Satisfactory Academic Progress - Full Report
1.1 Purpose and Scope
Federal regulations mandate that a student receiving financial aid under Title IV
maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) in his/her course of study regardless of whether
financial aid is awarded each semester. Students are responsible for understanding and adhering
to the satisfactory academic progress policy. SAP will be measured at the end of each term for all
students and is measured based on the standards below. Federal Regulations specify minimum
standards for these measures, but KCTCS may set stricter standards in its policy.
- Qualitative (cumulative Grade Point Average)
- Quantitative (67% Rule – Hours earned divided by Hours Attempted)
- Maximum Time Frame (150% of required hours for program completion)
1.2 Qualitative Standard – Grade Point Average (GPA)
KCTCS qualitative standard is determined by the student’s earned Cumulative Grade
Average (GPA). KCTCS uses a 4-point scale for GPA. To meet the Qualitative Standard,
students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0.
1.3 Quantitative Percentage Standard (QPS or 67% Rule)
The satisfactory academic progress policy must also include a quantitative measure
the number of credit hours attempted and percentage of credit hours completed (passed). The
minimum percentage of work a student must successfully complete by the end of each term is
67% of all attempted hours. If a student fails any combination of two (2) consecutive terms of
cumulative qualitative and/or cumulative quantitative standards, their financial aid will be
- At the end of the 2nd semester a student has cumulatively completed 16 credits while
attempting 24 credits
- Quantitative measure equals – 16 completed/24 attempted = 67%
- In conjunction with maximum time frame (see below), the quantitative measure indicates
if student is progressing at a pace to graduate within the maximum time frame
1.4 Maximum Time Frame (MTF) Standard - Pace
Students are expected to complete their degree/diploma/certificate credentials within
Time Frame (MTF) of 150 percent of the required number of credit hours to graduate from their
enrolled program of study. MTF of 150% includes all classes required for the credential plus
50%. An example is provided in Table 1.
|MTF Percentage||Attempted Hours Permitted|
|Associates – 60 hours||150%||90|
|Diploma – 48 hours||150%||72|
|Certificate – 30 hours||150%||45|
All hours such as transferred hours, repeated classes, bankrupted hours, incompletes,
withdrawals, failed in graded courses, failed in pass/fail courses and audit (changed from credit
to audit after the last day to add a class) are included in the maximum timeframe and quantitative
standards calculations or pace.
For a standard 16-week term, Student Aid enrollment status for payment purposes will be
established at the close of the 7th calendar day beginning with the first day the term, including
weekends but not holidays, or upon file completion whichever is later. Courses added after this
date will not be considered for enrollment for student aid purposes but will be counted as
attempted for quantitative and MTF standards.
Students who do not meet one or more of the Quantitative, Qualitative or Pace of the program
standards will be placed on “Warning” status. For example, during the SAP evaluation, students
earning a cumulative grade point average below a 2.0 at the end of a term will receive an SAP
“Warning” status, whereby the student may continue to receive Title IV aid for one payment
1.5 Other Elements
Grades of "A", "B", "C", "D", "P" and "S" will be considered in determining credit
hours earned. Grades of "E", "F", "W", "WF", "WP", "MP", "U", or "I" will not be
considered as credit hours earned but, will be considered as hours attempted for the
semester (includes anything earned throughout enrollment period).
1.6 Failure to Meet the Standards of Academic Progress
If a student fails any combination of two (2) consecutive terms of cumulative qualitative
cumulative quantitative standards, their financial aid will be suspended. Students who exceed
Maximum Time Frame (MTF) will be suspended immediately upon exceeding the MTF
A student who fails to meet SAP standards for the first time will be placed on a “warning”
allowing a student to continue to receive Title IV aid for one term without an appeal. A student
who fails to meet SAP standards at the end of the warning period or second consecutive term,
will be suspended and not receive additional Title IV aid. A student exceeding Maximum Time
Frame may go directly to Suspense not having received a warning status.
All conflicting information is reviewed for SAP monitoring. For example, late posted
grade changes will be reviewed once per semester after the initial SAP review. Students may
request that the SAP status be recalculated after they have confirmed with the registrar that the
grade change has been posted to their academic record.
Students with enrollment prior to July 1, 2011 who have failed to meet SAP Standards
previous term and are in Probation 1 or Probation 2 SAP status are considered to be in
warning status. Failure to meet SAP standards for the next term of enrollment will result in
immediate suspension and require an approved appeal to regain eligibility.
1.7 Appeal Process
When a student loses Federal Student Aid (FSA) eligibility and are put on SAP Suspense
because he/she failed to make satisfactory progress, the student may appeal that result on the
basis of: his/her injury or illness, the death of a relative, or other extenuating/special
circumstance that prevented them from meeting SAP standards. To appeal, students must
complete a SAP Appeal Form available in their Student Self-Service.
Extenuating/special circumstances are defined as situations beyond the student's control
created an undue hardship and caused the student's inability to meet satisfactory academic
progress standards. Appropriate documentation may be required at the discretion of the student’s
home college. If a student cannot provide requested documentation the student must
communicate in their appeal why documentation cannot be provided.
Special circumstances include but are not limited to:
- Death of an immediate family member or person who share the student's household
(parent, spouse or significant other, sibling, child)
- Issues related to a divorce
- Injury or illness to student or immediate family member (parent, spouse or significant
other, sibling, child) that required hospitalization, convalescence in an institutional
setting or confinement at home for at least seven (7) days
Simply stating that a student dropped a course or changed a major or “…was young and
know”, in and of itself would not be grounds to support an SAP appeal. More information
supporting an extenuating circumstance related to these actions would need to be provided. The
following possible reasons for extenuating circumstances are also examples that are not grounds
for a SAP appeal in and of itself:
- The difficulty of a course
- The teaching method or dislike of an instructor
- Too many hours attempted in a semester
- Promises to perform better in the future
- The length of time since last attended
- Voluntary change in work hours
Students who were determined to have exceeded Maximum Time Frame (MTF) may request
their coursework be evaluated based on classes needed for their current credential.
1.7.1 Appeal Requirements
To appeal, students must complete a SAP Appeal Form available in their Student SelfService
and provide any additional information/documents required by the college. The
appeal will be evaluated by the SAP Appeals Committee of the home college. Students
will be notified of the committee’s decision, typically within ten days of the committee
meeting. Since deadlines for submission of appeals, frequency of SAP Committee
meetings, and other details of the process may differ by college, students must refer to the
SAP information provided on their college’s website (College SAP Website Links).
Students are responsible for payment arrangements with the institution pending a
decision of the appeals committee.
1.7.2 Probation and Reinstatement of Aid
SAP appeals will be evaluated by the college SAP Appeal Committee. Students will be
notified of the committee’s decision, typically within ten days of the committee meeting.
To be placed on Probation (Plan of Action – PLOA), a student must:
- Appeal and have it approved by the school; AND
- Student expected (mathematically possible) to be making SAP in the next term; OR
- Be successfully following an individual academic plan designed to ensure student will be able to meet SAP by a specific point in time
The appeal must include:
- Why the student failed to make SAP; AND
- What has changed that will allow the student to make SAP at the next evaluation
Reinstatement of aid
If the SAP appeal is approved, the student will:
- Be assigned a Financial Aid SAP Probation (Plan of Action – PLOA) status if
- Given an individual academic plan of action/contract that stipulates certain
conditions and academic requirements.
Approved by SAP Work Group September, 2019
- Upon acceptance of the academic plan of action/contract, the student may receive
financial aid for one additional term. At the end of that term, the student’s status
will be re-evaluated.
- Federal student aid for the next term will not be awarded or disbursed until the
student has successfully completed all terms specified within the academic plan of
action contract or is found to have met SAP requirements.
If the SAP appeal is denied, the student:
- is not eligible for federal student aid will remain ineligible until they are again
compliance with SAP standards.
- may continue to attend college at their own expense.
- who is suspended from financial aid and achieves SAP standards without the assistance of federal financial aid, may request to be evaluated for reinstatement? All requests must be submitted to the local Student Financial Aid office of the home institution.
NOTE: Students are responsible for all expenses such as tuition, fees, books, and
supplies pending the decision of the SAP Appeals Committee and must contact the
Business Affairs Office to make payment arrangements with the institution. Decisions
made by the SAP Appeals Committee are final and are not subject to further appeal.
1.8 REPEAT CLASS POLICY
Federal student aid may only pay for the first repeat one of any previously passed
attempted hours are included in the denominator of the evaluation of Pace. Any given class will
be included in the numerator one time. Subsequent attempts of that course would increase the
denominator but not the numerator. KCTCS colleges will use the highest grade when calculating
a student’s GPA but must include the credits from all attempts when calculating maximum time
Example: Student attempts BIO137 and earns a D on the first attempt. At this point,
has a 1.0 GPA and 100% (QPS) (3 credits completed/3 credits attempted). The next semester,
the student attempts the course again and earn a B. At this point, the student has a 3.0 GPA and
50% (QPS) (3 credits complete/6 credits attempted)
1.8.1 Additional Information
- Student Aid will not be provided for:
- Courses taken by audit
- Credit hours earned by placement tests
- Non-credit course work
- All transfer hours will count in the attempted hours.
- Grades in legacy software systems (before PeopleSoft) will be used as recorded
and reflected on the student’s academic transcript.
Approved by SAP Work Group September, 2019
- If the student receives a change in a grade for a class, he/she must report this to
their local Student Financial Aid office in writing for the change to be evaluated
in the student’s financial aid eligibility record.
- Developmental remedial course work may receive funding up to a maximum of
30 credit hours according to federal regulations – automated due to Course
- A student may only receive aid for up to a maximum of 30 credit hours as
an undecided major. Students attempting hours beyond the 30 hours must
decide an eligible major to be considered for financial aid eligibility.
- A student may only receive aid for up to a maximum of 30 credit hours as
- Dual Enrollment Agreements (also known as Consortium Agreements) allow a
student to receive funds for classes taken at more than one college outside
KCTCS colleges. These forms are to be completed by the student and the
student’s "visiting" college and submitted to their local KCTCS “home” College
(where financial aid funds are received; usually the college from which the
student plans to graduate). Classes taken at a visiting college (whether at KCTCS
colleges or outside KCTCS colleges) must count toward the student’s graduation
from their awarding college.
- If a student is admitted "conditionally" she/he may receive student aid for one
semester only. No additional aid may be awarded until the student completes an
The student should check with their Home College Financial Aid Office SAP Appeal Policy
specific information on the appeal the process.