Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards


Federal regulations require that financial aid recipients meet certain academic standards to be eligible for federal financial aid. SFCC’s Financial Aid Office reviews academic transcripts each semester. All terms of attendance are reviewed (Fall, Spring and Summer), including periods during which a student did not receive financial aid. Students will be placed on financial aid Warning or financial aid Suspension if they do not meet the three requirements:

  1. Qualitative Progress: Students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.0
  2. Incremental Progress: Students must successfully complete 67 percent of the credit hours they attempt. All terms of attendance at SFCC will be reviewed regardless of whether the student was receiving financial aid for those terms. Any course in which the student earns a grade of failing (F), withdrawal (W), incomplete (I), progress (PR) or audit (AU), are treated as attempted but not completed coursework. Transfer credits are counted as attempted and completed.
  3. Quantitative Progress (i.e., Maximum Timeframe): Students must complete their primary declared degree program within a maximum number of attempted credit hours to continue to qualify for aid. Attempted credit hours include transfer credits, withdrawals, failed courses, and courses changed to audit after the established payment deadline. Part of maintaining SAP is to progress at a pace that leads you to graduate within the 150% maximum timeframe established by the Department of Education.  When you exceed the number of attempted hours it takes to earn your first degree by 50%, you have reached maximum timeframe and are no longer eligible for financial aid at a two-year institution.  Once a student has exceeded the number of attempted hours required to earn their primary declared degree by 20%, they will be placed on Early Alert Maximum Timeframe Suspension.  They will have to appeal Early Alert Maximum Timeframe suspension for direction from the Financial Aid Appeal Committee to graduate before reaching the 150% Maximum Timeframe dictated by the Department of Education when they will no longer be eligible for financial aid assistance at a two-year institution.  Preparatory hours (i.e., developmental or remedial courses) are excluded from the maximum timeframe calculation (maximum of 30 credit hours). In addition, courses dropped during the drop/add period are excluded from calculations. Repeat courses, incompletes, audits and withdrawals, are included in the maximum timeframe calculation as attempted credit hours. Students who exceed the maximum timeframe will be immediately suspended from receiving financial aid.  Given this quantitative guidance, students can only receive financial aid assistance for the completion of one Associates’ Degree.


A student will be placed on financial aid Warning if he or she does not meet the minimum qualitative or incremental progress requirements. That is, students are placed on Warning for not maintaining a cumulative GPA of at least a 2.0 and at least 67 percent completion rate of all course work. Students on financial aid Warning are still eligible to receive financial aid during the term that they are in Warning status. Aid for the term following the Warning term will not be considered until final grades for that term have been posted and satisfactory academic progress has been reestablished. Student’s on Warning status who do not meet the 3 Satisfactory Academic Progress standards at the end of their Warning Term, will be placed on financial Aid Suspension.


A student’s financial aid eligibility will be suspended when a student has not met satisfactory academic progress standards for two consecutive semesters. Students who exceed the Maximum Time Frame are placed directly on financial aid suspension. Students who are on financial aid suspension are not eligible for further financial aid. A student may appeal their suspension from aid. Students on financial aid suspension can reestablish eligibility for financial aid by meeting the 3 Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards.


Students have the right to appeal the suspension of financial aid. A written appeal must be submitted to the financial aid office stating the reasons for not maintaining satisfactory academic progress. The appeal and all supporting documents will be reviewed by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee in the order in which they are received. Appeals are reviewed usually within 10 days after submission. The committee will notify the student of its decision in writing. Students’ whose appeal is approved will be placed on an Academic Plan and will have their aid reinstated for the upcoming term. This term will be called Probation as their continuing eligibility will be determined after their Probationary term is over. If the student is placed on an Academic Plan, the student will need to meet certain conditions to maintain eligibility.  Students who successfully complete the Probationary term will then continue onto the Academic Plan.  If the student fails to successfully complete the Probationary term, or fails in a future semester to meet the terms of the Academic Plan, they will immediately return to Suspension.

To E-mail Financial Aid:

Federal regulations require that all financial aid inquiries come from your school e-mail address. Please e-mail all financial aid questions from your SFCC email account and include your student ID number.

Log into MySFCC, access email account in upper right hand corner, and create a new email using “” in the address bar.

For more information please contact the Financial Aid office, 505-428-1268.