Receive Your Aid
Financial aid awards will typically be applied to your student account each semester about one week before the first day of classes. Generally, funds are issued in two disbursements, once in the fall semester and once in the spring semester.
Disbursement and enrollment status
Before KU Financial Aid and Scholarships (FAS) disburses any funds, you must follow the steps on the Application Process Checklist. Financial aid is awarded based on the information you provided on the FAFSA and is disbursed based on your enrollment status. You may not qualify for all of your financial aid if you are not enrolled in at least 12 hours as an undergraduate student or 9 hours as a graduate/professional/law student.
- What if I plan to add hours at a later date? Your financial aid awards will not be credited to your university account until you are enrolled in the minimum number of hours. If you add hours to meet the minimum hour requirement before the first day of classes, your awards will be disbursed, provided you have a complete financial aid file. If you cannot add hours before the first day of classes, you will not receive your aid until you do.
- What if I am enrolled in less than the minimum number of hours? If you are not enrolled in 12 credit hours as an undergraduate or 9 hours as a graduate/professional/law student, you may still qualify for financial aid, but FAS must receive notification of your enrollment status to determine your financial aid eligibility. (Complete or update your enrollment status in Enroll & Pay (Student Center > Accept/Decline Awards > Award Package Page 2). Once you have updated your enrollment status, your financial aid may be adjusted. This adjustment could result in a cancellation or reduction of certain financial aid programs.
- If your enrollment status changes, it is your responsibility to update your status in Enroll & Pay.
For more information on the minimum number of hours required for particular programs, see the Financial Aid Programs at a Glance (PDF) information sheet for the year in which you are applying.
Note: If you receive a Federal Pell grant and you are enrolled or are planning to enroll in less than 12 hours, you must update your enrollment status in Enroll & Pay. FAS will review your enrollment status and adjust your Pell grant accordingly. If we make this adjustment and you increase your enrollment on or after the first day of classes for the specified term, your grant cannot be increased for those additional hours.
How federal, state, and institutional aid applies to charges
Typically, funds are issued in two disbursements, once in the fall semester and once in the spring semester. Financial aid will automatically apply toward current tuition, required fees, and housing charges.
As a service and convenience to you, KU will apply any excess federal financial aid to other charges (such as sports passes, library fees, etc.) You can choose to apply aid to other charges in Enroll & Pay (Student Center > Accept/Decline Awards >Award Package Page 2). If you decline this service, you will still be responsible for any outstanding charges and will continue to be billed for these charges. The university may place holds on your enrollment and/or academic transcripts until charges are paid in full.
Excess financial aid refunds
If your financial aid exceeds the amount due on your eBill, you will have a credit balance on your account and will receive an excess financial aid refund via Electronic Funds Transfer from the Student Account Service's Office. Excess financial aid refunds are typically available six business days after your financial aid file becomes complete. The first day to obtain excess financial aid for a particular semester is typically one or two days before the first day of classes. Questions about financial aid that has not applied to your university account should be directed to FAS.
Direct deposit / Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT)
The KU Student Account Service's Office requires direct deposit for student account refunds on the Lawrence and Edwards campuses. Any excess financial aid and other credit balances will be electronically transferred to your designated bank account each semester.
If you choose not to have excess financial aid deposited directly into your bank account, your excess financial aid refund will be mailed to your billing address. Questions about having excess financial aid refunds deposited into your bank account should be directed to the Student Account Service's Office at 785-864-3322.
To set up direct deposit, complete the authorization form in Enroll & Pay (Student Center > Set Up Direct Deposit). You can also set up direct deposit by filling out the Direct Deposit Authorization (PDF) and returning it to the Student Account Services office in Strong Hall, Room 23. If you change bank accounts, you must update your bank information online or with a new form.
- Disbursement of Scholarships (from donors outside of KU): Scholarships awarded through outside agencies will generally be credited to your student account once you have endorsed any checks received by FAS. Outside scholarship awards of $1,500 or more are typically divided equally between fall and spring semesters unless we are instructed otherwise by the donor.
- Disbursement of Federal Work-Study (FWS) funds: Federal Work-Study is disbursed much differently than other financial aid awards. You will receive a bi-weekly paycheck based on the hours you work. FWS funds must be earned and will never automatically credit your KU eBill. Working at an hourly rate, you are allowed to earn the total work-study amount granted to you. You and your on-campus FWS employer are responsible for monitoring the status of the FWS award. Once your earning limit has been reached, you are no longer eligible to work as an FWS student employee. At that time, your employer must either terminate the appointment or switch you to regular student hourly payroll. See the Work-Study Programs (PDF) information sheet for more information or contact us.
- Disbursement of Federal PLUS Loans: Federal PLUS loan funds will be credited each semester to your KU account typically one week before the first day of classes, provided you have a complete financial aid file. Disbursement is based on the expected enrollment status you report in Enroll & Pay (Student Center > Accept/Decline Awards > Award Package Page 2). Any excess funds will go to the parent who borrowed the loan. (Parents with a PLUS loan should also complete the Direct Deposit Authorization (PDF)). Parents who want the PLUS refund payable to the student should contact us for details on how to submit a PLUS refund request.