Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is required in order for a student to maintain eligibility for federal or state financial assistance. At the end of each academic semester, after final grades have been issued, the Associate Vice President for Student Financial Planning will verify the academic progress of each student. All periods of enrollment (Fall, Spring, and any future terms Monmouth may offer such as summer, J-term or May-term) will count toward SAP, including when a student does not receive federal/Title IV aid.
Once a student has reached the point in their college career when they have registered and enrolled for their 15th course credit (the equivalent of 60th credit hour), three components must be measured and met in order to maintain eligibility for financial aid.
“Registered Course Credits” include all transfer credits accepted by the college and all credits for which a student has officially enrolled (excluding audit classes) at Monmouth College.
Official enrollment is defined as the credits for which a student is registered at the end of the period for adding a course without a fee (typically the end of the first week of classes) or any 2nd half semester classes for which the student enrolls during the allowable period for adding a 2nd half semester course.
All remedial coursework, repeated coursework, and coursework from which a student withdraws, will be counted and calculated in the appropriate SAP formulas. When a course is repeated, only the most recent grade is used in the Qualitative – GPA calculation. However, both courses (original and repeated) will be used in the Quantitative – Pace calculation.
The three components of Satisfactory Academic Progress which must be evaluated and met are:
- Qualitative Standard (GPA)
- Quantitative Standard (Incremental Pace)
- Maximum Time Frame (to complete a program)
QUALITATIVE STANDARD (GPA)
Students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.00 on a 4.0 scale. A student will immediately lose eligibility for all Federal and State financial assistance if the student’s cumulative GPA falls below 2.00.
In the case of a student who receives a grade equal to “I” (Incomplete) or “IP” (In-progress), the eligibility for financial assistance for the next semester will be determined without regard for the “I” or “IP” grade. Subsequent removal of an “I” or “IP” grade and replacement of those grades with final grades may have an impact on future semesters and the eligibility for financial assistance, but it will not have a retroactive effect on semesters for which assistance has already been approved.
QUANTITATIVE STANDARD (INCREMENTAL PACE)
Students must also be making incremental progress (consistently earning credits) towards a degree at an acceptable pace. If however, the student is not making incremental progress towards the degree (earning at least two-thirds or 66.6% of the courses for which they are registering), a loss of eligibility for Federal and State financial assistance will occur.
MAXIMUM TIME FRAME (TO COMPLETE THE PROGRAM)
The Satisfactory Academic Progress policy contains a maximum time frame component, which allows a student to take up to 150% of the time needed to achieve and obtain a degree. (Transfer credits from another institution will be counted toward the maximum time frame but will not be counted toward the GPA.) For example, a student may take up to six years to obtain a four year bachelor’s degree and still remain eligible to receive financial assistance. Once the student has reached the 150% point in time, no further Title IV aid will be processed.
In any semester where a student has lost eligibility of financial assistance, the student may appeal to the Office of Student Financial Planning for the reinstatement of eligibility. The student must show that their cumulative GPA fell to less 2.00 or they failed to make incremental progress towards a degree (as outline above) as the result of 1) the death of an immediate relative of the student, 2) a severe injury to the student, 3) a severe illness of the student, or 4) other unusual circumstances that interrupted their ability to perform academically.
If an appeal is granted and the financial aid eligibility is restored, the student will be placed on financial aid probation and will be eligible to receive financial assistance for one semester. If, at the end of the semester on financial aid probation, a student does not 1) establish a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.00 or 2) make incremental progress toward the degree (as outlined above), no further aid eligibility will be allowed.
A student may re-establish eligibility for financial assistance in a number of ways. 1) A student may enroll at the college without the benefit of financial assistance and achieve or re-establish satisfactory academic progress during this time. Once a student has done this, by increasing the grade point average and/or incremental pace, the student could be eligible for financial assistance in the following semester. 2) A student may enroll at another institution. When doing so, a student is encouraged to discuss potential class selections with the Registrar’s Office to determine their eligibility for transfer back to Monmouth College. The SAP calculations would then be re-run to consider the newly earned transfer credits. When the student has successfully met the SAP requirements, their eligibility for financial assistance will be re-established and granted for the following semester. Note: This could be done over a summer semester and a student could successfully re-establish eligibility for the fall semester. These options are NOT available to students who have been dismissed from financial aid because of exceeding their maximum time frame.
CHANGING OF MAJOR/PROGRAM
If a student elects to change their major during their enrollment at Monmouth College, and this change is granted by the academic departments and the Registrar’s Office, the student will still be held to the Maximum Time Frame Component or 150% rule stated above. All coursework taken at Monmouth College will continue to be counted in the Qualitative (GPA) and Quantitative (Pace) formulas outlined above. The SAP status of a student will be applied in continuation from one major/program to the next.