Sep 27, 2022  
2018-2019 General Catalog and Student Handbook 
2018-2019 General Catalog and Student Handbook [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Financial Information


Tuition and Fees

Every possible effort is made by Bishop State Community College to avoid increases in the cost of each student’s education, but the College reserves the right to change, modify, or alter fees, charges, expenses, and costs of any kind without notice as approved by the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees.

General Policies

Students who register during the early registration period must pay tuition and fees by a designated date in order to retain their registration. Students who register during the regular or late registration period must pay tuition and fees in full at the time of registration in order to have their names placed on class rolls and to attend classes. Payment may be in cash, credit card, grants, scholarships, or their combination. Sponsored students, i.e., Vocational Rehabilitation Service, Alabama Veterans Affairs, WIOA, etc., must have written authorization from the appropriate agency to complete registration.

Students who fail to pay tuition and fees by the deadline, as published on the student schedule, are not registered and should not attend class.

Bishop State Community College reserves the right to revise fees, price schedules and terms of payment, and other financial elements listed in this catalog at any time without notice. Tuition is waived for up to four (4) credit hours, per semester, of in-state tuition for Alabamians age 60+ through the Senior Adult Scholarship Program. Enrollees must concur with program guidelines in course selection. Fees must be paid by the senior adult student. Please see Financial Aid office for guidelines and restrictions.

Tuition and Fee Schedule for traditional courses*

*In-state tuition is $129.00 per semester hour and out-of-state tuition is $258.00 per semester hour; facility fee is $9.00 per semester hour, technology fee is $9.00 per semester hour; special building fee is $10.00 per semester hour and bond surety fee is $1.00 per semester hour.

Credit Hours Alabama Residents Tuition Non-Alabama Residents Tuition Bond Surety Fee Technology Fee Facility Renewal Fee Special Building Fee Alabama Resident Total Tuition and Fees Non-Alabama Resident Total Tuition and Fees
1 $129.00 $258.00 $1.00 $9.00 $9.00 $10.00 $158.00 $287.00
2 $258.00 $516.00 $2.00 $18.00 $18.00 $20.00 $316.00 $574.00
3 $387.00 $774.00 $3.00 $27.00 $27.00 $30.00 $474.00 $861.00
4 $516.00 $1,032.00 $4.00 $36.00 $36.00 $40.00 $632.00 $1,148.00
5 $645.00 $1,290.00 $5.00 $45.00 $45.00 $50.00 $790.00 $1,435.00
6 $774.00 $1,548.00 $6.00 $54.00 $54.00 $60.00 $948.00 $1,722.00
7 $903.00 $1,806.00 $7.00 $63.00 $63.00 $70.00 $1,106.00 $2,009.00
8 $1,032.00 $2,064.00 $8.00 $72.00 $72.00 $80.00 $1,264.00 $2,296.00
9 $1,161.00 $2,322.00 $9.00 $81.00 $81.00 $90.00 $1,422.00 $2,583.00
10 $1,290.00 $2,580.00 $10.00 $90.00 $90.00 $100.00 $1,580.00 $2,870.00
11 $1,419.00 $2,838.00 $11.00 $99.00 $99.00 $110.00 $1,738.00 $3,157.00
12 $1,548.00 $3,096.00 $12.00 $108.00 $108.00 $120.00 $1,896.00 $3,444.00
13 $1,677.00 $3,354.00 $13.00 $117.00 $117.00 $130.00 $2,054.00 $3,731.00
14 $1,806.00 $3,612.00 $14.00 $126.00 $126.00 $140.00 $2,212.00 $4,018.00
15 $1,935.00 $3,870.00 $15.00 $135.00 $135.00 $150.00 $2,370.00 $4,305.00
16 $2,064.00 $4,128.00 $16.00 $144.00 $144.00 $160.00 $2,528.00 $4,592.00
17 $2,193.00 $4,386.00 $17.00 $153.00 $153.00 $170.00 $2,686.00 $4,879.00
18 $2,322.00 $4,644.00 $18.00 $162.00 $162.00 $180.00 $2,844.00 $5,166.00
19 $2,451.00 $4,902.00 $19.00 $171.00 $171.00 $190.00 $3,002.00 $5,453.00
20 $2,580.00 $5,160.00 $20.00 $180.00 $180.00 $200.00 $3,160.00 $5,740.00
21 $2,709.00 $5,418.00 $21.00 $189.00 $189.00 $210.00 $3,318.00 $6,027.00
22 $2,838.00 $5,676.00 $22.00 $198.00 $198.00 $220.00 $3,476.00 $6,314.00

Payment of Tuition and Fees

Tuition and fees may be paid by DEBIT CARD, CASH, MONEY ORDER, CASHIER’S CHECK, VISA, MASTERCARD, DISCOVER, and AMERICAN EXPRESS. Tuition for Online and Hybrid courses follows the same fee schedule above.


Schedules with unpaid balances will be deleted prior to the first day of Regular Registration. All tuition and fees are due at the time credit hours are added. Schedules will be deleted if added charges are not paid in full at the time of drop/add registration.

Tuition for Non-residents of Alabama

Students who are not residents of Alabama and/or who are not citizens of the United States shall pay 2.0 times the normal in-state tuition rate. The in-state tuition rate shall be extended to students who reside outside of Alabama in a state and county within fifty (50) miles of a campus of an Alabama College System institution provided the campus has been in existence and operation since October 1, 2008. The in-state tuition rate shall be extended to students who have graduated from Alabama high schools or who have obtained a GED in Alabama within two years of the date of their applications for admission in accordance with the requirements set forth in the Code of Alabama. Please note that the designations are by campus and not by institutions. Approved Mississippi Counties: George, Greene, Harrison, Jackson, Perry, and Stone.  Approved Florida Counties: Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, and Walton. Please see the Admissions Office for residency requirements.

Tuition for Veterans

Choice Act Section 702

The Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014 (the “Choice Act”) was passed by the United States Congress and signed into law by the President of the United States in 2014. The Choice Act “requires the United States Department of Veterans Affairs to disapprove programs of education for payment of benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill® and Montgomery GI Bill - Active Duty at public institutions of higher learning if the institutions charge qualifying veterans and dependents tuition and fees in excess of the rate for resident students for terms beginning after July 1, 2015.”

For the purpose of the Choice Act, a covered individual is one of the following:

  1. A veteran receiving Montgomery and Post-9/11 GI Bill® educational assistance and enrolling within three (3) years of discharge after serving ninety days or more on active duty
  2. An individual using transferred entitlement within three (3) years of discharge after serving ninety (90) days or more on active duty
  3. A surviving spouse or child under the Fry Scholarship who enrolls within three (3) years of an active duty service member’s death in the line of duty after serving ninety (90) days or more
  4. An individual remaining continuously enrolled after meeting initial requirements and using Chapter 30 or 33

“GI Bill®” is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at

Financial Regulations

Students are required to pay tuition fees upon registration for each semester. Tuition and fees for students who have established Pell Grant, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG), or Alabama Student Assistance Program (ASAP) eligibility will be charged to their accounts. Exceptions will be made for those students who establish eligibility for participation in Tuition Assistance, Alabama National Guard Educational Assistance Program (ANGEAP), Veterans’ Affairs, and Vocational Rehabilitation Services. In addition, students who are sponsored by agencies (Masonic organizations, sororities, fraternities, etc.) will be permitted to enroll without payment pending billing agencies for required fees. All students not paying tuition and fees at the time of registration must present written authorization from the sponsoring agency to the Business Office and to the Veterans’ Affairs Counseor in the Office of Financial Aid  in order to complete financial registration.

Students must clear all financial obligations with the College prior to the end of each semester of enrollment. Students will not be allowed to complete registration or attend classes until financial obligations of the previous semester are satisfactorily met, including, but not limited to, parking and library fines.

A student has not finalized enrollment until he or she has completed all requirements of registration and paid all tuition and fees.

How to Officially Withdraw from Class

Students who enroll at Bishop State Community College and decide, for any reason, that they no longer want to be enrolled at the College, must officially withdraw from class. Students can obtain the withdrawal form and procedures from withdrawing from the Admission/Registrar’s Office. The official withdrawal process does not begin until the Admissions Office has been notified.

Unofficial Withdrawal Policy

Federal regulations (34 CFR 668.22 (c)(2)(ii)) requires the College to perform a Return of Title IV (R2T4) calculation for students who enroll at the College, received federal funds, and subsequently and completely withdraws from the College before completing at least 60% of the term. To officially and completely withdraw from the College, the student must follow the official withdrawal policy as published in the class schedule, College Catalog or web publication. To unofficially withdraw is to completely withdraw from the College without following the published withdrawal policy.

Even though students are awarded and have federal funds disbursed to them at the beginning of the term, students are required to “earn” the federal funds disbursed to them by attending classes up to the point of where at least 60% of the term has expired. After the 60% point of the term, a student has “earned” 100% of the federal funds received, and will not owe any funds back to the federal program from which funds were disbursed.

The College is a non-attendance taking institution; however, the College requires that the instructors at the College electronically verify attendance at the end of the census date. The electronic attendance verification report is retrieved by the Admission Office personnel, and all the students shown as No Shows (students who enrolled in courses for which they never started attending), are automatically withdrawn from such courses, and all the federal funds received by the student are voided and returned.

For the official and complete withdrawal from the College, the date the withdrawal process was initiated by the student, either by completing the official withdrawal form, or by sending an e-mail to the Admissions Office, is the date the Business Office will use to perform the R2T4 calculations. That date will also be used in determining if the student has “earned” 100% of the federal funds disbursed to the student. The student will also be assigned a grade of “W” for the withdrawn courses.

Any student who has stopped attending at least 5 consecutive instructional days or 2 consecutive instructional days for a one day a week class prior to the 60% point of the academic term will be deemed to have unofficially withdrawn from such course(s), and the student will be withdrawn from such course(s) by the Admissions Office. For mini term courses, students who stop attending 3 or more consecutive instructional days prior to the 60% point of the academic term will be marked as no longer attending and withdrawn. Exception: Truck driving students who stopped attending 5 or more consecutive instructional days prior to the 60% point will also be marked as no longer attending and withdrawn. The student will be assigned a grade of “W” for the withdrawn course(s). The last date of attendance, (LDA) entered by instructor(s) will be used for performing the R2T4 calculations. Please see Admissions Office to officially withdraw from courses.

Policy revised July 16, 2015 and effective fall semester 2015

Financial Aid

The Financial Aid Office at Bishop State Community College is a service-oriented office with personnel whose main responsibility is to assist students in seeking and obtaining the funding needed to pursue their educational objectives.

It is the official policy of the Alabama Community College System and Bishop State Community College that no persons shall, on the basis of race, color, disability, sex, religion, creed, national origin, or age, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program, activity, financial aid, or employment.

The Financial Aid Office staff is available to assist students during the following office hours: Monday through Thursday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; Friday 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Student Rights

Students have the right to obtain the following information from the College:

  • Names of its accrediting or licensing organizations
  • Information about programs, instructional, laboratory and other physical facilities, faculty and the cost of attendance
  • All policies, including the Financial Aid/Veterans Affairs Office’s policy on refunds to students who withdraw from the college
  • Types of financial assistance available, including information on all federal, state, local, private, and institutional financial aid programs
  • Procedures and deadlines for submitting applications for each available financial aid program
  • Criteria used to select financial aid recipients
  • Process used to determine student financial need: how costs for tuition and fees, room and board, travel, books and supplies and personal and miscellaneous expenses are considered in the cost of education, it also includes how resources (such as parental contribution, other financial aid, assets, etc.) are considered in calculating student need and amount of student financial need, as determined by the institution
  • Procedure for paying students
  • Type and amount of assistance in a student financial aid package and an explanation of each award
  • How much of the financial aid award is grant aid
  • Kind of job and the hours to be worked, the duties, the rate of pay, and the payment schedule and procedure-if students are offered a Federal college work-study job
  • Reconsideration of an aid package, if students believe that a mistake has been made or if their enrollment or financial circumstances have changed
  • Process and policy used by the College to determine whether students are making satisfactory progress and ensuing actions by the college if they do not
  • Special facilities and services available to persons with disabilities.

Student Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of students to do the following:

  • Review and consider all information about a college’s program before enrolling
  • Complete the application for student financial aid accurately and timely to prevent delays in receiving aid
  • Meet all deadlines for applying or reapplying for aid
  • Provide all additional documentation, verification, corrections and new information requested by the Financial Aid/VA Office
  • Read, understand, and, keep copies of all forms they have signed
  • Comply with the provisions of agreements they have signed
  • Notify the school of any change in name, address or attendance status
  • Satisfactorily perform the work agreed upon in a college work-study job
  • Understand the College’s refund policy and the Financial Aid Return to Title IV Refund policy
  • Complete a new financial aid application each year

The Financial Aid Application Process

To apply and qualify for federally funded financial aid to attend Bishop State Community College students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online each academic year at

The academic year at Bishop State begins each fall semester and ends after the summer semester. Students may begin the financial aid application process in October for the following fall semester.

Example: Mary plans to attend Bishop State in Fall Semester 2019. Therefore, Mary can complete and submit her FAFSA after October 1, 2018. However, Mary should not complete the FAFSA until she completes her 2017 federal tax return. If Mary is a dependent student her parent(s) should also complete their federal tax return(s) before Mary completes the FAFSA.

Once the application is signed electronically and submitted by the student it will take approximately 5 to 7 business days for the College to receive the application from the Central Processing Center. 

Bishop State Community College participates in the following federal and state financial aid programs:

  • The Federal Pell Grant Program
  • The Supplemental Opportunity Grant Program
  • The Federal Work Study Program
  • The Alabama Student Assistant Grant Program

Bishop State Community College does not participate in any federal or private student loan program.

General Financial Aid Eligibility Requirements

The general eligibility requirements for receiving federal student aid are outlined in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 668.32.

To be eligible for federal student aid, a student must

  • Have a high school diploma or its equivalent, receive a passing score on an independently administered examination approved by the Education Department, or have been home-schooled and either (1) have a secondary school completion credential for home schools as provided for under state law, or (2) if the state does not require the credential described above, have completed a secondary school education in a home-school setting that qualifies as an exemption from the compulsory attendance requirement under state law
  • Be currently enrolled or accepted for enrollment as a regular student in an eligible program, in an eligible institution, for the purpose of obtaining a certificate or degree
  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen
  • Have a valid Social Security number (with the exception of students from the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, or the Republic of Palau)
  • Be making satisfactory academic progress
  • Sign certifying statements on the FAFSA such as agreeing to use federal student aid funds only for educational expenses
  • Not be in default on a federal student loan or owe an overpayment on an FSA grant
  • Have registered with the Selective Service Administration, applicable only to males 18-26

2017 Documents Needed to Complete the FAFSA

  1. To complete the FAFSA the student and his or her parents (if a dependent student) must use the information from the federal tax return filed two years ago instead of one. For example, the 2015 federal tax return should be used to complete the 2017-2018 FAFSA.
  2. If the student and/or parents will not file federal taxes because they are not required to by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), then the untaxed income and benefits for the most recent year must be used to complete the FAFSA.

Special Note: The Financial Aid Office has been given the authority by the U.S. Department of Education to ask students and/or parents of dependent students to provide documentation to support any income or other information on the FAFSA. Therefore, please keep copies of all documents used to complete the FAFSA. Answer each question on the FAFSA correctly and honestly because the College is required to resolve any financial discrepancies reported on the FAFSA.

Students are now able to complete their FAFSA application earlier. Beginning with the 2017-2018 FAFSA, students are required to report income information from an earlier tax year. For example, on the 2017-2018 FAFSA, students and parents (if applicable) must report their 2015 income information, rather than the 2016 income information.

Applying for Financial Aid

Please follow these instructions when completing the FAFSA on the web at

  1. Students and parents are now required to use an FSA ID, made up of a username and password to access certain U.S. Department of Education websites. Your FSA ID is used to confirm your identity and for electronically signing your FAFSA application. Apply for the FSA ID at
  2. Please put Bishop State Community College’s school code on the FAFSA: 001030. This ensures your financial aid application will be sent to the college.
  3. If additional documentation is required to complete the financial aid application process, the student who is requesting financial aid will be notified by the Financial Aid office of BSCC. All required documents needed to process student’s Financial Aid will be available to view on the student’s BORIS account.

Federal Financial Aid Programs

Pell Grant

The Pell Grant is awarded to undergraduate students who have not earned a bachelor’s or professional degree. Unlike loans, grants do not have to be paid back. Eligibility for the Pell Grant is determined by the U.S. Department of Education.

The U.S. Department of Education uses a formula, established by Congress, to analyze the income data reported on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine a family’s financial ability to contribute to the student’s education. The formula produces an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) that is used to determine Federal Pell Grant eligibility and the amount of the grant a student is eligible to receive from the college.

A student does not have to be enrolled full time to receive a Federal Pell Grant. However, the amount of Pell Grant a student receives each semester will be prorated based on the number of credit hours that a student is enrolled.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

The Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) is awarded to undergraduate students with exceptional financial need. Only Federal Pell Grant recipients will be considered for the FSEOG. The awarding of the FSEOG will be contingent on the student’s EFC and the availability of funds, but no separate application is required.

Federal Work Study Program (FWS)

The Federal Work Study Program (FWS) is a need-based program that provides jobs, both on and off campus, to students. This program is subject to the availability of funding awarded to the College by the U.S. Department of Education. Because funds are limited, the earlier an eligible student applies, the more likely he or she is to receive an award; job placement is not guaranteed. Students participating in the FWS program are paid monthly for the number of hours worked. Students interested in employment in the FWS Program should apply at the Financial Aid Office.

State Financial Aid Programs

Alabama Student Assistance Program (ASAP)

The Alabama Student Assistance Program (ASAP) provides additional financial assistance to qualified undergraduate students who have been determined to have exceptional need with income below the prescribed maximum levels allowed.

Students must be enrolled at least half-time in an eligible program of study leading to a degree or certificate other than a field of preparation for a religious profession. In addition, students must be legal residents of the State of Alabama and must maintain satisfactory progress according to the College’s Standards of Academic Progress Policy. There is no separate application for the ASAP grant.

Financial Aid Deadlines

To ensure that students have the funding available to pay their fees at registration, a student must have the FAFSA and all required documents on file in the Financial Aid Office by the following “priority” processing deadlines:

Fall Semester - June 1st
Spring Semester - November 1st
Summer Semester - March 15th

If a student fails to meet the “priority” processing, deadline the Financial Aid Office will still make every effort to process the student’s financial aid award. However, the Financial Aid Office does not guarantee that financial aid will be awarded in time to pay the student’s fees at registration. If aid has not yet been awarded, the student is responsible for paying his or her tuition and fees at registration. These charges will be reimbursed after the student’s attendance in classes has been verified and the student is eligible for financial aid.

Institutional Financial Aid Programs


Bishop State Community College provides a variety of achievement, ability, and activity scholarships. Some scholarships are state-sponsored, and other scholarships are funded through the philanthropy of private citizens, organizations, companies, fraternities, sororities, hospitals, and clubs. Following are descriptions of scholarship awards and qualifying criteria:

  • Academic Excellence Scholarships are awarded to graduating high school students based on their academic achievements.  These scholarships pay tuition and fees during the fall and spring semesters only.   Full-time study is required.  A minimum 3.25 G.P.A. on a 4.0 scale is required for the initial award and ACT scores will be considered in the awarding process.  A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for maintaining scholarship eligibility.
  • Athletic Scholarships are awarded to students for active participation in Baseball, Men’s Basketball, Softball, and Women’s Basketball. These scholarships pay tuition and fees for up to 18 hours during the fall and spring semesters, and books are provided on a loan basis. Recipients are recommended by the Athletic Department based on demonstrated athletic ability and eligibility based upon NJCAA guidelines. Contact the Athletic Department at (251) 405-7034 for additional information. 
  • Career Technical Scholarships are awarded to high school students who will pursue a degree or certificate in any of the Technical School Division programs.  Full-time study is required.  The Career Technical scholarships will cover certificates program up to 1-year.  A minimum 2.5 G.P.A. is required and ACT scores will be considered in the awarding process. These scholarships pay tuition and fees during the fall and spring semesters only. Recipients may renew these awards for a second year with a minimum 2.60 cumulative G.P.A.
  • Institutional Scholarships are awarded to students in the following leadership categories: Student Government Association and Miss & Mr. Bishop State. These awards are competitive and require an interview or a portfolio evaluation. This full scholarship pays tuition and fees during the fall and spring semesters only.  Approval of the activity sponsor is required for continued use of these awards.  Contact the Dean of Students office at (251) 405-7087 for additional information.
  • Performing Arts Scholarships are awarded to students who excel in performing arts. Awards will be on the basis of audition/portfolio and a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.20.   The full/partial scholarships will pay for tuition and fees only.   Recipients will be expected to perform while attending Bishop State on scholarship and must register for the appropriate scholarship-related classes each semester.   Contact the Preforming Arts Department at (251) 405-7095 for additional information.
  • Presidential Scholarships are awarded to graduating high school students based on their academic achievements. These scholarships pay tuition and fees during the fall and spring semesters only. Full-time study is required.  A minimum 3.5 cumulative G.P.A. and a 24 ACT composite score are required for the initial award. Recipients may renew these awards for a second year upon maintaining a 3.0 cumulative G.P.A. 
  • Transfer Scholarships are available to most colleges and universities.  In the twelve-month period prior to completing academic coursework at Bishop State, the student should inquire at the intended university or on the university’s web site regarding scholarship opportunities. Scholarship awards are made by the sponsoring institutions; however, a few institutions permit the Bishop State Scholarship Committee to make recommendations to the College’s President regarding the recipients.  A student must have a minimum 3.5 cumulative GPA and cannot have previously attended the transfer institution. Transfer admission is required.  The following institutions traditionally offer scholarships:  University of South Alabama, University of Alabama, University of Mobile, Springhill College, Alabama State University, Troy University and Jackson State University. Email for additional information.
  • Wildcat Ambassador Scholarships are awarded to selected students who are willing to work as a representative of the College. A minimum grade point average of 2.3 and completion the interview process is required. Must participate in college-wide activities and enroll in aa one credit hour course.  Contact: Student Development Services (251) 405-7087 or (251) 405-7017. 

Scholarship Waivers

  • One Free GED Class Waivers provides one free class to students who have successfully passed the GED in the State of Alabama after July 2002. Eligibility is determined by the Alabama Community College System which is the State Office for the GED Testing Program.  Contact the Office of Admission for additional information.
  • Senior Adult Waivers allows students 60 years of age or older, who have met admissions requirements, to receive tuition waivers for college credit courses on a space-available basis only. Space-available basis requires registration during the late registration process. Effective Fall 2015, Senior Adult Scholarships will be limited based on available funds. This scholarship can cover up to four (4) hours per semester of in-state tuition only after all other forms of financial assistance have been exhausted.  Contact the Financial Aid Office for additional information.
  • Bishop State’s Employee and Dependent Tuition Waiver Program pays for tuition only, not fees. It is designed for all full-time and Salary Schedule H-35 employees of the Alabama Community College System and their dependents as defined under Section II. An application form for the tuition assistance program is available at each institution and should be completed prior to registration for classes.  Contact the Financial Aid Office for additional information.

Registration Procedures for Financial Aid

Each semester the College publishes a class schedule which contains registration procedures. These include the process students must follow to have their financial aid properly credited to their account.

Students receiving financial aid will have their financial aid funds credited to their account and must proceed to the Business Office to complete the registration process.

Financial aid recipients who fail to complete the registration process will have their classes purged from the registration system.

Financial Aid Policies and Procedures

Standards of Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

The Higher Education Act of 1965 mandates institutions of higher education that participate in Federal Title IV financial aid programs establish guidelines or standards of academic progress to monitor a student’s academic progression toward a degree or certificate objective. Bishop State Community College’s Standards of Academic Progress (SAP) applies to all students. The student’s cumulative attempted hours, transfer credits, and cumulative grade point average are taken into consideration, regardless of whether a student paid for some or all of his or her courses and regardless of when the student took the courses.

Academic Year

For purposes of student financial aid programs, an academic year at Bishop State Community College is defined as 30 weeks of instructional time (two 15 week semesters) and at least 24 credit hours.

SAP Evaluation

Standards of Academic Progress (SAP) for all financial aid recipients will be evaluated at least once in an academic year. According to new federal regulations on SAP, students not meeting the published SAP guidelines are required to appeal the unsatisfactory progress. If the appeal is approved, the student will be placed on probation for that term and will continue to receive financial aid.

Minimum Grade Point Average

In order to retain eligibility for federal and state financial aid programs, a student must maintain the following Grade Point Average (GPA) based on the number of attempted hours. The scheduled credit hours include all hours in which a student is enrolled after the Drop-Add period ends at Bishop State Community College, plus any transferred credit hours.

  Hours Attempted Required GPA  
  12-21 1.50  
  22-32 1.75  
  33 or more 2.00  

Completion Rate

Each student is required to successfully complete 67% of all credit hours scheduled, which also include transfer hours. Scheduled hours are credit hours that the student is enrolled in after the Drop-Add period and includes grades of A, B, C, D, F, IP, I and W. (Note: IP = In Progress, I = Incomplete, and W = Withdraw.)

Example: Charles has scheduled 35 credit hours at Bishop State Community College and transferred 20 credits into his program from Grambling State University. To retain his financial aid eligibility, Charles is required to complete 67%, or 36.85 of the total scheduled credit hours. This was calculated by adding his total hours (35 + 20 = 55) multiplied by 67%.


Courses placed in ”bankruptcy” by the College will still count as scheduled hours. Bankruptcy does not affect a student’s SAP status.

Maximum Time Frame

Associate Degree Programs

Students enrolled in associate degree programs may receive financial aid for scheduling up to 150% of the total credit hours required for the degree. Example: An Associate Degree in Nursing requires 72 credit hours. Students enrolled in this program may receive financial aid for scheduling 108 credit hours (72 X 150% = 108).

Certificate Programs

Students enrolled in certificate programs of study may receive financial aid for scheduling up to 150% of the total credit hours required for the program. Example: A certificate in Management and Supervision requires 24 credit hours. Students enrolled in this program of study may receive financial aid for scheduling 36 credit hours (24 X 150% = 36).

Repeated Courses

Repeated courses will be counted as attempted hours in calculating the maximum time frame of financial aid. Note: A course previously taken and passed may be repeated only once without affecting his financial aid for the purpose of grade improvement. Further repeats will NOT be funded by federal financial aid. However, if a student is required by mandates of the program to repeat a course, it will be funded by financial aid since it is essential to completion of the program.

Change of Major or Program and Transfer Credits

Bishop State Community College students are not limited to the number of changes to their program of study.

Generally, all periods of the student’s enrollment count when evaluating Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP), even in periods when the student did not receive financial aid. It is the policy of Bishop State Community College to allow a financial aid student to have no limit to the number of major changes. Students may also change their major at any given time, however, the change must not take effect until the end of the semester. Credits attempted and earned under a previous major will not count towards the new major in evaluating SAP if those credits do not transfer to the new major. The student’s SAP is reset with the change of major, transfer student’s credits that apply towards the student’s declared major of study will be counted in evaluating SAP. Grades of W’s and F’s and IP’s earned at another college that will not transfer to Bishop State College will not be counted in the SAP evaluation.  All courses attempted at the College will be evaluated to determine overall SAP complianc.

Students changing their major or program of study are required to complete and submit to the Admissions Office a ”Change of Major” form. All attempted and earned credits applicable to the new major or program will be included in the calculation of the maximum time frame.

Example: Latisha changed her program of study from General Education to Nursing. She has scheduled 90 credit hours under General Education. Fifty (50) credit hours from the General Education program will count toward the Nursing degree which requires 72 credit hours to graduate. The maximum time frame for a Nursing degree is 108 credit hours (72 x 150%). Latisha may receive financial aid for 58 credit hours (108 credits - 50 credits) before she loses her financial aid eligibility.

Developmental Courses

Students who are required to enroll in developmental coursework may attempt up to 30 credit hours in developmental courses per federal guidelines. The 30 credit hours in developmental courses will not be counted in the maximum timeframe for the student’s’ program of study.

Example: Jim has scheduled 90 credits (maximum course load) to obtain an Associate of Science degree in General Education (GNE A.S.). However, 20 of the credit hours that he has scheduled are developmental courses. Jim can be paid an additional 20 credit hours before he loses his financial aid eligibility (90 minus 20 developmental course credits).

Audited or Non-Credit Courses

Financial aid will not be provided, and scheduled credits will not be counted toward SAP requirements for audited courses or any non-credit coursework not leading to a degree or certificate.

Financial Aid Probation

A student whose financial aid appeal has been approved will be placed on financial aid probation for the term the student has appealed to receive financial aid. The student must meet the conditions of the approved appeal to continue receiving financial aid beyond the financial aid probationary period.

Financial Aid Suspension

If at the end of the probationary semester, the student is still not meeting one or more of the minimum SAP requirements, the student will be placed on financial aid suspension and will become ineligible for federal and state financial aid until SAP is met at the student’s own expense.

Financial Aid Warning

Students who missed 67% completion rate by about 1 to 3 credit hours, with required GPA, may be placed on warning and still be allowed to receive financial aid. However, SAP will be checked at the end of term, and student must meet the required SAP, or will have to appeal to continue receiving financial aid.

Financial Aid Appeal Process

Students who have had financial aid cancelled for any reason may appeal to have their aid reinstated or the maximum time period extended. The student must complete the Financial Aid Appeal Form. The financial aid appeal form can be obtained from the Financial Aid Office or downloaded from the financial aid webpage at:

A financial aid appeals committee charged with reviewing the appeals may waive the SAP requirement due to injury to students, illness of students, or the death of relatives. The committee may also waive the SAP requirement in cases where a student may have experienced undue hardships as a result of special circumstances. The student will be required to explain why SAP was not met and what has changed that will enable the student to meet the published SAP requirement. The student must also provide a plan of action outlining how he/she will meet SAP. A student whose appeal is denied has the right to appeal the denial in writing to the Manager of Financial Aid, whose decision is final.

Reinstatement of Financial Aid

Students who successfully appeal their financial aid suspension will have their financial aid eligibility reinstated on probation for one semester. The student will be informed of the outcome of the appeal via letter/e-mail. To continue receiving financial aid, the student must meet all SAP requirements and any special requirements listed in the approved Financial Aid Appeal Form at the end of the semester.

Attendance and Enrollment Verification Policy

The number of credit hours for which a student is paid financial aid will be based on the number of credits that he or she is enrolled on the Pell census date. This is the date that attendance is verified after the Drop-Add period. Unless documentation is provided that supports extenuating or mitigating circumstances, such as an institutional error, a class canceled by the instructor, or other factors, a student will not be reinstated in a class or classes after attendance is verified.

Credit Balance Policy

All forms of financial aid, including institutional grants and scholarships, will be credited to a student’s account at the beginning of the semester or when the student becomes eligible if after the semester has begun. After allowable charges have been paid, any remaining credit balance on the student’s account will be issued by check within 14 days of when the credit balance occurred. Credit balance checks are issued by the Business Office.

Authorization of Charges

All Title IV recipients may authorize Bishop State Community College to apply their Federal funds (in excess of tuition and mandatory fees) to any other charges, including minor previous balances, incurred on their student account. These charges cannot be paid without the student’s prior authorization.

All recipients have the right to rescind this authorization at any time by contacting the Business Office. This may affect the amount of the credit balance to be refunded to the student.

Return to Title IV Refund Policy

As part of the Higher Education Act of 1998, Congress passed regulations that dictate how Federal Student Aid (Title IV) funds are handled when a student ‘completely’ withdraws, officially or unofficially, from a college during any given semester. These regulations require that a Return to Title IV (R2T4) Calculation be performed in to determine how much federal aid the student has earned. The calculation of Title IV funds earned by the student has no relationship to the student’s incurred institutional charges or to the College’s institutional refund policy.

Even though students are awarded and have had federal funds disbursed to them at the beginning of the semester, students are required to “earn” the financial aid disbursed to them by attending classes up to the point that at least 60% of the semester has expired. After the 60% point in the payment period or period of enrollment, a student has earned 100% of the Title IV funds he or she received or was scheduled to receive.

When a student completely withdraws, officially or unofficially, from the College before 60% of the semester has expired, the student has failed to “earn” all of the financial aid that he or she received. Therefore, the student may be required to repay a portion of the federal funds he or she received to the appropriate programs.

Students who enroll at Bishop State Community College and decide, for any reason, that they no longer want to be enrolled at the College must officially withdraw from class. Students can obtain the withdrawal form and procedures for withdrawing from the Admissions/Registrar’s Office. Please note: For purposes of Return to Title IV Aid Calculations, the withdrawal date for a student that officially withdraws from all classes is the date the student begins the withdrawal process.

Failure to properly withdraw from classes may result in the student receiving failing grades in all of his or her classes. This may negatively impact the student’s eligibility for financial aid in future semesters.

Return to Title IV Calculation

The Business Office will perform the Return to Title IV (R2T4) calculation. The unearned portion of the student’s Title IV funds will be returned to the federal program from which it was received. The Business Office will let the student know the amount of money, if any, he or she owes to the Dept. of Education or to the school.

Veterans Services

Bishop State Community College’s Veterans Services are under the direction of the Manager of Financial Aid. The services include assistance in communicating with the Veterans Administration on behalf of students who receive VA benefits special problems and in assisting veterans with procedures and certification.

Enrollment at Bishop State does not necessarily assure eligibility for veteran’s educational benefits. In order to be certified by Bishop State, the veteran must meet the following requirements:

Must contact the VA counselor at Bishop State located in the financial aid office to start the certification process.

Must be eligible to receive VA educational benefits;

Have a complete admission folder in the Admission/Registrar’s Office (application, high school transcript, college transcript, etc.);

Must have been a student in good standing at the end of last enrollment period at the school or institution from which the veteran is transferring;

Must have a specific degree plan, and must provide a copy of each semester’s schedule to the VA Coordinator at pre-registration after tuition and fees are paid, or at the beginning of each semester in order to be certified to the VA as attending. Must have all prior college transcripts evaluated for transfer credit to current major.

All veterans benefit recipients must maintain a grade point average in accordance with the outlined policy below for determining satisfactory progress.

  Semester Hours Attempted Required Overall GPA  
  12-21 1.50  
  22-32 1.75  
  33 or more 2.00  

Grading Policy

A veteran or eligible person who remains in a class for a period greater than three weeks and drops out must be assigned a grade. This grade must be considered in computing the grade point average for both the subsequent semester and the overall cumulative grade point average. If the Drop/Add period allowed at an institution is less than the three-week period referenced, the lesser period will be used in applying the policy.

A veteran or eligible person may not be certified for a course for which regular college credit is not awarded. This includes audit credit, non-credit, and continuing education units.

Institutional credit for required developmental subjects, such as ENR 098  , ENG 099  , MTH 098  , and MTH 099  , and may be acceptable if such subjects are measured on the same basis as regular college credit courses and are determined by the school to be necessary for students to reach their objectives.

Veterans or eligible persons changing from credit to audit prior to taking the final examination should have their enrollment certification amended effective the day the term began to reflect the actual credit hours for which they can receive credit.


Veterans or eligible persons must clear all course withdrawals with the VA Coordinator’s Office prior to withdrawal. There will be no penalty if the withdrawal occurs within the College’s regular Drop/Add period. However, if a course withdrawal would reduce the VA student’s course load to less than full-time status, a reduction of VA benefits will be retroactively determined from the beginning of the term. Mitigating circumstances can be submitted in writing to the VA counselor for possible exception to the potential loss of benefits.

Complaint Policy for Students Receiving VA Education Benefits

For students receiving VA education benefits, any complaint against the school should be routed through the VA GI Bill Feedback System by going to the following link: The VA will then follow up through the appropriate channels to investigate the complaint and resolve it satisfactorily.

Other Policies and Procedures

Veterans or eligible persons receiving VA benefits will not be permitted to take a course that is not part of their degree plan. The college will monitor registration schedules to verify that the courses selected are appropriate. The one exception to this rule is if the veteran or eligible person needs less than full time courses to graduate in his/her final semester. Courses outside the degree plan may be taken as long as the required course(s) are taken to graduate.