Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS FOR FINANCIAL AID ELIGIBILITY

 

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) ensures that students are able to complete their academic program in a timely manner while achieving minimum academic standards.

 

Federal regulations (C.F.R. §§ 668.32(f) and 668.34) mandate that all students be required to maintain SAP while pursuing a degree in order to receive financial assistance through the Title IV, HEA Federal Financial Aid Program. This program includes but is not limited to the Federal PELL Grant, Federal Direct Loan and Parent PLUS Loan, Federal Work-Study, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, and need based state aid such as the Tennessee Student Assistance Award.

 

Students must meet standards as outlined in the SAP policy. These standards are for financial aid purposes only and neither replaces nor overrides academic policies outlined by Hiwassee College. Federal regulations state that SAP standards must include a review at all periods of enrollment, regardless of whether or not aid was received. Students will be evaluated using the standards described below. Failure to meet any of these minimum standards will result in loss of Title IV, HEA program (Federal financial aid) eligibility.

 

Remedial Coursework will not be considered when determining a student’s SAP as it relates to Qualitative Standards. However, remedial coursework will be considered when determining a student’s SAP as it relates to Quantitative Standards. All repeated courses affect Financial Aid SAP calculations. A repeated course along with the original attempt must be counted as attempted credit hours as it relates to Quantitative Standards.

 

Evaluation Period

 

Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress will be evaluated at the end of each term of attendance: fall, spring, and summer.

 

COMPONENTS OF SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS (SAP)

 

The components of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) consist of qualitative and quantitative measurements:

 

  1. The qualitative measurement evaluates the quality (grade point average [GPA] and Academic Standing) of the student’s academic work.

  1. Quantitative measurements evaluate the pace and progress by which a student is working toward the completion of their program.
    1. This is measured by establishing a required percentage of attempted credit hours that must be passed
    2. AND a maximum timeframe in which a student must complete all required course work for their degree. Failure to meet any of these standards will result in suspension of eligibility for financial aid.

Note: Grades of F, I, U, W, WP, and WF are considered attempted but not meeting progress standards for the purposes of financial aid and are counted for SAP.

 

QUALITATIVE REQUREMENTS

 

In order to maintain eligibility for financial aid at Hiwassee College, a student must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. A student must have a cumulative GPA of 2.0 at the end of each evaluation period.

 

QUANTITATIVE REQUIREMENTS

 

Course Completion Percentage (Pace)

 

Students must be on target to complete their academic program within the set time frame. To determine if a student is meeting this standard, total cumulative earned hours are compared to total cumulative attempted hours. This is calculated by:

 

 

Cumulative Earned Hours / Cumulative Attempted Hours.

 

 

The resulting course completion percentage must be equal to or greater than 67% to stay on pace towards a degree. In other words a student must complete and pass two-thirds of all their total cumulative hours attempted.

 

Example:

 

 

Cumulative

 

 

Cumulative

 

SAP

 

SAP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Earned Hours

 

 

Attempted Hours

 

Calculation

 

Evaluation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

14

 

 

30

 

14/30 =

 

Does NOT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

46.67%

 

meet SAP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maximum Time Frame

 

All students are expected to finish their degree within the maximum time frame as determined by the College. All attempted credit hours are considered toward the maximum time allowance, regardless of whether or not the student received financial aid. A student can attempt a second degree at Hiwassee College; however, classes from the first degree that transfer (this includes transfer credit from any school) into the second degree will be considered for the Maximum Time Frame component. Under the second degree a student could receive aid up to 150% of the credit hours required for program completion.

 

Example:A student’s total cumulative attempted hours may not exceed 150% of the hours required for the student’s academic program. For example: 150% of the typical Hiwassee College Bachelor’s Degree Program is 124 hours * 150% = 186. 150% of the typical Hiwassee College Associate’s Degree Program is 66 hours * 150% = 99.

 

EVALUATION AND NOTIFICATION

 

The Financial Aid Office will monitor Qualitative, Quantitative (pace) and Maximum Time Frame requirements after the end of each term and determine a student’s status. If SAP is not being met, the following process will be taken. A student not meeting SAP standards will be notified by email to their student email address, and by writing to their address of record. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that contact information is up to date in the student information system.

 

Financial Aid Warning

 

Students who fail to meet SAP for the first time (excluding students that have attempted 150% of the credits required for their degree) will be placed in a “SAP Warning” status for one term and are expected to meet SAP requirements by the end of the following term of enrollment. Students who fail to meet SAP requirements at the end of the Warning Status will be placed on financial aid suspension. Students may appeal this suspension to the Hiwassee College Appeals Committee and, if their appeal is approved, will be placed on strict financial aid probation that could include an academic plan.

 

Financial Aid Appeal

 

Federal regulations allow for certain cases in which the school may waive the standards for satisfactory academic progress. Specifically, if a student fails to be in compliance with one or more of the satisfactory academic progress components due to events beyond the student’s control, such as extended illness, serious illness or death in the immediate family, or other significant trauma, and if such mitigating circumstances can be appropriately documented for the specific term(s) in which the deficiency occurred.

 

Appeals must be made in writing to the Hiwassee College Financial Aid Office and the student should include appropriate supporting documentation. The appeal should be well presented with attention to spelling and grammar, and it should outline the extenuating circumstances that contributed to the student’s inability to meet SAP standards and what has changed that will allow the student to meet SAP at the next evaluation.

 

A student whose appeal is approved will be placed on:

 

  1.  Financial Aid Probation
  2. OR will be required to follow an Academic Plan developed by the Hiwassee College Financial Aid Office. Failure to successfully complete all conditions during the probationary period (as defined in the academic plan) will result in loss of financial aid eligibility.

 

One Term Financial Aid Probation (Appeal Approved)

 

Students who have successfully appealed their financial aid suspension and for whom it is mathematically possible to meet SAP standards after completing one academic term are placed on One Term Financial Aid Probation. Students on One Term Financial Aid Probation are eligible to receive financial aid for one term. 

 

Academic Plan Probation

 

Students who have successfully appealed their financial aid suspension and cannot meet SAP standards after one term are placed on Academic Plan Probation.

 

Students who are placed on Academic Plan Probation:

 

  1. May receive financial aid for up to three (3) terms.
  2. SAP will be checked at the end of each term and the student must have a minimum of a 2.5 term GPA and must complete all classes;
    1. While on an Academic Plan, a student cannot receive any of the following grades: W, WP, or WF.
    2. In addition, any classes wherein a student receives a grade of “I”, must be completed by the end of the following term.

If the student meets SAP standards at any time during the Academic Plan, the student will be placed in good standing and will no longer be on Academic Plan Probation. If the student is not meeting SAP guidelines at the end of the Academic Plan, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension and the student will not be eligible for an appeal. In this instance, the studentwill have to pay out-of-pocket and will have to get back into good standing before he or she can regain financial aid eligibility.

Only one Academic Plan Probation per student will be given. If a student fails to meet SAP at any time after completing an Academic Plan, he or she will be suspended and will not be eligible for an appeal.

 

Final Appeal (If initial appeal is denied)

 

Students whose appeal is denied by the SAP appeals committee may make a final appeal in writing to the Financial Aid Office. That appeal will then be forwarded to the appropriate member of the campus executive committee for review. The student will be notified by email to their student email address, and by writing to their address of record of the final appeal decision. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that contact information is up to date in the student information system (Populi). The result of the final appeal is final and cannot be appealed.

 

Financial Aid Suspension

 

Students whose appeal is denied and/or do not meet the terms of their academic plan, the cumulative grade point average standard, and/or the course completion percentage will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. Students on Financial Aid Suspension are not eligible to receive any Title IV, HEA Aid as outlined above and all aid will be cancelled for future semesters until the student has regained SAP. Students allowed to re-enroll while on Financial Aid Suspension can apply for an alternative or private loan or pay out of pocket.

 

Appeal Deadline for Submission

 

The student will receive a letter regarding failure to meet the standards of Title IV, HEA Federal Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy. Students will have 14 days from the date of the letter to appeal. Appeals submitted outside the permissible timeframe will not be evaluate.

 

Regaining Eligibility

 

A student who has lost financial aid eligibility may only regain full eligibility by meeting the minimum SAP standards. Course work taken at other colleges will not be considered for reinstatement purposes.