student Aid than the amount earned, the school, or the student, or both must return the unearned funds in a specific order. The amount of Federal Student Aid to be returned is determined by subtracting the amount of earned Title IV aid from the amount of the Title IV aid that was actually disbursed to the student.


Amount of Unearned Title IV Aid Due from the School

When a return of Title IV funds is due, the school and the student may both have a responsibility for returning funds. Funds that are not the responsibility of the school to return must be returned by the student. Although these requirements talk in terms of returning funds, a school is not required to return its share before the student. Rather, it is the calculation of the amount of assistance the school is responsible for returning to the Title IV accounts that must be performed first. The student’s repayment obligation is determined after the school’s share is calculated. The school must return the lesser of:

  • The amount of Title IV funds that the student does not earn; or
  • The amount of institutional charges that the student incurred for the payment period or period of enrollment multiplied by the percentage of funds that was not earned.

Return of Funds by the School

A school must return Title IV funds to the programs from which the student received aid during the payment period or period of enrollment as applicable, in the following order, up to the net amount disbursed from each source:

  • Unsubsidized Direct Stafford Loans
  • Direct Graduate Plus Loans

Any unearned tuition for alternative loans or Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Title VII funds (Primary Care Loan, Health Professions Student Loans, Loans for Disadvantage Students, Student Nursing Loans) will be returned to the lender or HRSA. Scholarships will be adjusted subject to their donor agreements.


Time Frame for the Return of Title IV Funds

A school is required to return unearned funds for which it is responsible as soon as possible, but no later than forty-five days from the determination of a student’s withdrawal.


 Repayment of Student Loans

The student loans that remain outstanding consist of the loans disbursed to the student minus any loans the school repaid. These outstanding loans are repaid in accordance with the terms of the student’s promissory notes.


Cares Act Relief

For any student who begins attendance in a payment period or period of enrollment that includes March 13, 2020 until the last date that the national emergency is in effect, and subsequently withdraws from the period as a result of COVID-19-related circumstances, WesternU is not required to return the Title IV funds.  


Reference

Department of Education, Student Financial Aid Handbook, 2021-2022 Award Year.