Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

To receive federal or state financial aid, a student must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). The Financial Aid Office will evaluate a student's progress at the (1) time of application and at the (2) end of each semester. Changes of curricula do not necessarily constitute extended time limits for eligibility. Per federal regulation, all enrollment at PVCC and all applicable transfer credits will be considered, whether or not aid was awarded or received.

The SAP Appeal Policy currently states that:

  • Students must successfully complete at least 67% of the credits they attempt. 
  • Students must meet minimum cumulative GPA requirements based on a progressive scale.
  • Students who have attempted a number of credits that total 150% or more of their program requirements have not made satisfactory academic progress. 

Complete a SAP Appeal

What is Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)?

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is designed to define successful completion of class work toward an approved degree or certificate program to maintain eligibility for student financial aid. If you are unable to meet these standards, you will be placed on financial aid warning or suspension. If you receive financial aid, you have a responsibility to make Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) towards your degree or certificate program to continue to receive state and federal funds, as well as Federal Stafford and PLUS loans. Students must:

  • Maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA).
  • Successfully complete 67% of all credit hours attempted for your degree or certificate program.
  • Complete your program within the time limit for receiving aid.
  • Earn grades of A, B, C, D, S or P in your classes. Grades of F, R, W, U, X and I are unsatisfactory.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Warning or Failure

PVCC's Financial Aid Office checks your progress at the end of each semester. If you are not meeting SAP you will be given one warning per semester. After that semester if you are not meeting SAP, your financial aid will be suspended. If this happens, the Financial Aid Office will send you a letter notifying you of the suspension. The letter will include information on how to appeal the suspension and what you need to do in order to re-establish your eligibility for financial aid.

1. GPA Requirements (GPA Rule) In order to remain eligible for financial aid, students must meet a minimum cumulative grade point average requirements. Only non‐developmental courses with grades of A, B, C, D, and F are included in this calculation. Transfer credits are excluded. In order to graduate, a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 is required.

SAP GPA Requirements for Total Number of Credits Attempted

Total Number of Credits Attempted GPA Requirement
1-15 1.5
16-30 1.75
31+ 2.0

2. Completion Rate (67% Rule) Students must successfully complete 67% of cumulative credits attempted. This evaluation is made prior to financial aid being awarded and after grades are posted at the end of each semester a student is enrolled at the College. 

  • Satisfactory grades are A, B, C, D, S, or P.
  • Developmental and ESL coursework is included in the calculation.
  • Accepted transfer credits will be counted as both attempted and completed.

3. Maximum Hours (150% Rule) Financial Aid will be terminated for recipients upon reaching 150% of the number of credits needed to complete their degree, diploma or certificate program. This regulation applies to all students, including those that have not previously received financial aid.

  • Example: A student working toward an A.A. degree needs 60 credit hours to graduate. Once the student attempts 90 credit hours they are no longer eligible for financial aid at PVCC. (60 credit hours x 150 percent = 90 credit hours) Under extenuating circumstances, the 150 percent rule may be appealed. The 150 percent rule applies to all classes attempted by the student, including vocational and transfer hours. Students must make other arrangements to pay their tuition and fees if their financial aid is terminated and they do not appeal or their appeal is denied.

Students are allowed to receive financial aid for up 30 credit hours of remedial coursework. The successful completion of remedial coursework is not counted toward the 150% completion rule. Repeated coursework is allowed as stated in the college catalog. However, these repeated courses count towards the calculation of the 150% Timeframe limit.

One-Time 150% Reset Students who would like to change programs of study and are nearing or exceeding the SAP 150% Timeframe Rule with the new program of study may appeal to the Financial Aid Office to be considered for a reset to count only those PVCC and transfer credits that go toward the new program of study. The reset may be approved one-time. To be approved, students must meet SAP requirements for GPA and Completion Rate and have not yet earned a degree. Additional requirements are under review. 

4. Developmental and ESL Courses Students may receive financial aid for a maximum of 30 semester hours of Developmental Studies courses as long as:

  • The courses are required as a result of placement testing,
  • The student is in an eligible program of study, and
  • Satisfactory academic progress (SAP) requirements continue to be met.

ESL credits are unlimited in number as long as they are part of an eligible program and SAP requirements continue to be met.

How to Re-establish Financial Aid Eligibility

Following a deficiency in cumulative grade points or credit hours, you will without receiving any financial aid have to do the following in order to reapply:

  • Meet the minimum GPA required and/or
  • Earn the required number of credit hours

You cannot regain your eligibility for financial aid simply by changing your degree or certificate or your curriculum.