Eligibility for financial aid

Many students qualify for some type of financial aid. Most types of financial aid require that you:

Read more details below, or contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships with questions.

Admitted to degree program

Formal admission is different from just taking classes. Most financial aid requires admission to a degree-seeking program.

First or second degree

Most students qualify for some type of financial aid while earning their first degree. When you satisfy all requirements for your first degree, you will no longer be eligible to receive federal financial aid for subsequent terms due to US Department of Education regulations. However, you may still be eligible to receive other non-federal financial aid.

If you are admitted to a second undergraduate degree program, you may be eligible for Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized loans.

If you add a second major after completing a bachelor’s degree, or if you are continuing coursework to complete a second major in a degree program from which you’ve already graduated, you are not eligible for financial aid, including loans.

Minimum number of credits

Most types of financial aid require that you enroll in a minimum number of credits in order to receive the aid. The minimum number of credits varies depending on the type of offer and your degree program.

See full-time and half-time credit definitions

Your enrollment is reviewed about 10 days before the start of the term. Your financial aid offer will be prorated (if necessary) based on the number of credits you’re enrolled in on that date. This ensures your financial aid is disbursed to your student account as quickly as possible.

Your enrollment will be reviewed for the final time each term on the last date to add full semester classes without approval from your college. If you have enrolled in any additional credits, you may be eligible for additional aid. If you have dropped any classes, you may lose eligibility for financial aid, and would then be billed for any aid you’ve already received. If you add classes after the final review, it may not make you eligible for additional financial aid. Contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships to determine if classes added after the drop/add period can be included when determining your eligibility for aid.

Federal Pell Grants

The amount listed on your financial aid offer is based on the assumption that you will be enrolled in at least 12 credits per semester. If you take fewer than 12 credits in a semester, your Federal Pell Grant will be prorated based on the number of credits you enroll in.

  • Full time: 12+ credits
  • Part or 3/4 time: 9 to 11 credits
  • Half time: 6 to 8 credits
  • Less than half time: 1 to 5 credits

Minnesota State Grant

To receive the full Minnesota State Grant, you must register for at least 15 credits each semester. If you're enrolled for fewer than 15 credits, the grant will be prorated per credit. You must register for at least 3 credits to receive any portion of the grant. If you add or drop credits during the refund period, your Minnesota State Grant amount will be adjusted.


Work-study requires you to enroll in 6 or more credits each semester. You do not need to be enrolled in summer classes in order to be eligible for work-study. 


You must be enrolled for at least 6 credits to be eligible for Federal Direct student loans.

Online classes

Online classes that are "term-based" are eligible for financial aid.

Online classes that are "extended term" are not eligible for financial aid. These are typically offered by the College of Continuing and Professional Studies.

Additional resources

You can find more information about financial aid eligibility at Federal Student Aid. Information about financial aid opportunities for undocumented students under the Minnesota Dream Act is also available.