Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Financial Aid

(Effective September 1, 2015)

Recipients of financial assistance, including most loan programs, must make satisfactory academic progress toward their degree. Both your cumulative grade-point-average (qualitative) and your attempted credit hours (quantitative) factor into satisfactory academic progress.


At the end of the spring semester student records are reviewed by the Financial Aid Office to determine which students are not maintaining satisfactory academic progress. Notices are sent to students informing them of their ineligibility for financial aid. If notification of a change in academic standing is not received from the student (including incomplete grade reports and summer session grades), it will be assumed that SAP is not being maintained and the student will be ineligible for financial aid.

  • Satisfactory academic progress is also checked when students return from a period of non-enrollment, including recent withdrawals.
  • Satisfactory academic progress may be checked at other times during the year, as prescribed by specific federal, state or institutional funds.

Qualitative (GPA):

All Undergraduate students must be maintaining the appropriate cumulative grade point average according to the following:

Credit-Hours Attempted Cumulative GPA
0-29 1.6
30-59 1.8
60 or more 2.0

Graduate students must be maintaining the minimum GPA required by their department's academic policy. No graduate student GPA may fall under a 2.0.

Quantitative (PACE):

In addition to qualitative standards as outlined above, students must progress through their program in a timely manner (not to exceed 150% of the published length of the academic program and/or 180 attempted credits). Undergraduate full-time day, part-time day, undergraduate evening and graduate students must successfully complete 67% of all credit hours attempted towards their degree program.

  • Courses graded W (Withdrawn), I (Incomplete) and F (Failure) are counted as credits attempted but not successfully completed.
  • Courses dropped before the published add/drop date each term do not count as credits attempted.
  • Transfer credits accepted toward the degree program are neutral for GPA and are counted as credits attempted and completed.
  • Repeated courses are counted as credits attempted. Financial aid may be received only once for a repeated course in which a grade was previously earned.
  • Credit elimination (academic amnesty) courses are counted as both quantitative and qualitative components.

Appeal Process

Students may appeal to the Director of Community Standards. If circumstances warrant, a student may be granted a one semester probationary period, during which they may continue to receive financial assistance. The Director of Community Standards will develop an academic contract detailing the terms of the probationary period. At the conclusion of the probationary term, students must have met the terms of the contract and/or regained satisfactory academic progress in order to receive financial aid in subsequent terms. Students will not be granted more than one probationary period. Once the student has begun the enrollment period for which the probationary period has been granted, the probationary period is official and cannot be canceled or deferred.

The appeal must be generated by the student and must include the following:

  • Basis of the appeal
    • Death of a relative
    • Injury or illness of the student
    • Other exceptional circumstance
  • Why the student failed to make satisfactory academic progress
  • What has changed in the student's situation that will allow the student to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress at the next evaluation

Students must submit the appeal prior to any review being conducted by the Director of Community Standards.

Financial aid awards will be based upon the availability of funds at the time of appeal approval. All requests must be processed prior to the end of the term for which the student is appealing.

Students may attempt to make up credits or improve their grade point average through enrollment in winter or summer session classes. Aid will not be offered for these terms.

It is the responsibility of the student to officially notify the Financial Aid Office of any changes to their academic standing. For example, credits transferred in from another institution, the completion of incomplete grades, and the completion of summer session classes need to be brought to our attention. Aid cannot be awarded until this official notification is received.

Students who have been denied financial aid because they were not making satisfactory academic progress may again receive aid the semester after regaining satisfactory academic progress.