Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy - IL

As required by Federal law, reasonable standards of satisfactory academic progress for maintaining financial aid eligibility have been established by MWU for all degree granting programs. These standards apply to all students.

Purpose
To establish, publish, and apply reasonable standards of satisfactory academic progress for financial aid eligibility as required by federal law for all aid types, including federal, state, or institutional assistance and veterans' educational benefits administered by MWU.

Policy
Federal regulations require that all students receiving Federal Title IV financial aid funds maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP), which states that both qualitative (GPA) and quantitative (pace/maximum timeframe) measures must be met and maintained for continuous financial aid eligibility as outlined in the MWU Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Eligibility.

Both qualitative and quantitative measures must be met and maintained for continuous financial aid eligibility as outlined in the MWU Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Eligibility.

Qualitative Measures

  • The GPA measurement is fixed. MWU does not use the graduated measurement.
  • The Biomedical Sciences (M.A.) students are evaluated each quarter since the program is one year in length. All other programs are reviewed annually at the end of spring quarter.
  • All students must maintain at least a "C" average each year in their respective programs in order to graduate (MWU Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Eligibility).
  • Grades will affect the cumulative GPA for students that have to take a summer class at another institution in order to advance to the next class level at MWU. Grades from students matriculating into a program from another school do not affect the GPA.
  • If a Biomedical Sciences (M.A) student does not meet the minimum GPA standard at the end of a quarter, they will be placed on financial aid warning. If students don't meet the standards at the end of the next quarter, they will be placed on financial aid suspension with the right to appeal. All other students that don't meet the minimum GPA standard by the end of spring quarter will be placed on financial aid suspension with the right to appeal.
  • The assistant directors at each campus monitor the GPA standards for SAP.

Quantitative Measures
The quantitative measure defines the pace at which all students must progress to ensure program completion within the maximum timeframe permitted. This period of time cannot exceed 150% of the published length of each program. The completion ratio is calculated by dividing the cumulative "successfully completed" credit hours by the cumulative "attempted" credit hours. Transfer credit hours are included in the completion ratio for all programs. Students must earn a minimum of 67% of their cumulative credits attempted (not including audited courses) at the time of evaluation, and all periods of enrollment are included regardless whether or not the student receives financial aid. Less-than-full-time enrollment is prorated. Pace is evaluated quarterly for the Biomedical Masters of Arts students and annually for all other students.

Grades of "W" (withdrawals) made after the first week of classes will be included in the number of attempted credit hours and calculated against the quantitative (pace) measure. Grades of "I" (incomplete) will be included in the number of attempted credit hours as well, but will not be included in the qualitative (GPA) measure.

Students are governed by the performance standards of the department in which they are enrolled: Programs longer than a year must meet both quantitative/qualitative measures on an annual basis; programs one year or less must meet both measures at the end of each quarter.

Maximum Time Frame
MWU is a graduate/professional school. Maximum time frame is defined by the length of the program. Length of programs is measured in years. See chart titled MWU Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Eligibility below for specific timeframes by program.

Quarterly SAP Reviews
The quarterly SAP review process applies to students enrolled in the Biomedical Science (M.A.) program. When an unsatisfactory SAP determination has been made at the end of a quarter, a financial aid "warning" is issued. Students remain eligible for Title IV aid in the quarter immediately following a financial aid warning, and no further action is necessary unless a student wishes to file an appeal. If SAP is not achieved by the end of a financial aid warning period, a financial aid "suspension" status is issued for the following quarter. Students may be put on probation and made eligible for Title IV or Title VII funding during a probationary period once an appeal is approved by the Financial Aid Committee.

Quarterly SAP Review Appeals
Any student placed on financial aid suspension will be notified of the loss of financial aid eligibility. Students must complete the SFS Appeal Form and work with their academic department to come up with an approved academic plan. Both the SFS Appeal Form and approved Academic Plan must be submitted to the Office of Student Financial Services, who will forward it to the University Financial Aid Committee for consideration. The University Financial Aid Committee will only review completed appeals; all required documentation must be included.

Students are limited to a maximum of one (1) appeal of their financial aid status during the course of their enrollment in the Biomedical Science (M.A.) program at MWU. Students who do not attain satisfactory academic progress at the conclusion of their period of financial aid probation will be placed on financial aid suspension permanently and will not regain financial aid eligibility for the remainder of their enrollment in the Biomedical Science (M.A.) program at MWU.

Annual SAP Reviews
Students cannot receive Title IV financial aid funds unless the suspension is successfully appealed and the student is placed on probation. A student on probation status may receive Title IV financial aid for a subsequent quarter. For students who need longer than one quarter (payment period) an Academic Plan is developed to help ensure that h/she can meet SAP standards by a specific point in time. While programs have discretion to determine the length of the Academic Plan, students must be monitored at the end of each quarter to confirm all components as specified in their Academic Plan are being met. Probation statuses may be suspended and student will lose eligibility for Title IV financial aid at the end of any quarter where Academic Plan requirements are not met. Once Title IV eligibility is lost, students must continue at their own expense until SAP requirements as set forth in this policy are achieved.

Annual SAP Review Appeals
Students must complete the SFS Appeal Form and work with their academic department to come up with an approved academic plan. Both the SFS Appeal Form and approved Academic Plan must be submitted to the Office of Student Financial Services, who will forward it to the University Financial Aid Committee for consideration. The University Financial Aid Committee will only review completed appeals; all required documentation must be included.

Students are limited to a maximum of two (2) appeals of their financial aid status during the course of their enrollment in any single program at MWU that is not covered by the quarterly SAP appeals process above. Students who do not attain satisfactory academic progress at the conclusion of their second nonconsecutive period of financial aid probation will be placed on financial aid suspension permanently and will not regain financial aid eligibility for the remainder of their enrollment in that specific program at MWU.

Financial Aid Suspension
A financial aid "suspension" is issued at the end of the spring quarter for students not meeting satisfactory academic progress. Any student placed on financial aid suspension will be notified of the loss of financial aid eligibility.

Financial Aid Warning
A financial aid warningis for one quarter (payment period) only. Any Biomedical Sciences M.A. students that are not achieving SAP for the first time at the end of a quarter are automatically placed on financial aid warning. Students are informed that they are still eligible for federal aid, but they must achieve a 2.75 GPA and/or 67% pace by the end of the quarter. If they don't they will be placed on financial aid suspension with the right to appeal. Students are allowed one warning period.

Financial Aid Probation
Not used too often. It is the policy that all students submit an academic plan with their SAP appeal application. Academic plans are developed by program directors, faculty advisors, or the Dean's office The student meets with the academic advisor regarding the academic plan throughout the academic year and also take advantage of the tutoring services on campus.

Maximum Appeals
Any student placed on financial aid suspension will be notified of the loss of financial aid eligibility. Students must complete the SFS Appeal Form and work with their academic department to come up with an approved academic plan. Both the SFS Appeal Form and approved Academic Plan must be submitted to the Office of Student Financial Services, who will forward it to the University Financial Aid Committee for consideration. The University Financial Aid Committee will only review completed appeals; all required documentation must be included.

Students are limited to a maximum of two (2) appeals of their financial aid status during the course of their enrollment at MWU (Biomedical students get only one). Students who do not attain satisfactory academic progress at the conclusion of their second nonconsecutive period of financial aid probation will be placed on financial aid suspension permanently and will not regain financial aid eligibility for the remainder of their enrollment period at MWU.

Regaining Eligibility
A student who chooses not to appeal or have their appeal denied have the option of attending at their own expense. Students who attend at their own expense will be eligible to have their aid reinstated after successfully completing the quarter (i.e., meeting SAP standards). Students in this situation should contact the financial aid office for counseling.

Treatment of non-punitive grades, repeated courses, audit courses, pass/fail courses, withdrawals and incompletes
Grades of "W" (withdrawals) made after the first week of class will be included in the number of attempted credit hours and calculated against the quantitative (pace) measure.

A student who has "W's" (withdrawals) for a quarter are place on a leave of absence and will return the following academic year to retake those classes. If the student goes on a leave of absence in the winter or spring quarters, often times the program will have the student retake many of the courses in the quarter(s) that he/she did not achieve a high grade.

Grades of "I" (incomplete) will be included in the number of attempted credit hours as well, but will not be included in the qualitative (GPA) measure.

Classes in which students are auditing cannot be included in the amount of credit or contact hours earned when determining eligibility for financial aid. In addition, the following grades will not be considered as credit or contact hours earned/attempted for purposes of awarding federal financial aid: "I" Incomplete, "IP" In-Progress, "F" Failure, or "W" Withdrawal or "WF" Withdrawal/Failing. Therefore, audited courses are not included in either the GPA or Pace.

Pass/Fail courses are included in both the attempted and completed hours, but not the GPA.

Repeated courses are included in the GPA and Pace (attempted and completed). A program usually only allows a student to repeat a course once.

Midwestern University does not have remedial courses.

Non-punitive grades are not addressed in MWU policy. Courses assigned an "I" grade must be completed within 10 calendar days from the end of the final examinations for the quarter or they will be automatically converted to a grade of "F". An "IP" grade may be assigned when extenuating circumstances make it necessary to extend the grade completion period past 10 calendar days. Authorization of the Deans is required and the completion period should not typically exceed one quarter.

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