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SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS POLICY YEAR 2011-2012

Students attending Bethune-Cookman University who wish to be considered for Federal Title IV financial aid, in addition to meeting other eligibility criteria, must maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP) in the course of study being pursued.  The University is required to establish satisfactory academic progress standards in accordance with U.S. Department of Education regulations. This University's SAP Policy is as strict as or stricter than its Academic policy for students who are not receiving Title IV Aid. At the end of each financial aid year (end of spring semester), a review will be made to ensure compliance with the SAP standards.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Minimum Standards

Whether a student is considered to be making SAP depends on the cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA), the successful completion of attempted credits hours (PACE), and the Maximum Time Frame to complete his or her course of study. Students requesting consideration for Federal financial aid must demonstrate a positive forward movement toward their degree. Students must meet the standards listed as follows:

Academic Standing
Semester Hours Earned
Cumulative G.P.A Required
PACE %
Freshman Students
1 to 27 credit hours
1.85 or above
60%
Sophomore Students
28 to 57 credit hours
2.00 or above
67%
Junior
Students
58 to 91 credit hours
2.00 or above
70%
Senior
Students
92 or more credit hours
2.00 or above
70%
Graduate Students
1 to 36 credit hours
3.00 or above
70%
Each student must successfully meet the minimum cumulative GPA and pass the minimum percentage of the attempted credit hours (PACE) for their academic standingat the end of the Spring semester of each financial aid year. This includes courses in which the student remained enrolled past the Last Day for Registration/Program Change. Please note Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards do not pertain to FL State Grants.

PACE is calculated as follows:    Credits *  Earned/Attempted  =   PACE %

For example, if you are a freshman and take 15 credits and only earn 9 credits (3 of 5 courses) that would be a PACE of 60%, you would meet the requirement. However, if you take 15 credits and only earn 6 credits (2 of 5 courses) that would be a PACE of 40%, you would NOT meet the requirement.
 
In addition, Federal financial aid will be provided for up to 150% of the credit hours required to complete your Undergraduate or Graduate degree. This includes institutionally accepted transfer credits from other schools attended. In a proactive approach to assist students in not maxing out of their financial aid eligibility, Bethune-Cookman University Office of Financial Aid will send all students, who have reached or exceeded a total of 160 credit hours, a Maximum Time Frame Warning Letter. It is recommended that students visit their respective schools for guidance and an evaluation of the credits remaining to complete their degree in order to stay within the Federal requirements of 150%.

Maximum Time Frame is calculated as follows:    Mass Communication Degree = 120 Total credit hours
                                                                       120  X  150%  =  180 Maximum credit hours allowed

Satisfactory Course Completion

The following grades are considered to demonstrate satisfactory course completion:  A, B, C, D, and S (Satisfactory). Drops, withdrawals, incompletes, repeated and non-credit coursework will be counted towards the attempted credit hours (PACE) SAP standards.

The following grades will be counted towards the attempted credit hours (PACE), but do not demonstrate satisfactory course completion: F, U, W, I (Incomplete), DR (Drop), Needs Repeating (NR), No Grade (NG) and WD.

Transfers And Change of Majors

Students who transfer to Bethune-Cookman University or change their major while at this institution are required to stay within the maximum time frame of 150% of program pursued that is required by federal regulations. Transfer credits do not count in the calculation of the GPA, but they are included in the calculation of both attempted and earned hours. If a student changes majors, the hours from the previous major that count towards the student’s new degree requirements are included in the calculation of attempted and earned hours as well.

Finacial Aid Termination – Not Making Satisfactory Progress (NMSP)

Students will be reviewed for satisfactory academic progress (SAP), at the end of each financial aid year (end of spring semester). After review, if a student is not meeting the minimum SAP standards required of all Bethune-Cookman University students, financial aid eligibility will be terminated. The student will however be offered an option to submit a Financial Aid SAP Appeal Form.

Appeal Process

Students, who fail to achieve the minimum required SAP GPA &/or PACE Standards at the end of the spring semester of each financial aid year, will no longer be eligible for financial aid. A student may however submit a Financial Aid SAP Appeal Form to the Office of Student Financial Aid for review.

The Appeal Process requires submission of ALL the following documentation:

  • The Office of Financial Aid SAP Appeal Form.
  • A typed statement, signed and dated, from the student explaining in detail the reason for not meeting the minimum SAP Standards, the changes that have occurred and what measures are being taken in order to meet the minimum SAP Standards in the future.
  • Documentation of the extenuating circumstance(s).
  • A Financial Aid SAP Plan from a C.A.S.S. or C.A.R.E.S. Advisor.

SAP Appeals are initially reviewed by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee and upon a decision the student will be notified of approval or denial in writing.

The following extenuating circumstances are reason(s) for appealing:

  • Death of an Immediate Family Member.
  • Serious Illness or Injury.
  • Emergency.
  • Non-Voluntary Military Activation.
  • Other Special Circumstances.
Please note:  Termination for Maximum Time Frame may not be appealed. Once a student has reached 150% of the required credit hours in order to complete their degree they are Terminated for SAP and no longer eligible for financial aid.

SAP Probation

Students who appeal for reconsideration to receive financial aid and are approved will be placed on a SAP Probation or Academic Plan. A SAP letter and a copy of the Bethune-Cookman SAP Policy will be mailed to the student. Although at the time the student is placed on a SAP Probation or Academic Plan they are not meeting the minimum SAP standards, they will continue to receive financial aid.

  • Met the minimum SAP standards (students placed on Probation).
  • Are meeting the requirements of an Academic Plan (students placed on Academic Plan).

If at the end of the SAP Probation semester the student is meeting the minimum SAP standards, OR is adhering to the SAP Academic Plan, financial aid eligibility will continue for the following semester.

If at the end of the SAP Probation semester the student is not meeting the minimum SAP standards, OR is not adhering to the SAP Academic Plan, financial aid eligibility will be terminated. 

Students who are initially Approved by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee, placed on a SAP Probation or Academic Plan and do not successfully meet the requirements of the Financial Aid SAP Plan after their first semester, may submit a second appeal for review by the SAP Faculty Appeals Committee, for reconsideration of financial aid eligibility.

The SAP Faculty Appeals Committee is the final opportunity in which a student has to Appeal for re-consideration of Financial Aid. No Appeal option will be available after this point.

Reinstatement of Finalcial Aid

All students must meet the minimum SAP standards at the end of each financial aid year (end of spring semester) in order to continue receiving financial aid or to have financial aid reinstated (for those placed on a SAP Probation or Academic Plan). Failure to reestablish eligibility at the end of a SAP Probation semester, or adhere to the Academic Plan developed for student, will result in termination of federal financial aid eligibility. Once a student meets the minimum SAP standards, here at Bethune-Cookman University, financial aid will be reinstated. Awards cannot be paid retroactively for the term(s) during which eligibility was lost.

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