Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Fisk University has the following Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy for students who receive financial aid. These standards require that a student make progress toward an undergraduate or graduate degree during all periods of enrollment, including periods when a student did not receive financial aid. Fisk will be consistent in applying the SAP policies to full & part time, independent and dependent students.

Minimum Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Standards

Maintain required cumulative Grade Point Average(GPA) based on matrix below, or higher (a qualitative measure) and

Undergraduate Students:

 

Total Number of Credits Attempted Minimum Cumulative GPA
1-24 1.80
25-36 1.90
37 or more 2.0

Graduate Students:

  • Must maintain a 3.0 GPA for all coursework completed at Fisk.
  • Successfully complete at least 67% of the cumulative attempted credit hours(a quantitative measure) and
  • Make positive progress toward a program of study within 150 percent of the average published program length.

Financial Aid Statuses

  • Eligible – Student is meeting the minimum academic standards or has no academic history. Fully Eligible for financial aid.
  • Warning – Student did not meet minimum standards for cumulative GPA and/or 67% completion rate in the previous evaluation period. Student is still Eligible for financial aid, but must reach all minimum standards by the end of the next evaluation period to maintain eligibility.
  • Ineligible – Student has failed to meet minimum standards for cumulative GPA and/or 67% completion rate SAP at the end of the evaluation period. Student is Ineligible for financial aid.
  • Timeframe – Student has attempted at least 180 credit hours toward a Bachelor’s Degree. Graduate students must earn their degree within the timelines set by the Graduate School per their graduate program. If a student exceeds these credit hour limits, they are not making progress toward a degree within the 150% federal requirement. Student is Ineligible for financial aid.

When is Academic Progress Evaluated?

A student’s satisfactory academic progress will be evaluated at the end of each semester (Fall, Spring and Summer). Students will not be eligible for federal funding during this time if in an ineligible SAP status.

Successful completion of a class

is defined as earning a grade of A, B, C, D, or Pass (plus and minus grades may be attached to letter grades) and will be used to determine cumulative GPA, Completion Rate and Timeframe.

New Financial Aid Students with prior academic history:

Fisk students with prior academic history will be evaluated at the time they apply for financial aid. They will receive one of three financial aid statuses.

  • Eligible – Student is meeting the minimum academic standards or has no academic history. Fully Eligible for financial aid.
  • Warning – Student is below minimum standards in his/her previous academic history. Student is still Eligible for financial aid, but must reach the minimum standards at the end of the next evaluation period to maintain eligibility.
  • Timeframe – Student has attempted at least 180 credit hours for toward a Bachelor’s Degree. Graduate students must earn their degree within the timelines set by the Graduate School per their graduate program. If a student exceeds these credit hour limits, they are not making progress toward a degree within the 150% federal requirement. Student is Ineligible for financial aid.

Transfer Students and Transfer credit hours:

Students transferring to Fisk are required to have all prior college transcripts evaluated for transfer credits. All credit hours accepted by Fisk will be used to determine 67% completion rate and maximum timeframe of 150%.

Academic Reset:

A student is allowed one academic resets. This means that a student can change their Major once after they have attempted 30 credit hours toward any Major. If the student changes a Major after the first reset, all credit hours that have been attempted in the 1 reset, plus any taken toward the second Major change will be used toward determining their maximum timeframe.


Non-Passing Grades:

Unsuccessful grades of E, F, W, WD, WF, WP, NG or I will be used in determining completion rate and timeframe. Letter grades of E and F are used toward the completion rate and cumulative GPA.

Repeat Courses:

Students repeating courses, for the first time only, can receive aid for that repeated course. All repeat courses will be used in determining completion rate and timeframe. Actual letter grades are included in the cumulative GPA.

Audited Credit Hours:

Courses taken on an audit basis are not counted when determining the completion percentage or for purposes of determining your cumulative GPA.

How to Re-establish Eligibility?

  • A student must bring his/her GPA and completion rate up to the minimum standards of the required cumulative GPA, per matrix, and 67% completion rate. A student will be Ineligible for financial aid and cannot be reimbursed during this time.
  • Mitigating Circumstances: If a student has experienced mitigating circumstances (illness, family illness, change of major) during the most recent evaluation period, they may submit an Appeal to reinstate financial aid eligibility. The student must explain, in the appeal, what has changed that will now allow them to meet the SAP requirements. The student must also submit supporting documentation with the appeal. If the request is granted, the student will be placed on one of two Financial Aid Eligibility Statuses:
  • Probation – The student is expected to improve to minimum standards by the end of the next evaluation period. The student is Eligible for financial aid, but must meet minimum standards by the next evaluation period. A student cannot be on probation for two consecutive semesters.
  • Academic Success Plan – The student cannot be expected to improve to minimum standards by the next evaluation period. The student and Fisk have agreed to a success plan to allow the student to meet minimum standards within a fixed number of evaluation periods. The student is fully Eligible for financial aid as long as they are strictly following the success plan. If at any time the student stops following the success plan and they are not meeting minimum standards they will become Ineligible for financial aid. If a student meets minimum standards at any time while on a success plan their Financial Aid Eligibility Status will be updated to Eligible.

If the request is not granted, the student will remain Ineligible for financial aid until they meet all minimum standards.

  • Timeframe Mitigating Circumstances: If a student has not completed their program of study within the 150% timeframe and there are mitigating circumstances (illness, job related, family illness, change of major), they may submit an Appeal to reinstate financial aid eligibility. If this application is granted, the student will be placed on the following Academic Eligibility Status:
  • Timeframe Academic Success Plan – The student and FISK have agreed to a success plan. The student is fully Eligible for financial aid, as long as they are strictly following the success plan. If at any time the student stops following the success plan, they will become Permanently Ineligible for financial aid.

If the request is not granted, the student will be Ineligible for financial aid. All students are limited to one Timeframe Academic Success Plan.

STUDENTS WILL BE NOTIFIED BY EMAIL, OF THEIR SAP STATUS, AT THE END OF EACH SEMESTER

NOTICE TO APPLICANTS
Student Financial Assistance Programs Disclosure of Social Security Account Number

Section 7(a) of the Privacy Act of 1974 (5U.S.C.552a) requires that when any federal, state, or local government agency requests an individual to disclose his or her Social Security Account Number, that individual must also be advised whether that disclosure is mandatory or voluntary, by what statutory or other authority the number is solicited, and what use will be made of it. Accordingly, applicants are advised that disclosure of the applicant’s Social Security Account Number (SSAN) is required as a condition for participation in student financial assistance programs sponsored by the federal government, state, or the local government, in view of the practical administrative difficulties that would be encountered in maintaining adequate program records without the continued use of the SSAN. The SSAN will be used to verify the identity of the applicant and as an account number (identifier) throughout the life of the loan or other type of assistance in order to report necessary data accurately. As an identifier, the SSAN is used in such program activities as determining program eligibility, certifying school attendance and student status, determining eligibility for deferment or repayment of student loans, and for tracing and collecting in cases of defaulted loans. Authority for requiring the disclosure of an applicant’s SSAN is grounded on Section 7(a)(2) of the Privacy Act, which provides that an agency may continue to require disclosure of an individual’s SSAN as a condition for the granting of a right, benefit, or privilege provided by law where the agency required this disclosure under statute or regulation prior to Jan. 1, 1975, in order to verify the identity of an individual.