Coursework toward Program of Study (CPoS)

Coursework toward Program of Study (CPoS) refers to the courses you are taking toward your degree program. Federal financial aid regulations dictate that only courses that apply towards your degree program can be included in calculating your federal aid eligibility.  If you enroll in classes that are not part of your eligible Program of Study (degree program) your aid may be reduced.

Only courses required for degree completion can be used to determine your eligiblity for federal financial aid programs such as grants, work study, and loans and your enrollment status (full-time, half-time, etc.).


Why is this important?                                                          

Taking courses that are not required to complete your degree could result in receiving less or no federal aid or owing money back. Taking classes that are not in your Course Program of Study for your officially declared major or minor (if required for the program) may result in a reduction to your overall financial aid package.

**Courses that are not eligible cannot be counted toward your full-time enrollment status.**

The full-time cost of attendance (COA) requirement requirement says undergraduates must be enrolled in at least 12 eligible hours for full-time financial aid.

For example if only 9 of your 12 hours are in your Course Program of Study, your enrollment status will reflect you are not a full-time student (9 hours = 3/4 time enrollment status). Your COA and financial aid will be updated based on your 3/4 time enrollment status, which could reduce your federal, state, and institutional scholarships. Remember, financial aid cannot be awarded in excess of your specific cost of attendance.


  • The Minor must be required for the degree program; or
  • The Minor can be completed with general electives; or
  • With the student's permission, a credit from Title IV aid can be used to pay for a minor that is not required for the program.
  • Programs with flat tuition rates - Minors that are not required for the degree program can be covered over the required12 hours for full-time status, up to 18 hours
    • NOTE: Twelve credit hours MUST be part of your Course Program of Study to meet the full-time enrollment status requirements.

What should you do?

  1. Check MyMercer to be sure your major and minors are correctly declared and required for your degree program.
  2. If a minor is outside your degree program, check with your Financial Aid Counselor for other payment options.
  3. See your advisor to be sure you are registering for classes that fulfill your degree requirements.
  4. Check your financial aid in MyMercer for messages and updates to your financial aid.