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By accepting the financial aid offer, the student agrees to fulfill all of the following terms and conditions set forth by federal and state regulations and institutional policies:


Financial aid includes need-based, merit-based and other grants, scholarships, loans, student employment, income share agreements, military educational benefits, and employer educational benefits from federal and, state governmental agencies and other institutions and third-parties.  Federal tax credits associated with higher education expenses, such as the American Opportunity Tax Credit, and account payments made by a student or on a student's behalf are not considered financial aid.


1. The student and/or student’s family has primary responsibility for financing the education, and a student requesting financial aid is expected to contribute toward his or her own educational expenses. This self-help may be in the form of summer or school-year earnings or loans in any reasonable combination. Financial aid from the university and other sources will be viewed only as supplemental to support from the family.

2. The student’s financial need is determined by an analysis of the information provided in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Consideration is given to elements that affect a family’s financial status, including current income, assets, number of dependents, other educational expenses, and retirement needs.  

3. Students applying for financial aid are expected to meet annual application deadlines. Deadlines vary by school. Dates and deadlines for each school are available on the links below:

College of Arts & Sciences deadlines

BUILD deadlines

College of Adult & Professional Studies deadlines

Graduate School deadlines

Seminary deadlines

4. All Bethel Financial aid offers are prepared by the Office of Financial Aid, and designed to ensure students are treated equitably. Students must accept or decline the financial aid offer. A student may appeal his/her offer, but the resulting decision made by the Financial Aid Office of Bethel University is final and binding.

5. All financial aid, excluding job earnings, is first credited to the student’s Bethel account. If aid results in a credit balance, the student should contact the Business Office.

6. The types and amounts of financial aid available to students varies by school, degree sought, academic program, and financial aid criteria. For example, postbaccalaureate students taking undergraduate courses will not receive gift aid but are eligible for government loans if they are seeking licensure, certification, or a second type of bachelor’s degree (e.g., a student has a B.A. and is now seeking a B.S.).


Financial aid is based on enrollment assumptions derived from a student's admissions file and/or enrollment pattern at Bethel. If the student’s actual enrollment differs from the assumptions, aid may be adjusted at any time. This applies to federal, state, and institutional (Bethel) aid.

The Financial Aid Office monitors enrollment each term. For the College of Arts & Sciences, BUILD, and Seminary, the office locks in student enrollment on the 10th day of fall and spring semesters and adjusts financial aid accordingly at that time. For the College of Adult and Professional Studies and the Graduate School, we monitor enrollment throughout the semester and adjust financial aid appropriately.

Only courses that are required for the student’s program of study, as defined by DegreeWorks program audits, may be counted when determining the enrollment status used to disburse financial aid. Students should refer to their personal degree audit to determine the coursework necessary to fulfill individual graduation requirements.

Simply being registered in courses is not enough to secure financial aid, students must also attend and actively participate in the courses for which they register. Course attendance and participation is verified by course instructors. 


Financial aid eligibility varies depending on the funding type (grant, scholarship, loan, work, etc.) and source; institutional, federal, military, state, etc. Listed below are key program-specific eligibility criteria. More specifics may be found at bethel.edu/financial-aid:  

  • Student Loans. Students must be enrolled at least half-time to receive Federal Direct or PLUS loans.  There are also annual and aggregate limits applicable to Direct Loan eligibility. 
  • Federal Pell Grant. Available to students seeking their first baccalaureate degree. Eligibility is determined by the FAFSA results. The maximum Federal Pell Grant is offered to undergraduate students enrolled full-time (12+credits), but the amount varies when enrolled less than full-time. Students may receive Pell Grant for up to twelve full-time semesters. Full details are found at https://studentaid.gov/understand-aid/types/grants/pell.
  • Minnesota State Grant. Available to students seeking their first baccalaureate degree. Eligibility is determined by the FAFSA results. The maximum Minnesota State Grant is offered to undergraduate students enrolled for 15+ credits, but the amount varies for each credit from 3 to 15 credits per semester. Once students have completed the equivalent of eight full-time semesters they are no longer eligible for a Minnesota State Grant.  The formula which determines state grant amounts is set by the Minnesota State Legislature and is subject to change. When the formula changes, Bethel will recalculate amounts and notify students. Full details are at https://www.ohe.state.mn.us/mPg.cfm?PageID=138.
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG). Offered in place of need-based institutional grants to College of Arts & Sciences students who are eligible for Pell Grants. FSEOG funds are subject to the same policies and procedures as Institutional Grants and Scholarships. 
  • Institutional Grants and Scholarships. Eligibility criteria for institutional grants and scholarships are summarized in the catalog and in the “Types of Aid” webpage for each school. Institutional grants and scholarships are not available for semester study abroad experiences. 
  • Outside Assistance (private grants and scholarships, employer assistance, and/or Veterans and other military educational benefits). In most cases, Outside assistance does not impact the amount of Bethel-controlled grants and scholarships. Outside Assistance frequently impacts loan or student employment eligibility.


When finalizing your financial aid offer, Bethel must make sure your total amount of financial aid does not exceed your cost of attendance due to the institutionally-controlled aid and outside (privately funded) aid you receive. When the sum of aid from all sources exceeds the cost of attendance budget an overaward exists. Overawards are most likely to occur when students receive outside aid that was unknown or unconfirmed to Bethel when the initial financial aid offer was prepared.

When determining if there is an overaward, Bethel must consider all the aid you will receive, including military educational benefits. When the amount of institutional or outside aid results in an overaward, Bethel must eliminate the overaward by reducing the financial aid offer.

Normally, Bethel eliminates overawards by first reducing loans and work-study dollar for dollar against the excess institutional or outside aid, until the overaward is eliminated. If additional reductions are required, Bethel reduces institutionally-controlled aid, starting with need-based aid.

For students receiving federal military educational benefits, Bethel is limited in the reductions it can make to certain federal and state aid included in your financial aid offer. This means you may be allowed to keep federal loans, federal work study eligibility, and Minnesota State Grants in your financial aid offer, but Bethel may need to reduce institutionally-controlled aid or other outside aid to eliminate the overaward. See examples of financial aid adjustments here.


Financial aid offers may be adjusted at any time during the term at the sole discretion of the University. Additional factors that may require your final aid offer to be adjusted include, but are not limited, to the following:

  • the sum of a student’s financial aid exceeds the actual cost of attendance Bethel used to calculate the offer, 
  • the assumptions used to prepare the offer (e.g. enrollment status, program of study, documented need) do not match the student’s actual circumstances,
  • correction of processing errors, 
  • final and complete FAFSA verification, and
  • change in eligibility criteria made by the organization funding the aid.  


Students wishing to withdraw from Bethel University must notify the applicable office for their program below:  

Students must notify the Office of Financial Aid immediately if financial assistance is received from an outside source (e.g., private scholarships, etc.) which was not previously disclosed to Bethel.

All students must read and comply with financial aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policies and must demonstrate satisfactory academic progress as described in Bethel’s SAP Policy. Failure to maintain SAP could result in loss of financial aid.

All financial aid funds listed on a student's offer letter must be used solely for educational expenses related to attendance during the academic year.


As part of the financial aid process, the Office of Financial Aid estimates the anticipated total cost of attendance at Bethel using direct and indirect costs. Direct costs include tuition, fees, room, and board, etc. and are charged directly to the student account. Indirect costs may include transportation, books, and supplies, social activities, etc. Indirect costs are not charged directly to the student but are used to estimate the total cost of attendance. Please refer to the catalog and Bethel student account for actual charges. In addition to tuition, some courses and activities may charge additional fees; e.g. science labs, music lessons, etc.


Bethel University uses a secure website (my.bethel.edu) to disclose and provide financial aid information to students. In addition, Bethel corresponds with students using students’ Bethel email addresses to communicate important financial aid information. By applying for financial aid, students voluntarily consent to participate in electronic transactions related to financial aid. Students not wishing to participate in electronic communication must contact the Financial Aid Office in writing to make alternative arrangements.

Instructions for acknowledging Terms & Conditions (pdf).