Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Professional and Graduate Studies
Satisfactory Academic Progress (effective 1-1-13)

Federal regulations require Southern Nazarene University (SNU) to evaluate financial aid satisfactory academic progress (SAP) at the conclusion of each term. All students are encouraged to become familiar with the SAP policy as students must adhere to these requirements to retain eligibility for federal, state and university financial aid. There are 3 components to SNU’s policy 1) Hours completed (including transfer credits), 2) Grade Point Average and 3) Maximum number of hours. The Financial Aid Office reviews students’ transcripts at the conclusion of each term to determine continued eligibility.

I. Satisfactory Completion of Semester Hours – Pace

Effective July 1, 2011 each student is required to pass a minimum of 75% of the credit hours attempted during the preceding term (rounded down to the nearest whole number). The number of completed hours is based on the number of hours a student initially enrolled and received financial aid. Pace is evaluated at the conclusion of each term.

Example: If a student attempted 12 hours during the term, the SAP policy would require the student to complete at least 9 hours (12 x 75% = 9 hours). If a student completes fewer than 9 hours, a Financial Aid Warning letter will be sent.

II. Grade Point Average Requirement

Each student must meet a cumulative grade point average standard to remain eligible for assistance. The grades of F, W, I or Audit do not count as successful completion of a course.

Cumulative GPA Required:

 Undergraduate Graduate  
0-24 hours
1.5 GPA Graduate 3.00 GPA
25-56 hours 1.75 GPA
57-89 hours
2.00 GPA
 90-124 hours
2.00 GPA

A student may not receive aid for repeating courses in which a grade A, B, or C was earned. A student may receive aid for repeating courses in which a grade of D, F or W was earned. A student may repeat a class one time. If the student passed the course and is repeating the course for any reason (to improve a grade, to review the content again, etc.), then Financial Aid funds can only pay for one repeat of the course.

III. Maximum Number of Hours (Degree Completion) – Pace

Each student enrolled in a degree program is eligible for financial aid for a maximum number of hours specific to the completion of the degree. Students (undergraduate and graduate) are subject to a maximum time frame of 150% of the published length of the degree program as measured in credit hours. To determine the published length of a specific degree program, please refer to SNU’s catalog.

Maximum number of hours for an undergraduate degree based on 124 hours is 186 hours. Maximum number of hours for a graduate degree based on 36 hours is 54 hours.

Transferred credit hours accepted from another university (and accepted towards student’s SNU educational program) must count as both completed and attempted hours in the evaluation of Pace. If the student does not meet the satisfactory academic requirements, he will enter the university on probation.

Academic Advisors or Program Directors to notify Financial Aid of total number of hours accepted.

Monitoring Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Financial Aid Warning:

Students not meeting the minimum hours and cumulative GPA requirements (I and II above) for the first time, will be sent a Financial Aid Warning letter. Students who receive a Financial Aid Warning letter will receive financial aid for one additional term/payment period. The letter explains that academic performance will be re-evaluated after the warning term/payment period to determine if additional action must be taken.

Financial Aid Suspension:

Any student who is on a warning status for the term/payment period and does not meet the SAP requirements will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. Financial aid cannot be received while on suspension. The student will receive a Financial Aid Suspension letter and will be given the opportunity to file an appeal if they seek consideration for financial aid for the upcoming term/payment period.

Appealing Financial Aid Suspension:

A student who has mitigating circumstances (such as, but not limited to, death of an immediate family member, serious injury or illness of a student or immediate family member) may complete the Financial Aid Satisfactory Suspension Appeal Form for continued financial aid. The appeal must include 1) why the student failed SAP and 2) what has changed in the student’s situation that will allow the student to demonstrate SAP at the next evaluation. The appeal form also request information for the student’s plans to be successful in future terms/payment periods. The appeal and supporting documentation must be received within 30 days of the date of suspension notification letter. Supporting documentation may include a physician’s written statement to substantiate illness or accident, a copy of a death certificate, a written statement from spouse, parent, clergy, the program director or professors. Students appealing suspension may be requested to submit an Academic Plan from their advisor that ensures achievement of at least the required 75% completion rate, the minimum required GPA, and/or graduation by a specified time frame.

An appeal will be reviewed by a Financial Aid Committee, and they will notify the student in writing of the decision of the committee. If the appeal is approved, a letter will be sent to the student with a list of conditions that must be continued financial aid i.e. hours and grades. If the student cannot mathematically achieve SAP standards in one term/payment period/an academic plan may be required.

If the appeal is denied, a student can be reinstated to financial aid once they raise their GPA either at SNU or another university.