Undergraduate Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards for Receiving Financial Aid

In order to be eligible to receive Title IV federal aid, a student must be making satisfactory academic progress.  Please note that satisfactory academic progress may be different from good standing, academic probation, or academic dismissal.

The Graceland University satisfactory academic progress standards for financial aid apply to all students who want to establish or maintain financial aid eligibility.  The standards apply to a student’s entire academic record whether or not the student received financial aid for previous terms of enrollment.

*Satisfactory Academic Progress for Graduate Students is defined differently. (See Satisfactory Academic Progress for Graduate Students)

Eligibility and Evaluation

To qualify for financial aid,  undergraduate students must progress according to the following standards.  All financial aid recipients will be evaluated by two measurements; quantitative and qualitative.  All Undergraduate students must meet or exceed the minimum requirements for both measurements in order to remain eligible for financial aid.

  • The quantitative measurement is the pace in which it will take the student to complete their program. All students must obtain a 67% pace of completion or higher. The pace of completion standard is determined by the scheduled length of completion for an undergraduate student (120 s.h.) divided by the maximum timeframe (180 s.h.) of 150% defined by the Department of Education. The pace of completion is calculated for each student by taking total credits earned (successfully completed with passing grades) divided by the total credits attempted. (Please see the section below Attempted Credits for clarification of what credits are considered attempted.) A student will become ineligible to receive financial aid once it becomes evident that the student is unable to complete the program requirements without exceeding the maximum timeframe rather than waiting until they have exceeded the maximum timeframe.
  • The qualitative measurement is the cumulative GPA of the student during their enrollment at Graceland. GPA standards are set at a 2.0 cumulative GPA at each evaluation period. (For information on how GPA is figured refer to System of Grading)

The academic progress of financial aid recipients will be evaluated at the end of each payment period (semester or trimester).

Attempted Credits

Attempted credits include the following: successfully completed courses, non-passing credits (including F’s, withdrawals, incompletes, and audit grades), repeated courses, and transfer credits. Transfer credits refer to all credits accepted by Graceland (for more information in regards to accepted transfer credits refer to the Transfer Student).

If a student is not meeting the minimum requirements for Satisfactory Academic Progress they will be notified by email from their Student Financial Services Advisor that they are not meeting SAP.

Developmental Studies (Remedial Coursework): Undergraduate students may receive financial aid for a maximum of 30 semester hours of developmental coursework as long as the courses are required as a result of placement testing, the student is in an eligible program of study, and SAP requirements continue to be met. Developmental Studies are figured in the total of completed and attempted hours as well as part of the student’s cumulative GPA.

Academic Forgiveness: In the event that a student has been granted Academic Forgiveness, this does not exclude their previous academic record when calculating hours completed, hours earned, or cumulative GPA as it pertains to satisfactory academic progress.

Financial Aid Warning Period

An undergraduate student may receive financial aid for one semester while on Financial Aid Warning and no appeal is necessary. The Financial Aid Warning period will be the semester that directly follows the evaluation period where a student is not meeting the satisfactory academic progress standards. Students who have been accepted to return after an Academic Dismissal will be given one semester of Financial Aid Warning on their return. It is possible for a student to receive more than one Financial Aid Warning Period during their academic career as long as they are not consecutive with another Financial Aid Warning Period or directly following a Financial Aid Probation Period. If the student does not meet all of the satisfactory academic progress standards at the end of the Financial Aid Warning Period, the student will lose their eligibility until they have appealed and been approved for Financial Aid Probation.

If a student is being allowed to continue to receive financial aid during a Financial Aid Warning Period,  the student will be notified by email from their Financial Advisor.

Financial Aid Appeal

If a student is no longer eligible to receive financial aid and must appeal due to not meeting the satisfactory academic progress standards, the student will be notified by email from their Financial Advisor that they must complete a SAP Appeal and be approved in order to be granted a Financial Aid Probation period.

Appeals for Financial Aid Probation must be submitted in writing or by email to their Financial Advisor, no later than two weeks prior to the semester begin date. The appeal must contain the following information:

  1. A statement by the student that outlines the circumstances that the student believes contributed to their lack of academic progress.
  2. The steps that the student plans to make to remedy their current academic situation.
  3. A list of courses the student is planning to enroll in during the next semester. This should include written documentation of your educational plan from your academic advisor, the CAP Center, or your program consultant. See the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form.
  4. For undergraduate juniors and seniors, a semester by semester plan of the classes the student will take in order to graduate within the standards of satisfactory academic progress.

A student may be placed on Financial Aid Probation if a SAP Appeal has been approved by Student Financial Services. Financial Aid Probation allows a student to receive financial aid for one payment period. A student can only receive financial aid for a subsequent payment period if that student is now making SAP. It is possible for a student to receive more than one Financial Aid Probation during their academic career as long as they are not consecutive with another Financial Aid Probation. There must only be one payment period of Financial Aid Probation per Appeal.

After a student’s SAP Appeal has been reviewed, the student will be contacted by the Student Financial Services Office Manager and explained the outcome of their appeal. The Office Manager will explain if the student is being granted a Financial Aid Probation and/or what the student needs to do moving forward to meet the satisfactory academic progress standards.