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Financial Aid and Scholarships

Background and Regulations

While academic policies at UCLA and in the UC system do not require instructors to take attendance, federal student aid regulations require that institutions must be able to document that each student aid recipient began some type of academic activity in each course, for which students may receive financial aid. Academic activity is defined in federal regulations:

(7)(i) ‘‘Academic attendance’’ and ‘‘attendance at an academically-related activity’’—

(A) Include, but are not limited to—

  1. Physically attending a class where there is an opportunity for direct interaction between the instructor and students;
  2. Submitting an academic assignment;
  3. Taking an exam, an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instruction;
  4. Attending a study group that is assigned by the institution;
  5. Participating in an online discussion about academic matters; and
  6. Initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a question about the academic subject studied in the course; and

(B) Do not include activities where a student may be present, but not academically engaged, such as—

  1. Living in institutional housing;
  2. Participating in the institution’s meal plan;
  3. Logging into an online class without active participation; or
  4. Participating in academic counseling or advisement.

(ii) A determination of ‘‘academic attendance’’ or ‘‘attendance at an academically-related activity’’ must be made by the institution; a student’s certification of attendance that is not supported by institutional documentation is not acceptable.

Commencement of Academic Activity Certification

These regulations apply to all undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Class instructors must communicate directly with the Financial Aid Scholarships Office, if a student on a class roster has not begun attendance and has not otherwise engaged in any course related activities. The instructor will need to send a message via MyUCLA under topic “Financial Aid: Commencement of Academic Activity” and indicate that the student did not start participation in the class. Please, include the student’s UCLA ID number and the course name in the message.

Financial Aid and Scholarships and the Registrar’s Office are working to improve the process so that, in the future, the instructors will be able to document commencement of academic activity via the options outlined below. In the meantime; however, we require direct reporting in order to stay compliant with federal regulations.

  • Faculty utilizing the CCLE environment can elect to use one of these options by end of Week 3 where data from the system can be used to confirm academic activity and directly update the MyUCLA class roster:
    • Use the “attendance” feature
    • Create and assign a quiz
    • Create and assign an assignment
    • Taking an exam, an interactive tutorial, or computer-assisted instructions
    • Attending a study group that is assigned by the institution
  • Capture course-based peer counseling and workshop participation data
  • Capture tutoring/prep work for a class assignment
  • Faculty teaching impacted classes can utilize a faculty drop procedure for students who have not begun attendance in the course.
  • Faculty can take roll or utilize other academic related activities (e.g., in-class assignments, activities captured in other learning management tools, clicker data) up to the end of Week 3 by updating the MyUCLA class roster for each student.

Failure to provide the date of the last known academic activity (e.g., date they last attended class, completed an assignment, or participate in a discussion, etc.) will result in the University being required to cancel all financial aid for the students that did not qualify to receive the aid.