Credential students are considered undergraduates for financial aid purposes, must be enrolled in 12 units per semester to be considered full-time, and are subject to undergraduate-level loan limits.
When completing the 2016-2017 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), credential students must provide the following answers:
- When you begin the 2016-2017 school year, what will be your grade level? Answer: 5th year/other undergraduate
- When you begin the 2016-2017 school year, what degree or certificate will you be working on? Answer: Teaching credential (non-degree program)
- At the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year, will you be working on a master’s or doctorate program? Answer: No
Conditionally classified qualifying credential students can receive aid for one consecutive 12-month period only. Conditionally classified qualifying credential students are considered undergraduates for financial aid purposes, and may be eligible for senior-level Federal Direct Stafford Loans. Students must be enrolled in 12 units to be considered full-time. Conditionally classified qualifying credential students are not eligible for Pell Grant, State University Grant, Perkins loans or Federal Work Study. Please notify our office when you are admitted into a credential program, so that we may review your aid eligibility. See Qualifying Credential under Postbaccalaureate Eligibility & Enrollment Requirements.
If you are dually enrolled as a credential and masters student, you are considered a graduate student for financial aid purposes. See eligibility requirements for graduate students.
Information for Credential Students
- You may be eligible for a Federal Pell Grant, TEACH Grant, State University Grant (SUG), and Federal Work-Study funding. You may also qualify for Federal Stafford and Perkins student loans.
- If you are eligible for a Pell Grant, you must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 units of Pell-Fundable Credential Coursework (PDF) that is required by California to receive a professional certification or licensing credential. The Pell Grant is not available for prerequisite courses, courses that are suggested as beneficial, or elective courses. Students who choose to take coursework outside of their credential program plan and are enrolled in less than 12 units of Pell eligible coursework, may be required to repay Pell Grant that they previously received.
- Pell Grant is available only for your initial credential. If you currently hold a credential and have been awarded a Pell Grant for the academic year, please contact our office immediately. Repayment will be required for any student who receives a Pell Grant and currently holds a credential.
- State University Grant (SUG) is available only for your initial credential.
Credential students may receive SUG for their initial credential, up to a total earned units equivalent to 100% of unit requirements as published in the university catalog.
- Your eligibility for Federal Direct Stafford Loans is the same as for seniors.
- The TEACH Grant is actually a grant/loan combination that requires a TEACH Grant Agreement to Serve (ATS), as the grant will convert to unsubsidized loan in the future if contracted teaching obligations are not met. If this happens, interest accrual will be effective as of the date of the first TEACH disbursement. The TEACH Grant is available for credential/graduate students who meet specific criteria. Click here to learn more.
- Loan cancellation and deferment options are available for selected teaching areas, specialties, and years of service.
- Federal Stafford loans: Partial loan forgiveness for Stafford loans is available for designated teachers and childcare providers. Additional information can be found at: https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/repay-loans/forgiveness-cancellation/teacher.
- Federal Perkins loans: Perkins loan recipients may take advantage of a number of provisions for cancellation of loan principal and interest for each year of service in certain teaching fields and for teaching in low-income schools. Complete details are provided on the Perkins Master Promissory Note and through CSU, Chico Student Financial Services.
- Teach for America: AmeriCorps recruits committed recent college graduates and professionals of all backgrounds to teach for two years in urban and rural public schools. The program offers loan forbearance and paid interest on federal student loans for two years in exchange for teaching service pre-K through 12 in 46 urban and rural regions across the country. Most corps members are eligible to receive an education award of at least $5,775 per year after successfully completing each year of teaching (totaling $11,550). You can use the education award toward repayment of qualified student loans.
- Future math and science teachers: To get information regarding scholarships for future math and science teachings, visit the Center for Mathematics and Science Education Web site.
Credential students enrolled in less than 12 units of Pell eligible credential coursework, may have a hold placed on their account to prevent Pell Grant disbursement. Pell Grant for these students may disburse after eligibility is reviewed. The TEACH grant is not included in financial aid offers but can be offered retroactively to eligible students during the award year. All other aid for which you are eligible, will be disbursed the Thursday prior to the beginning of each semester or approximately one week after all of your financial aid holds are cleared and all of your financial aid To Do list items are received and completed.
If you do not have enough aid to cover fees because of the disbursement date of your Pell Grant, please contact our office and we will waive your late fee.
Students are not eligible to receive funding if beginning Fall semester with 60+ postbaccalaureate units. If you have completed 60 postbaccalaureate units before the Fall semester, a maximum unit hold will be placed on your financial aid. If you are in the process of finishing your degree or credential, complete and submit a Maximum Unit Appeal as soon as possible.