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Federal financial aid regulations limit the number of times a student may repeat a course and receive federal financial aid for that course. A student is allowed to repeat the same course and receive federal financial aid (in addition to assuming the office’s Satisfactory Academic Progress is met) until a “D-“grade or better is earned for the class. Once the student has achieved a “D-“grade or better, a student can repeat the same course a second time and still receive federal financial aid.

If a Student Elects to Take a Repeat Class Within the Same Course a Third Time

Once a “D-“ grade or better has been earned, the class cannot be factored into federal financial aid enrollment eligibility.  This rule applies whether or not a student received federal financial aid in earlier enrollments of the course.

Once a Repeated Class Can No Longer Be Counted Within a Student’s Enrollment for Federal Financial Aid Purposes

It is irrelevant for financial aid purposes if a student is required to retake a class to meet major/program GPA requirements.  It is irrelevant if a student has a personal desire to receive an improved grade.

Can a Student Receive Aid to Repeat a Course after Withdrawing from that Same Course?

According to the U.S. Department of Education (ED), a course from which a student has withdrawn is not considered a repeated course when determining a student’s Title IV eligibility under the definition of a full-time student in 34 CFR 668.2(b).  The following scenario is an example:

Johnny has taken English 101 during the fall semester and earned a D.  Johnny takes English 101 again in the spring semester along with other courses, but drops (withdraws from) English 101 after the first month of classes.  All aid has disbursed and he has been paid for the class. The next academic year, Johnny decides to try English 101 once again.  Since Johnny withdrew from English 101 during his second attempt (and did not complete the course), when he signs up for it again during the upcoming fall semester, he can be paid Title IV aid for that class. Conversely, if Johnny were to take English 101, earn a grade of D, then repeat the course and earn a grade of F, he would not be eligible to receive Title IV aid for additional repeats of the course. So, if English 101 would be the course that made Johnny a full time student the next time he attempted it, he would only receive Title IV aid as a three-quarter time student.