Satisfactory academic progress

What is satisfactory academic progress?

In accordance with federal, state and institutional requirements, students who receive Federal Student Financial Aid must 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 remain eligible for financial aid at the Carey Business School, students must demonstrate satisfactory progress toward their academic objectives, as measured by:

  1. Minimum cumulative grade-point average (GPA). Qualitatively, on a scale of 4.0 graduate students must maintain a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA. (Note that this will change to 2.85 from the end of fall 2019.) For an initial award, students must meet the minimum GPA requirements and all periods of prior enrollment a 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, students must maintain a 100% course completion rate.
  3. Maximum timeframe to completion of 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 are 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. Only 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 school 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, however, are not 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 concentrations within their degree program, only those attempted credits 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. Previous coursework in which no degree was earned will count as part of the total GPA and credits attempted when evaluating SAP.


How often do we review SAP and how are students notified?

Financial aid recipients are reviewed for SAP at the end of each traditional semester (summer, fall, spring). Students who do not meet the SAP standards, and who are placed in either a warning status or a suspended status, will receive SAP status letters sent to their JHU email accounts.


Financial aid warning status

Students who fail to meet the minimum cumulative grade-point average standard (currently 3.0, but will change to 2.85 from the end of fall 2019) 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 as applicable if they did not meet the minimum grade point average or course completion standards as noted in this policy prior to applying for financial aid.


Financial aid suspended status

Students in a Financial Aid Warning status who 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 the 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 receiving financial aid for the first time will not be eligible for financial aid and will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension as applicable if they did not meet the minimum grade point average or course completion standards as noted in this policy 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.


Re-establishing financial aid eligibility

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, or on an Academic Plan for no more than three subsequent semesters/periods 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 SAP standards.
  3. 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 deadline 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:

  1. A description of the extenuating circumstances that prevented the student from meeting the SAP requirements. The student must demonstrate that s/he understands the reason behind failure to meet the SAP requirements.
  2. A description of the course of action or change in situation that will allow the student to meet the SAP requirements by the end of the next semester/period of enrollment. Include specific plans to rectify the current academic status.
  3. If applicable, any supporting documentation to substantiate the appeal.

The Financial Aid Appeals Committee will review the appeal and consult with academic advisors and other involved parties as warranted.

Students who lose eligibility for financial aid during their program by not meeting the SAP standards are only allowed a maximum of two appeals during their time at the JHU Carey Business School.

All decisions on appeals are final.


Financial aid probation status

If it is determined that the student can meet the SAP requirements after one semester/period of enrollment, the appeal may be approved and the student placed in a Financial Aid Probation status for the next semester/period of enrollment. The Financial Aid Appeals Committee may set terms such as limiting enrollment to specific courses, and achievement of a term or cumulative GPA by the end of the probationary semester/period of enrollment. Students will receive written notification of the decision via email to their JHU email accounts. The probation terms and conditions will be included in the correspondence.


Academic plan

The Financial Aid Appeals Committee may determine that the student will not be able to meet the SAP standards by the end of the next semester. However, if the committee agrees that the student's grounds for appeal are reasonable, and that the student has a reasonable chance to succeed and graduate, the student will be placed on an Academic Plan upon approval of the appeal.

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. The academic plan will be developed in conjunction with the student and involves input from academic advisors, counselors and other student services as warranted. Students will be required to acknowledge acceptance of the plan by signing an Academic Plan Agreement. Students on an academic plan must meet the milestones and requirements of the plan at the end of each semester/period of enrollment included in the plan in order to maintain financial aid eligibility. If students do not meet the SAP standards at the end of their academic plan, they may have the option to go through the appeal process again for the possibility to regain eligibility.

Students will receive written notification of the decision via email to their JHU email accounts. The academic plan terms and conditions will be included in the correspondence. The academic plan may only be modified with the prior approval of an academic advisor and/or counselor or relevant student services.


Is financial aid probation the same as academic probation?

No. Financial aid recipients must meet the financial aid SAP 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 Office of Financial Aid at 410-234-4733 or carey.finaid@jhu.edu.

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