Glossary of Student Payroll Terms

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1042S
A statement of earnings for a previous tax year sent to international students who had tax treaty earnings. University Payroll mails these forms out during the month of March.
8233
One of the forms an international student needs to complete in order to declare a tax treaty. The IRS’s Exemption from Withholding on Compensation for Independent (and Certain Dependent) Personal Services of A Non-Resident Alien Individual form.
Advance
A payroll loan given to students who were not paid on-cycle through no fault of their own. Advances must be requested by a payroll coordinator in writing and must be approved by a Student Payroll staff member.
Base Rate
The minimum pay rate for an hourly paid job. The grade level of a job determines the base rate.
Check Destination
A five-character mail code identifying the department where a student’s check or direct deposit stub is delivered.
Check Reversal
A check reversal is done when a student receives a payment in error. The reversal has the money credited back to the department and deducts the money from the student’s yearly earnings.
Data Sheet
One of the forms an international student needs to complete in order to declare a tax treaty. The student lists personal information relating to the tax treaty on this form.
Departmental
Non-Work-Study employment, where the department pays 100% of the student’s gross salary.
Distribution
The University accounting codes (unit, department, object, and source) for on-campus departments.
Earn Code
A two-character code which is passed to the main payroll system to designate the type of payment that has been made to a student.
Entry Date
The date an international student entered the United States. This is used to track international students’ eligibility for FICA exemption.
FICA
A payroll tax. There are two components to FICA: Social Security and Medicare.
Grade Level
A one-digit code which identifies the complexity of and responsibilities required in a job. The higher the grade level, the more complex the job, and the higher the base rate of pay. There are five grade levels (1-5) for hourly-paid jobs. Three special grade levels exist which do not have a base pay rate. They are grade level 0 (monthly paid jobs) grade level 8 (jobs for which the earnings are credited to a student’s Student Account — this grade level is not identified in the Job Classification Guide), and grade level 9 (one-time payment).
I-9
Eligibility for Employment Verification Form, which certifies that an individual is eligible to work in the United States. It must be completed the first time a student works at the University. International students must complete this form at the International Students and Scholars Office.
ISSO
The International Students and Scholars Office, located at 888 Commonwealth Avenue.
IS&T
Information Systems & Technology. IS&T develops and maintains the University’s mainframe computer system.
Job Classification Guide
A guide to the job codes and job types used at the University for student employees. It also identifies the pay grade levels. View it online.
Job Code
Two-digit code, which identifies the type of work that a student employee performs. Job codes are identified in the Job Classification Guide.
LongevityA standardized raise scale through which student employees receive pay increases based on time worked in a department.
M-4
Massachusetts State Withholdings certificate.
Mail Code
A five-character code identifying University departments. Mail codes are established through University Payroll.
Off-Cycle
Outside of the normal schedule/cycle.
Off-Cycle Payment
A payment processed after the scheduled pay date has passed.
Off-Cycle Increase
Change in pay rate which does not follow the usual merit scale.
Piecemeal
A one-time payment job.
Rehire
1. An action taken to hire a student into a job he or she has previously worked.
2. A program run by the Work-Study Office that automatically rehires Work-Study students into their spring semester jobs for an upcoming Work-Study Program (academic year or summer). Runs weekly for one month prior to the start of the academic year or summer program.
Rehire Report
A report sent to payroll coordinators via payroll packet identifying all students rehired within their department by the automatic rehire process.
Rollover
A program run by Student Payroll two weeks prior to the beginning of each semester. It automatically establishes student jobs in the upcoming semester as long as proper criteria are met. To be rolled over, the job must have an end date in the upcoming semester and the student must meet the enrollment requirements for that semester.
Rollover Report
A report sent to payroll coordinators identifying all students whose jobs were affected by the rollover for their department.
SEA
The Student Employee Authorization Form. This is the document which is used to hire and maintain student employees in their jobs by departments that do not have Business Link access.
Stipend
A payment made to a student for which no work is required. Stipend payments are not processed by Student Payroll, but by University Payroll.
Tax Treaty Packet
This packet includes all the forms a student needs to complete in order to declare a tax treaty. Students must obtain this packet in person from Student Payroll.
Treaty Letter
One of the forms an international student needs to complete in order to declare a tax treaty. It lists the provisions of the country’s tax treaty.
W-2
A statement of earnings and taxes withheld for a previous tax year. University Payroll mails these forms out at the end of January.
W-4
The Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate, completed by an employee to identify the rate at which he or she wishes to have taxes withheld from paychecks.
Walker System
The University’s on-line accounting system, used to identify valid distribution codes in keying used throughout the University.
Work Expiration Date
The final day an international student has permission to work. This date is determined by ISSO and can only be extended by ISSO.
Work-Study
A federally funded financial aid program offered to eligible students through BU Financial Assistance. On-campus departments employing Work-Study students are charged 30% of a student’s gross earnings and the federal Work-Study fund is charged the remaining 70%.