RPP Registration and Tuition Frequently Asked Questions
When is the new fee schedule effective?
The changes to the registration and fee structure are being implemented coincident with the start of the new federal aid year (Summer 2012).
What are the changes?
Beginning with the 2012 summer term and forward, SIT graduate students engaged in an off-campus academic term will:
- Register for half-time enrollment and be charged a standard tuition fee for each RPP registration (course numbers: MPIM-6701, -6702, -6703)
- Be eligible to apply for financial aid and in-school deferments of federal loans
- Be actively engaged with their faculty advisor and complete academic requirements, as defined by the faculty of their department
- Receive a grade at the end of each term, as appropriate to their performance
- Be subject to defined consequences for failure to meet established academic standards
Why the change requiring a new RPP registration and billing process?
Recent regulatory changes aim to prevent excessive student loan borrowing (and successive deferment or defaults) when borrowers are not making satisfactory academic progress. Institutions like SIT that accept federal financial aid have obligations with respect to achieving that aim. In accordance with the new regulations, SIT is structuring its academic calendar and tuition/billing schedule so that students must be enrolled and making progress toward their degrees during off-campus phases. This change eliminates the possibility of students taking out loans or obtaining deferments for periods when they are not actively working toward the degree.
The academic credit distribution of the RPP remains the same:
“Students may register for the RPP any time after their successful completion of the on-campus phase, that is, after having received passing grades in all of their required coursework. The standard RPP period consists of three consecutive semesters for a total of twelve months” (SIT Course Catalog 2011-2012, pg. 16).
As before, the RPP phase follows two semesters of on-campus coursework. Each RPP registration carries four credits. Three, four-credit semesters of RPP (12 credits) is the degree requirement. Students are encouraged to complete the RPP and Capstone requirement in three consecutive semesters.
Explain the change in the way the tuition is charged.
Previously, students paid $5,510 and were immediately and automatically enrolled in the next 3 semesters (the RPP). Under the new structure, students must take the initiative to register for those terms in which they intend to make academic progress. Students must register for three 4-credit courses and will be billed $2,000/course; typically, this will be accomplished by pursuing one 4-credit course in each of three off-campus semesters. Rather than a single, up-front payment of $5,510, there will be three $2,000 payments made as courses are taken.
Historically, if a student did not successfully complete the Capstone at the end of the three RPP semesters, they could maintain their student status by participating in the Enrollment Maintenance Program, paying a $600 fee per semester. This program is no longer available.
Will all students be affected by these changes?
- Students who register and successfully complete Capstone in July 2012 are not affected if in their third semester of RPP.
- Anyone who has paid their $5,510 and will successfully complete Capstone within three RPP semesters is also not affected.
- Students who were on the Enrollment Maintenance Program have one opportunity to petition and successfully Capstone in July 2012, November 2012, February 2013 or May 2013 for a special $600 fee. They must register to do so. Upon registration, EMP students will be charged a one-time $600 fee. This fee will not be available following the 2012-2013 academic year; students in this category who do not successfully complete Capstone by May 2013 and choose to register at a later date will be charged $2000 (or whatever the current fee is at that time).
- Current on-campus students who have not yet undertaken their first RPP semester will follow the new procedures for RPP registration and be billed $2000 per semester.
- Students who have paid the three-semester RPP fee, have completed three RPP terms, but have not yet successfully Capstoned, and have not maintained enrollment status have one opportunity to petition and successfully Capstone in either November 2012, February 2013 or May 2013 for a special $600 fee as long as this is within the five year limit for degree completion. They must register to do so. Upon registration these students, will be charged a one-time $600 fee. This fee will not be available following the 2012-2013 academic year; students in this category who do not successfully Capstone by May 2013 and choose to register at a later date will be charged $2000 (or whatever the current fee is at the time).
I am a new student in academic year 2011-2012. What happens if I finish my RPP phase in two semesters?
The degree requirement is twelve credits of RPP; the fee is linked to each registration in MPIM-6701, -6702, and 6703. Since you are billed per RPP course, you will be billed $2,000 for each four-credit course. It is therefore theoretically possible to complete the RPP in two terms, but the cost of the RPP would still be $6,000 because you would still be enrolling in three courses.
If you don’t successfully Capstone by the end of the third RPP semester for which you register, you will have to register for a fourth semester and pay the $2,000 charge to successfully complete and Capstone. You must have student status in the term in which you successfully Capstone.
How does this change impact students already enrolled in the former Enrollment Maintenance Program?
The Enrollment Maintenance Program has been eliminated. To complete your degree, you must register for the semester in which you plan to Capstone. If you register to Capstone in November 2012, February 2013 or May 2013 you will be billed a special $600 fee. If you Capstone after May 2013, you will be charged the $2000 fee. You may apply for financial aid in any semester for which you are registered.
What if I need to take time off from working on my Capstone and I’m not ready to present it? Do I have to register every semester even though I am not working on the Capstone?
No. You only need to register if you are engaged with SIT in making progress toward your Capstone, or if you will be presenting your Capstone. When you are not actively engaged with SIT and working on or presenting your Capstone, you are not an active student and need not register. Without student status, you are not be eligible for federal financial aid or loan deferments. You may also need to request a Leave of Absence, discussed below.
Do I still have five years to complete my degree?
Yes, students may take up to five years from their date of matriculation to complete the degree requirements.
How does my registration status affect my financial aid eligibility?
Financial aid eligibility is linked to students’ enrollment status. Students must have at least half-time status to be eligible for financial aid. Please contact the Director of Financial Aid for counseling regarding your specific situation.
Do I have to register for RPP, or can I take a Leave of Absence?
A student may take a personal leave of absence with the permission of the Dean of the Graduate Institute. A plan for completion of the degree program must be submitted to the degree chair, the registrar and the student’s academic advisor at the time the permission is sought. A personal leave of absence may not exceed two semesters.
Note: While on Leave of Absence, “withdrawn” status is reported to the National Student Clearinghouse and loans become due for repayment.
If I do my third RPP semester but do not Capstone that semester, will I have to register for a fourth RPP?
Yes. Students must be registered for an RPP course in the semester in which they Capstone.
What happens to my student loans if I don’t register in summer and fall, and instead take a Leave of Absence until Spring 2013 to register my third RPP and Capstone?
While on Leave of Absence, “withdrawn” status is reported to the National Student Clearinghouse. Federal student loans will become due for repayment six months following a student’s last date of enrollment.
How do I register?
Please read the RPP Registration Instructions (PDF)
As you make your plan for degree completion with your academic advisor, please talk to the Registrar and/or the Financial Aid office if you have further questions.
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