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Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Federal and state regulations require that students receiving financial aid maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP) to be eligible to continue to receive federal financial aid.

The Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy applies to all students who receive financial aid administered by the Financial Aid Office.

SAP Appeal Form

How Academic Progress is Measured

To maintain eligibility for financial aid, students must meet both a “qualitative” and a “quantitative” standard.

  • To meet the qualitative standard, students must maintain a cumulative 2.0-grade point average (GPA).
  • To meet the quantitative standard, students must also successfully complete 67 percent (will not round) of all credits in which they enroll.

Developmental math courses (including DMS shell courses) and Developmental English courses (designated by course numbers below “100”) are included in the calculation of a student’s enrollment status. However, no more than 30 of these remedial course hours can be used to determine a student’s enrollment status for financial aid purposes. “Foundation” courses in math and English are NOT eligible for financial aid funding or inclusion in the determination of enrollment status because their content is below the post-secondary level.

Transfer credits from institutions other than CFCC will be totaled and counted in the determination of completion rate and maximum time frame. Grades of “W,” “WP,” “WF,” “NC,” “NS,” “I,” “R,” “U,” “F,” and “XF” do not count as successfully completed courses but do count as credits attempted and are used in the determination of enrollment status and maximum time frame. Audited courses are not eligible for financial aid funding and are not included in the determination of a student’s enrollment status for financial aid purposes.

A student is permitted to repeat courses. All earned grades will be used to determine a student’s compliance with the 2.0 cumulative GPA requirement and all attempted hours will be included in the calculation of maximum time frame.

When Academic Progress is Measured

Satisfactory academic progress is measured after every semester. All terms of enrollment at CFCC are included in the measurement, even if the student did NOT receive financial aid. This includes summer and mini sessions.

If Standards are Not Met

If a student fails to meet either the qualitative (2.0 cumulative GPA) or quantitative standard (successful completion of 67 percent without rounding of all courses in which enrolled) or both, s/he will receive a warning notice. The preferred method of notification is electronic; messages are sent to the student’s CFCC email account. Students on warning are eligible to receive one semester of financial aid and are expected to use this period to reestablish satisfactory academic progress.

If a student fails to meet either standard for a second consecutive semester, s/he will receive a suspension notice. No financial aid will be awarded to a student on suspension until the student corrects the academic progress deficiencies. Students who do not meet the satisfactory academic progress requirements for financial aid eligibility can enroll at CFCC without financial aid to correct the deficiencies.

Appeal Process for Probationary Semester
The right to appeal is granted to any student whose financial aid eligibility has been suspended. An appeal must be based on significant mitigating circumstances that seriously impacted academic performance.

The student should submit a written appeal to the Financial Aid Office. An appeal letter must include why the student failed to make satisfactory academic progress and what has changed that will allow the student to make progress at the next evaluation (i. e., at the end of the next semester of enrollment).
 
An appeal letter must be accompanied by:

  • A typed academic plan clearly stating how the student intends to meet progress standards, and
  • A copy of the student’s program evaluation, which is available on the student’s Web Advisor account. The program evaluation displays completed courses and courses still required for program completion.

An appeal submitted without adequate documentation will be denied. Please note that merely filing an appeal does NOT guarantee continued eligibility for financial aid.

Typically, appeals are reviewed within 15 business days. Students will be notified of the committee’s decision. The preferred method of notification is electronic; the decision notice is sent to the student’s CFCC e-mail account. The decision of the Financial Aid Committee is final and cannot be further appealed.

If the appeal is denied, the student may reestablish financial aid eligibility for subsequent semesters ONLY by taking courses, without benefit of financial aid, until s/he is in compliance with all components of the CFCC satisfactory academic progress policy (67% completion rate (will not round) and 2.0 minimum cumulative GPA).

If the appeal is approved, the student regains financial aid eligibility for one probationary semester. During the probationary semester and all subsequent semesters, the student must achieve a 75% (will not round) completion rate and maintain a term GPA of 2.0. Failure to do so will result in suspension of financial aid eligibility after which the student will regain eligibility ONLY by taking a minimum of six (6) credits, without benefit of financial aid, until s/he is in compliance with all components of the CFCC satisfactory academic progress policy for Continued on Appeal status (75% completion rate (will not round) and 2.0 minimum GPA). Previously-passed courses which the student retakes will not be included in the determination of Continued on Appeal status. The classes in which a student registers to regain eligibility must be required for program completion.

Maximum Time Frame
Federal regulations also establish 150 percent of the published length of the program as the maximum time frame allowed in which to complete an educational program. Maximum time frames allowed to complete CFCC programs, measured by credits attempted as a percentage of credits required for graduation, is as follows:

Program Number of Credits for Graduation Maximum Number of Attempted Credits Allowed for Financial Aid Eligibility
Certificate 18 27
Diploma 48 72
AAS 76 114
College Transfer/AGE 65 98

If a student earns 67 percent (will not round) of the credits attempted each semester, the student should complete the program of study within the maximum time frame.

The 150% count will include transfer credits and all credits attempted in all programs of study in which the student has been enrolled, regardless of whether or not a certificate, diploma, or degree was received. The number of credits attempted will be measured against the student’s current active program of study.

Maximum Time Frame Appeal
Students who have exceeded the maximum time frame for their declared program of study must submit an “Exceeding Maximum Time Frame” appeal. The student must be
meeting the cumulative 2.0 grade point average and 67% (will not round) cumulative completion rate in order to submit a maximum time frame appeal.

A student is ineligible when it becomes mathematically impossible for the student to complete their active program within 150% (example 2 year degree within 3 years).

A complete maximum time frame appeal will include:

  • The “Exceeding Maximum Time Frame” Appeal form, and
  • A copy of the student’s degree audit, and
  • A typed statement explaining the student’s circumstances.

 

    1. Additional instructions appear on the “Exceeding Maximum Time Frame” Appeal form. An appeal submitted without adequate documentation will be denied.

A student for whom a maximum time frame appeal is approved must complete 75% (will not round) of all attempted credit hours with a minimum 2.0 grade point average each semester following the appeal approval. Failure to do so will result in the suspension of financial aid eligibility.

Student Responsibilities
It is the student’s responsibility to monitor satisfactory academic progress as it relates to maintaining eligibility for financial aid. The Financial Aid Office assists with periodic measurement and notification to students who fail to meet the standards.

It is the student’s responsibility to notify the Financial Aid Office of any grade change made after the official posting of semester grades.

It is the student’s responsibility to follow up with the Financial Aid Office if s/he does not receive an appeal determination notice within three weeks of submitting the appeal.

NOTE: The Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for financial aid recipients is different than the College’s satisfactory progress standards maintained by the Registrar’s Office that places students on academic warning, probation or suspension for failure to achieve a 2.0 grade point average.