Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Recipients 2018-2019

What is satisfactory academic progress?

Students who receive Federal Student Financial Aid must — in accordance with federal, state, and institutional requirements — be in good standing and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) toward obtaining their degree or certificate. Under Federal Title IV law, the college’s SAP requirements must meet certain minimum requirements, and be at least as strict as the college’s standards for Good Academic Standing. This policy applies to students applying for financial aid for semesters that begin in June 2017 or after, starting with the Summer 2017 semester.

The federal government requires that an institution use three measurements to determine SAP: qualitative, quantitative, and finite. The student must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average, maintain a minimum cumulative completion rate, and complete a degree or certificate within a maximum timeframe set by law. The standards used to evaluate academic progress are cumulative and, therefore must include all periods of the student's enrollment (even periods during which the student did not receive SFA funds).

What is Our SAP Policy?

To be able to receive financial aid at the Carey Business School, students must demonstrate satisfactory progress toward their academic objectives, as measured by:

Graduate Students
  1. Minimum cumulative grade-point average (GPA). Qualitatively, on a scale of 4.0 graduate students must maintain a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA. For an initial award, students must meet the minimum GPA requirements and all periods of prior enrollment must be considered even if the student received no aid for that period. Earned Fs factor into the GPA as zero.
  2. Minimum cumulative completion rate. Quantitatively, financial aid recipients must maintain a completion rate equal to or exceeding 67% of the courses attempted. After a probation period, graduate students must maintain a 100% course completion rate.
  3. Maximum timeframe to completion of degree or certificate. The maximum timeframe is the maximum timeframe under law to complete the degree or certificate. Students must complete the required course work within 150% of the published program length (e.g., 54 credits attempted for a 36 credit program).
Treatment of W, I, AU, F, S, P and X Grades, No Grade Reported and Repeated Coursework
  1. Course withdrawals (W grade) after the drop/add period are not included in the GPA calculation, but are considered a non-completion of attempted coursework.
  2. Incomplete courses and I-grades are not included in the GPA calculation and are considered a non-completion of attempted coursework until the coursework is completed and graded with a permanent grade.
  3. Audited courses (AU grade) and other noncredit coursework is not considered attempted coursework or included within the GPA calculation, nor is the coursework considered for financial aid eligibility.
  4. A satisfactory (S) grade or a passing (P) grade is treated as attempted credits which are earned, but is not included in calculation of GPA.
  5. F grades are treated as attempted credits that were not earned and are included both in the calculation of GPA and minimum completion rate.
  6. If no grade is reported or a grade of X, the coursework is not included in the GPA calculation but is considered a non-completion of attempted coursework until the coursework is completed and graded with a permanent grade.
  7. The highest grade earned in a course that is repeated will count in the GPA computation, but every repeated attempt will be included in the completion rate determinations.

How do classes taken at another institution and transferred to our schools affect a student's SAP?

All credits accepted for transfer to the Carey Business School are taken into consideration under the quantitative measurement component of SAP. Grades earned at other institutions are not, however, counted when computing the student's GPA.

How does a change of major or change of program impact a student's SAP evaluation?

For students who change majors within their degree program, only those credits attempted which apply to their new major are included in the evaluation of SAP. All coursework is included in the calculation of GPA as required under federal law. This also applies to those students who change their program or take subsequent programs.

How often is a student's SAP reviewed and how are students notified?

Financial aid recipients are reviewed for SAP at the end of each traditional semester (Fall, Spring, Summer). Letters are emailed to students who do not meet the SAP standards and are placed either in a warning status or a suspended status.

Financial Aid Warning Status

Students who fail to meet the minimum cumulative grade-point average standard (3.0 for graduate students) or fail to complete at least two-thirds of cumulative credits attempted will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for the subsequent semester/period of enrollment. Students are still eligible for financial aid during the "Warning" semester.

Students receiving financial aid for the first time will be placed on Financial Aid Warning if they do not meet the minimum grade point average or course completion standards as noted in this policy based on previous periods of enrollment prior to applying for financial aid.

Financial Aid Suspended Status

Students who, while on Financial Aid Warning, fail to maintain the minimum completion rate and/or fail to maintain the minimum cumulative GPA requirement will be placed on Financial Aid Suspended status for subsequent semester/period of enrollment. No financial aid will be disbursed during subsequent semesters/periods of enrollment until the student regains financial aid eligibility by being removed from Financial Aid Suspended status.

Students applying for aid for the first time will not be eligible for financial aid and will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension if they did not meet the minimum grade point average or course completion standards as noted in this policy based on the two previous consecutive semesters prior to applying for financial aid.

Students who do not complete their program within the Maximum Timeframe lose eligibility for financial aid and are placed on Financial Aid Suspension status.

Reinstatement of Aid After Financial Aid Suspended Status — Financial Aid Probation Status

Reinstatement of financial aid after a student is placed in Financial Aid Suspended status is achieved in one of the following ways:

  1. The student submits a written letter of appeal and the Financial Aid Appeals Committee grants the appeal. The student is placed on Financial Aid Probation for the semester/period of enrollment rather than in Financial Aid Suspended status.
  2. The student registers for coursework, pays for tuition and fees without the help of student financial aid, and does well enough in the coursework to satisfy all the satisfactory academic progress standards.

*Students who are beyond the maximum timeframe to completion may only regain financial aid eligibility on a semester-by-semester basis through the appeal process.

Appeal Process

The student must submit an appeal of Financial Aid Suspended status in writing to the Financial Aid Appeals Committee by the date specified in the Financial Aid Suspended notification letter. The committee will review the appeal and notify the student in writing of their decision within 14 working days after the Appeals Committee meets and makes its determination. Appeals should include:

  • The grounds for appeal (i.e., working too many hours, etc.)
  • Demonstration that the student understands the reason behind failure to meet the SAP requirements
  • Specific plans to rectify the student's current academic status

The Financial Aid Appeals Committee will review the appeal and consult with academic advisers and other involved parties as warranted. If it is determined that the student will not be able to meet the SAP standards by the end of the next semester, but the committee is in agreement that the student's grounds for appeal are reasonable and the student has a reasonable chance to succeed and graduate, then if the appeal is approved, the student will be placed on an Academic Plan. Students will receive written notification of the decision. All decisions on such appeals are final. Students who lose eligibility for financial aid by not meeting the SAP standards more than once during their program may submit an appeal each time.

Academic Plan

Students who lose eligibility and submit an appeal may be placed on an Academic Plan if the appeal is approved. The purpose of an academic plan is to support the student in bringing them back into compliance with the financial aid SAP standards by a specific point in time in order to ensure that the student will be able to successfully complete the degree or certificate program. The academic plan will be specifically tailored to the student and may include milestones and specific requirements, such as reduced course load, specific courses, or tutoring. Students on an academic plan are still responsible for meeting the SAP standards in the subsequent semester and will lose eligibility if the SAP standards are not met. They will need to go through the appeal process in order to regain eligibility. The student's progress in their academic plan will be taken into account in any subsequent appeal of financial aid eligibility.

Is financial aid probation the same as academic probation?

No. Financial aid recipients must meet the financial aid satisfactory academic progress standards, which are more stringent than the schools' academic policy standards, in accordance with federal Title IV law. Students should consult the Standards for Good Academic Standing for more information on that standard. Students on academic probation may not be eligible to receive financial aid.

Where can students get more information?

Contact the Financial Aid Office at 410-234-4733 or