Federal Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards for Title IV Financial Aid

Deadlines

  • September 12th — Last day to submit a Federal Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Appeal form for the Summer & Fall 2014 semesters.

  • Complete online, print and sign the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form (pdf).

Policy Summary

Brooklyn College students must satisfy the following qualitative and quantitative federal financial aid satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards, as defined by the U.S. Department of Education and Brooklyn College in order to remain eligible for federal financial aid. §CFR668.34. All students who submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as well as those who receive any type of financial assistance are evalulated for SAP. Financial aid recipients and applicants (upon submission of the FAFSA) who are found not to be in satisfactory academic standing will be notified. Students can also check their eligibility status by logging into their Cunyfirst account (student self-service).

Federal aid programs governed by these regulations are:

  • Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)
  • Federal Direct Subsidized Stafford Loan
  • Federal Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan
  • Federal Direct Graduate PLUS
  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Perkins Loan
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Federal Teach Grant
  • Federal Work-Study
  • And all other TITLE IV aid programs
  • TAP (Note: While failing to meet federal financial aid satisfactory academic progress (SAP) can impact your eligibility for TAP, New York State has developed its own guidelines for New York State satisfactory academic progress).

Definitions

Our definition of SAP has three components: 

Qualitative Standard

Undergraduate students must achieve the following grade point averages:     

Cumulative

Attempted

Credits From

Cumulative

Attempted

To

Minimum

Cumulative

GPA

        1

12

1.5

13

24

1.75

25

Upward

2.0

The regulations also stipulate that, if enrolled in an educational program of more than two academic years, a student must have a GPA of at least 2.00 or the equivalent at the end of the second academic year. This means that a student must maintain a minimum 2.00 GPA after being at the school for four semesters or six quarters without regard to enrollment status and superseding the above table. 

Graduate students must achieve a grade point average of at least 3.00. 

Quantitative Standard

Maximum Time Frame

Undergraduate students may not attempt more than 150 percent of the credits normally required for completion of the degree (all students must meet this minimum requirement).

Graduate students may not attempt more than 150 percent of the credits normally required for completion of the degree. 

Pace of Progression (credits attempted vs. credits earned)

For undergraduate programs, accumulated (or earned) credits must be equal to or greater than a certain percentage of the total credits attempted according to the following chart below.

Graduate students must accumulate credits toward the degree greater than or equal to two-thirds the cumulative credits attempted at the institution. 

Pace of Progression Chart (undergraduate programs only):   

Cumulative

Attempted

Credits 

From

Cumulative

Attempted

Credits To

Cumulative Earned

Percentage Credits

 

SAP Status

25

30

15%

PASS

31

36

25%

PASS

37

45

35%

PASS

46

48

40%

PASS

49

60

45%

PASS

61

72

50%

PASS

73

94

55%

PASS

95

120

60%

PASS

121

129

61%

PASS

130

138

62%

PASS

139

150

63%

PASS

151

151

64%

PASS

152

156

65%

PASS

157

164

65%

PASS

165

180

65%

PASS

181

999.999

99.99

FAIL

 

Determination of Cumulative Attempted Credits and Cumulative Earned Credits

Withdrawals

Courses that are dropped during the add/drop period will not be counted as cumulative attempted credits. Withdrawals that are recorded on a student's permanent record will be included as cumulative attempted credits and will have an adverse effect on a student's capability to meet the appropriate standard.

Incomplete Grades

Courses with incomplete grades are included as cumulative attempted credits. However, these courses cannot be used as credits accumulated toward the degree since successful completion is the criterion for positive credit accumulation. If the student fails to meet the pace of progression standard due to the lack of successful completion grades for incomplete courses, the recording of successful completion grades within a term which brings the accumulated credit level to the appropriate standard will restore eligibility for the term and subsequent terms within the academic year. 

Repeated Courses

Successfully completed courses can generally be accepted toward degree requirements once (cumulative earned credits). However, each time a student attempts a course, even if that course is part of a forgiveness or amnesty policy whereby credits attempted and grades earned in prior semesters are excluded from the GPA, it must be included as part of the cumulative attempted credit record for the measuring of pace of progression. Therefore, repeated courses, regardless of the prior grade, reduce a student's capacity to meet the pace of progression standard.

Transfer Students

Transfer students from colleges inside and outside of CUNY shall have their pace of progression status initialized for the purpose of measuring satisfactory academic progress by using the number of credits determined to be acceptable toward the degree as both the student's cumulative attempted credits and cumulative earned credits. 

Treatment of Non-standard Situations

Change of Degree

If a student changes his or her objective and begins pursuing a different degree, he or she will be subject to the maximum time frame for the new objective without regard to time spent pursuing the previous degree.

Readmitted Students

A student not making SAP cannot re-establish eligibility for Title IV program assistance by reenrolling after a one year or longer period of non-reenrollment. Upon readmission after any period of non-reenrollment, the student's Title IV progress standing must be re-evaluated for SAP under the standard as the record stood at the end of their  last term of attendance. If the student has taken any action during the period of non-reenrollment that would bring him or her into compliance with the progress standard (e.g., successfully completing transferable courses at another institution during the period of absence), this should also be factored into the reassessment. If the readmitted student has not taken any such action, or if the action taken is not sufficient to bring the student back into compliance with the progress standard, the student remains on financial aid suspension and must file a successful appeal to re-establish eligibility. 

SAP Changes Effective July 1, 2011

The following is required by the U.S. Department of Education and are to be implemented for the 2011–12 academic year and thereafter:

Students found to be unsatisfactory due to failing one or more components of SAP at the annual review are ineligible for financial aid. No tolerance is permitted.

First-year students must earn a 1.50 GPA within their first 12 credits and a 1.75 by their 24th. Continuing students at 25+ credits must earn a 2.00 GPA.

Students are reviewed annually at the end of each academic year. A student who is found to be deficient in one or more components as defined above is ineligible for any future financial aid immediately. A student who is ineligible has the right to appeal if there are extreme extenuating circumstances that contributed to the deficiency.

Appeals are approved for documented extreme situations only. Students who appeal will be approved only for the following federally defined reasons:

  • Serious physical or mental illness of the student

  • Serious physical or mental illness of the student's immediate family member

  • Death of the student's immediate family member

  • Other extreme circumstances

The circumstance must have occurred during the time the student struggled academically. All appeals must have documentation of the circumstances claimed in the appeal.

Approved appeals can result in no more than one term of financial aid eligibility. Students who have approved appeals are granted one term of financial aid probation. For continued eligibility, students must resolve all SAP deficiencies during the period of probation. Students who cannot mathematically resolve all deficiencies in one term will once again become ineligible for federal financial aid.

There is no limit on the number of times a student may follow the financial aid appeals procedure. Although a student may file only one appeal per payment period (semester), additional appeals to extend financial aid probation to subsequent semesters are all deficiencies in one term will once again become ineligible for federal financial aid.

As in the original appeal, the student would indicate the mitigating circumstances, the reasons why SAP was not achieved, and what has will ensure the student will be able to meet SAP at the next evaluation. 

Re-establishing Eligibility

Other than having eligibility restored through filing a successful appeal, a student on financial aid suspension may regain eligibility only by taking action that brings him or her into compliance with the appropriate progress standard. The mere passage of time is insufficient to restore Title IV eligibility to a student who has lost eligibility due to not meeting the SAP standard. Therefore, students may not re-establish eligibility solely by leaving the institution for at least one year because this action, by itself, would not bring the student into compliance for Title IV SAP. 

Students who choose to remain enrolled without receiving Title IV aid may request a review of their academic record after any term in which they were on financial aid suspension to determine if they were able to re-attain appropriate standard.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal

 The Office of Financial Aid has established an appeal process for suspension of financial aid related to satisfactory academic progress. In order to submit an appeal, you must complete the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form (pdf). Any student who wishes to appeal the suspension of financial aid should read and complete the attached materials.

Procedure

  1. Complete the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal form. Please be sure to attach documentation to support your appeal. Appeals submitted without supporting documentation will not be reviewed.

  2. Submit your appeal to the the Enrollment Services Center (Financial Aid Inquires) counter.

Guidelines

  • Be specific when explaining your circumstances. Lack of information or documentation may result in a denial of your appeal. If health problems played a role in your circumstances, please attach supporting documentation from a physician or counselor.