Paying For School

Financial Aid and Coursework

HACC offers many different degree, certificate and diploma programs for students to enter the workforce or transfer to a four-year school.

Most of the programs offered at the College are eligible for financial aid. However, some programs and/or coursework have financial aid limitations.

Please note:

  • Students who apply for financial aid and are registered in an ineligible program will see a notation on their myHACC account under the financial aid tab.
  • Pennsylvania State Grants are limited to students enrolled in associate degree programs at HACC.
  • An ineligible course is any course not required for a student’s official program of study (major) at HACC.
  • Only required courses or classes for an eligible program of study at HACC qualify for federal and state financial aid.
  • Federal and state financial aid will not pay for ineligible courses or classes. This means students are responsible for the cost of any ineligible courses and would need to pay out of pocket prior to the tuition due date.
  • Ineligible courses for which a student does not pay out of pocket will be dropped from the student’s schedule.


The following types of aid are impacted by ineligible courses:

  • Federal financial aid includes:
    • The Pell Grant
    • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
    • Federal Work Study (FWS) 
    • Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
    • Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan 
    • Federal PLUS Loan
  • State financial aid includes:
    • The PA State Grant
    • The Chafee Education and Training Grant
    • PA Ready to Succeed Scholarship
    • PA Targeted Industry Program
    • PA Blind or Deaf Higher Education Beneficiary Grant
    • PA Fostering Independence Tuition Waiver Program 
    • PA Partnerships for Access to Higher Education Program
    • PA Post-secondary Educational Gratuity Program 


Developmental courses typically begin with a "0". For example, ENGL 050, MATH 090, and ENGL 003 are all developmental courses.

The College does not count developmental courses towards the required credits to complete your degree.

Please note:

  • You may only use federal financial aid to pay for developmental coursework until you have attempted 30 developmental credits.
  • We do not count English as a Second Language (ESL) courses toward this 30-credit limit.

There are limits on the number of developmental credits you can count toward your full-or part-time status for the PA State Grant and PA Ready to Succeed For up to a maximum of two full-time semesters or four part-time semesters, developmental credits may be counted as follows:

  • You may qualify for a full time PA State Grant and PA Ready to Succeed by combining a minimum of six degree credits (100 level or above) with up to six developmental credits.
  • You may qualify for a part time PA State Grant and PA Ready to Succeed by combining a minimum of three degree credits (100 level or above) with up to three developmental credits.

ESL classes are eligible for federal financial aid and do not count toward the federal 30-credit developmental limit. However, ESL courses do count as developmental courses for PA State Grants as applied in the section above.

To ensure our students find success at HACC, the College offers courses in a variety of formats. To learn more about our course options, please visit this webpage

Please note:

  • Online or blended course credits count toward federal financial aid without restriction.
  • The PA State Grant Program has specific policies regarding eligibility for online and blended courses. The program is administered by the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA). For additional information, please visit

At HACC, it’s our mission to help you succeed, and educational plans help you stay on track. Please see the frequently asked questions related to educational plans:



Student Question: HACC’s Response:
What is an educational plan? An educational plan is a map of the courses you will take, when you will take them, and how you will progress toward the completion of your degree.
Why do I need an educational plan? To be compliant with Title IV regulations for federal financial aid, HACC must ensure that all students take only courses required for their program of study (major), and the educational plan helps us track that progress. 
How often do I need to set up an educational plan? You and your advisor will set up a comprehensive educational plan for your studies at HACC; however, it will likely need to be reviewed and updated each semester.
How do I develop an educational plan?  You will develop your educational plan with your advisor. 
Where can I view my educational plan? You can view your educational plan at any time in Degree Works.
How does an educational plan help me? 

This plan will guide you through your studies at HACC.  

By following your educational plan, you will:
  • Stay on track to graduate 
  • Avoid taking unnecessary courses
  • Save time and money
Why are holds applied to my account during the educational plan review process?

An educational plan hold is applied at the start of the registration cycle for all students who have completed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  

This hold stays in place until:
  • You have an educational plan 
  • Your courses have been reviewed by an advising review team to ensure they are aid eligible 

The College applies an educational plan hold to your account to prevent the disbursement of financial aid for ineligible courses. 

Once your classes are approved, the educational plan hold is removed and a registration hold is applied to “lock in” your eligible registration. The registration hold will show in your account as an “Approved Class Hold.” 

To change your classes while this Approved Class Hold is in place, you must work with the advising office to ensure any schedule changes keep you eligible for financial aid.

What is an aid-eligible class? An aid-eligible class is one that meets a requirement for your program of study (major) at HACC. Classes that do not meet a requirement for your program of study (major) are not eligible for financial aid.  
Can I take classes for transfer to another institution?

Financial aid cannot be used for classes that are intended solely for transfer. To be eligible for aid, the class must meet a requirement for the student’s official HACC program of study (major). 

Guest students who would like to use financial aid are not eligible to do so through HACC and should work with their home institution to arrange for a consortium agreement.