Federal regulations and State and Local policies require students to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) in three areas – GPA, hours earned, and maximum timeframe – be be eligible for financial aid. It is the student’s responsibility to stay informed on the SAP standards and to monitor his/her individual progress.

1. Maximum Timeframe

Each student receiving financial assistance will be expected to complete his/her course of study within a period not to exceed 1.5 times the length of his/her program of study; e.g. a two-year program of study (4 semesters, 64 hours) must be completed within 3 years (6 semesters, 96 hours) of attendance.

2. Qualitative Measures

Each student will be expected to meet or exceed the following GPA value when satisfactory academic progress is checked: If the student has attempted 1-21 hours, they must maintain a 1.5 Financial Aid GPA. If the student has attempted 22-32 hours, they must maintain a 1.75 Financial Aid GPA. If the student has attempted 33 & above hours, they must maintain a 2.0 Financial Aid GPA.
*Please refer to section 4 Additional Regulations to see what is included in calculating financial aid GPA.

3. Quantitative Measure

Each student will be expected to meet or to exceed the following completion rate when satisfactory academic progress is checked: If the student has attempted 1-21 hours, they must have a 58% completion rate. If the student has attempted 22-32 hours, they must have a 62% completion rate. If the student has attempted 33 & above hours, they must have a 67% completion rate.
*Please refer to section 4 Additional Regulations to see what is included in calculating completion rate.

HOURS COMPLETION RATE FINANCIAL AID GPA
1-21 58% 1.50
22-32 62% 1.75
33-UP 67% 2.00

4.  Additional Regulations

  • Transfer hours will be included in the complete rate calculation.  A transfer grade of “D” will be accepted only when the transfer student’s cumulative transfer GPA is 2.0 or above.
  • All prior coursework at NWSCC will be included in completion rate and GPA calculations.
  • If a student does not meet any of the requirements listed the student will be given one warning semester in which he/she will be eligible to receive aid.  There is no warning period for MAX timeframe and that situation cannot be improved.
  • After the warning semester the student must have the required GPA and/or completion rate to continue to receive financial aid assistance or financial aid will be suspended.
  • If financial aid funds are suspended the student may file an appeal based on any extenuating circumstances that caused the student to be unsuccessful in their coursework.
  • Information as to the treatment of repeat, incompletes, withdrawals, transfer credit, bankrupted, forgiven, and transitional (remedial) classes is as follows:
    • Incompletes will be factored into the completion rate and maximum timeframe calculations.
    • Withdrawals will not be factored into the GPA calculation but will be included in the completion rate and maximum timeframe calculations.
    • Transfer credits will not be factored into the GPA calculation but will be included in the completion rate and maximum timeframe calculations.
    • Bankrupted classes will be factored into the GPA, completion rate, and maximum timeframe calculation.
    • Forgiven classes will not be factored into the GPA. A class is automatically forgiven one time using the second attempt grade for GPA. If the class is repeated more than twice the GPA will count in all additional attempts. All forgiven and repeated classes will be factored in maximum timeframe calculations. If a passing grade was earned in the class that was forgiven, the hours are no longer counted as earned or passed hours.  In addition, a student can only repeat a successfully passed class using federal aid once. 
    • Transitional (remedial) classed will be factored into the GPA, completion rate, and maximum timeframe calculations.
    • Dropped courses during the official add/drop period will not be factored into the GPA, completion rate, or maximum timeframe calculations.

Grade Course Registration Status Counted in Attempted Credit Hours Counted in Earned Credit Hours Counted in Financial Aid GPA Calculation
A, B, C, D YES YES YES
F YES NO YES
I, IP YES NO NO
S YES YES NO
U YES NO NO
W, WP, WF YES NO NO
AU NON-CREDIT COURSE (AUDIT) NO NO NO
REPEAT COURSE (Students can only repeat a successfully passed class using Federal Aid once) YES YES (only the repeated course counts here) YES
TRANSFER HOURS YES YES NO

Appeal Process

  • Students may submit a Financial Aid Appeal if he/she can provide documented proof of extenuating circumstances.  Extenuating/Special circumstances are those that are beyond the student’s control or request a degree audit for maximum time frame.
  • Student must submit the appeal application and all documentation pertaining to the appeal, by the published appeal deadline.  Submitting a Financial Aid Appeal is NOT an automatic approval.
  • Students will be notified by email of the final appeal decision.
  • If approved the student must follow the guidelines of their approval appeal.
  • Students who have exceeded their 600% Pell Grant Lifetime Eligibility are not eligible to file an appeal to receive a Pell Grant.  Their appeal will be considered for Direct Loans only, unless they have reached the maximum loan amount.  At this point the student is not allowed to file an appeal.
  • Students who owe back Title IV funds from a prior term cannot appeal repaying the funds.
  • A complete appeal packet will consist of:
    • Signed and completed appeal application
    • Signed and dated detailed letter of explanation.
      • The student will need to address the specific semesters where they experienced academic problems or withdrawals.
      • The letter will also need to include what actions the student took to make an effort to meet their responsibilities during the time of the extenuating circumstances and how their circumstances have improved.
    • Documentation
    • FAFSA confirmation page
    • Unofficial NWSCC academic transcript

SAP Evaluation & Student Notification

Satisfactory academic progress will be monitored at the end of each semester after grades have posted. Students will receive an email informing them of the update and to check their MyNWSCC Experience Portal for their eligibility update.

  • Login to your MyNWSCC Experience Portal.
  • Click My Financial Aid
  • Click Satisfactory Academic Progress

You should now be able to see your SAP status.

Sample Scenarios

Student is incoming Freshman with no prior college work.

Semester Hours Registered Per Semester Cumulative HRS Attempted at end of the Semester Cumulative HRS Passed at end of the Semester SAP Status Hours to Complete to Meet Percentage Requirements
Fall 2014 12 12 9 YES 12/9 = 75% Meeting SAP Meeting Completion Requirements
Spring 2015 (Complete Withdraw this semester) 6 18 (12 + 6) 9 (9+0) NO18/9 = 50% WARNING for Spring 2015.  Still eligible for aid. 6 hours
Summer 2015 6 24 (12 + 6 + 6) 12 (9 + 0 + 3) NO24/12 = 50% FAIL for Summer 2015.  Not eligible for aid. 15 hours
Fall 2015 15(Hours paid by means other than Financial Aid) 39(12 + 6 + 6 + 15) 27(9 + 0 + 3 + 15) YES39/27 = 69% Meeting SAP Meeting Completion Requirements
Spring 2016 12 51(12 + 6 + 6 + 15 + 12) 39(9 + 0 + 3 + 15 + 12) YES51/39 = 76% Meeting SAP Meeting Completion Requirements

Student is a Transfer student with prior college work.  Student has transferred 50 hours before attending NWSCC during the Fall 2014 semester.

Semester Hours Registered Per Semester Cumulative HRS Attempted at end of the Semester Cumulative HRS Passed at end of the Semester SAP Status Hours to Complete to Meet Percentage Requirements
Fall 2014 12 Hours 62(50 + 12) 59(50 + 9) YES62/59
= 95%
Meeting SAP Meeting Completion Requirements
Spring 2015 12 Hours 74(50 + 12 + 12) 71(50 + 9 + 12) YES74/71
= 95%
Meeting SAP Meeting Completion Requirements
Summer 2015 12 Hours 86(50 + 12 + 12 + 12) 83(50 + 9 + 12 + 12) YES83/86 = 96% Meeting SAP Meeting Completion Requirements
Fall 2015 15 Hours 101(50 + 12 + 12 + 12 + 15) 98 (50 + 9 + 12 + 12 + 15) YES101/98
= 97%
Exceeding Max Credit Hours.No longer eligible for aid. Taking additional courses does not improve Maximum Time Frame.

Sample GPA Scenarios

Semester Hours Registered Per Semester Cumulative HRS Attempted at end of the Semester Cumulative HRS Passed at end of the Semester SAP Status Hours to Complete to Meet Percentage Requirements
Fall 2015 1.75 12 1.50 YES Meeting GPA Requirements
Spring 2016 1.50 24 1.75 NO Warning Status. Still eligible for Aid.
Summer 2016 1.75 36 2.00 NO FAIL for Summer 2015. Not eligible for aid.
Fall 2016 1.85 48 2.00 NO FAIL for Fall 2015. Not eligible for aid.
Spring 2017 2.00 60 2.00 YES Meeting GPA Requirements. Eligible for aid.