Financial Aid Glossary of Terms

Drury University > Financial Aid > Financial Aid Glossary of Terms

Appeal – An appeal process is available to any student who has been determined ineligible for continued aid if extenuating circumstances prevented them from maintaining satisfactory academic progress.

Award Letter/Package – Notice of aid/scholarships a student may receive.

Cost of Attendance (COA) – Estimated expenses including tuition, fees, books, transportation.

Deferment – A period of time a student may postpone student loan payments.

Dependent Student – A student that does not meet the federal requirements for independent status and is required to report parental information when applying for federal and state student aid.

Disbursement – A timeframe for processing refunds.

Expected Family Contribution (EFC) – Federal Government’s measure of Family contribution.

Financial Aid – Financial Aid is a catch-all term referring to any program that offers money to assist with the costs associated with being a student this includes tuition.

Forbearance – A time in which a student borrower is permitted to temporarily stop making federal loan payments or reduce the amount of payment.  Interest still accrues during this time.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) – A form that is filled out annually by current and future students and their parents (for dependent students) to determine eligibility for federal and state financial aid.

Grace Period – A time period that begins the day after a student borrower is no longer enrolled at least half time and ends the day before the loan repayment period starts.

Grant – Need-based assistance that generally does not have to be repaid.

Independent Student – A student that meets the federal requirements for independent status as required when applying for federal and state student aid.

Loans – Borrowed money that must be repaid with interest.

  • Alternative Loan – Alternative or private loans may be available to students to meet educational expenses not covered by other financial aid, including federal direct loans. Students should carefully consider the decision to borrow alternative loans since they are generally more expensive than federal student loans. Students should exhaust their federal student loan eligibility before applying for additional private loans. Alternative loans are credit-based and cannot be consolidated with federal student loans.
  • Parent Plus Loan – The Parent PLUS Loan is a loan borrowed by the parent of an undergraduate, dependent student. The parent is responsible for repayment, which begins 60 days after the funds are fully disbursed, unless a deferment is requested and granted. For information on PLUS deferment, contact the Department of Education. Maximum amount eligibility is based on the cost of attendance minus other financial aid. Contact the financial aid office for specific amounts. To apply for the Parent Plus Loan, visit and log in using the same parent PIN number used to sign the FAFSA. Parents wishing to apply for the Parent Plus Loan must complete the Parent Plus Loan application and Master Promissory Note (MPN).
  • Subsidized Loan – The Subsidized Federal Direct loan is based on financial need determined by a federal formula. A loan is “subsidized” when the government pays the interest for you during the following periods: while you are enrolled in school at least half-time; during the six-month grace period after you stop attending school at least half-time; during periods of authorized deferment.
  • Unsubsidized Loan – The Unsubsidized Federal Direct loan is not based on financial need and is available to all students regardless of income. Because this loan is not subsidized by the government, the student is responsible for all interest that accrues during in-school, grace and deferment periods. You may choose to make interest payments while in school or you may defer (and accumulate) the interest until repayment.

National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) – A database that maintains the financial aid records from schools, lenders and the U.S. Department of Education.

Need – The student’s COA minus the EFC, which is used to determine a student’s eligibility for most federal student aid as well as some state and institutional aid.

Pell Grant- Aid awarded to undergraduate students, based on need, who have not yet earned a bachelor’s degree.

Probation – Drury students are expected to maintain the highest level of scholarship of which they are capable. Notification of probationary status serves as a warning that students are not making satisfactory progress toward the degree and that unless the quality of work improves they will be subject to suspension from the university.

Return of Title IV Funds – Up through the 60% point in each payment period or period of enrollment, a pro rata schedule is used to determine the amount of Title IV funds the student has earned at the time of withdrawal. After the 60% point in the payment period or period of enrollment, a student has earned 100% of the Title IV funds.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) – The quantitative grade point average in a time limit 67%

State Aid – Financial aid programs funded by the state of Missouri.

Student Aid Report (SAR) – A report provided to students after completing the FAFSA.  The SAR contains the Student’s Estimated Family Contribution (EFC) and results of federal financial aid.

Scholarship – Merit-based financial aid awards that do not have to be repaid.

Verification – The process to confirm the information provided on the FAFSA

Unmet Need – The difference between a student’s total available resources and the student’s total cost of attendance.

Work Study – Students who wish to apply for the Federal Work Study (FWS) Program must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  On the FAFSA application, there will be an option that asks if the student would like to be considered for the work-study program. This option must be checked by the applicant. The applicant’s financial need will be determined based on their application. The student must indicate an interest in the FWS program on their FAFSA application. If the student is eligible the amount of the FWS award will be listed along with your other awards.