Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Federal and state regulations require that students receiving financial aid maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward the completion of a certificate or degree.  SAP will be evaluated at the end of each semester, including summer sessions.

This policy applies to all students who receive assistance from any financial aid program requiring a determination of satisfactory academic progress as a condition of eligibility. SAP is calculated at the end of each semester after grades are posted. Currently enrolled students are notified via their university email account if they are placed on warning status or suspension. Students can also view their SAP status on Web For Students. To meet SAP requirements and be eligible to receive financial aid, a student must comply with the following conditions:

Program of Study

A student is only eligible to receive financial aid for credits that pertain to the student’s degree program, with the exception of up to 30 credits of remedial courses. ESL courses are not financial aid eligible. It is the student’s responsibility to enroll in courses that count toward his or her program. Coursework is closely monitored for students pursuing a second bachelor’s degree, second master’s degree, or teacher certification and only credits that count toward the student’s program of study are used in the SAP calculations below.

Qualitative Measure

Minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA):

• Undergraduate students must maintain a 2.0 on all coursework attempted

• Graduate students must maintain a 3.0 on all coursework attempted

Quantitative Measure

Pace Measurements

Students must earn at least 67% of all credit hours attempted over the course of their attendance at ALL educational institutions, regardless of whether or not financial aid was received. For example, if a student has attempted 100 credit hours, he or she must successfully complete 67 of those credit hours to maintain Pace compliance. This percentage includes all credit hours attempted regardless of whether or not financial aid was received. Grades of F, X, W, DR, S, U, NC, I or NG are treated as attempted and not earned. All attempted credits count (including remedial courses) even if the student has changed academic programs. All transfer hours are included in the number of attempted hours.

Maximum Time Frame

Undergraduate and Graduate students are eligible to receive financial aid for a limited time while pursuing a degree. Once a student exceeds 150 percent of the number of credits that it takes to obtain a degree they will be considered to be ineligible for financial aid.

Undergraduate Students: The maximum number of cumulative hours a student may attempt is limited to 180 semester hours. Students should be aware that changing their major could adversely affect their financial aid eligibility.

Graduate Students: The maximum number of cumulative hours a student may attempt is limited to 54 credit hours.  All periods of enrollment, including transfer hours from another college, must be considered toward the 150% calculation even if the student did not receive financial aid. Once the student has attempted 150% of the hours required to graduate, the student may not be eligible for financial aid in future semesters unless approved by the appeal process.

Doctoral Students:  The maximum number of cumulative hours a student may attempt is limited to 90 credit hours. 

Second Bachelor Students: The maximum number of cumulative hours a student may attempt is limited to 60 credit hours.  Once the student completes 60 semester hours after their second degree has started, they will lose eligibility for financial aid.  Students may appeal to have financial aid reinstated.

Second Graduate Degree: The maximum number of cumulative hours a student may attempt is limited to 54 credit hours.  Once the student completes 60 semester hours after their second degree has started, they will lose eligibility for financial aid.  Students may appeal to have financial aid reinstated.

Repeated Courses: A student may only repeat a previously passed course once and receive financial aid. Students may repeat a failed course until it is passed. Repeated credits count toward maximum time frame.

Grade Changes: Students who have a grade changed in a prior semester will have their SAP re-calculated for that term and any subsequent term of enrollment.



Financial Aid Warning

After one semester of not meeting the SAP, students will be placed on Warning status for the following semester. Warning status lasts for one payment period only, during which the student may continue to receive federal student aid funds. Students who fail to make satisfactory progress after the warning period lose their aid eligibility unless they successfully appeal and are placed on probation. If a student does not return the following term, they must contact the financial aid office to have their warning status re-evaluated for financial aid eligibility. Students are limited to being placed on Warning status while receiving financial aid one time for each degree they earn; however, students have the option to appeal.

Financial Aid Suspension

After the one semester of warning, students who fail to meet any one or a combination of the SAP components will be placed on financial aid suspension and will be ineligible for financial assistance.

Re-establishing financial aid eligiblity

Once a student meets the minimum SAP standards, financial aid eligibility is reinstated with Satisfactory Financial Aid Progress status. Awards cannot be paid retroactively for the term(s) during which a student was on Suspension and ineligible for aid. Students are still required to re-apply for financial aid every year by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Appeals

Students on financial aid suspension may submit an appeal in writing to the Financial Aid Office based on extenuating circumstances beyond the student’s control. Students are limited to two appeals as an undergraduate student and two appeals as a graduate student., and new appeals must be based on a different reason than the prior appeal(s). If a student wishes not to appeal, or if their appeal is denied, they will remain on financial aid suspension and no financial aid will be awarded until SAP is met again. Appeals must be submitted in writing and must be submitted four weeks prior to the end of the semester for which the student is seeking funding. A committee meets each semester before classes begin.  The only way to regain financial aid eligibility after a denied appeal is for the student to finance their own way to college and meet the minimum standards of the schools satisfactory academic policy.

Federal regulations stipulate appeals may be granted based on extenuating circumstances only.

Documents required for appeal

• Statement from you detailing the reason for the deficiencies, what action has been taken to ensure it will not occur in the future; and ONE OR MORE of the following documents:

• Medical documentation that supports that you were medically unable to meet the requirements for SAP; or

• Verification (obituary or death certificate) of a death in your immediate family. Immediate family for purposes of a financial aid appeal is parents, siblings, children, spouse or grandparents; or

• Verification of military orders for military personnel and their families that have been temporarily reassigned or called to active service; or

• Verification of natural disasters beyond your control that impacted your academic performance; or

• Personal tragedies that were beyond your control and are documented by a 3rd party professional, i.e. police, courts, medical, clergy, etc.

Please note: If you submit a divorce decree, you must submit additional documents such as a restraining order, child custody papers, or any additional legal documentation. A divorce decree alone is not considered an extenuation circumstance.

Should an appeal be approved, the student is placed on an Academic Plan.

*The submission of an appeal does not guarantee that an approval is forthcoming. Students who are denied financial aid should make alternative arrangements*

Academic Plan

An Academic Plan serves as a contract between TAMUT and the student and it is the student’s responsibility to ensure he/she meets the requirements of the academic plan each semester to continue to be aid eligible. Academic Plans are reviewed each semester. Failure to adhere to the conditions of the Academic Plan will result in the denial or cancellation of all future aid until the student has met the minimum standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress, at which time the student may be able to reestablish his/her financial aid eligibility.