Satisfactory Academic Progress

OVERVIEW

Bowling Green State University (BGSU) is required by federal law to establish a reasonable satisfactory academic progress (SAP) policy for determining whether a student is making satisfactory academic progress in his or her educational program. To be eligible for federal student aid or other funds such as state and institutional scholarships and grants, a student must make reasonable satisfactory academic progress toward the attainment of a degree or certificate program. A student’s entire academic history at BGSU (including any College Credit Plus, transfer or consortium agreement credits and periods during which no federal aid was received) is reviewed to ensure timely progression toward graduation.

Financial aid academic progress is assessed by the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships (SFA) annually at the conclusion of the Spring semester according to qualitative, quantitative and maximum time frame measures described within this policy. All measures must be met for continued federal and state aid eligibility. Students failing to meet any single measure of the satisfactory academic policy will be deemed ineligible for financial aid.  Students may request re-consideration through an appeal process described in item number 6 of the policy.

Satisfactory academic progress requires financial aid recipients to do the following:

  1. Be admitted into a degree/certificate seeking program.
  2. Meet minimum cumulative grade point average.
  3. Satisfactorily complete at least 67% of cumulative credit hours attempted.
  4. Complete the degree/certificate program within the maximum attempted hours.

PROGRAMS GOVERNED BY THIS POLICY:

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG)
  • Federal Direct Subsidized & Unsubsidized Loans
  • Federal Direct Parent Loans for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)
  • Federal Direct Graduate PLUS
  • Federal Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant (TEACH)
  • Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant
  • Federal Work Study
  • Nursing Loans
  • State Scholarship & Grant Programs (Example: Ohio College Opportunity Grant)
  • BGSU Sponsored Scholarship & Grant Programs
  • Private  Loan Programs (Depends on the Lender)

* Eligibility for graduate assistantships and fellowships, as well as dependent or employee fee waivers, are not governed by this policy.

1. QUALITATIVE MEASURE DEFINED

The qualitative measure can be summarized as the cumulative grade point average (GPA) measured once a year at the completion of spring semester or after each approved probationary payment period. The minimum GPA requirement depends on a student’s career/degree level i.e., associates, certificate, bachelors, masters, and doctoral. Regardless of how many times the student changes majors within a given degree, the minimum GPA is cumulative until the student pursues a different degree. Financial aid is suspended if the qualitative measurement is not met and the student will remain ineligible unless the student follows the steps in the SFA appeal process and the appeal is approved, or the student corrects his or her deficiency on their own. The university requires all undergraduate students to obtain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 to graduate. All graduate students must obtain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 to graduate.

Minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average
Degree ProgramsAcademic Level

Required to maintain Financial Aid Eligibility

Financial Aid Eligibility Suspended

Baccalaureate degree programs

After 1st Academic Year1.75 GPA or higher0.00 - 1.74 GPA
2nd Academic Year and beyond2.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 1.99 GPA

Associates degree programs

After 1st Academic Year1.75 GPA or higher0.00 - 1.74 GPA
2nd Academic Year and beyond2.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 1.99 GPA

Certificate programs

Undergraduate2.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 1.99 GPA
Graduate3.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 2.99 GPA
Graduate degree program 

3.00 GPA or higher

0.00 - 2.99 GPA

Teacher Certification/Education, Licensure, Professional & Associate Renewals, Endorsements
Undergraduate2.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 1.99 GPA
Graduate3.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 2.99 GPA

Qualifying Guest Student Programs

Undergraduate2.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 1.99 GPA
Graduate3.00 GPA or higher0.00 - 2.99 GPA

2. QUANTITATIVE MEASURE DEFINED

The quantitative measure for all students can be summarized as the total number of credit hours successfully completed divided by the total number of credit hours actually attempted. For example: If a student has attempted to take 50 credit hours but only successfully completed 40 out of those 50 credit hours, the completion rate would be at 80% (40/50 = 80%). When these measures are applied, federal regulations require that a student’s entire academic history, (including CCP coursework) be considered. This includes semesters during which federal aid was not received by the student as well as all applicable transfer hours.

Financial aid recipients must satisfactorily complete at least 67% of all cumulative credit hours attempted. Grades of A, B, C, D, F, W, WF, ATNF, INC, I, IP, S, U, and NC are considered in the quantitative measure. Grades of A, B, C, D, IP (for graduate students completing thesis or dissertation), P and S are considered to be satisfactory grades. All other grades such as F, I, U, WF, W, ATNF, NC are considered unsatisfactory grades.

Note: Audited classes (letter grade: AUD) are not counted within this policy. No credit is being offered for an audited class; therefore, no financial aid can be provided.

Financial aid is suspended if the quantitative measurement is not met, and the student will remain ineligible unless the student follows the steps in the SFA appeal process and the appeal is approved, or the student corrects his or her deficiency on their own.

3. MAXIMUM TIME FRAME MEASURE DEFINED

A student is expected to complete a degree/certificate program within a prescribed time frame. For an undergraduate program the time frame cannot exceed 150% of the published time to degree completion measured in credit hours attempted. For instance, if the published length of an undergraduate degree is 120 credit hours, the maximum period must not exceed 180 (120 x 1.5) credit hours.

BGSU applies the 150% time frame measure to undergraduate, graduate, certificate, and licensure programs. Regardless of how many times the student changes majors within a given degree, the maximum time frame is cumulative until the student pursues a different degree.

Financial aid is suspended if the maximum time frame for a degree is exceeded. The student will remain ineligible unless the student follows the steps in the SFA appeal process and the appeal is approved, or the student corrects his or her deficiency on their own.

Maximum Time Frame Credit Hours

Program

Maximum Credit Hours Allowed

Baccalaureate degree programs

183 hours

Associate degree programs

93 hours

Certificate programs

48 hours

Master’s degree programs

48 hours

Doctoral degree programs

120 hours

4. POLICY VARIATIONS

Academic Forgiveness

Any credit hours and/or GPA associated with a student’s academic forgiveness, granted in accordance with University policy, shall be considered when determining a student’s satisfactory progress.

Incomplete Grades

Students may have their SAP status re-evaluated, by contacting SFA when an incomplete course grade becomes a graded course.

Monitoring Intervals

Satisfactory academic progress shall be monitored annually at the conclusion of each spring semester or at the time the student is applying for financial assistance (completing the FAFSA). If a student is placed on financial aid probation with an Academic Plan, as a result of appealing their SAP status, their progress will be re-evaluated after one payment period, which includes summer. If a student is academically suspended between monitoring periods, the student’s eligibility for financial aid will also be suspended and must be reassessed at the time the student is readmitted to the University.

College Credit Plus (CCP), formerly known as PSEOP

Course credit taken under a CCP program, or equivalent program, must be counted within the qualitative, quantitative, and maximum time frame measures of this policy.

Reinstatement of Financial Aid Eligibility

Periods of non-enrollment or paying for school at one’s own expense, does not automatically qualify a student to receive federal and state financial aid again in a subsequent semester. Eligibility may be regained by eliminating all satisfactory progress deficiencies at the student’s expense until all requirements of this policy are met or by appealing his or her satisfactory academic progress status and the appeal is approved.

Remedial Coursework

Remedial coursework credits are included within this policy. Students may only take up to 30 credit hours of remedial coursework. Remedial coursework is graded on an S /U basis and does not count as letter-graded hours. Therefore, remedial coursework is not considered in the qualitative measure. Remedial coursework is, however, included in the quantitative and maximum time frame measures.

Repeated Courses

A student may receive federal funds for repeated coursework previously taken in a program but may not include more than one repetition of a previously passed course, or any repetition of a previously passed course due to the student’s failing other coursework. All retake registration hours will be counted in the quantitative and maximum time frame measures.

Withdrawing from Classes

As previously stated, the entire academic history is reviewed to ensure reasonable progress toward graduation. W,WF, and ATN grades are included in the quantitative measurement of this policy. The more classes a student withdraws from, the more likely the chances of not completing 67% of all hours attempted. An example of how a grade of WF/ATN can affect a student’s progress follows:

Fall semester a freshman student receives the following grades:

Math

3 credits

Grade = A

English

3 credits

Grade = B

Psychology

3 credits

Grade = C

Art

3 credits

Grade = B

This student has successfully completed 12 credit hours and attempted 12 credit hours. 12/12 = 100% successful completion rate fall semester.

Spring semester the same freshman student receives the following grades:

History

3 credits

Grade = A

Political Science

3 credits

Grade = F

Geography

3 credits

Grade = F

Astronomy

3 credits

Grade = F

Statistics

3 credits

Grade = F

This student has only successfully completed 3 credit hours and attempted 15 credit hours. 3/15 = 20% successful completion rate spring semester.

When the total academic history for the student is reviewed:

  • Total credit hours completed fall & spring =15
  • Total credit hours attempted = 27
  • Quantitative Measure= 15/27 = 55%
  • In this example, this student would not be meeting the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy because the quantitative measure of 67% is not being met.

This student is not progressing toward graduation in a reasonable time frame and financial aid will be suspended. The student will remain ineligible unless the student follows the steps in the SFA appeal process and the appeal is approved, or the student corrects their deficiency at their own expense.

5. PROBATIONARY STATUS

If a student is not maintaining financial aid satisfactory academic progress at the end of spring semester the student is considered to be ineligible for federal and state program funds. A student may follow the appeal process asking to be reinstated to an aid eligible status. An approved appeal will result in the assignment of an Academic Plan as outlined by SFA. Upon acceptance of a signed Satisfactory Academic Progress Academic Plan, the student will be placed in a probationary status and will be eligible to receive federal and state aid for one payment period.

6. THE APPEAL PROCESS

When it has been determined a student has failed to meet any one or more measures of satisfactory academic progress (SAP) a notification will be sent to the student via US Mail and BGSU email. An appeal may be submitted if there are extenuating circumstances that warrant a student to continue to receive federal and state aid/funds during a probationary payment period. Extenuating circumstances may include, among other things, the student being injured or ill, change of employment, or death or illness of a family member.

  • All appeals and supporting documentation will be reviewed by a committee.
  • A successful appeal will result in the assignment of an Academic Plan as outlined by the committee and a probation period of eligibility lasting one payment period.
  • All appeals must contain information regarding why the student failed to make SAP and what has changed in the student’s situation that would allow the student to demonstrate SAP at the next evaluation.
  • SFA reserves the right to request additional documentation to verify the extenuating circumstances described in an appeal. The burden of proof is upon the student to substantiate claims for not meeting the requirements set forth within the policy.

An approved appeal will result in a Satisfactory Academic Progress Academic Plan and may include:

  1. Expected GPA to accomplish by the end of the probationary payment period
  2. Expected number of credit hours to complete by the end of the probationary payment period
  3. The maximum number of additional credit hours allowed as indicated on Academic Advisor Certification Form (for Maximum Timeframe citations)
  4. Required visits to the Learning Commons/Teaching and Learning Center as determined by the SFA counselor or advisor.

If the appeal is not approved, that decision is final. The student's eligibility for financial aid would remain suspended at BGSU. A student could regain eligibility for aid by completing courses and bringing their academic record into good standing according to the qualitative and/or quantitative standards outlined above.

Appeal Committee

Students who submit a Satisfactory Academic Progress appeal will have their submission reviewed by an appeals committee. The appeals committee has the final authority to determine if financial aid will be extended or denied to a student. The decision of this committee is final and cannot be appealed. The committee will respond to the student in writing of their decision. The student will not meet with the appeals committee. All correspondence will be conducted in writing by mail or email.

Appeal Deadlines

Appeals must be submitted by the following dates to be considered for eligibility for that semester.

  • Summer: July 1
  • Fall: October 1
  • Spring: March 1

Policy revised: September 4, 2018

If you wish to appeal your satisfactory academic progress status, based on the above policy, please use the Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form.