MAP Eligibility Requirements
Postsecondary institutions approved to award MAP grants are those that offer a program of collegiate study directly applicable toward the attainment of an associate or baccalaureate degree, or a program yielding a certificate, diploma, or associate degree in health education. For eligible institutions with campuses in multiple states, only campuses located in Illinois are eligible to award MAP grants.
To receive a MAP grant, a student must:
- be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen (FSA Handbook Volume 1 chapter 2) or meet the “undocumented student” criteria of the RISE Act;
- be a resident of Illinois (if the applicant is a dependent, the parent whose information is used on the FAFSA must be an Illinois resident);
- demonstrate financial need;
- be enrolled a minimum of three credit hours in a degree or certificate program at an approved Illinois college, for either a semester or quarter term throughout the institution’s tuition refund/withdrawal adjustment period;
- be an undergraduate student who has not received a baccalaureate degree (graduate students are not eligible for MAP assistance);
- comply with federal Selective Service registration requirements (see the Note below for possible exceptions);
- maintain the satisfactory academic progress standards of the institution (the institution must certify that the student has met its satisfactory academic progress standards at the time MAP payment is requested);
- not be in default on any student loan, nor owe a refund or repayment on any state or federal grant or scholarship. Students in default may reestablish MAP eligibility by:
- repaying the debt in full;
- making satisfactory payment arrangements with the holder of the loan;
- rehabilitating the defaulted loan(s); or
- making payments on the defaulted loan(s) to consolidate the loan(s)
- not be incarcerated; and
- not have exceeded the equivalent of 135 semester credit hours of MAP benefits paid. Eligibility may be extended for one additional term if the recipient has accumulated fewer than 135 MAP Paid Credit Hours, but does not have enough credit hours of payment remaining for the number of hours for which he/she is enrolled for the term.
As a result of the Retention of Illinois Students and Equity (RISE) Act, the cap of 75 MAP Paid Credit Hours for freshman and sophomore students was eliminated effective January 1, 2020, and – starting with the spring 2020 term – all corresponding edits have been removed from the MAP system (edits for the fall 2019 and earlier terms will continue to display).
NOTE: in some instances, Illinois undocumented students and transgender students who are not eligible for federal financial aid [and do not file FAFSA®] may apply for a MAP grant using the online Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid. More information is available at the RISE Act page of this website. The Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid – which is patterned after the FAFSA – is now available for the 2020-21 academic year. For these students, references to the FAFSA also apply to the Alternative Application for Illinois Financial Aid throughout the remainder of Rise Act page.
If a student who is eligible for the MAP grant is also eligible for Illinois Veteran Grant (IVG) and/or Illinois National Guard (ING) Grant benefits, all IVG and ING Grant benefits that are available for the term(s) must be used first. A student cannot decline IVG or ING Grant benefits in favor of using MAP benefits.
After all applicable IVG and ING Grant benefits have been used for the term(s), then a partial MAP award may be applied to any outstanding eligible tuition and fees.
Once payment processing ends for an academic year, adjustments to the number of MAP Paid Credit Hours that have been assessed will not be made for individuals who originally had their expenses (e.g., tuition and fees) covered using those benefits (i.e., you cannot choose to "pay back" the dollar amount of benefits used in order to reinstate MAP Paid Credit Hours).