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California State University, Long Beach

Faculty and Staff Reference

Student Payment Categories

Student payments are classified into three general categories:

  1. Employment that is compensation for services rendered
  2. Educationally related awards including scholarships, fellowships, traineeships, and grants whose primary purpose is to assist students in financing their education, and
  3. Non-Educational Direct Payments to students that provide for reimbursement of University business expenses or other non-educationally related activities.

Evaluate the student payment using the definitions and examples below. Based upon the classification, the appropriate forms to complete are listed.

Compensation for Services Rendered (Employment)

A payment is considered compensation for services if:

  1. the amount represents payment for past or present employment services,
  2. the student is paid a fair market value wage for the service provided, and
  3. an employee/employer relationship exists, which is defined as:
    1. The work to be performed is part of the regular business activity of the University, includes planned time schedules and breaks.
    2. The student is subject to discipline or discharge under University personnel policies and may be discharged at the University's discretion.
    3. The individual can quit or be terminated at any time and payments will only be made for services already rendered.

Examples Include: Student Assistant, Work study student, lab assistant, tutor, exam proctor, research assistant.

Affect on Financial Aid Eligibility: Payment for employment does not directly affect a student’s eligibility for need-based federal, state, institutional aid. Students receive W-2 forms and earnings are accounted for in a student's Adjusted Gross Income and tax liability, if applicable when they apply for financial aid for the next year.

General Taxability Information: Earnings from employment are always taxable. The University provides a student a W-2.

Compensation for Services Rendered
Payment Type Forms Required Routing Comments
Wages/Employment
  • Personnel Transaction Form (PTF)
  • Personnel/Payroll Transaction (PPT)
  • Immediate Pay Voucher
  • Additional Pay Voucher
  • Timesheet

State Payment: Payroll, Brotman Hall 353

Foundation Payment: Payroll, FDN 332

Individual will be issued a W-2 at end of tax year

Educationally Related Awards

Educationally Related Awards: including Scholarships, Grants, Fellowships, Traineeships, Assistantships

A payment is considered an Educationally Related Award if the purpose is to support the students pursuit of an educational program. Payments may be designated to assist students with financing their education by covering living expenses during enrollment (rent, food, clothing, transportation, etc.) and/or restricted to tuition, fees, books & supplies.

Most payments to students that are not considered Compensation for Services (above) will fall into this category as the reason they are receiving the award is related to their pursuit of a CSULB educational program.

Payments may be disbursed to students in multiple ways, including a one-time payment, semester payment, and/or monthly living expense payment. Payments are still classified as Educationally Related Awards regardless of the type of educational expense the award covers or how or when the disbursement is made.

Examples Include: Chemistry Scholarship, Research Grants, CalSWEC Award, Book Scholarships, Department Scholarship, Training Grants, Endowed Scholarships, Essay Contests, Graduation Awards, Merit awards.

Affect on Financial Aid Eligibility: Federal and State regulations require the University to coordinate and review all educationally related awards a student is receiving in determining their eligibility for need-based federal, state, and institutional aid. This coordination must happen even if the need-based aid has already been disbursed to the student. In general, the combination of all awards cannot exceed a student’s financial aid need. If it does, need-based aid must be adjusted, normally reducing the student's loan burden or work-study obligation.

General Taxability Information: The total amount of Educationally Related Awards (including need-based grants) that exceed the student's tuition, fees, books and supplies is considered taxable. Students are required to self-report this amount when completing federal and state tax returns. Students should consult a tax specialist to determine the tax implications specific to their individual situation.

Educationally Related Award
Payment Type Forms Required Routing Comments

Scholarships & Grants

Student Fellowship

Student Traineeship/Student Assistantship

Scholarship/Educational Award Payment Form

Office of Financial Aid

123 Brotman Hall

Awards will be reviewed and coordinated with other financial assistance, if any. Payment will be issued upon completion of review by the Office of Financial Aid

Non-Educational Direct Payments

Awards paid to students not directly related to their educational program or pursuits.

Travel Reimbursement

Reimbursement to students for expenses incurred while on University business, supported by the submission of receipts. Expenses covered may include: Airfare, Transportation, Meals, Lodging, Conference Fees or other reimbursable expenses.

Non-Educational Payments

Payments for non-educationally related activities, typically in the amount of $200 or less. Examples include: Participation Honoraria, Participation Incentive Payments.

Affect on Financial Aid Eligibility: Non-Educational Direct Payments do not affect financial aid eligibility.

General Taxability Information:

  • Travel Reimbursement: Payments for direct reimbursement are not taxable.
  • Non-Educational Payments: Payments are taxable and students will receive a 1099 form indicating the amount of payments received. Students should consult a tax specialist to determine the tax implications specific to their individual situation.

Non-Educational Direct Payment
Payment Type Forms Required Routing Comments
Travel Reimbursement Appropriate Travel Claim form Accounts Payable  
Non-Educational Payments

State Payment: Direct Payment Form

Foundation Payment: Non-Educational Payment Request Form (Participant Incentives)

State Payment: Accounts Payable, FDN 280

Foundation Payment: Foundation AP, FDN 332

Student will be issued a 1099 form at the end of the tax year

For questions or assistance determining the classification of a student payment, contact the Assistant Director for Scholarships, Financial Aid at ext: 58030