UW Flexible Option: Bursar Brief
Describes the Bursar function associated with the UW Flexible Option Program
University of Wisconsin Flexible Option Bursar
Note that bursar functions remain with the degree-granting institution until they are centralized at UW-Extension. The following describes the bursar function after centralization.
One of several essential student services functions, the Bursar function is an integral part of a single, comprehensive student services operation serving all UW Flexible Option campus partners. The UW Flexible Option Bursar, located within UW-Extension Continuing Education Outreach and E-Learning (CEOEL), oversees student financial services that differ from traditional semester- and credit-based operations. New processes include payment timelines tied to 12 monthly starts, 3-month subscription schedules, payments for individual assessments and/or competency-sets, and other associated fees and program costs. These differences require dedicated staff to implement the appropriate UW Flexible Option-specific procedures, and to interface the bursar functions seamlessly with the other core operations (admissions, financial aid, veterans benefits, registration, etc.) so that students are able to effectively meet their educational goals.
Together, the UW Flexible Option Bursar and institutional bursars ensure that reporting data required by state and federal regulations is properly entered into the student information system. The UW Flexible Option Bursar serves as the authority on UW Flexible Option student financial issues, minimizing additional and differentiated work for institutional units.
The UW Flexible Option Bursar is responsible for collecting fees and tuition from enrolled students and developing policies that facilitate student payment, working closely with the UW Flexible Option Financial Aid office to ensure that those policies account for students applying for financial assistance.
The UW Flexible Option Bursar manages all students’ accounts receivable, ensuring that UW Flexible Option student accounts are properly tracked and that students are billed. The staff receives and processes payments, issues refunds, and resolves fee and tuition issues as they arise.
The UW Flexible Option Bursar processes third-party billing, including outside scholarships, military payments, and employer assistance. Relatedly, the UW Flexible Option Bursar files paperwork with the IRS to support each enrolled student. The UW Flexible Option Bursar will also work with institutional partners to reconcile revenues from the tuition payments received at the appropriate interval.
The UW Flexible Option Bursar determines policies governing student accounts, including actions that prompt financial holds on students’ records and govern debt collection, in accordance with UW System, institutional and government policies.
Information flow between the UW Flexible Option Registrar and Bursar regarding student payment status is critical. Staff in these functions work closely together to ensure that student tuition is accurately and timely posted to student accounts and student records holds are placed and released appropriately.
The Flexible Option Knowledge Base provides a central repository of information about all aspects of the UW Flexible Option initiative and serves as a 24/7 resource for students, staff, and faculty within the System.
Connections to Other Briefs
Credit determinations and subscription timing (beginning and ending dates) are key factors for veterans benefits, as described in the Veterans Brief. The UW Flexible Option Bursar serves as a bridge between UW Flexible Option programs and campus certifying officials who liaise with the Department of Veterans Affairs on these issues by developing processes that support veteran-specific payment timelines, resource coordination and report compliance.
As described in the Registrar Brief, the UW Flexible Option Registrar enforces UW Flexible Option Bursar student account policies by applying and/or adhering to relevant student records holds that preclude students from certain activities until their accounts are in good standing.
The UW Flexible Option Bursar must work with the UW Flexible Option Financial Aid Office to interface with the activities described in the Financial Aid Brief to ensure compliance with financial aid funds disbursement and other relevant regulations.