On March 19, 2012, the Louisiana Student Financial Assistance Commission amended Sections 301 of the Scholarship and Grant Program Rules to change the definition of academic year (college) to include summer sessions.
Beginning with the 2011-2012 academic year and thereafter, the academic year begins with the fall term of the award year and concludes immediately before the next fall term commences.
All intersessions and summer sessions are included.
This change applies only to TOPS Opportunity, Performance, and Honors award recipients.
Reminder: The TOPS Opportunity, Performance, and Honors awards will not pay for college summer school except when:
- the summer session is required in your degree program for graduation and you enrolled for at least the minimum number of hours required for the degree program.
- you can complete your program's graduation requirements in the summer session.
- the course(s) taken during the summer session is required for graduation in the program in which you are enrolled and is only offered during the summer session.
- the summer session is conducted for a nonacademic program in which you are enrolled.
- you have earned at least 60 hours of college credit.
Students who do not meet the above criteria may always attend a summer session at their own expense.
NOTE: An award made for summer school expends one semester or term of TOPS eligibility. For more information, please visit the (LOSFA) Louisiana Office of Student Financial Assistance website (link below).
ENROLLMENT AND CREDIT HOUR REQUIREMENTS:
- You must enroll full-time each term, remain continuously enrolled and earn (PASS with a “D” or better) at least 24 credit hours during each Academic Year. (Summer sessions are optional.)
- The Academic Year begins with the fall semester or term, includes the winter term (if applicable), the spring semester or term and ends with the summer session. If you have earned at least 24 hours prior to the summer session, you are not required to attend the summer session to maintain your award. However, if you have not earned 24 hours by the end of the spring semester/quarter, you must enroll in and earn enough hours during the summer session to meet the 24 hour requirement.
- If you enrolled as a first-time, full-time student in the middle of the Academic Year (spring semester or winter/spring quarter), you will not be required to earn 24 hours that year.
- Credits from Advanced Placement, CLEP, or Credit by Exam are not included in Academic Year Earned Hours.
- You must earn 24 hours even if you drop courses, change majors or transfer to another school. Failure to earn 24 hours will result in the cancelation of your TOPS Tech Award at the end of the Academic Year unless granted an exception for cause.
- The grade for courses reported as “Incomplete” will be counted as “F” unless a subsequent report from your school shows otherwise.
- If you must leave school completely during the semester or quarter, or if you transfer to another eligible institution after the semester or quarter has begun, you should officially resign with the Registrar’s Office so that you do not receive failing grades in all of the courses in which you were enrolled. If you do not, your TOPS Tech Award may be jeopardized. If you resign, your award will be canceled and you must submit a Request for Exception form to be considered for an exception.
For more information about TOPS, visit LOSFA or call 800-259-5626, ext. 1012.