Terms and Conditions

Federal, state, or institutional aid awarded or adjusted is indicated on the award letter and is noted on the award summary on DukeHub. By accepting the award funds, students agree to the terms and conditions set out below.

Messages associated with certain awards will be listed on the award letter as well as in DukeHub for any awards offered. Acceptance of these terms and conditions includes acknowledgment of messages linked to specific programs.

Accepting your award on DukeHub certifies that you have read the terms and conditions and understand that the award messages on your DukeHub may change if your award package is adjusted.

The Karsh Office of Undergraduate Financial Support as well as the financial aid offices of the graduate and professional schools at Duke will communicate any changes to a student’s financial aid, including the terms and conditions, primarily through a student’s Duke email account and the DukeHub portal.  Students should monitor their accounts regularly.

General Terms

Federal, state, and institutional student financial aid (including scholarships) can be used only to pay the cost of attending Duke University. The cost of attendance includes direct costs such as tuition, fees, on-campus housing and meal plans, as well as indirect costs such as books, supplies, off-campus living expenses, transportation, and personal expenses.

Aid packages may require an adjustment to avoid an overaward, which is financial aid in excess of financial need. This will affect students who receive scholarships, fellowships or assistantships after federal aid has been awarded. Students are responsible for satisfying any balance due on their student account that is created by adjustments to their aid.

University and other scholarships cannot exceed the total cost of attendance. This limitation applies to all financial aid regardless of the source and is based on the cost of tuition and fees, housing, food, books and supplies, transportation, and personal expenses. Scholarships will be adjusted to ensure that this limit is not exceeded.

The Karsh Office of Undergraduate Financial Support as well as the Offices of Financial Aid for the Graduate and Professional Schools at Duke reserve the right on behalf of the University to review and cancel any award at any time because of changes in financial need, academic status, academic history, academic program, graduation, or program funding.

All loans, including but not limited to, Federal Direct Loans, Federal Direct PLUS Loans, and private loans, must be approved by the US Department of Education or the lender. The amounts shown may be our recommendation only and may be adjusted after the lender completes processing. Students must complete all loan requirements such as Entrance Counseling and the Master Promissory Note. 

An origination fee will be assessed on each Direct Loan disbursement. This is a mandatory fee charged by the U.S. Department of Education to help offset the cost of processing the loan. The loan origination fee is a percentage of the amount of each loan and is subtracted from each disbursement prior to being applied to the student account. This means the money a student receives will be less than the amount he/she actually borrows. Students are responsible for repaying the entire amount borrowed and not just the amount received. For more information about current loan origination fees, please visit the Federal Student Aid website. Within 14 days of disbursement, students may contact their school's financial aid office and cancel all or a portion of their loan(s).

Undergraduates may receive a Federal Pell Grant at only one school per term.

University and other scholarships, state or university need-based grants, Federal Pell Grants, and Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants are restricted to undergraduate students pursuing a first bachelor’s degree.

All federally funded financial aid is restricted to United States citizens and eligible non-citizens as defined by the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

If Federal Work-Study is offered in the financial aid award package, the amount of work-study shown is the maximum amount of money a student can expect to earn during the academic year. Earnings are paid directly to the student based on hours worked and cannot be credited to the student account for satisfaction of university fees.

Disbursement of this aid, except work-study earnings, will be in the form of direct credit to the student account. Any credit balances created as a result of this aid will be disbursed according to guidelines established by the Bursar’s office.

Gift assistance (scholarships, fellowships, and grants) that exceeds tuition, mandatory fees, books and required supplies is subject to U.S. income taxation. Amounts used for housing and food are considered taxable income. We encourage students to maintain careful records and consult their tax preparer as needed.

Enrollment Requirements

For the purpose of determining final financial aid eligibility, enrollment is defined as total units enrolled as of midnight on the last day to drop classes without a “W” based on the academic calendar. Course credits attempted for evaluating satisfactory academic progress are also set based on this date.

Duke assumes all students, graduate and undergraduate, will attend full-time.  Undergraduate full-time enrollment is defined as 3-4 course credits per semester (see individual graduate/professional schools by program for each school’s full-time definition). In the event a student is enrolled less than full-time and awarded University scholarships, grants and/or waivers he/she will not receive the full-time award. The Duke Scholarship or Grant and Federal SEOG Grant will be prorated based on the number of course credits the student is enrolled in each semester. Students who attend less than half-time, defined as 1 course credit for undergraduates, are not eligible for University scholarships, grants, or waivers.

Full Federal Pell Grants for undergraduates require full-time enrollment of 3-4 course credits; half-time grants require 2 course credits; and less-than-half-time grants require 1 course credit per semester.

Undergraduates can only receive Pell Grant funds from one school at a time. The maximum time frame for Pell Grant eligibility (set by federal law) is 12 full-time semesters or the equivalent of six years. Since the amount of a scheduled Pell Grant award a student can receive each award year is equal to 100%, the six-year equivalent is 600%. Students will receive a notice from the Office of Undergraduate Financial Support when getting close to time limit.

If a student receives a Federal Direct Loan, Federal Direct PLUS Loan, or Federal Direct Graduate PLUS Loan, he/she must be enrolled at least half-time, defined as at least 2 course credits per semester for undergraduate students. Please see individual graduate/professional schools by program for half-time definitions.

The Cost of Attendance for the year is predicated on full-time enrollment, defined as 4 course credits per semester for undergraduate students. (Please see individual graduate/professional schools by program for full-time definition.) Failure to enroll full-time will require the respective financial aid office to adjust the student budget based on enrollment status. This could negatively impact the award or create an over award if the student has received 100% of his/her funds based on full-time enrollment.


Students are required to notify their financial aid office at Duke of any scholarships, loans, or other forms of assistance from sources outside the University. Credit for outside aid will not be posted on the bill until the funds are received by the University’s Bursar. Students are liable for the bill regardless of the status of the outside aid. If we do not receive payment for the outside aid by the billing due date of each term, students are responsible for paying the balance in full or setting up a payment plan.

Students are required to notify their respective Office of Financial Aid of periods of less-than-full-time enrollment, periods of non-enrollment, periods of study abroad, internships, candidacy for graduation, and other plans that may affect enrollment during the time covered by their award. Failure to notify the office within the appropriate time frame could negatively impact the award or create an over award if the student has received 100% of awarded funds based on full-time enrollment or other eligibility requirements.

Students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid as defined by their school at Duke.

Students selected for federal verification must submit all requested documents to the financial aid office to receive federal funding. Documentation must be received by April 30th of the aid year in which federal funds are to be applied. For instance, students selected for verification in the 2024-2025 aid year must submit verification documents by April 30th of 2025 to receive federal funding. If a student returns from a leave of absence and begins the year in Summer Session 1, that student will have until June 10th to submit verification documentation.

If a student withdraws from the University during a term or earns no passing grades for a term (which may be considered an unofficial withdrawal), eligibility for the financial aid already disbursed may be affected. Students may be required to repay significant amounts of financial aid. Failure to repay these funds may prevent students from re-enrolling at the University; may prevent release of academic transcripts to transfer to another institution; may result in the account being referred to a collection agency; and may result in a damaged credit rating.

Scholarship recipients must meet the criteria for consideration and/or renewal of their institutional scholarship as defined by their School at the University.

By accepting a scholarship award, students authorize Duke to release information about them and their scholarship to the media, the donor, and University officials.

Certain programs may require students to meet specific eligibility requirements. If a student is deemed ineligible due to failure to meet certain eligibility requirements, financial aid will be withdrawn. Restrictions concerning specific programs should be reviewed by consulting with a financial aid counselor. Messages associated with certain awards are listed on the award letter as well in DukeHub. Acceptance of these terms and conditions includes acknowledgment of messages linked to specific programs.

Students must re-apply for federal aid annually by submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Application procedures and deadlines are outlined on the financial aid website for each school at the University.

Necessary Action

Students acknowledge that they have read these terms and conditions by accepting the aid posted to their account or by actively accepting loans and/or work study awards. 

In addition, students must notify Duke of any outside aid/scholarships by emailing finaid@duke.edu or submitting notification of an outside scholarship from any third-party entity via mail.

Students must also notify Duke of any changes to full-time enrollment by emailing their school’s financial aid office (finaid@duke.edu for undergraduates) or stopping by the office and consulting with a financial aid counselor.

Acceptance of this aid does not satisfy payment of university tuition and fees. Students must follow all billing instructions from the Bursar’s office to prevent any penalties associated with the student bill.