Satisfactory academic progress policy for undergraduates

Satisfactory academic progress policy

Effective as of August 14, 2012

34 CFR 668.16 (e), 668.32 (f), 668.34

Students receiving federal Title IV student financial assistance while attending Concordia University, Nebraska must be meeting the minimum standards of the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy (SAP) according to Federal Regulation: 668.7 Higher Education Act of 1965, Higher Education Amendments, 1986 and 1992.  These standards affect eligibility for the following types of aid:

-          Federal Pell Grant

-          Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

-          Federal Perkins Loan

-          Federal TEACH Grant

-          Federal Work Study (FWS)

-          William D. Ford Federal Direct Loans (Direct Subsidized, Unsubsidized, and PLUS)

-          Nebraska Opportunity Grant (NOG)

-          Concordia University academic, athletic, talent and/or Departmental scholarships

The SAP policy establishes guidelines to ensure all students complete their program of study within a maximum timeframe regardless of enrollment status (full time, part-time, etc.).  The university evaluates SAP at the end of each academic period/term of enrollment.  The evaluation includes review of qualitative (grade point average or GPA) and quantitative standards (pace) as well as maximum timeframe (for undergraduate students).  The evaluation includes all periods of enrollment, even periods in which the student did not receive federal student aid funds.  Students attending Concordia University, Nebraska must meet the following minimum requirements to remain eligible for receipt of financial aid:

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS/DEGREE COMPLETION STUDENTS

Qualitative: Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 2.0 or higher

Quantitative: Must earn a minimum 67% of all credit hours attempted.  Attempted credit hours include accepted transfer credits and grades of A, B, C, D, F, I, P, NR, W and repeat credit hours

Maximum Timeframe: 180 credit hours (120 credits to graduate x 150%) for undergraduate students.  

Evaluation Period: At the end of each period of enrollment (semester)

The evaluation is consistent for all enrollments (full time, three-quarter time, part-time, etc.).   The SAP assessment is conducted using cumulative credit hours earned and attempted.  For example:  a student completes their freshman academic year with 36 attempted credit hours, earned 24 credit hours and achieved a CGPA of 2.07.  To calculate the quantitative requirement divide 24 earned credit hours by 36 attempted credit hours.  The percentage of completion is 67% and the student has a CGPA greater than 2.0.  The student successfully met the minimum quantitative standard (67%) and the qualitative standard (CGPA 2.0 or higher). 

Students with more than 180 attempted credit hours are no longer eligible to receive federal financial aid due to reaching the maximum number of credit hours for payment of aid (maximum timeframe).   

GRADUATE/PROFESSIONAL STUDENTS

Qualitative: Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 3.0 or higher;

Quantitative: Must earn a minimum 67% of all credit hours attempted.  Attempted credit hours include accepted transfer credits and grades of A, B, C, D, F, I, P, NR, W and repeat credit hours

Evaluation Period: At the end of each period of enrollment (semester)

Timeframe: Graduate students may receive aid for a maximum of 150% of the number of credit hours required to complete their program of study (54-67 credit hours depending on the program of study)

William D. Ford Federal Direct Loans are available to graduate and professional students attending Concordia University, Nebraska.  Students must be enrolled at least half time to be eligible to receive payment.  Satisfactory completion of 6 credit hours (or 3 credit hours if half-time) per semester and a 3.0 cumulative GPA is required to remain in good academic standing.

FAILURE TO MAINTAIN MINIMUM SAP STANDARDS

Satisfactory academic progress is checked at the end of each term of enrollment.  Students who fail to maintain satisfactory academic progress, those who do not successfully complete the minimum number of credit hours, and/or maintain the minimum CGPA, will be placed on financial aid warning for a maximum of one semester to correct the deficiency. 

A student is eligible to receive financial aid during the financial aid warning period. If at the end of the term on financial aid warning the student is not yet meeting SAP, the student will be placed on financial aid suspension. A student placed on financial aid suspension is not eligible to receive financial aid until the minimum standards of SAP are again met. 

If the student has mitigating circumstances, the student may submit an appeal for consideration by the financial aid committee.  The appeal should include an academic plan created with an academic advisor.  If the appeal is approved, the student will be placed on financial aid probation and eligible to receive aid for one termIf the student fails to meet the minimum standards after their term of financial aid probation they will be placed back on financial aid suspension.  Students will be required to pay out of pocket for expenses for terms in which they are not eligible to receive financial aid. 

Financial Aid Reinstatement

Students on financial aid suspension will remain ineligible for aid until they are meeting SAP or file a successful written appeal resulting in financial aid probation. Students placed on financial aid probation will be eligible to receive aid for a maximum of one semester to correct the deficiency. If at the end of this semester the student is not yet making SAP, the student will again be placed on financial aid suspension and be ineligible for financial aid. Students will be allowed three appeal opportunities while at Concordia University, Nebraska.

Appeal

Any student wishing to appeal the suspension of his/her financial aid eligibility, based on provisions in this "Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy," may appeal in writing to the Director of Financial Aid of Concordia University, Nebraska. The appeal must include: (1) a letter from the student stating reasons why he/she did not achieve minimum academic requirements and why his/her aid should not be terminated to include supporting documentation; (2) what has changed in order for the student to make SAP now; (3) a supporting letter from an advisor or professor; along with (4) an established academic plan for meeting SAP (form available upon request from the Financial Aid office).  The student will be notified in writing of the final determination of the appeal.

If SAP appeal is approved, the school has determined that the student:

-Will be able to make SAP standards by end of next payment period; or

-Will be placed on an established academic plan that will ensure the student is able to meet SAP standards by a specific point in time.

How GPA and pace of completion are affected by:

▪ Incompletes:  No financial aid will be disbursed to a student who has an “I” (incomplete) grade from a previous term.  The incomplete must be converted into a grade before any loans or other federal funds are disbursed.  Incompletes must be removed on or before 30 days after the start of the subsequent term or the incomplete automatically becomes an ‘F’.

▪ Withdrawals:  After the drop/add period, a student may withdraw from a class any time up to the day designated as the last day to withdraw for each term.  If approved by the Registrar, a “W” will be recorded on the student’s official record.  A grade of ‘W’ will not count in the student’s GPA however it will count in the number of hours attempted. Any tuition refund for a withdrawal will follow the appropriate refund schedule.  The last date for withdrawal from semester classes is two weeks before the official closing of regular class sessions.

▪ Repeated Course work:  A student may elect to repeat any course. The highest grade will be used in determining GPA. All grades will be included on the transcript.  Federal aid is available for payment of a repeated course that has been previously passed only once.

▪ Transfer of credits from other schools:  Must count transfer hours accepted toward completion of student’s program as both hours attempted and hours completed.

▪ Remedial credits:  Concordia University, Nebraska offers a limited number of remedial coursework.  These credits will be included in SAP assessment.

Re-establishing eligibility for financial aid

Traditional undergraduate students who have been suspended from financial aid eligibility may use summer session enrollment to correct the deficiencies which caused their suspension. Transfer credit hours, if earned while the student is a Concordia student and if accepted by the Concordia University registrar, may also be counted toward removal of the deficiency for the number of successfully completed hours, but do not change Concordia's CGPA other than the effect of removing a failing grade from the previous calculation. Your official CGPA is derived from courses taken at Concordia University. However, Concordia must include all attempted hours when calculating the maximum time frame for degree completion for SAP.

Eligibility for federal and institutional aid will be reinstated when a student presents the Director of Financial Aid with an official transcript from the registrar verifying the satisfactory removal of the deficiency. All courses taken at Concordia University while a student is under financial suspension shall be at the student’s own expense.