Award Notification

An Award Notification will indicate the types and amounts of financial aid from all sources for which the student is eligible, along with the terms and conditions of receiving and using the funds awarded. Award amounts will be displayed on the PSU student account at Students must review and accept the terms and conditions for specific awards if necessary, then accept or decline aid in an offered status.

Delivery of Aid

After the financial aid award is accepted and all requirements have been completed, available financial aid will be credited to the student account to pay tuition and other billed charges for enrolled students each term. Financial aid that exceeds billed charges is then delivered to the student by the Portland State University Student Financial Services Office according to the preference that the student has established with the University. See for more information.

Federal Work-Study is earned on a monthly basis and paychecks are issued at the end of each month by the University’s payroll office. Students may authorize direct deposit of their Federal Work-Study earnings to their bank account. More information can be found at

Aid Disbursement Policy

Financial aid can begin being disbursed to a student’s Portland State University revolving charge student account up to ten days prior to the start of each term. Aid will only disburse if a student’s registered enrollment level matches their award enrollment level for the term, and there are no outstanding requirements. The ability to disburse aid prior to the beginning of a term means that the University must have a “census date” that is used to finalize a student’s official aid eligibility for a term. Census dates for the 2021-2022 aid year and minimum enrollment requirements for the various financial aid programs can be found on the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships website at At the census date of each term each student’s enrollment is "locked" and considered to be final. Financial aid for that term may then require adjustment based on their enrollment level at that time. When a reduction in aid is required due to a student’s reduced enrollment level at the census date the reduction can create a balance due on the student’s PSU account. If there is tuition refund because of dropped credits, the tuition refund will be used to reduce the balance due on the student’s account.

Students applying to borrow a federal student loan must be enrolled in a minimum of halftime credit hours, have demonstrated need and/or eligible costs to receive a disbursement from the federal student loan programs.

Students who have received a disbursement of a federal student loan and then reduce enrollment below half-time at any point will be required to complete federal student loan exit counseling. The PSU Registrar’s Office will report the less than half time enrollment status to the federal student loan servicer which will result in the loss of In School Deferment status. All prior federal student loans for a borrower who does not qualify for in school deferment will enter the grace period or repayment if a grace period was previously used. Students who regain eligibility to borrow from the federal student loan programs by increasing enrollment after the census date for any term must notify the Office of Student Financial Aid by submitting a Revision Request for to update their enrollment plan and request a reinstatement of their federal student loan.

Any current term aid disbursed after the census date will be based on the student’s enrollment on the census date, or their actual number of credits enrolled at the time of disbursement, depending on type of aid. Credits added after the census date cannot be used to increase aid eligibility. Retroactive aid (aid for a term that has ended prior to disbursement) must be disbursed based on completed grades/credit hours, or census date registration, whichever is less. This includes retroactive grants and loans. Grades that are considered “complete” for disbursement purposes are: A, B, C, D, F (if earned through course participation), P, I or IP.


Please see the annual Registration Guide, or visit, for the university policy regarding dropping classes and tuition refunds. Students who withdraw completely during the term and are receiving federal, state, or institutional financial aid may have a percentage of their aid reversed based on federal regulations and institutional policies. These students will have any unearned portion of their aid charged back to their PSU account, and may owe repayment directly to the U.S. Department of Education of any overpaid federal grants. Federal student aid recipients who begin attending classes and then stop attending prior to the end of the quarter are considered by the federal government to have unofficially withdrawn. For students who receive grades of X, M, NP, W or F in all of their classes, we must determine whether they unofficially withdrew. If University records indicate that student unofficially withdrew from the quarter, the University will consider the Withdrawal date to be the last date of attendance or participation in class by the student midpoint of the quarter as determined by the University. If University records show a federal student aid recipient never attended any class or performed any academically related activity for a quarter or term, then the recipient never established eligibility for any federal aid funds that may have been disbursed for that quarter or term. The student must repay the entire amount of ineligible aid disbursed for that term.  Any student aid recipient who drops all classes or voids their schedule with an effective date prior to the first day of class for a quarter or term did not establish eligibility for any funds that may have been disbursed for that quarter or term. More information can be found at