Financial Aid: How Do I Get My Money?
Learn how UCSD applies all types of financial aid to your student account.
When you're admitted, UCSD establishes a student account for you, identified by your personal ID number, which begins with "A." Your student account records all charges (and payments) for registration fees, housing, parking, and other miscellaneous fees.
Most financial aid awards (including scholarships) are credited to your UCSD student account each quarter. Work-study awards are paid to you in biweekly checks that you can either pick up at work or have deposited directly to your personal bank account.
Read more about the steps necessary for disbursing financial aid and scholarship awards below. (If you're expecting summer aid, you can also read additional notes on Summer Session aid disbursement.)
- You must be enrolled in at least 6 units (not including wait-listed courses).
- You must not have any holds on your student account.
- Your Financial Aid file must be complete.
- Make sure you've submitted all required documents to the Financial Aid Office.
- Check your UCSD e-mail inbox for any messages from the Financial Aid Office about updating your file.
- Check your financial aid award status online to verify that you've submitted all required documents.
- You must sign a Master Promissory Note for each Federal Direct loan and each Grad PLUS loan.
- You must sign another Master Promissory Note and Information Sheet for each Perkins loan.
- Parents must sign a Master Promissory Note for each Parent PLUS loan.
- You must complete entrance loan counseling.
- Check your financial aid award status online to verify that you've met all requirements.
- Financial aid awards will be divided equally by the number of quarters you'll attend (usually 3).
- Financial aid pays your costs in the following order:
- Registration fees
- All other charges owed to the university according to their due dates (this may include Bookstore or parking charges, among other things)
- Financial aid and scholarship disbursement dates vary from quarter to quarter. Disbursements begin in September (for fall quarter), January (for winter quarter), and March (for spring quarter).
- Financial aid disbursements for Summer Session and study abroad and exchange programs may differ.
- Your financial aid credit is automatically refunded to you at the beginning of each quarter, after all fees and charges are paid.
- If you have a housing contract, the Financial Aid Office strongly recommends that you set it up on the quarterly installment plan, because when your housing payments are evenly distributed throughout the academic year, your financial aid awards are more likely to cover them each quarter.
- A refund check will be sent to you by mail or deposited directly to your bank account. The refund check appears as a charge on your bill to bring your account balance to zero.
- You're responsible for any additional charges placed on your student account after the refund goes through.
- If any financial aid funds are disbursed late in the quarter, these funds may be included in the following quarter's refund. Contact Student Business Services if you need these funds earlier.
- Learn more about financial aid credit balances on your student account.
- You'll be paid an hourly wage for the number of hours you work.
- You'll receive your work-study check every other week.
- You'll receive a check made payable to you, or (if you make arrangements with your employer) your work-study check will be directly deposited into your personal bank account.
- Read more about work-study.