Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Purposes

All students receiving federal, state or institutional financial aid must meet the standards of progress outlined below. The requirements for these standards are set by federal regulations (34CFR Sections 668.16(e), 668.32(f), 668.34). 

Satisfactory progress requirements are:

  1. You must maintain at least a 2.0 cumulative grade point average or if on Financial Aid probation (which means that you have an approved appeal) and your cumulative GPA is less than 2.0 you must maintain at least a 2.0 semester GPA to maintain probation status to continue receiving aid, and;
  2. You must successfully complete at least 67 percent of all CF credits taken including transfer courses accepted, and;
  3. You must successfully complete at least 67 percent of the credits you attempt for the semester; your GPA must not drop from the previous cumulative GPA to maintain good standing or probation status;
  4. You may attempt no more than 150 percent of the total credit hours in your degree or certificate program.

How are the above calculations made?

If you attended other colleges, the courses you took that are accepted as transfer credit by the College of Central Florida will be considered in the evaluation of your progress. For financial aid purposes, being enrolled in a course for credit beyond the official drop/refund deadline counts as an attempt. All successfully completed transfer courses accepted and courses taken at the College of Central Florida, including those taken as part of another program of study, will be included in determining your Satisfactory Academic Progress. For financial aid purposes, successful completion of a course means an earned grade of A, B+, B, C+, C, D, SP or S. However, a grade of D is passing below average.  All other grades (F, I, W, N and NR) are considered unsuccessful completions and will impact your progress determination. The formula for calculating the completion ratio is: total hours earned divided by total hours attempted. The resulting percentage must be 67 percent or greater. If you have attempted 150 percent of the hours needed for your current declared program (for most students this is 90 credit hours or more, referred to as excess hours), you will no longer be eligible for financial aid without a signed degree audit from an academic advisor.

When does the College of Central Florida evaluate a student for SAP?

Satisfactory Academic Progress will be evaluated when the FAFSA is received by the College of Central Florida’s Financial Aid office. Standards are also evaluated at the end of the summer just prior to beginning a new Financial Aid year to include all transfer work or newly completed coursework since the FAFSA was received and at the end of each semester for students that have been disbursed Title IV aid.

What happens if you are not meeting SAP?

If you are not meeting SAP for the very first time at the College of Central Florida you will be placed on Financial Aid Warning. This will allow you to attend one semester on financial aid. At the end of that semester you will be evaluated to determine if you have progressed. If you progressed you will be placed on probation, however, if you did not you will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.

At the end of a semester, if you do not meet the standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress due to your GPA or completion ratio, and are currently on probation, your academic progress will be evaluated and if you have not withdrawn or received a non-passing grade you will be placed on financial aid probation for one semester. Students may continue to enroll, attend classes and receive financial aid for the probationary period. If you do not meet the requirements during your probation semester, you will be placed on suspension and will not be eligible for further financial aid at the College of Central Florida.

During suspension students can continue to enroll and attend classes as long as all tuition/fees and any other charges are paid in full.

Can you appeal the SAP decision?

You have the right to appeal a financial aid suspension if you have special circumstances that affected your ability to meet the satisfactory progress requirements. Appeal forms are available from the Financial Aid tab on the student portal under Financial Aid forms. Documentation of your special circumstances will be required along with supporting documentation and an academic plan from an academic advisor. Appeal forms must be submitted to the Financial Aid Department by the appeal deadline printed on the form. If you are placed on financial aid suspension and you do not have special circumstances or your appeal is denied, you may regain your eligibility for financial aid by bringing your cumulative GPA up to a 2.0 or better and your cumulative completion rate to at least 67 percent. If you were on probation and you have failed to bring your GPA and completion ratio up you will need to pay for the courses you take while under suspension. However, during the same financial aid year if you were awarded Title IV aid on an appeal and continue to show improvement a Financial Aid administrator may approve an appeal for the next consecutive semester without an additional appeal form submitted. End of semester appeals must be submitted before the end of add/drop for the upcoming semester. Refer to the student portal to determine your end of semester SAP status. No appeal will be approved for a semester that has ended.

Appeals are granted for extenuating circumstances.

  • Illness/injury of the student or death of a close relative of the student are extenuating circumstances.
  • Other extenuating circumstances that will be considered are medical emergencies, accidents, divorce/separation of parents; personal tragedy, natural disaster or other special circumstances beyond the student’s control that prevented the student from meeting the minimum standards.
  • No appeal will be considered without supporting documentation. The student must have proof of his/her situation.
  • The Financial Aid Office will notify each student on the student portal and in writing of its decision.
  • Students whose appeals where approved are placed on financial aid probation for one semester. The probationary semester may have conditions placed on the student so it is important to follow the conditions of the appeal. At the end of that semester the students’ academic records are reviewed and students who have met the conditions of their probation will be given another semester of probation. Students that are still not meeting minimum standards or did not do what was required for the probation are placed on financial aid suspension.
  • The financial aid suspension will remain in place for appeals that are not granted.
  • Students may appeal the decision of the appeal by submitting a written request to the Financial Aid Director or Coordinator or by speaking to the either of them in person. Decisions on appeals made by the Director or Coordinator of Financial Aid are final and may not be appealed further.