Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

In accordance with Section 484 of the Higher Education Act (HEA), Title IV Regulations, published on 668.16 of the Federal Register, federal and state financial aid regulations require Victor Valley College to establish, define, and apply standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SA) for all financial aid applicants, regardless of previous financial aid history or how the courses were paid for. These standards are created to help students successfully achieve their program of study within the federal Maximum Timeframe (MTF). The regulations require that SAP be evaluated at the end of every academic term, and the qualitative standard (cumulative GPA), quantitative standard (Completion Rate/PACE) and Maximum Time Frame (MTF) are determined before aid can be disbursed in the next academic term. 

All periods of enrollment at Victor Valley College and, if applicable, transferable units from other colleges will be included as part of the SAP review. To ensure meeting these standards, students must request all official academic transcript(s) from all prior colleges to be submitted to the Admissions and Records Department and request a current Student Education Plan (SEP) in accordance with your declared major.

SAP standards apply to all students requesting financial aid from the following federal and state funded programs listed below:

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Federal Work-Study Program (FWS)
  • Federal Direct Loans
  • State Cal Grant Program (B, FTSS & C)
  • State Chafee Grant Program
  • State Child Development Grant Program
     

ELIGIBLE PROGRAM OF STUDY

Recipients of financial aid must be enrolled in a major or program of study, which leads to a Certificate of Achievement, Associate Degree, or a transferable program that leads to a Baccalaureate Degree. It is the student's responsibility to have a major or academic program of study declared at Victor Valley College.

ELIGIBLE COURSEWORK 

Students must take coursework that is required toward the graduation requirements for their primary program of study on file with Admissions & Records. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that their coursework meets the requirements for their program of study at Victor Valley College.

Components of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

 

~Qualitative Standard: Grade Point Average

Students are required to maintain a minimum cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of at least 2.0 or better to achieve Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) status.

Grades considered as units completed for CGPA:  A,  B,  C,  CR,  D,  P
Please Note: A grade of "CR" or "P" counts as units completed, but will not be included in your GPA.

Grades not considered as units completed for CGPA:  U,  FW*,  F*,  I,  NC,  W,  IP
*Note: These grades are excluded from your GPA, with the exception of an F and FW grade.

 

~Quantitative Standard: Completion Rate (PACE)

Students must maintain a completion rate/PACE of 67% or greater at the end of each semester to ensure completion of their program of study within Federal timelines. The completion rate (PACE) is measured by dividing the total cumulative number of hours the student has successfully completed/passed by the total number of hours the student has attempted. Transfer credits showing on the student's transcript count in the completion rate/PACE. Please note: There is no rounding when calculating this number. 

Examples of Completion Rate of 67%

Example 1:

Roger Ram has attempted 40 total credit hours at VVC and has no transfer credits.

Roger has completed/passed 24 total credit hours that he has attempted at VVC.

24 divided by 40 = 60% Completion Rate/PACE <not meeting minimum standards>

Example 2:

Sally Lou Who has attempted 12 total credit hours at VVC and has 6 transfer credits from another college. 

Sally Lou Who has a total attempted hours of 18 (12+6=18).

Sally Lou Who has completed/passed 9 total credit hours that she has attempted at VVC + her 6 transfer credits. 

Sally Lou Who has a total of 15 hours completed/earned (9+6=15).

15 divided by 18 = 83% Completion Rate/PACE <meeting minimum standards>

~Maximum Timeframe Standard

The U.S. Department of Education has established the Maximum Timeframe (MTF) requirement stating students receiving Federal Student Aid must complete their degree within 150% of their program's published length. MTF is evaluated by the total number of hours attempted and/or transferred into VVC and posted on the student's transcript toward the program of study. Students who are unable to graduate within the 150% Maximum Timeframe lose eligibility for financial aid when the hours needed to graduate and the hours attempted exceed the 150% limit. Please note: This can sometimes occur before a student has received aid for the full 150% credit limit. 

The maximum time limit is calculated specifically for each individual academic program and will include, but is not limited to:

  • Repeated courses will count toward the 150% maximum units allowed
  • The maximum time frame will not be extended for students who change academic programs or have prior degrees or certificates
  • A maximum of 30 units of Basic Skills/Remedial and all ESL courses will be excluded from the maximum credit unit limit

Examples of the 150% Maximum Timeframe Requirement

Example 1:

Roger Ram has attempted 75 total credit hours at VVC and has no transfer credits.

Roger has completed/passed 30 total credit hours that he has attempted at VVC.

Roger needs 25 credit hours remaining to earn his associate degree. 

90 - 75 = 15 credit hours remaining until MTF <no longer eligible for aid because he has more hours to graduate than left before he hits MTF-25 credits to graduate, but only 15 remaining in MTF. He will not be paid for 15 more hours.>

SAP Statuses & Definitions

 

~Warning Status:

Students who do not meet minimum SAP standards of a cumulative grade point average (CPGA) of 2.0 or better and/or a 67% completion rate/PACE at the end of a semester will be placed on warning status and will receive ONE additional term of aid to the CPGA and PACE up to the minimum standards. If at the end of the warning semester a student is not meeting minimum SAP standards, the student will be dismissed from the Federal Student Aid program. 

 

~Dismissal Status:

Students who do not meet minimum SAP standards of a cumulative grade point average (CPGA) of 2.0 or better and/or a 67% completion rate/PACE at the end of the warning semester will be placed on dismissal status from Federal Student Aid and any program where SAP must be met to maintain aid. No further aid will be awarded or disbursed while in this status. A student in this status can submit a SAP Appeal Form and supporting documentation to show circumstances outside of their control that prevented them from achieving minimum SAP standards. An appeal should include information and supporting documentation for any term during which a student was not meeting the minimum standards. 

 

~Maximum Timeframe Met Status:

Students who have met minimum Maximum Timeframe (MTF) standards of 150% and have not earned a degree/certificate will be placed in this status. No further aid will be awarded or disbursed. of a cumulative grade point average (CPGA) of 2.0 or better and/or a 67% completion rate/PACE at the end of the warning semester will be placed on dismissal status from Federal Student Aid and any program where SAP must be met to maintain aid. No further aid will be awarded or disbursed while in this status. A student in this status can submit a SAP Appeal Form and supporting documentation to show circumstances outside of their control that prevented them from achieving minimum SAP standards. An appeal should include information and supporting documentation to explain why a student could not complete their degree timely. 

 

Appeal

Any student, who is denied financial aid because of failure to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards, may submit a TYPED  Appeal Form to the Financial Aid Department; however, appeals will not be accepted for any summer terms. Appeals must (1) state any extenuating circumstances that may have occurred and why the student failed to achieve SAP; (2) explain what has changed in the student's situation and (3) explain how this change will ensure academic success at the next SAP evaluation.

Only one appeal is allowed per school year.

If the student is requesting an appeal, they must complete the Satisfactory Academic Progress Orientation Workshop Online prior to submitting an appeal. All appeals submitted will be forwarded to the Financial Aid Appeals Committee for either approval or denial.

Please make sure to use the fillable SAP Appeal Application available after orientation is completed and the test passed with a 100% since handwritten applications will not be accepted.

The student may complete the appeal form and submit it along with the following items:

  • A current SEP, dated within the academic year.
  • Supporting documents (i.e. medical records, legal documents, death certificate) that may assist in justifying your situation/case.

The Committee will review the appeal and notify the student of the results.

Extenuating Circumstances must be explained in detail.

If the Committee approves the appeal, the student will be reinstated for financial aid and placed on "Probation". If the appeal is denied, the student will remain disqualified and ineligible for financial aid until Satisfactory Academic Progress can be reestablished.

Probation

Students with an approved appeal are on financial aid probation for one semester and are eligible for Federal and State financial aid if all other eligibility requirements are met. Students must meet all SAP standards at the end of the probation semester as referenced above and meet any specific appeal requirements to regain SAP good standing in order to be considered for additional financial aid in subsequent terms. Students who fail to achieve SAP standards at the end of the probationary term will be disqualified for additional financial aid. 

SAP will be evaluated at the end of the probation semester after grades have been recorded to determine future eligibility for financial aid and therefore the posting of subsequent financial aid will be delayed until your SAP status can be determined.

While on probation, a student may not receive any  I's, W's, D's, NP's, FW's or F's, or their financial aid eligibility will end immediately.

Reinstatement

Reinstatement is not automatic and is not guaranteed for the next school year.

THIS POLICY SUPERSEDES ALL PRIOR POLICIES.