Financial aid disbursement and refunds

Financial aid disbursement and refunds


How financial aid payments work

Any financial aid you receive from ASU is automatically applied to your charges before the semester begins. Any funds left over after your tuition and charges are paid can be paid back to you in the form of a financial aid refund. To make sure your aid disburses and you receive your refund, complete the steps below. If you’re looking for information about a tuition refund — money you paid out of pocket that you get back when you drop a course or withdraw — visit the tuition refund page.

Watch video: How does my financial aid pay for my charges? 

Watch video: Three things to know before the first day of classes.

Watch video: When will I get my refund?

Watch video: How is financial aid split between fall and spring semesters?

Make sure your financial aid file is complete

After you submit the FAFSA, you may need to submit additional documentation to help us confirm your financial eligibility. This is called “verification” and it’s quite common. Check your Priority Tasks in My ASU to see what, if any, verification items we may need.

Watch video: How to check Financing Tasks in My ASU.

Enroll in direct deposit

By enrolling in direct deposit, any financial aid funds that remain after your charges have been paid will go directly into your bank account. Enroll in direct deposit by going to the Finances tab in My ASU and clicking “Direct deposit enrollment.”

Watch video: How to enroll in Direct Deposit

Know how your enrollment impacts your aid

Changes in your enrollment can affect your financial aid awards, as one of the factors in your cost of attendance is the number of credit hours you take. If you drop a class, your aid will be decreased to match your enrollment hours. Other changes may adjust your cost of attendance and consequently your aid, including campus and residency status. Learn more about aid adjustment.

Financial aid disbursement and refunds

How to know if your financial aid file is complete

Your financial aid tracker is there to help you understand where you are in the financial aid process. Visit the Finances tab in My ASU to view yours. 

Watch video: How to know your financial aid file is complete

Frequently asked questions

Financial aid typically disburses about a week before the semester starts. Your financial aid tracker will say “disbursement is ready to begin,” which means your aid is in the process of being applied to your account. Once disbursement is complete, you’ll see your account balance change to reflect that a payment has been made.

It can be tempting to spend unwisely when you have extra money in your pocket after your charges are paid. Remember, loans need to be repaid with interest, and scholarship funds are intended to pay for housing and food, books, course materials, supplies, and equipment and should be used for those things only.

Smart borrowing, establishing good credit and creating a realistic budget are skills that you need to be successful. No matter what you’re studying, this is a great time to start building your best money habits.

ASU partners with iGrad to offer students and alumni lifelong financial wellness skills through customized courses, articles and tools to help you make important financial decisions. From how to manage your first credit card to refinancing your home, investing in the stock market and saving for retirement — you’ll learn it all. Get started with iGrad now and begin a healthy, lifelong relationship with money.

If you are a graduating senior and only attending one semester, Financial Aid and Scholarship Services is required to reduce your financial cost of attendance for the academic year to reflect one semester costs. In most cases, a reduction of your cost of attendance will reduce your financial aid eligibility and result in a reduction of some of your awards (even if you have already accepted them). If you plan on attending one semester, please contact us or visit our office to see how your aid will be affected.

Important Notes

  • You may not receive all of your fall/spring financial aid in the fall semester.
  • You may not be considered a fall-only student if you are not graduating for the fall (i.e., you must apply for graduation with the university).
  • Your Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans will prorate if you are an undergraduate or post-baccalaureate student (see below for details).
  • If you were originally offered aid for the fall and spring semesters and do not end up attending the fall semester, your entire aid package may be cancelled mid-fall. If you plan on attending the following spring semester, please make sure to accept your aid on My ASU and enroll for the spring semester.

Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans

If you are an undergraduate or post-baccalaureate student, your Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans must be prorated based on the number of credit hours for which you are enrolled. This means that you may not be eligible to receive your maximum annual loan limit. Your aid will be adjusted at the time of disbursement according to your enrolled credit hours.

Students electing to use VA educational benefits at ASU under Veteran Readiness and Employment (Chapter 31) or the Post-9/11 GI Bill® (Chapter 33) must first establish their benefits eligibility, then verify their intent each semester.  In accordance with 38 U.S.C 3679 (e), students who successfully establish their eligibility and elect to use benefits in any given semester are automatically given a tuition deferment that will prevent any late fees or penalties from being incurred during that semester. The deferred tuition due dates are as follows:

·       Fall Semesters – December 25

·       Spring Semesters – May 25

·       Summer Semesters – September 25

Additionally, students who have accepted financial aid may elect to receive a credit for the anticipated amount of their VA benefits. This credit will allow any excess financial aid to disburse in advance of the VA’s actual payment. Students should understand that ASU’s “anticipated VA payment” is an estimate, and that settling their student account balances can only take place once all VA payments for the semester are received. It will be the student’s responsibility to return any money that had been refunded in excess. For more information on the steps required, please contact the Pat Tillman Veterans Center at 480-965-7723 or For questions about your individual student account, please contact Student Business Services at 855-278-5080 or