Reducing your credit hours has implications for both your aid eligibility for the current semester and future terms. Your aid eligibility is based on the number of credit hours for which you are enrolled on census day, usually the Friday of the second week of classes.
If your aid was distributed based on full-time enrollment (12 credits undergraduate; 9 credits graduate) and you drop to part-time on or before census day, your aid may be reduced.
If you drop after the day withdrawal grades are assigned, the withdrawal grades will reduce your percentage completion rate, which is part of the standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress for the receipt of financial aid.
Federal regulations state that financial aid is earned by attending class. You have not earned 100% of your financial aid until you have attended 60% of the term. If you withdraw before this date, a portion of your financial aid has not been earned.
The unearned portion is equal to the percentage of the term remaining on the date of withdrawal. Your financial aid eligibility will be recalculated based on your actual period of attendance - you may be asked to repay a portion of the aid that had been distributed to you.
If you fail to earn credit for any of your classes (receive grades of F, W, I and/or NC), federal regulations require the Financial Aid Office to assume you stopped attending your classes. In order to retain any of your financial aid, you must provide proof that you attended classes.
If you did stop attending class, you are treated as an unofficial withdrawal. This means that the midpoint of the term is used as your last date of attendance and your aid eligibility is reduced by up to 50%.
This will result in you owing funds back to the university unless you can provide documentation of attendance past the 60% point of the term.