University of Texas at El Paso

Financial Aid

204 Academic Services Building
Phone: 915.747.5204
Fax: 915.747.5631

DIRECTOR: Raul H. Lerma

The Office of Student Financial Aid assists qualified students in meeting the costs of college education. No person is excluded from participating on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, veteran status, disability, or sexual orientation. We welcome inquiries by mail, e-mail, telephone and personal visits. Appropriate forms are available at El Paso-area high schools in the counselors' offices and at our office.


The amount and type of financial assistance provided through educational loans, grants, and college work-study programs follow existing federal, state, and local regulations and policies governing financial aid programs. Priority is given to UTEP undergraduate students with documented need, who meet academic eligibility criteria, who are enrolled on a full-time basis (12 hours or more), and whose applications are received by the priority date of March 15 each year for the upcoming academic year.

Financial aid awards are based on financial need and academic merit.  To apply, a student must submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine financial need for the aid period. The cost of attending the University is the student budget.  The student’s financial resources, combined with those of the student’s parents if the student depends on them, compromise the  student/family contribution. Financial assistance includes all non-Title IV scholarships, grants, loans, or other assistance, such as Veterans Educational Benefits.  The difference among the student budget, family contribution, and financial assistance determines the student’s financial need. For a detailed breakdown of direct and indirect educational costs, students should contact the Financial Aid Office.


March 15 is the application submission priority date for each school year. All forms and required documents are due and must be completely processed by the Office of Student Financial Aid by this date for one to be considered for the maximum aid available. The processing of financial aid documents can take at least four weeks. Late applications will be considered on the basis of available funds.

Information that UTEP obtains from a student’s need analysis is used to determine financial need and the types of awards for which one is qualified. Awards fall into two categories: (1) gift aid, which includes grants and (2) self-help funds, which include the College Work-Study Program and long-term educational loans. The amount of aid awarded, combined with the student’s resources (student/family contribution), cannot exceed the student budget. 

Once the documented need is established, the Office of Student Financial Aid will make every effort to meet that need. The financial aid award will be packaged from a variety of sources and will be based on the financial need, program eligibility, and availability of funds. In some instances, the total award might be less than the documented need because of fund limitations, program eligibility requirements, or other factors.

If a student wishes to apply for financial assistance for the spring semester, he or she will be considered based on the availability of funds after UTEP receives the financial aid documents.

Students should refer to the Tuition and Fees Emergency Loan section of this catalog for non-need emergency loan fund programs.

If a student is subject to Selective Service registration, she or he must file a statement indicating whether one has registered for or is exempt from service registration, in order to be eligible to apply for federal or state financial aid.


The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) is mandated by the Department of Education (DOE) to establish minimum Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards for students receiving financial aid.  UTEP’s SAP policy encourages a student to progress, in a successful and timely manner, toward completion of their program of study (degree) for which the student is receiving financial aid.  At UTEP, SAP is comprised of both a qualitative standard and a quantitative standard (see below for explanations). These standards apply to the student’s entire academic history, whether financial aid was received or not, and to all types of aid awarded (federal and state grants, loans and work-study).  UTEP’s Office of Student Financial Aid will update a student’s SAP status at the end of every semester.  A student may check their current SAP status by going to in the Check Status tool/portal at after all course grades are posted.  A student will receive notification via a letter if they are not meeting any of the following SAP requirements: low GPA and/or failing to complete 75% of attempted hours* and/or exceeding the “maximum timeframe” (see below for further explanation of these items).

* NOTE: Attempted hours include transferable hours that count only toward a student’s degree plan at UTEP as well as all hours attempted at UTEP (see measureable progress section II. b. for more information on attempted hours).  Students are responsible for determining into what courses they should enroll, in order to comply with this requirement, by following their degree plan.  Degree plans can be found in the “Degree Evaluation” link, in student’s Goldmine account, under the “Student Records” link.

Qualitative and Quantitative Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards

  • Qualitative Standard--Grade Point Average (GPA)
    Grade point average (GPA) is the qualitative cumulative measurement used to track the quality of the student’s academic performance at UTEP.  To remain eligible to benefit from Financial Aid, a student must maintain at least a 2.00 GPA if pursuing an undergraduate degree, and a 3.00 GPA if pursuing a graduate degree.
    • Students pursuing certification programs must meet the GPA requirements of the certification to remain eligible.
    • Certain financial aid programs (ACG, SMART, TEACH Grant, TEXAS Grant, and the UTEP Promise) may require a higher GPA standard for those students pursuing an undergraduate degree. The table below illustrates the financial aid programs and the applicable GPA requirement by academic level.

Academic Level

Financial Aid Program

GPA Requirement











2.0 Initial
2.5 to renew

UTEP Promise



All other aid



All Aid


Alternative Certification

All Aid


  • Quantitative Standard: Maximum Timeframe and Progression Toward A Degree or Certificate
    The “quantitative standard,” as defined by the DOE, tracks the amount of credit hours attempted toward completion of an eligible degree program and whether the appropriate proportion of those hours are completed without surpassing the maximum number of hours allowed for such degree.  (The DOE provides a glossary of terms at
    • Maximum Timeframe
      Undergraduate and graduate students, receiving financial aid, cannot attempt more than 150% of the published length of the degree program as measured by credit hours.  (Students may view their “Degree Evaluation” online, in their Goldmine account, under the “Student Records” link).  For example:
      • If the length of a student’s undergraduate academic program (degree plan) is 120 total credit hours, then the “maximum timeframe” would equal150% of 120 credit hours for a total of 180 credit hours.
      • To calculate “maximum timeframe” simple multiply 1.5 by the length of the degree program in credit hours to arrive at the maximum attempted credit hours allowed before financial aid eligibility runs out.
      • Completed Degree or Change of Major
        Credit hours obtained in a completed degree (i.e. a certificate, associates, bachelors, masters, etc.)  will not affect a student’s “maximum timeframe” by beginning a new degree. 
      • In addition, students who change their major will not have the attempted credit hours count against them.

    Measurable Progress--Progression Toward A Degree or Certificate
    The DOE calls progress toward a degree or certificate “measurable progress.” “Measurable progress” is determined by the cumulative completion of at least 75% of all attempted hours toward a student’s degree plan in an academic year.  For UTEP this determination is made only during the summer session. 

    For example,

    If a freshmen student has attempted 12 total credit hours in the fall, plus 12 total hours in the spring, plus 6 total hours in the summer, he/she has attempted 30 total credit hours for the academic year.

    Assuming the student has earned/passed 21 of the 30 total credit hours attempted, the student would be making satisfactory academic progress; or

    To calculate this it would be 30 (total attempted hours during an academic year) x .75 = 21 earned/passed hours, the minimum required to meet “measurable progress,” as defined by the DOE.

    Certain financial aid programs (ACG, SMART, TEACH Grant, TEXAS Grant, and the UTEP Promise) may require a specific number of completed/earned hours to remain eligible within an academic year (fall, spring, summer).  For example, the TEXAS Grant requires the completion of 24 completed/earned hours.  See the financial aid web site for details on each program at  All programs, however, fall under the “measurable progress” DOE rule of 75% completion of attempted hours.

    The chart below is a guide to determine if the “measurable progress” standard is being met. To find out the number of attempted credit hours that a student must earned to remain in good standing for satisfactory academic progress, find the total number of hours attempted at UTEP in column A. The number found in column B is the minimum number of credit hours the student needs to have completed/earned to be making satisfactory progress.

    • A B   A B   A B   A B
      # of  Total Attempted Hours Need to complete
      75% of attempted hours
      # of  Total Attempted Hours Need to complete
      75% of attempted hours
      # of  Total Attempted Hours Need to complete
      75% of attempted hours
      # of  Total Attempted HourS Need to complete
      75% of attempted hours
      6 to 8 3 52 to 55 39 104 to 107 78 152 to 155 114
      9 to 11 6 56 to 59 42 108 to 111 81 156 to 159 117
      12 to 15 9 60 to 63 45 112 to 115 84 160 to 163 120
      16 to 19 12 64 to 67 48 116 to 119 87 164 to 167 123
      20 to 23 15 68 to 71 51 120 to 123 90 168 to 171 126
      24 to 27 18 72 to 75 54 124 to 127 93 172 to 175 129
      28 to 31 21 76 to 79 57 128 to 131 96 176 to 179 132
      32 to 35 24 80 to 83 90 132 to 135 99 180 to 183 135
      36 to 39 27 84 to 87 63 136 to 139 102 184 to 187 138
      40 to 43 30 88 to 91 66 140 to 143 105 188 to 191 141
      44 to 47 33 92 to 95 69 144 to 147 108 192 to 195 144
      48 to 51 36 96 to 99 72 148 to 151 111 196 to 199 147
        100 to 103 75   200 to 203 150


  • Repeated Course(s): Students who repeat a course(s) to improve their GPA are cautioned that previously attempted hours will remain on their record and therefore could affect their “measurable progress.”
  • Modular Math: Modular math classes (MATH 1411 and MATH 1508) will not be counted in evaluating “measurable progress,” but they will be considered in measuring the “maximum timeframe.”
  • Grades Affecting Measurable Progress: The following grades are not considered hours completed/earned and will affect the 75% “measurable progress” requirement:
    No grade
    In Progress


Satisfactory Progress (SAP), Evaluation Time Frame, Probation, Termination, Good Semester, and Reestablishing Financial Aid Eligibility

  • SAP Evaluation Time Frame
    SAP is evaluated at the close of each term when grades are posted by the Registrar’s Office.
    • At the end of any term, if a student has reached their “maximum timeframe” they will receive a “termination” of financial aid letter.
    • Otherwise, at the end of the academic year, if a student is not meeting SAP they will receive notification, via a letter, that they are not meeting any of the SAP requirements: low GPA and/or failing to complete 75% of attempted hours and/or exceeding the “maximum timeframe.”
    • Students who have not completed the conditions stipulated in their appeal approval notification are subject to termination.
  • Probation
    Probation is grace period during which a student receives financial aid.  It is available to students, who for the first time in their academic career at UTEP fail to meet either their qualitative and/or the quantitative standard(s) noted above. Students are placed on probation for an academic year.
    Probation requirements consist of:
    • Meeting all SAP requirements (qualitative and quantitative standards) during the academic year on probation to continue receiving financial aid; otherwise, they will not be eligible and receive a letter of termination.
    • Proof of attendance in one of the Office of Student Financial Aid’s Information Sessions on financial literacy the first semester after being placed on probation.  The student is expected to follow the instructions on the probation letter.
  • Termination
    Termination of financial aid may occur for the following reasons:
    • Students who do not meet the requirements of their probation, will not receive financial aid and receive a letter of termination.
    • Students who do not complete the conditions stipulated in their appeal approval notification, will not receive financial aid and receive a letter of termination.
    • Students who have reached their “maximum timeframe” will not receive financial aid and receive a letter of termination.
    • Students who are not meeting any of the SAP requirements (low GPA and/or failing to complete 75% of attempted hours and/or exceeding the “maximum timeframe”) will not receive financial aid and receive a letter to that effect.

At this point, in order to be reinstated, a student will need to complete a “good semester” or reestablish financial aid eligibility.

  • Good Semester
    A “good semester” is required prior to the term for which a student wishes to receive financial aid.  A “good semester” is achieved when a student improves their academic performance.  A student must:
    • Register for at least 6 credit hours for which the student must pay (see number 7 under the appeals process chart).  Payment options are available at
    • Complete 75% of all attempted hours; and
    • Have a 2.00 GPA for their “good semester.”
  • Reestablishing Financial Aid Eligibility
    A student may regain federal student aid eligibility after:
    • The student improves their academic performance to meet the school’s SAP standards noted above; or
    • The student successfully appeals their Financial Aid termination.

Appeal Process

An appeal process is available to any student who is ineligible for financial aid but has extenuating circumstances that prevented him or her from making satisfactory progress.  If a student has grounds for an appeal, the student needs to come to the Office of Student Financial Aid (Academic Services Building, room 204) to obtain an appeal form. 

Below are some examples of extenuating circumstances.  (There may be other extenuating circumstances not listed).

Extenuating Circumstance

Documentation Type

1. Death in the immediate family

Death Certificate or News Paper Clip

2. Accidents

Insurance Claim/Police report

3. Employment changes

Unexpected loss of job or attaining a job due to sudden events beyond their control. (Also, having to work because the parent suddenly lost their job.)

4. Legal matters such as divorce/separation

Court Order, Letter from Attorney

5. Military deployment


6. Medical

Bills, memo from Dr. Dr’s Notes; hospital statement

7. Academic performance improvement

Grades for one “Good Semester”*

8. Extenuating circumstances not listed in 1-7

Varied—check with the Office of Student Financial Aid**

*Students whose appeal is granted must ensure there are no prior balances.  Students can view prior term balances in their Goldmine account by clicking on “Student Records” then “Account Summary by Term.”  Questions on prior balances should be directed to Student Business Services (Academic Services Building 118).
**All extenuating circumstances must be documented.

If there are grounds for an appeal, the Office of Student Financial Aid will require the following documentation:

  1. An appeal form obtained from Office of Student Financial Aid (Academic Services Building 204);
  2. Supporting documentation relevant to the semester(s) in question; and
  3. A typed personal statement with an explanation of the circumstances which brought about the ineligibility and what has been done to remedy the situation.

Appeals are reviewed throughout the year for clearly defined extenuating circumstances (see chart above numbers 1-7). For extenuating circumstances (see chart above number 8) the student’s appeal will go through a Financial Aid Internal Review (FAIR) process.  The Financial Aid Internal Review (FAIR) will review the provided documentation and make a final decision.  Any student anticipating the necessity of requesting an appeal should be prepared to make payment arrangements for his or her own tuition and related fees, in the event the appeal result is unknown by the tuition deadline.  (Payment options are available at The result of the student’s appeal request will be known within a week. Student’s whose appeal is denied, will not receive financial aid.  If the appeal is denied the student will need to complete a “good semester” (see number IV above).

Special Considerations: Academic Fresh Start, Certifications, Non-degree, and Transfer Students

  1. Academic Fresh Start:   Students who return to UTEP under the Academic Fresh Start (see Academic Fresh Start section in the catalog for details) and apply for financial aid will be placed on probation (see probation requirements above) immediately after being granted an Academic Fresh Start.  Academic Fresh Start students will be eligible for financial aid during their probation period. Students, however, who have been taking classes after being granted an Academic Fresh Start and then apply for financial aid, must be making satisfactory academic progress.  Students should note that DOE requires an institution to count courses applicable to a student’s major (whenever taken) in evaluating a stu­dent’s satisfactory academic progress.
  2. Certifications:  A few certificate programs are eligible for financial aid.  To see the updated list of eligible certificate programs go to
  3. Non-degree: Non-Degree seeking students are not eligible for financial aid. To be considered for financial aid, a student must be enrolled in a degree granting program at UTEP.
  4. Transfer Students:  Undergraduate students, who begin their academic career at another postsecondary institution and subsequently transfer to UTEP, must have their transcript evaluated by this institution’s Undergraduate Admissions and Recruitment Office. Only transferred courses that apply to a student’s degree plan at UTEP will be counted toward their “maximum timeframe” of attempted hours.  For these students, financial aid eligibility is identical to that of UTEP students with comparable credit hours.


The following summaries of financial aid programs are provided for information only and are subject to legislative acts. Complete details of the programs are available through the Office of Student Financial Aid.


Pell Grant. The Federal Pell Grant Program is designed to assist eligible students in pursuing their first undergraduate degree by providing a foundation of aid to help pay the cost of attending school. If one has applied for the Federal Pell Grant, one will receive a Student Aid Report (SAR) within six weeks of applying. Undergraduate students must apply each year for the Federal Pell Grant. Satisfactory academic progress must be maintained in order for the student to remain eligible for the program.

Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG). The Federal SEOG is available for enrolled students who maintain good academic standing, who are making satisfactory academic progress, and who demonstrate exceptional financial need. Priority will be given to students who are enrolled full-time and observe the application submission deadlines.

Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG).
This is a federal grant available to you during the first and second years in college.  The recipient must be a U.S. citizen, eligible for a federal grant, enrolled full-time, and have completed a rigorous secondary school program of study.

SMART Grant (National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent).
This is a federal grant available to you during the third and fourth years of college.  The recipient must be a U.S. citizen, eligible for a federal grant, in the third or fourth year in four-year degree programs, enrolled full-time in an eligible major, and hold a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale in the program.

TEACH (Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education) Grant.
This program provides up to $4,000 a year in grants for undergraduate and graduate students who intend to teach full-time in high-need subject areas for at least four years at schools that serve low-income families.  Recipients who do not complete the teaching requirements must repay the grant as a Direct Unsubsidized Loan under the Direct Loan Program.   

Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnership Program (LEAPP). This is a state-matched grant awarded based on financial need. One can be a graduate or an undergraduate student and must be enrolled at least part-time. It is necessary to file a separate application for this grant.

Toward EXcellence, Access, and Success Grant Program (TEXAS Grant). This state program provides financial assistance to our students with demonstrated financial need who graduated from a Texas public or accredited high school in 1998 or later. One must also have completed the Recommended High School Curriculum or Advanced High School Program or higher to be considered for this program. Awarding of the TEXAS Grant is dependent upon the availability of funds. 

Texas Public Education Grant (TPEG). This grant provides financial assistance to undergraduate and graduate students with financial need who are enrolled at least half-time.

Student Employment (Federal College Work-Study Program). The Federal College Work-Study Program provides jobs for students who have documented financial need and wish to earn part of their educational expenses while going to school. Jobs cannot exceed 19 hours per week at both on-campus and off-campus worksites; jobs range from clerical to research. Student employees are paid at the prevailing minimum wage rate as prescribed by federal law. Both graduate and undergraduate students demonstrating financial need are eligible for participation in this program; full-time enrollment is required.

International, second-degree, and certification students, as well as unclassified graduates, are not eligible for the Work-Study Program. 

For more information, please visit  For work study opportunities, students may use UTEP login information to access the following portal and search for available positions:


The Office of Student Financial Aid offers assistance through various long-term loan programs. If the student is a first-time recipient of a long-term loan, she or he must attend Pre-Loan Counseling or Review Sessions prior to receiving the loan funds.

The long-term educational loans available through the Financial Aid Office have many repayment benefits. All of these loans defer payment while one is enrolled in a course of study at least half-time. Loans cannot be released and remaining loan amounts will be canceled if one drops below half-time status. Repayment is made on a monthly basis, not to exceed ten (10) years. Students should refer to the Financial Aid Web site for repayment information. Specific descriptions of the various loan programs are listed below.

Loan repayment begins at the end of a grace period or after one ceases to enroll half-time.  If one fails to make a payment after the grace period, the loan is in default. The lending agency can then take necessary action to obtain payment, including the use of a collection agency or court action. If this type of action is taken, the student is required to repay the entire loan plus costs of collection. 

Federal Perkins Loan. This loan requires evidence of financial need. The interest is 5% and does not accrue while you are enrolled at least half-time. There are provisions for partial cancellation and deferral for designated public service.  The Perkins Loan is dependent upon the availability of funds. 

Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan. Starting the fall 2010, UTEP will participate in the Direct Student Loan Program.  The Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan is a loan from the U.S. Department of Education made on the basis of the student’s financial need and other specific eligibility requirements.  The Federal government does not charge interest on these loans while the borrowers are enrolled at least half-time, during a six-month grace period, or during authorized periods of deferment.    

Federal Subsidized Stafford Student Loan. This loan requires evidence of financial need and is offered through participating lending institutions. The federal government will pay the interest as long as one is enrolled at least half-time. Under this plan, the recipient is responsible for selecting a bank or lending institution that participates in the Federal Family Education Loan Program. This loan is available for both undergraduate and graduate students.

Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan.  Starting the fall of 2010, UTEP will participate in the Direct Student Loan Program.  The Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan is a federally financed loan made to students meeting specific eligibility requirements.  Interest is charged throughout the life of the loan.  The borrower may choose to pay the interest charged on the loan or allow the interest to be capitalized (added to the loan principal) when the loan enters repayment.    

Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Student Loan. Unlike the Stafford Loan, this loan does not require evidence of financial need. In addition, the student is responsible for the interest on the loan while in school.

Tuition and Fees Loans. These loans are available for those who need assistance in meeting the costs of tuition and fees. They are available to resident, non-resident, and international students, and documentation of need as described elsewhere in this section is not required for these loans. The loan must be repaid during the semester in which it is obtained. An annual interest rate of 5% is charged. Please refer to the current Class Schedule for availability dates. Applications for these loans are available at:

Emergency Book Loans. Emergency book loan funds are available for students who are temporarily in need of funds for books. Regularly enrolled students are eligible if they do not have an outstanding emergency loan or previous semester balance. The loan must be repaid during the semester in which it is obtained. There is a $250.00 limit for book loans. A $10.00 service charge is added to each loan. One can apply for this loan at The funds are deposited into the Miner Gold Card to be used at the Campus Bookstore.

Hazlewood Act Exemption
The Hazlewood Act exempts eligible Texas veterans and their children from the payment of tuition and fees, other than property deposit and student services fees, subject to the following provisions. This exemption does not apply to fees for services or items that are not required for general enrollment or for specific courses that one might take.  Eligible veterans or children who are entitled to receive both federal and state veterans’ educational benefits for the same semester can do so only if the value of the federal benefit is less than the value of your tuition and fees, less property deposit and student services fees.

To be eligible to receive the Hazlewood Act Exemption as a veteran, one must demonstrate Texas residency at the time of entering military service; one must have classified as a Texas resident for tuition purposes for the semester for which the exemption was requested; one must have been honorably discharged from the service; have no federal veterans’ educational benefits, or if so, the value of the benefits is less than the value of tuition and fees, less property deposit and student services fees, for the relevant term; one must not be in default on an educational loan made or guaranteed by the State of Texas and one must not be in default on a federal loan if that default is the reason that one cannot use federal veterans’ benefits; one must have attempted fewer than 150 hours of college work, and must have followed the application procedures required by these provisions.  In addition, one must have served in the Armed Forces or in certain auxiliary services during World War I, World War II (except those who were discharged because they were over the age of 38 or because of a personal request), the Korean War, or served at least 181 days during the Cold War, Viet Nam, Grenada and Lebanon, Panama, Persian Gulf War, the National Emergency by Reason of Certain Terrorist Attacks, and any future national emergency declared by law.

As a child of a veteran, one is eligible for the Hazlewood Act Exemption if you are classified as a resident of Texas for the semester for which the exemption is requested and one must demonstrate that he or she is a dependent of a member of the U.S. Armed Forces who was a resident of Texas upon entry into the service and who died while in the service, is missing in action, whose death was caused by service-connected injuries, or who became totally disabled for purposes of employability as a result of a service-related injury, and have no federal veterans’ educational benefits based on the death or disability of a veteran parent.

To obtain this exemption as a veteran, a student must complete the Hazlewood Act Exemption Application, available in the Financial Aid Office. A copy of the Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty (DD-214) and proof of current status regarding eligibility for federal veterans’ educational benefits must be submitted.  As a child of a veteran applying for the exemption, the student must submit the application, along with proof regarding eligibility for federal benefits on the basis of the parent’s service-related death or disability, and documentation that the parent was a resident of Texas when he or she entered the service. It is highly recommended that the student complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine federal grant eligibility to obtain student loan history, and to expedite the awarding process. Complete information is available in the Financial Aid Office.