Student Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

To be eligible to receive federal student aid, you must meet and maintain satisfactory academic progress. You must meet both the quantitative and qualitative standards as identified in each UI&U program’s Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy for the retention of financial aid by the end of each award year. You will find each degree program’s SAP policy located in the financial aid forms directory on our website. If your financial aid is terminated due to failure to maintain satisfactory academic progress, you can appeal to the Office of Financial Aid. You may download and print the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal form.

New SAP Policy Effective July 1, 2011

Financial aid recipients must make satisfactory academic progress toward a degree in order to receive institutional, federal and or state aid. In keeping with federal regulations and Union Institute & University policy, Union Institute & University has amended its SAP Policy. Changes will take effect when SAP is calculated at the end of spring 2011.

Note: The PreCohort PhD Program has its own qualitative and quantitative standards for Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress. If you are PreCohort PhD student, please review the policy at the end of the PreCohort section of the catalog.

SAP Components

Qualitative: Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) Requirement

In accordance with federal regulations, a student’s cumulative GPA must be reviewed at the end of each term of attendance.

  1. An undergraduate student must have earned at least a cumulative 2.0 GPA or "S" average when grades are reviewed at the end of each term. A graduate or professional student must have earned at least a cumulative 3.0 GPA or "S" average.
  2. Students who do not earn their at least the minimum required cumulative GPA will be placed on financial aid warning for their next term of attendance.
  3. While on financial aid warning, the student remains eligible for financial aid:
    • If the student earns at least their minimum cumulative GPA by the end of the financial aid warning term, the warning will be lifted (provided the student meets all other SAP guidelines).
    • If the student does not earn at least their minimum cumulative GPA by the end of the financial aid warning term, the student will be placed on probation and financial aid will be terminated. The student will not qualify for financial aid, effective the next term of attendance, until such time as the student again meets all SAP guidelines. The student may appeal a probation decision. If the appeal is approved by the Director of Financial Aid, then aid may be reinstated for that term. See the appeal section for additional information.

Quantitative: Completion Rate Requirement

In accordance with federal regulations, students must successfully complete at least 67% of cumulative credits attempted in order to meet the requirements for financial aid. For example, if a student has attempted 60 credit hours during enrollment, he/she must successfully complete 40 or more of those hours. Student completion rates are reviewed at the end of each term of attendance.

  1. Students must earn a cumulative 67% completion rate.
  2. Students who do not earn a cumulative 67% completion rate will be placed on financial aid warning for their next term of attendance.
  3. While on financial aid warning, the student remains eligible for financial aid:
    • If the student completes sufficient credits to earn a cumulative 67% completion rate by the end of the financial aid warning term, the warning will be lifted (provided the student meets all other SAP guidelines).
    • If the student does not complete sufficient credits to earn a cumulative 67% completion rate by the end of the financial aid warning term, the student will be placed on probation and financial aid will be terminated. The student will not qualify for financial aid effective the next term of attendance until such time as the student again meets all SAP guidelines. The student may appeal a probation decision. If the appeal is approved by the Director of Financial Aid, then aid may be reinstated for that term. See the appeal section for additional information.

Maximum Time Frame

The maximum time frame within which to complete a degree is 150% of the published length of the program. For example, if the published length of a program of study is 64 term hours, a student may attempt up to 96 term hours (64 x 150% = 96). To determine the published length of a program, please refer to the program of study sections of the Union Institute & University catalog.

Appeals

Students may appeal the termination of their financial aid eligibility in the event of documented extenuating circumstances, such as illness or injury of the student or the death of an immediate family member. The appeal must address why the student failed to make satisfactory progress and what has changed in the student’s situation that will allow the student to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress in the future. Supporting documents should be included with the appeal. Appeals must be submitted in writing to the Director of Financial Aid. The Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeals Committee will review the appeal and notify the student in writing regarding the status of the appeal. Students are limited to two probation appeals requests while attending Union Institute & University. All requests for appeals must be submitted no later than 10 business days after receiving the Financial Aid Probation notice.

Students whose appeals have been approved will be placed on financial aid probation their aid will be reestablished to continue with their studies. The student should develop an individualized academic plan that should be followed in order to continue enrollment. The plan may include requirements for academic performance, meetings with an academic advisor, etc. Students who meet these requirements will continue to be on probation for the next term, and a new academic plan will be developed. Continued eligibility for financial aid is contingent on meeting the requirements of each term’s academic plan. Financial aid probation status will not end until the student successfully establishes his or her minimum cumulative GPA and 67% cumulative completion rate. Failure to meet the SAP during any approved financial aid probation term will result in final financial aid termination, cancellation of financial aid.

A student who exceeds the maximum allowable time frame for completing a program of study may appeal the timeframe by providing a graduation plan signed by his/her academic advisor; if the plan is deemed reasonable, the student will receive financial aid on a probationary basis for one or more terms until the degree is completed.

Treatment of Selected Grades

Course Withdrawal, Incompletes, Unsatisfactory, Vanished and Fail: Credit hours in which a student receives a grade of “W”, “I”, “U”, "V", and “F” are included in the number of hours attempted but do not count toward successfully completed hours; consequently, students who withdraw may have difficulty meeting the satisfactory progress requirements. These grades are included in the calculation of GPA.

Transfer Credit: Students transferring from another institution will be considered making satisfactory progress at the time of enrollment. A student’s maximum timeframe for receiving financial aid will be reduced by the number of transferred credit hours applied towards his/her program of study at Union Institute & University. Repeated course: Courses repeated that have never been passed are eligible for federal aid.  Courses that have been passed are eligible for aid only one additional registration. The last grade earned is calculated in the GPA. For financial aid purposes, the previous hours attempted and earned will continue to be counted in the student’s cumulative hours attempted and earned. Successful completion: A grade of A, B, C, D, or S is considered successful course completion. These grades are included in the calculation of GPA.

SAP Statuses

Satisfactory: Students who have met the criteria explained above, respective cumulative GPA and cumulative completion rate of 67%, have satisfactory status. Financial aid funding will post to student’s account as scheduled.

Financial Aid Warning: Students who have not earned the required minimum cumulative GPA or completion rate at the end of a term will be placed on financial aid warning for the next enrolled term. Satisfactory academic progress will be monitored at the end of each term to determine if the student meets the standards of progress and is eligible to continue to receive financial aid. Financial Aid funding will post to student’s account as scheduled. If warning remains at end of term, financial aid funding for the next term will be placed on hold until Satisfactory Academic Progress is reviewed.

Financial Aid Termination: Students on financial aid probation whose appeal was denied will have their financial aid terminated. Financial aid will also be terminated for students who have attempted the maximum allowable credit hours for their program of study.

Financial Aid Probation: Students whose appeals have been approved by the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeals Committee are placed on financial aid probation. Until financial aid probation appeal is approved, financial aid funding will be placed on hold.

Notification of Financial Aid Warning, Probation or Termination: The Financial Aid Office will send an email to a student who is placed on financial aid warning, probation or terminated; however, failure to receive correspondence does not negate a termination or warning status.

Returning students are evaluated on a continuing basis from the last enrollment, unless an extenuating circumstance is considered. Returning students who enrolled under an earlier academic progress policy will be required to meet the standards of the current policy upon returning.

Complete academic record: To measure a student’s satisfactory progress toward degree requirements, the student’s complete academic record at Union Institute & University must be evaluated, whether or not the student received aid for the entire time of enrollment.

Please note that satisfactory academic progress warning, probation or termination status can be changed only by successfully completing classes – it is not enough to sit out a term. The status remains until you earn both a minimum cumulative GPA and a cumulative completion rate of 67%. You must meet both criteria to be considered in good standing for financial aid.