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Federal & State Eligibility Requirements

Financial Aid Handbook

Applying for Federal and State Financial Aid

Application for federal and state financial aid must be made by completing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at In order to complete online filing of the FAFSA, students and parents should create a FSA User ID. The FSA ID may be used to provide an electronic signature on the FAFSA which will ensure prompt processing, typically between 48-72 hours. 

The FAFSA should be submitted by our priority deadline of March 1 each year that you plan to attend Coe. Failure to file the FAFSA by the priority deadline may result in the loss or reduction of federal, state and Coe need-based grants. Upon submission of the FAFSA the family is provided with a Student Aid Index (SAI). The SAI is the number used to determine a student's eligibility for certain types of federal aid.

Students filing online who provided a valid email address will be notified electronically when the results of their FAFSA are available to be viewed. We strongly recommend that you log back into your application at and view your application. Any necessary corrections or updates to tax information can be made online by the applicant at this time.

Federal and State Eligibility Requirements

  1. Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA): A student must file a FAFSA to establish eligibility for federal, state, and institutional funded grant and loan programs.
  2. Regular student in an eligible program: A regular student is someone who is enrolled for the purpose of obtaining a degree or certificate.
  3. Elementary or secondary enrollment: A student who is concurrently enrolled in high school and at Coe College is not considered a “regular student,” and is not eligible for financial aid.
  4. Academic qualifications: Coe requires an admitted student to have a high school diploma or its recognized equivalent. A home-school student is also eligible under certain circumstances.
  5. Satisfactory Academic Progress: A student must attend classes on a regular basis and meet Coe’s Satisfactory Academic Progress standards.
  6. Citizenship: A student must be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen. For any student who fails the Social Security match for citizenship or the Department of Homeland Security match for permanent residency on their FAFSA application, the Office of Financial Aid requires confirmation or documentation of status as specified by federal regulations. These documents must be presented in person to a designated financial aid official.
  7. Social Security Administration: If a student’s application fails the Social Security match on their FAFSA application, the Office of Financial Aid is required to resolve the discrepancy. Typically such discrepancies can be resolved by submitting a copy of the student’s social security card to the financial aid office.
  8. Defaulted student loans and overpayments of federal aid: A student must certify that he or she is not in default on a federal student loan or owe an overpayment on a federal grant or loan.
  9. Total and Permanent Disability Discharge of prior student loans: To receive a new Title IV loan or a TEACH Grant after receiving a discharge due to total or permanent disability, a borrower must:
    1. Obtain a certification from a physician that he or she is able to engage in substantial gainful activity; and
    2. Sign a statement acknowledging that the new loan or TEACH Grant service obligation cannot be discharged in the future on the basis of any injury or illness present at the time the new loan or TEACH Grant is made, unless the condition substantially deteriorates so that he or she is again totally and permanently disabled.
  10. Verification of FAFSA application data: A student selected for verification must comply with the guidelines as outlined below.

Enrollment Status

The amount of your financial aid award depends on your enrollment status, as of the college’s official date of record (Fall term 9/8; Spring term 1/26). You may receive less financial aid if your full time enrollment status changes prior to the official date of record. The amount of the reduction can vary and is contingent upon the following enrollment statuses: full-time (3 or more course credits); three-quarter time (2.5 course credits); half-time (2 course credits); less than half-time (less than 2 course credits).

Financial Aid Eligible Coursework

If you are receiving any federal or state financial aid (Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Opportunity Grant, Federal Work Study, Federal Direct loan) please note the following regarding your coursework and federal aid eligibility.

Federal Financial Aid is awarded based on a student’s enrollment status as defined by the US Department of Education and may be prorated if the student is taking less than 3 course credits. When determining enrollment status (full, three-quarter, half and less than half), the US Department of Education only allows you to receive financial aid for courses that are required in order to complete your program of study.

Frequently Asked Questions

I earned a D for a class required by my major, however a C is required. Can I retake the class as financial aid eligible?

For financial aid purposes, a D is considered passing. You may retake it one time and have it count in your enrollment as financial aid eligible.

How many times can I repeat a failed grade?

You are not necessarily limited in the number of retakes for a class that you do not pass. However, failing classes can impact your eligibility for financial aid in other ways. More information about Satisfactory Academic Progress can be found below.

A course is required for my degree completion but it isn’t counting in my enrollment hours. What can I do?

Contact the Office of Financial Aid at or 319-399-8540.

I only need 1 class to graduate and there is nothing in my program of study left to take. What can I do?

Please contact our office to explore other aid alternatives.

I am required to be enrolled full time in order to receive my scholarship, but I don’t have three course credits left in my program of study.

Scholarships are not considered federal aid. All of the hours you are registered for will be counted in your enrollment for all other purposes. Federal financial aid is the only type of aid that is limited to your program of study.

Can I still repeat the class that financial aid won’t cover if I am registered full time with other courses in my program?

Yes, as long as you are taking a minimum of 3 course credits in your program of study you will be considered full time for financial aid purposes.

What if I retake a class that I previously passed and withdraw from that class? Is that still counted as my retake?

If you officially withdraw from the class before completing it, then it is not counted as your one retake.

I retook a course I previously passed, and I failed it the second time. Can that course count in my enrollment again?

No. Retaking a previously passed course and failing it, still counts as your one retake.


Federal regulations require that selected FAFSA applications complete the verification process before aid is disbursed. Students may be chosen for verification by the U.S. Department of Education or by Coe College. Additional information can be found under the Verification section of the FA Handbook.

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy (SAP)

The Office of Financial Aid is required to monitor students who receive federal financial aid to determine if they are making satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward their degree program. SAP standards apply to all students receiving federal, state and institutional financial aid. These standards apply to a student’s entire degree program including terms for which financial aid was not applied or for which enrollment was less than full time. The specific criteria and the consequences to the student if progress is not achieved is outlined in the SAP Policy in the FA Handbook.