What is Course Applicability?

Course applicability means a course is able to be paid for with federal financial aid.

Students can only use federal financial aid for courses that are required for their degree or certificate program. If you are taking a course that is not course applicable, then you cannot use federal financial aid to pay for it.

Course Applicability FAQ

Will I Be Notified If One of My Courses Is Ineligible?

Yes, you will receive a message in eServices if you are taking a course that is not eligible for federal financial aid.

From your eServices dashboard:

  1. Click Financial Aid
  2. Find the section titled FA Course Eligibility

Any courses that are not course applicable and therefore not eligible for federal financial aid will be marked with a red X in the column titled FA Eligible.

What If I Think My Course Should Be Eligible for Federal Financial Aid?

Visit the Welcome Desk in the Student Services building at our main campus if one or more of your classes has been marked as ineligible but you believe that it is required for your program of study. For assistance at the Natomas Center, please call (916) 485-6000.

If a counselor determines that a class that was marked as ineligible is actually eligible, the counselor will complete an override request. The results of the override will post to your eServices account the next business day.

What If My Course Is Paid for by the California College Promise Grant?

Your fees will remain waived if you received a California College Promise Grant. The California College Promise Grant covers all courses, even those that are not a requirement of your program of study.

What's the History of Course Applicability?

Financial aid programs are highly regulated. There is a long-standing requirement that colleges do not award federal financial aid for classes that do not directly apply to a financial aid-eligible degree or certificate program.

Institutional Liability

The US Department of Education has levied audit findings against several institutions for non-compliance with federal regulations regarding disbursement practices. Institutional scrutiny is at an all-time high to ensure accountability with federal financial aid policies and regulations.

If American River College were to fund courses that are not course applicable, it could result in sanctions. These sanctions include repayment of funds and possible loss of the college's ability to administer Title IV aid.

What Audit Process Is Used Use to Determine Eligibility?

American River College uses a course audit tool called Highpoint. This tool ensures that the classes a student is enrolled in meet the program's requirements for federal financial aid.

How Many Students Are Impacted by Course Applicability?

We tested eligibility for fall 2016 students and found that approximately 25% of students receiving financial aid had at least one class that did not meet course applicability requirements.

Where to Go for Help

Students can visit the Welcome Desk in the Welcome and Support Center building during the following hours:

July 1
10:00 am – 12:00 pm

July 3
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

July 9
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

July 11
10:00 am – 12:00 pm

July 16
10:00 am – 12:00 pm

July 19
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

July 22
10:00 am – 12:00 pm

July 25
2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

July 29
10:00 am – 12:00 pm

Please arrive early, as the wait-list is first come first serve and fills quickly.