Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Summer 2024 SAP Appeal Deadline: May 28, 2024 @ 12:00PM
Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form

Students must make satisfactory academic progress (SAP) in order to receive federal student aid each year. Failure to maintain satisfactory academic progress may impact your eligibility to receive the Federal Pell grant, Federal SEOG grant, Federal Work-Study, Federal Veteran’s Administration Benefits, the Illinois Student Assistance Commission’s Monetary Award Program (MAP) grant, and the Illinois Veteran’s Grant, Illinois National Guard, and MIA/POW Scholarships.

At Shawnee Community College, an academic year is defined as two 16-week semesters (fall and spring). The summer semester is treated as a trailer semester to the fall and spring semesters and is included as part of the previous academic year.

In order to receive federal financial aid funds, students must meet 3 minimum requirements, including:

  • Required completion rates (Pass Rate Rule – 67% of hours attempted for undergraduate and graduate)
  • Required grade point average (GPA Rule – min. 2.0 for undergraduate and graduate)
  • Requirement of Maximum Hours (Max Hours Rule – Students must complete degree program before reaching 150% of the number of credits needed to complete their degree program)

A student who does not meet the standards for Satisfactory Academic Progress is ineligible to receive federally-funded financial aid. Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is measured at the end of each semester, unless conditional eligibility was provided.

Returning students who previously attended Shawnee Community will be reviewed for SAP prior to receiving Financial Aid regardless of whether Financial Aid was received previously.

Grade and time requirements are in effect for all attempted credit hours whether a student received financial aid or not. Academic progress toward completion is measured using students current, formally declared program.

Transfer students are assessed for SAP grade and hour requirements using only those courses attempted at Shawnee Community College. Certificate and/or degree completion is assessed using both Shawnee Community College attempted hours and the hours formally transferred and accepted by Shawnee Community College.


Pass Rate Requirement

To maintain academic progress over time, a student must, by the end of the first full academic year of attendance (one fall and one spring semester) and each year thereafter, have successfully earned 67% of attempted hours.

Attempted hours are all hours the student is still enrolled in after the 10th day each semester. If 67% of attempted hours have not been successfully completed the student will be placed on financial aid Probation status for one semester.

While on Financial Aid Probation, the student must enroll in and pass enough hours to successfully earn 67% of attempted hours by the end of the semester. If the student does not pass 67% of courses during the probationary period, the student is placed on financial aid suspension status. Students are ineligible to receive Title IV Federal Financial Aid while on financial aid suspension status. Once a student attains a 67% pass-rate they are removed from Financial Aid Probation/Suspension status. 

Failures, Incompletes, Withdrawals, Audits, ABE/High School Equivalency, and Community Education courses are not counted as successfully completed credit hours. All other credited courses, including pass/fail courses and remedial courses, are counted in credit hour completion. Repeated courses are counted in the review of grade point averages and as an attempted course.

It is the student’s responsibility to notify the Financial Aid Office of grade changes that occur after being placed on probation or suspension. Grade changes must be updated on the official student transcript to be considered for financial aid purposes.

Students who withdraw from Shawnee Community College and re-enroll at a later date, re-enter using the same Satisfactory Academic Progress status used at the time of withdraw (i.e. if the student was ineligible upon withdrawing from school, they are ineligible when they return). Once the credit hours attempted cap is reached, the student is placed on financial aid suspension until the appropriate certificate or degree is completed.


Grade Requirement

Each financial aid recipient must be enrolled in an eligible certificate or degree program, and maintain at least a 2.0 cumulative grade point average (GPA) on a 4.0 scale.

Students with a cumulative GPA of <2.0 at the end of the spring semester are placed on Financial Aid Probation for subsequent semesters. The student may continue to receive grant or gift financial aid while on probation through the SAP appeal process.

During the probationary semester, the student must attain a 2.0 current GPA, or raise their cumulative GPA to at least 2.0 to retain financial aid eligibility. Failure to earn a 2.0 GPA during the probationary period will result in Financial Aid Suspension.  Students are ineligible to receive Title IV Federal Financial Aid while on Financial Aid Suspension.

If a student attains a 2.00 current grade point average while on probation and the cumulative grade point average is under 2.0, the student will be allowed to continue on probation. Once a 2.0 GPA tis attained, the student is removed from Financial Aid Probation/Suspension status.


Maximum Time Frame Requirement

A student is expected to complete an Associate Degree with 64 credit-hours and thus no more than 96 (150% of 64) credit-hours.

A one-year certificate program is 34 credit-hours and thus no more than 51 (150% of 34) credit hours;

A less-than-one-year certificate program is typically completed in 16 credit-hours and thus no more than 24 (150% of 16) credit hours.

Exceptions may be made to extend the allowable hours for certificate or degree programs which require more than 34 or 64 hours, respectively, to complete the program.

Due to required prerequisites in the LPN/ADN programs, an LPN student is expected to complete the Certificate after attempting no more than 77 credit hours (150% of 51) and an ADN student is expected to earn the Associate Degree after attempting no more than 122 credit hours (150% of 81).

Once the allowable level of credit hours attempted has been reached, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension until the appropriate certificate or degree has been completed.


Monitoring Procedures

Satisfactory progress toward the completion of a degree or certificate, the percentage of hours attempted that have been earned, and the federal requirement for a 2.0 cumulative GPA are monitored by the Financial Aid Office at the end of each semester including, the summer term if the student attends the summer term, for all enrolled students.



Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form

Students not meeting one or more of SCC’s Satisfactory Academic Progress are ineligible for continued financial assistance as described unless a SAP appeal justifying the reinstatement is submitted and approved. A student may appeal suspension of financial aid by submitting a complete SAP Appeal Packet describing any mitigating circumstances that prevented academic progress requirements.

A SAP Appeal Packet must be completed by the student with the assistance of their Academic Advisor. The SAP Appeal Packet includes, an Appeal Form, a student letter stating mitigating circumstances, supporting documents, an Academic Plan Contract, and an Academic Plan Requirements Form.  All completed documents must be signed and dated by the student and advisor. 

The merit of the appeal is determined by the Shawnee Community College Appeals Committee at their next regularly scheduled meeting after the SAP Appeal Packet is received. The SCC Appeals Committee decision shall be final.

If the appeal is approved, the student’s financial aid eligibility is changed to probationary status for continued monitoring. The student must abide by all conditions stated by the SCC Appeals Committee in order to maintain financial aid eligibility. 

Students on probationary status that fail to meet the specifications outlined in their approved Academic Plan may not receive Title IV Financial Aid funds for the subsequent payment period unless Satisfactory Academic Progress is achieved. After receiving an approved appeal, if the student is not enrolled for a period of time, the same approved appeal requirements are in effect when the student re-enrolls at SCC.

Students must contact their Academic Advisor and the SCC Financial Aid Office should they experiences a catastrophic event while on Probation Status. The Financial Aid Office will review the circumstances and may require additional supporting documentation. If it is determined a revised Academic Plan is needed, the Financial Aid Office and SCC Academic Advisor will work collaboratively with the student to formulate a revised plan in order to best support their needs.



Students on probation for grade requirements retain probationary status as long as their current grade point average is 2.0 or better.

To reinstate probationary financial aid status after having eligibility suspended, the student must enroll, and utilize resources other than federal/state financial aid to pay for the costs. The student must earn a minimum of six (6) semester hours and attain a 2.0 current grade point average for all enrolled hours during the semester. Reinstatement without probation will occur when the student’s cumulative grade point average is 2.0 or better.

Students who are on suspension because a certificate or degree has not been completed within 150% of attempting the normal credit hours needed will be reinstated after they have processed an approved graduation application for the appropriate certificate or degree, and have been placed on the graduation list.

Reinstatement without probation will occur when the student’s cumulative GPA is 2.00 or better.