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Financial Aid and Scholarships

Glossary of Financial Aid Terms

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Aggregate Loan Limit

A limit on the total amount of outstanding loan debt a student may accrue. Information about Aggregate Loan Limit can be accessed at any time through the UNF Federal Direct Loan webpage.

Annual Loan Limit

A limit on the yearly (fall, spring and summer) loan funding a student can receive. Limits are determined by grade level and take into account a student’s aggregate loan indebtedness. Information about Annual Loan Limit can be accessed at any time through the UNF Federal Direct Loan webpage.



Bringing Education And Career Opportunities Nearer. A financial aid training program for high school seniors and their families in Duval County. Provides students with information about funding for college, how to complete the FAFSA, and Florida scholarships and grants, including Florida Bright Futures.

Benacquisto Scholarship Program

Formerly the Florida Incentive Scholarship, the Benacquisto Scholarship Program is a merit scholarship for 2013-2014 Florida high school graduates and thereafter who receive recognition as a National Merit Scholar.

Bookstore Authorization

As a courtesy to students, UNF may authorize students who anticipate a financial aid refund to use all or part of that refund in the UNF Bookstore in advance of disbursement. The amount of the Bookstore Authorization is limited to the anticipated financial aid refund and may not exceed $600 per semester.


Campus-Based Funding

Common acronym: CBF. Financial Aid programs administered directly by the UNF Financial Aid Office. Examples include: Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) and Federal Work Study (FWS).

Central Processing System

Common acronym: CPS. The U.S. Department of Education's automated system that processes all FAFSA applications, calculates financial aid eligibility and notifies students and educational institutions of the results of the eligibility calculation.

College Financing Plan

A consumer tool, previously referred to as the Financial Aid Shopping Sheet, that participating institutions use to notify students about their financial aid package. It is a standardized form designed to simplify the information prospective students receive about costs and financial aid so they can easily compare institutions and make informed decisions about where to attend school. UNF is a participating school and provides access to our College Financing Plan via myWings.

Concurrent Enrollment

Currently registered UNF degree-seeking students who wish to earn credit at another regionally accredited postsecondary institution for transfer into a UNF degree program. Some restrictions apply. Check with your academic advisor. For more information on how this impacts financial aid, visit the Concurrent Enrollment webpage.

Consumer Information

The Higher Education Act of 1965 (HEA), as amended, requires institutions that receive Title IV funding to provide specific consumer information about the school to prospective and enrolled students and their families, and, in some cases, prospective and current employees. For more information, visit the Consumer Information webpage.

Cost of Attendance

Common acronym: COA. The estimated Cost of Attendance at UNF for one academic year. This amount includes the following:

  • Tuition – charges assessed for classes
  • Fees – charges assessed for other college services
  • Room and Board for on-campus students
  • Estimated living expenses – allowance for rent, utilities, and food for off-campus living
  • Estimated transportation costs
  • Estimated books and supplies
  • Miscellaneous costs


Data Retrieval Tool

Common acronym: DRT. The Data Retrieval Tool is an option available on the FAFSA to electronically transfer your tax return information to the FAFSA. Using the DRT saves time and effort, as you will not have to locate your tax documents. It also keeps you from making data entry mistakes that would lead to an incorrect FAFSA result.


Failing to make payments on disbursed (paid) student loan(s) as scheduled according to the terms of the signed promissory note, the binding legal document signed at the time the loan(s) were originally accepted can result in Default.

Deferment - Loans

Loan Deferment is a period during which repayment of the principal and interest of a loan is temporarily delayed or reduced.

Deferment - Tuition

UNF will automatically defer (sometimes called "pend") your billed charges against financial aid you have accepted in myWings. A student who has enough accepted financial aid to cover 100% of their billed charges does not have to make a payment by the posted payment deadline. A student whose billed charges are partially deferred must pay the difference by the posted payment deadline.

Demonstrated Need

For students who file a FAFSA: A student’s cost of attendance budget minus their EFC equals unmet need. A student’s unmet need minus any financial aid resource they have been awarded equals demonstrated need.

Direct Deposit

Common acronym: DD. The electronic transfer of financial aid eRefunds from the UNF Controller's Office to a student’s bank account. Students must sign up for Direct Deposit via myWings.

Direct Loan

Common acronym: DL. Federal Direct Loans are fixed-rate, low interest loans available to degree-seeking undergraduate and graduate students attending accredited schools at least half-time. They are the most common source of college loan funds.

There are three types of Direct Loans for students:

  • Subsidized Direct Loans are need-based, and the government pays the interest on these loans while you are in school. Subsidized loans are only available to undergraduate students.
  • Unsubsidized Direct Loans are not need-based, and you are responsible for all of the interest that accrues on the loan, including while you are in school.
  • Grad PLUS Direct Loans are for graduate and professional students to supplement their other financial aid. Federal Direct PLUS loans require an application and credit check to determine borrower eligibility.

Discharged Loan

Under certain conditions, a federal student loan borrower may be relieved from further repayment obligations by having their federal student loans discharged. Loan Discharge generally occurs in situations where the borrower can’t repay the debt (e.g., death, disability, and bankruptcy) or rejects the debt (e.g., fraud, identity theft, false certification or unpaid refund).


Educational Loan

A form of financial aid that must be repaid (with interest in the case of Unsubsidized Direct Loans, Grad PLUS Direct Loans, Parent PLUS Direct Loans and private loans). Educational Loans have varying interest rates and repayment terms. Students and/or parents are required to sign a promissory note when accepting an educational loan.

Enrollment Level

Level of the degree-granting program in which a student is enrolled. Basic levels of enrollment include: undergraduate (first time bachelor's seeker), post baccalaureate, graduate (master's), and post-graduate (doctoral). The amounts and types of financial aid a student is eligible for is determined, in part, by their enrollment level.

Enrollment Services Appeal

Common acronym: ES Appeal. An Enrollment Services Appeal is a process through which a student with documentable extenuating circumstances may request special consideration for several situations:

  • Denied In-State Residency
  • Denied In-State Residency Reclassification
  • Review of Residency Reclassification or Initial Residency Classification after the deadline
  • Denied SAP appeal
  • Loss of Institutional Scholarship
  • Loss of Bright Futures Scholarship

Enrollment Status

Academic workload (or course load), as defined by UNF, that a student is carrying for a defined academic period. This typically refers to the number of credit hours taken by a student during a given academic semester:

  • Full-time status = 12 or more credit hours
  • Three quarter-time status = 9 to 11 credit hours
  • Half-time status = 6 to 8 credit hours
  • Less than half-time status = 1 to 5 credit hours

**Most UNF institutional grants and Enrollment Services scholarships require enrollment in at least 15 credit hours for disbursement.

Entrance Counseling

Entrance Counseling is an online tutorial required for students who accept Federal Direct Loans.

Estimated Award

An estimated award is one that UNF offers to students in an initial financial aid package. Estimated awards are subject to change based on enrollment, verification results and other financial aid that may be awarded after an initial financial aid package is released.

Exit Counseling

A 20 to 30 minute online tutorial, required by the federal government, to remind students of their rights and responsibilities as a borrower and, most importantly, to educate them about loan repayment options. Students receive an Exit Counseling requirement when they drop below half-time status (including withdrawals), break continuous enrollment, or graduate. All of these events can trigger the repayment phase of federal student loans.

Expected Family Contribution

Common acronym: EFC. Expected Family Contribution is an index number college financial aid staff use to determine how much financial aid a student would receive to attend school. The information students report on their FAFSA form is used to calculate their EFC.


Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

Common acronym: FERPA. Also known as The Buckley Amendment. Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act is a federal law that protects the privacy of student education records.

Federal Aid Information Center

Common acronym: FAIC. A U.S. Department of Education help and support department. Help is offered in multiple ways: online via FAQ’s, email and live chat, and via telephone, including TTY calls for the hearing impaired.

Federal Pell Grant

Federal Pell Grant is provided by the federal government to qualified undergraduate students who demonstrate exceptional financial need (via the FAFSA) and have an EFC below a threshold designated annually by the U.S. Department of Education, based on the amount of program funds appropriated by Congress.

Federal Student Aid

An office of the U.S. Department of Education responsible for managing the student financial assistance programs under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965.

Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant

Common acronyms: SEOG, FSEOG. Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant is provided by the federal government to qualified undergraduate students who demonstrate exceptional financial need. Priority is given to Pell Grant recipients and funds must be awarded by the school in lowest EFC order.

Federal Work Study

Common acronym: FWS. Federal Work Study is a program that provides part-time employment to students attending participating institutions of higher education who need the earnings to help meet their costs of post-secondary education and encourages students receiving FWS assistance to participate in community service activities.

First Generation Matching Grant

Also known as: FGMG, First Gen, 1st Gen. First Generation Matching Grant is a need-based grant program available to degree-seeking, Florida resident, undergraduate students who demonstrate substantial financial need. Eligible students have a parent(s) who has not earned a baccalaureate or higher degree.

First-Time-In-College Freshman

Common acronym: FTIC. A student admitted to UNF with less than 11 credit hours of college coursework. Please Note: students who complete college coursework prior to high school graduation (via dual enrollment or accelerated mechanisms, like AP) are still considered FTICs no matter how many hours of college credit they earn prior to high school graduation.

Florida Bright Futures Scholarship

Common acronyms: BF, BFS, FBF, FLBF. Four lottery-funded scholarships to reward Florida high school graduates for high academic achievement:

  • Florida Academic Scholarship (formerly known as 100% Bright Futures)
  • Florida Medallion Scholarship (formerly known as 75% Bright Futures)
  • Florida Gold Seal Vocational Scholarship (not available at UNF)
  • Florida Gold Seal CAPE Scholarship (not available at UNF)

Florida Education Fund

Common acronym: F.E.F. A Florida not-for-profit corporation whose mission is to provide funding and programs for the educational advancement for historically underrepresented groups.

Florida Financial Aid Application

Common acronym: FFAA, A required Florida financial aid application available online for students interested in qualifying for state-funded scholarships and grants (including Bright Futures and FSAG). This application must be completed prior to August 31 of the year the student graduates high school.

Florida Fund for Minority Teachers

Common acronym: FFMT. A collaborative performance-based scholarship program for African-American, Hispanic-American, Asian-American, and Native American students.

Florida Incentive Scholarship

Common acronym: FIS. Name changed in 2016. See Benacquisto Scholarship.

Florida Prepaid

Common acronyms: FLPP, FPP. Florida Prepaid is a college savings or investment plan that is not considered financial aid. 

Florida Shines

Formerly known as: FLVC, FACTS. A Florida collaborative funded by the Florida Legislature and administered by the University of West Florida to assist Floridians in earning a college degree. Also, where students can apply to take transient coursework.

Florida Student Assistance Grant

Common acronym: FSAG. Florida Student Assistance Grant is a need-based grant program available to degree-seeking, Florida resident, undergraduate students who demonstrate substantial financial need and are enrolled in participating post-secondary institutions.


If a deferment is not possible, a loan servicer may be able to grant a forbearance. With forbearance, payments may be delayed or reduced for up to 12 months. Interest will continue to accrue on subsidized and unsubsidized loans (including all PLUS loans).

Free Application for Federal Student Aid

Common acronym: FAFSA.  The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is an application that all U.S. citizens and eligible non-citizens use to determine their EFC and schools use to determine a student’s eligibility for financial aid.


FSA ID is a secure, personal identifying username and password which provides individuals with access to Federal Student Aid’s online systems (like FAFSA) and also serves as their legal signature on those systems.


Gift Aid

Funds awarded to students that do not need to be repaid, unless the student fails to meet certain terms, such as a service requirement, specified as a condition of the grant. Gift aid includes awards with titles such as grants, scholarships, waivers, etc.

Gift aid can be awarded based upon many factors, including (but not limited to): 

  • Financial need
  • Academic excellence
  • Athletic, musical and/or theatrical talent
  • Affiliation with various groups
  • Career aspirations

Grad PLUS Loan

Direct Loan program for students admitted into degree-seeking graduate and doctoral programs. Students must enroll in a minimum of six degree-applicable credit hours to be eligible.


Gift aid awarded to a student that does not need to be repaid. Grants are typically based on financial need.


Common acronym: GIA. An athletic scholarship. Specifically the document a student-athlete signs to officially accept their athletic scholarship (by NCAA standards).


Indirect Cost

Expenses incurred as a result of attendance the student/family may pay to a third party (merchant, landlord, etc.) other than UNF.

In-School Deferment

In-School Deferment is a period of time, while enrolled at a college or career school at least half-time (six credit hours), when a student may not be required to make student loan payments.

Institutional Student Information Record

Common acronym: ISIR. An electronic FAFSA output document sent to colleges which contains CPS processed student information as well as key processing results and NSLDS financial aid history information. 

Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant

Common acronym: IASG. A grant program for students who do not qualify for Pell Grant funds whose parent or guardian was a member of the U.S. armed forces and died as a result of military service performed in Iraq or Afghanistan after 9/11/01.


Jacksonville Commitment Program

Common acronym: JCP. A scholarship program for Duval County high school graduates admitted as a Florida resident to a participating school. To be eligible to apply, a high school student must be eligible for the Free and Reduced Lunch program and be Pell eligible.


Lifetime Eligibility Used

Common acronym: LEU, Pell LEU. A student’s maximum duration of eligibility is 6 scheduled awards, as measured by the percentage of LEU. One scheduled award equals 100% LEU so the maximum percentage is 600%. This limit applies to both Pell and the Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant.

Loan Action Request Form

Common acronym: LARF. A paper form a student who has accepted or declined a Direct Loan (sub or unsub) can submit to change their loan decision (decline, reduce, increase, reinstate, cancel disbursement).


Master Promissory Note

Common acronym: MPN. The Master Promissory Note is legal document in which a Direct Loan borrower promises to repay loans and any accrued interest and fees to the U.S. Department of Education.

Memorandum of Understanding

Common acronym: MOU. The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) policy requires schools that wish to participate in the DoD Tuition Assistance (TA) Program to sign a Memorandum of Understanding conveying the commitments and agreements between the school and DoD prior to that school receiving funds from a service's TA program.


Common acronym: MW. UNF's secure student portal.


National Student Clearinghouse

Common acronym: NSCH. Also known as "Clearinghouse". An online service used to exchange student data and facilitate compliance with FERPA and The Higher Education Act. UNF Student Financial Aid reports student enrollment to National Student Clearinghouse for the purposes of enrollment verification as it pertains to student loans and "in school deferment." 

National Student Loan Data System

Common acronym: NSLDS. The U.S. Department of Education’s central database for student aid. National Student Loan Data System receives data from schools, guaranty agencies, the Direct Loan program and other ED programs. Student access provides a centralized, integrated view of Title IV loans and grants so that recipients of Title IV Aid can access and inquire about their Title IV loans and/or grant data.

Net Cost

Amount of direct and indirect costs remaining after all gift aid (scholarship and grant) is subtracted from a student's COA budget.

Net Price Calculator

Common acronym: NPC. A tool allowing current and prospective students, families and other consumers to estimate the net price of attending a particular college or career school. Access UNF’s Net Price Calculator.

Non-degree Applicable

Common acronym: NDA. A course that is not required to complete a student’s degree. A course that will not result in credit towards major, general education or required or free electives within a program of study. Most financial aid programs cannot cover these courses.


One-Stop Student Services

Common acronyms: OS, OSSS. Staffed by cross-trained professionals, One-Stop Student Services provides a single point of communication for issues ranging from admissions, academic records, registration and financial aid.

Out-of-pocket Cost

The difference between a student's cost of attendance budget and all gift aid. Out-of-pocket cost can be covered through a variety of sources, including: savings, income and educational loans.


Parent PLUS Loan

Direct Loan program for parents of dependent students admitted into degree-seeking undergraduate programs. Students must enroll in a minimum of six degree-applicable credit hours to be eligible.

PLUS Loan Action Request Form

A paper form a student whose parent has accepted or declined a Direct PLUS Loan can submit to change their loan decision (decline, reduce, increase, reinstate, cancel disbursement). 

Private Education Loan

Non-federal loans, offered by lenders such as banks, credit unions and state agencies. Interest rates vary and a credit check is required. Co-signer may be necessary in the case of adverse or limited credit history. Re-payment typically is not deferred while a student is in school.


A reduction in a financial aid award for less than full-time enrollment.


Refund - Financial Aid

The overage of financial aid and resources paid to a student after all allowable institutional charges have been paid.

Return of Title IV Aid

Common acronym: R2T4. Return of Title IV Aid is a federal requirement for students who receive federal financial aid and withdraw (either completely or unofficially) from ALL classes before completing more than 60% of the semester. Per the regulation, students in these situations will have a percentage of their Title IV funds returned.


Satisfactory Academic Progress

Common acronym: SAP. Higher Education Act regulation that requires schools to establish and apply standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress towards their degree that all students must meet to qualify and remain eligible for assistance from those Title IV financial aid programs.


Gift aid awarded to a student that does not need to be repaid (except in some cases, e.g.: Bright Futures and withdrawing from a course). Scholarship awards are typically based on merit (or a combination of merit and need) such as academic excellence, talent, affiliation with various groups, or career aspirations.

Scholarship Action Request Form

Common acronym: SARF. An online form (available in myWings) which allows a student to notify UNF about circumstances that may impact their eligibility for institutional scholarships, Florida Bright Futures Scholarships or to request special consideration under certain unusual circumstances. Login to myWings to access the form.

Scholarships for Children and Spouses of Deceased or Disabled Veterans

Common acronyms: CDDV, CSDDV. State award for dependent children or unmarried spouses of qualified Florida Veterans. Eligible students who attend UNF will receive funds to cover their tuition and registration fees.

Self-Help Aid

Financial aid in the form of loans or student employment. Loans are used to help pay the remaining net costs after gift aid is deducted. Student employment earnings (including FWS awards) are generally not deducted from billed costs but can be used to help cover indirect costs and are paid in the form of wages to the student.

Student Aid Report

Common acronym: SAR. An output document that a FAFSA filer receives after their FAFSA has been processed. Online FAFSA filers who provided an email address will receive their Student Aid Report via email. All others will receive a paper copy to the address provided on their FAFSA. The SAR provides the student’s EFC (unless the FAFSA is rejected) and important messages if applicable (e.g.: selective service and/or citizenship confirmation results).

Subsidized Loan

A type of Federal Direct Loan awarded to students who demonstrate unmet financial need. The federal government pays (subsidizes) the interest on this type of loan while the student is enrolled at least half-time (six credit hours) in a degree-seeking program or major.

Subsidized Loan Lifetime Limit

Subsidized Loan Lifetime Limit is the maximum period of time (measured in academic years) that a student can receive Direct Subsidized Loans. In general, you may not receive subsidized loans for more than 150% of the published length of your program of study.


Teacher Certification Only

Common acronym: TCO. Students who have completed a bachelor’s degree in a non-education field of study may pursue teacher certification through Teacher Certification Only studies. All TCO coursework must be taken at the graduate level (e.g.: 5000 or 6000 level courses) unless graduate-level courses are not offered. TCO does not lead to the awarding of a degree or certificate. Students admitted to UNF as a TCO are only eligible for unsubsidized Direct Loans (provided they enroll in at least six credit hours each term).

Transfer Monitoring

Before disbursing FSA funds to a transfer student, schools must obtain his/her financial aid history to determine if he/she may have received aid at another school since the latest ISIR. The NSLDS Transfer Student Monitoring Process was established to allow schools to use NSLDS information for its transfer students.

Tuition Differential

Common acronym: TD. Pursuant to Senate Bill 762, the tuition differential fee is assessed (per credit hour) to students who have not been continuously enrolled at the University of North Florida since July 1, 2007 or are not the beneficiary of a Florida Prepaid contract purchased prior to July 1, 2007. The tuition differential fee provides funding for undergraduate education and need-based financial aid.


Unmet Need

For students who file a FAFSA, a student’s cost of attendance budget minus their EFC equals unmet need.

Unsubsidized Loan

A type of Federal Direct Loan awarded to students who do not demonstrate unmet need. The government does NOT pay (subsidize) the interest on this type of loans. Therefore, the student is responsible for paying all interest that accrues.

Unusual Enrollment History

Common acronym: UEH. A flag on a student's FAFSA which requires UNF to review the student’s enrollment and financial aid records to determine if, during any of the previous several award years, the student received a Pell Grant or a Direct Loan. UNF must then determine whether academic credit was earned during the award year(s) for which the student received a Pell Grant or Direct Loan. Based on those determinations, additional steps and/or documentation may be required before further Title IV disbursements can be allowed.



Process to confirm the accuracy of data provided by the applicant on the FAFSA. In order to complete the verification process, students are required to provide certain documents to the school for review.

Verification Requirement

Documents a student must submit in order for UNF Student Financial Aid to complete the verification process. Documents requested might be UNF forms (which are downloadable online), or they may be documents the student possesses. Never submit original documents unless specifically requested to.