Satisfactory Academic Progress
Federal regulations require the College to establish and apply reasonable standards of satisfactory progress for the purpose of the receipt of financial assistance under the programs authorized by Title IV of the Higher Education Act. The law requires institutions to develop policies regarding satisfactory academic progress (SAP). Fisher College students who wish to be considered for financial aid must maintain satisfactory academic progress in their selected course of study as set forth in this policy. Please note that satisfactory academic progress for financial aid purposes is distinct from the College's Academic Progress Guidelines.
The Office of Financial Aid evaluates student academic progress at the end of each semester for students in the Day Division. Students in the Division of Accelerated and Professional Studies are evaluated at the end of each term. Students are evaluated on the basis of grade-point average (GPA), credit hour completion (incremental progress), and maximum time frame limitation (degree completion). Day and DAPS students will be evaluated after attempting a minimum of 12 Fisher credits.
A. Degree Granting Programs and Certificate Programs
a) The maximum time frame allowable to complete a program will be no more than 150% of the published length of the program (measured in total credits attempted, including transfer credits). b) A minimum of 67% of courses attempted must be completed each academic year. Grades of A, B, C, D, and P are treated as successfully completed and earned. Grades of F, W, and I are not. Courses attempted include accepted transfer hours, withdrawals, incompletes and repeats.
a.) A cumulative GPA of 2.0 must be maintained.
Students are notified of the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy in the Fisher College Catalog, on the Financial Aid webpage and on the back of the Financial Aid Award Letter.
A. Warning Status
The first time a student fails to meet the SAP standards listed above, he or she receives a notice from the Office of Financial Aid and is placed on Financial Aid Warning for one academic term. The student will not lose his or her financial aid eligibility during the period. Day students are placed on Financial Aid Warning for one 16 week semester and DAPS students are placed on Warning for 2 consecutive 8 week terms.
B. Loss of Eligibility
If the student does not meet the SAP standards at the end of the Warning time-frame the student loses eligibility for any subsequent financial aid payments, until he or she once again meets the SAP standards. This includes both federal and institutional aid. Financial assistance cannot be provided retroactively for the term during which the student regains eligibility.
Any student who has been denied financial aid due to failure to meet one or more of the SAP standards as defined above may appeal to the Office of Financial Aid by completing a Satisfactory Academic Progress appeal. This appeal should be done in the form of a letter or an e-mail to the Financial Aid Office.
In some cases, a student's failure to remain in compliance with one or more SAP standards is due to events totally beyond the student's control.
Mitigating circumstances that are outlined in the Financial Aid Appeal should be documented in detail to provide the basis for the SAP appeal. Mitigating circumstances that can be used for a financial aid appeal are:
- Serious injury of the student and/or the student's immediate family
- Serious extended illness of the student and/or the student's immediate family
- Death of the student's relative
- Extenuating family circumstances beyond the student's control
- Approved Leave of Absence (must be documented)
The appeal will be reviewed, and a decision rendered, by the Director of Financial Aid. The College reserves the right to consult any authorized individuals within the College who may be in a position to provide further information or who can otherwise corroborate the student's circumstances. Once an appeal is submitted, the student will be notified of the appeal decision within two weeks of submission. Notification will be mailed to the student as well as emailed to their Fisher College email address.
The appeal process will result in one of two decisions: Appeal Approved or Appeal Denied.
A. Appeal Approved
If the appeal is approved, financial aid will be reinstated and the student will be placed on Financial Aid Probation in which to meet all SAP standards. If at the end of the additional term or semester the student does not meet all SAP requirements, the student will lose all financial aid eligibility until such time as they are met. No additional appeal may be submitted. (If the student regains eligibility and then in the future once again fails to meet the SAP standards, another appeal may be submitted at that time).
B. Appeal Denied
If the appeal is denied, financial assistance will be suspended until such time as the student meets all SAP progress requirements as stated above.