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Athabasca University

What else should I know about student financial assistance? : Prospective Students - Program

Course Contract Periods

If you are receiving student financial assistance and you are pursuing full-time studies, you are expected to complete your courses in a time frame that is consistent with a traditional post-secondary format. What this means is that instead of a 6-month contract period for your courses, you will be given a 4-month contract period.

If you are a part-time student, you will be given our normal course contract period of 6 months.

Minimum Course Load

When you are receiving financial assistance, you must register in and complete the minimum course load requirements as specified by the Canada Student Loans program: “at least 60 per cent of a full course load if you are a full-time student, or between 20 and 59 per cent of a full course load if you are a part-time student.”

For the purposes of student financial assistance, AU defines a full course load as 15 credits (or five 3-credit courses) in each 4-month period. So the minimum course load to qualify for student financial assistance as a full-time student is 9 credits (three 3 credit courses all having the same start date) in each 4-month study period.

Note that if are a student with a disability, you may qualify for a reduced course load. Please contact our Access to Students with Disabilities unit for more information.

The minimum course load for a part-time student is 3 credits, to a maximum of 9 credits (three 3 credit courses all having the same start date) in each 6-month study period.

Academic Progress and Course Completion Requirements

When you are receiving student financial assistance, you are required to submit assignments and complete your course work to show the University and your funding agency that you are making progress on your courses. You will receive some guidelines related to academic progress once you have been admitted to the University and your student financial assistance has been confirmed.

You are also required to successfully complete the minimum course load in accordance with the agreement you have with your student funding agency. Academic progress is checked regularly, and your funding agency will be notified of any changes to your course load or program of study.

If for any reason you are encountering difficulties with completing your studies in the specified time period, contact your financial aid advisor, who will make the appropriate referrals to help you get back on track with your studies.

Course Extensions

Full-time SFA Funded students must contact the Student Awards and Financial Aid Unit in the Office of the Registrar to discuss implications on their funding and full-time status. Extensions granted to full-time SFA students will affect the student’s full time eligibility for funding for current and future funding terms.

Change of Personal Information

Whenever you have a change in personal information, you are required to keep the University and your funding agency informed. Please report any changes to your personal information such as address or marital status as soon as they occur. Changes to your personal information can be made by logging in to the myAU portal and selecting the Change in Personal Information option.

Updated September 22 2016 by Student & Academic Services

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