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Satisfactory Progress and Financial Aid

November 2011

The U.S. Department of Education dictates that students must be progressing through their academic program in a timely manner in order to receive federal student financial aid, such as a Pell Grant or student loans.  The amount of time varies, depending on the type of program and format through which the program is being offered, such as the main campus or ACCEL.
 Students are required to complete 67 percent of the credit hours attempted, as well as maintain a minimum GPA as listed in the table below:

If a student fails to maintain Satisfactory Progress (SAP), they will be given a warning and allowed to receive financial aid for one term immediately following the term in question. If, by the end of the warning period, the student is still not meeting SAP standards, financial aid will be suspended for future terms, including Summer term.

A student may appeal the financial aid suspension by submitting a letter to the SAP Appeals Committee. The letter must include an explanation as to why Satisfactory Progress was not maintained and what has changed that will allow the student to make SAP at the next evaluation at the end of the upcoming term. The SAP Appeals Committee will approve an appeal if it is determined that the student will be able to make SAP standards by the end of the next term or the student will be placed on an Academic Plan that will ensure the ability to meet SAP standards by a specific point in time which will be determined. An Academic Plan will also involve your Academic Advisor.

So how do you make sure you're making SAP?  

The easiest way is to complete the courses you originally registered for each semester. Most of the time, students are at risk because they drop courses during the semester and end up completing fewer credits than what they had originally registered.  As an example, if you enroll in 9 credit hours for a semester and drop a course, you then only will be completing 6 credit hours for that semester instead of the intended 9 credit hours. In this type of situation, it is in your best interest to add another class at some point during a semester to replace the credits you dropped. If you think you might have a satisfactory progress issue, contact a financial aid counselor or your academic advisor immediately.

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