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Financial Aid Handbook - Satisfactory Academic Progress

Students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) to continue receiving financial aid. This is required by federal law to receive any type of financial aid, including scholarships, grants, work study, and loans. Beginning with Summer 2011, the rules regarding SAP were changed by the federal government.

SAP has three components: grade point average, completion rate, and maximum hours. Students must be achieving at least the minimum in EACH category:

GPA Requirement
For a student to maintain their financial aid, their GPA must meet a set of minimum requirements. Your GPA from any transfer credits will not count towards your GPA.

Credit Hours GPA requirement
24 credits or fewer 1.75 or higher
More than 24 credits

2.0 or higher

Completion Rate Requirement
All students must successfully complete a minimum of 67% of their cumulative credit hours that they attempt. Grades considered unsuccessful are “E”, “I”, “W”, “U,” or any other grade that does not signify a passing grade. Transfer credits will be considered in your completion rate as both hours attempted and hours completed.

If student attempts And passes Completion Rate
12 credits hours 8 67%
9 credits hours 6 67%
6 credits hours 4 67%

Maximum Credit Hours
Students may only receive financial aid up to the point that their credit hours reach 150% of the total credits required to complete their degree. This includes any transfer credits and any credits earned while the student was not receiving financial aid. In addition, if when reviewing a student’s total hours it is determined that they are unable to complete their program within the 150% credit hour limit, the student’s aid must be terminated at that point.

For example, an Associate in Arts requires 61 credit hours to complete. Therefore 61 x 1.5 = 92 (rounded up). Students completing an Associate in Arts could only receive financial aid for up to 92 credit hours. If however, after a student had completed 70 credit hours, and they still had 30 credit hours to go before receiving his Associate in Arts, their aid eligibility would be terminated at the end of that semester.

Financial Aid Warning
When a student’s cumulative GPA or completion rate fall below the minimum standards of academic progress, the student goes on Financial Aid Warning. A student who goes on Financial Aid Warning will lose their ability to receive financial aid if, after the end of their next term of enrollment, their CUMULATIVE completion rate and GPA do not meet the minimum standards.

Financial Aid Termination
When a student who is on probation fails to maintain the minimum required standards during a subsequent semester, they will be placed on financial aid termination. During the termination period, the student cannot receive grants, scholarships, work study, or loans.

Regaining Aid Eligibility
A student may regain financial aid eligibility by taking credits at their own cost and reaching the minimum required standards of progress for BOTH grade point average and completion rate. Alternatively, the student may complete a Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal if they had extraordinary circumstances outside of their control that caused them to fail. See the SAP Appeal section below.

Financial Aid Appeals
Students who failed to maintain the minimum requirements can complete a Financial Aid Appeal form if they had circumstances outside of their control. Documentation should be provided of the circumstances. Examples of circumstances the committee will consider are: personal illness or injury; death of parent, spouse or child; or other circumstances that was outside the reasonable control of the student. The appeal committee will determine whether the student can continue receiving financial aid and will notify the student in writing.

Courses Below the 100 Level
Students enrolled in courses below the 100 level must successfully complete the required minimum 67 percent of all courses attempted. Unsuccessful completion of these courses will result in a grade of “E”, “U”, “W” or “I”. However, since the grades received in these classes are not included as a part of the grade point average, the GPA requirement is waived.