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Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards for 2014-2015

​To keep getting financial aid every semester, you must move forward in your program of study. For a quick overview of the standards you are required to maintain, see our Satisfactory Academic Progress flowchart.
 
The colleges of DCCCD are required by law to formulate standards to measure a student’s progress toward completion of a program of study while receiving financial assistance through federal, state or institutional student aid programs by applying both qualitative and quantitative measurements to academic work (34 CFR 668.34). To comply with applicable laws and accreditation standards, the colleges have developed a policy describing Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) for both applicants and recipients of student financial aid.
 
The following SAP policy measurements became effective July 1, 2014. These measurements shall be used to determine student eligibility for all need-based and federal Title IV financial assistance, unless the terms of a particular grant or funding source state otherwise. All current and returning students (after a lapse of one period of enrollment or longer) will be re-evaluated under the current SAP policy. Satisfactory Academic Progress is measured at the end of each period of enrollment. Some financial aid programs have specific requirements. In those instances, the program requirements will supersede the general SAP policy stated here.
 
Each financial aid applicant must select a primary program of study on eConnect (login required) prior to receiving financial aid payments. A student can receive a retroactive financial aid payment for a prior period of enrollment within the payment period or award year only if he or she has chosen a primary program of study prior to the end of the academic calendar for that particular period of enrollment. Students may not be allowed financial aid funding for multiple changes of programs for the purpose of extending financial aid eligibility. All previously repeated college-level courses will be counted in the measurement of rate of completion and maximum time frame.
 
Transfer students must submit official transcripts from all previous colleges attended. If you have an unevaluated transcript with a print date that is more than three years old, you must submit a new one for evaluation. For those who transfer to the colleges of DCCCD, all previous college transcripts must be received and evaluated by the deadlines listed below. If you are applying for financial aid, please be prepared to pay tuition and fees until financial aid is evaluated based on your transfer request and eligibility.
 
The deadlines for submitting transcripts for the next term are:
 
Fall: May 1
 
Spring: Oct. 1
 
Summer: March 1

Measurement 1: Qualitative Progress (CGPA)

A cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 2.00 on a 4.00 scale or higher must be attained by the end of the student’s first period of enrollment at the colleges of DCCCD. For repeated courses, only the latest grade earned is included in the cumulative grade point average even if the latest grade is lower than the preceding grade. This average must be maintained at the end of each subsequent period of enrollment for a student to continue to receive financial aid. Students who do not meet this minimum CGPA requirement will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for one period of enrollment. If a CGPA of 2.00 on a 4.00 scale or higher is not reached by the end of the warning period, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.

Measurement 2a: Quantitative Progress (Pace of Progress 67 Percent)

To avoid exceeding the maximum time frame required to complete a program of study using financial aid, students are expected to maintain a “pace of progress.” At the end of each period of enrollment, students must have a cumulative passing rate of at least 67 percent. Grades of W, WX, E, F and I will be counted as hours attempted but will not be counted as hours successfully passed. Repeated course enrollments will be counted in the completion rate and against the overall maximum time limit required to complete the program of study. Those transfer hours accepted toward the student’s primary program of study will be counted as both attempted and completed when calculating the pace of progress. Students who do not maintain the minimum 67 percent pace of completion will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for one period of enrollment. If a 67 percent cumulative pace of progress is not reached by the end of the warning period, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.

Measurement 2b: Quantitative Progress (Maximum Time Frame 150 Percent)

A student may apply for and, if eligible, receive financial aid for attempted credit hours that do not exceed 150 percent of the minimum number of hours required to complete the student’s primary program of study. All hours attempted toward the completion of a program of study will be counted regardless of whether financial aid was received. Credit hours transferred to the colleges of DCCCD are counted when calculating the 150 percent maximum. When SAP is calculated, students who meet both the pace of progress and the cumulative GPA but have attempted 150 percent of the allowed number of credit hours will be placed on “Max” status, which is a Financial Aid Suspension that may be subject to an academic reset. Those who have attempted 150 percent of the allowed number of credit hours and also fail to meet either the pace or progress, cumulative GPA or both will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension and will not be subject to an academic reset. Students who are placed on Max Financial Aid Suspension may have exhausted financial aid eligibility to complete the program and may not receive financial aid benefits to complete their primary program of study. Hours attempted by a student who has been cleared for a “fresh start” by the colleges of DCCCD will continue to count toward the student’s 150 percent maximum limit.
 
Examples:
 
  1. For a student completing an associate degree program that requires 66 hours, the student must complete the degree within 99 attempted hours. The student will lose eligibility for additional financial aid to complete the program after 99 attempted hours.
  2. For a student completing a certificate program that requires 30 hours, the student must complete the certificate within 45 attempted hours. The student will lose eligibility for additional financial aid to complete the program after 45 attempted hours.

Academic Reset for Maximum Time Frame

Once a student reaches the maximum time frame, a review of the student’s current primary program of study will be evaluated, one time only, for additional program hours. Only hours that cannot conceivably be included toward the student’s primary program of study may be excluded from the student’s maximum time frame calculation. The institution must always include any courses applicable to the student’s primary program of study on file when evaluating eligibility for financial aid purposes. Therefore, any courses that apply to your current program of study will be used in calculating your SAP, including those hours that could be considered elective. The purpose of a review is to better align the student’s chosen program with the student’s educational goals and is not to grant additional financial aid eligibility. To be eligible for an academic reset, the student must be meeting both the pace of progress and cumulative GPA requirements set forth in this Satisfactory Academic Progress policy.

SAP Treatment of Developmental Course Work

An otherwise eligible student may receive financial aid for a maximum of 30 attempted credit hours of developmental/remedial course work. Once the 30-credit-hour maximum is reached, additional developmental credit hours will not be used to calculate the award amount. Students taking ESOL classes, which are counted as developmental hours, may submit a written request to the Financial Aid Office to exclude ESOL classes from the 30-hour maximum, if additional ESOL classes are necessary after reaching the 30-hour maximum. Developmental and ESOL attempts and grades are used in the measurement of the pace of progress as well as the CGPA.

Reinstatement Procedures

The DCCCD Office of Financial Aid will review academic records at the end of each period of enrollment and determine each student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress status. A student who fails to meet the SAP minimum standards for pace of progress or cumulative GPA but has not exceeded the maximum time frame will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for one period of enrollment. If the student fails to attain the minimum standards for pace of progress or cumulative GPA by the end of the warning period, he or she will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. As described in the policy above, a student who exceeds the maximum time frame and fails to attain the minimum standards for pace of progress, cumulative GPA or both will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension without a warning period. Financial Aid Suspension cannot be appealed.
 
To regain financial aid eligibility, a student placed on Suspension must pay enrollment-related expenses from personal resources until the minimum SAP standards are met. The student’s progress will continue to be reviewed at the end of each period of enrollment. Eligibility will automatically be reinstated for the next period of enrollment upon successful completion of a period of enrollment in which the student meets the required SAP standards described in this policy.

Definitions

Financial Aid OK — Under Financial Aid OK status, a student is considered financial aid eligible, is regarded as meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress standards and can continue to receive financial aid.
 
Financial Aid Warning — Under Financial Aid Warning, a student is not meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress standards for pace of progress or cumulative GPA and may continue to receive financial aid for one period of enrollment.
 
Financial Aid Suspension — Under Financial Aid Suspension, a student is not considered financial aid eligible and is not meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards for the next period of enrollment. A student loses financial aid eligibility. Financial Aid Suspension cannot be appealed.
 
Financial Aid Max — Under Financial Aid Max status, which is a Financial Aid Suspension, a student is not considered financial aid eligible and is not meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards. However, the student may be eligible for an academic reset. Max status is assigned only when the student meets both the pace of progress and cumulative GPA, yet has attempted college-transferable hours in excess of 150 percent of the published length of the primary program of study.