Once school begins, you'll want to maintain good grades. Federal regulations require that students make reasonable academic progress in order to continue receiving financial aid.
Progress is measured by the student’s cumulative grade point average, percentage of credit hours earned in relation to those attempted, and the length of the academic program. In order to assure that students make progress toward earning a degree both in terms of number of hours completed and cumulative GPA, Kirkwood Community College requires a student maintain the following standards: a cumulative 2.0 GPA and cumulative pace of 67%.
Cumulative records are reviewed after each payment period to evaluate progress. All periods of registration, including summer term, will be evaluated regardless of whether or not financial aid was disbursed during the term. This includes remedial credits, ESL credits, and transfer credits from other institutions. Attempted credit hours will be determined at the end of the drop period each term.
Classes that are not repeatable for credit are counted as attempted hours each time they are attempted. However, they are counted as completed hours only once.
The student is placed on a Warning status the first term his/her academic transcript does not meet the standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) with one exception. Students who fail to complete any courses within their first term of enrollment (combination of Fs and Ws) will be placed on Suspension for the following term.
If progress during the Warning term is adequate to bring the cumulative record up to the standard, the Warning status is removed. If progress in the Warning term is not enough to bring the cumulative record up to standard, the student will receive a Suspension status and be ineligible for financial aid. This suspension includes all scholarships, work-study, loans and grants.
A student can regain eligibility by completing at least one additional term of half-time work and maintaining the standards of the policy. This is an out of pocket expense. When this is accomplished, the student must notify the financial aid office and submit an academic plan (see below). Financial aid is reinstated on an Academic Plan status. Progress is monitored and the Academic Plan status is extended as long as the student follows the academic plan each semester and maintains a 2.0 GPA and a 75% pace for each term until the cumulative record meets the standard or the student graduates. Alternately, the student may submit an appeal.
The student has the right to appeal the SAP policy if he/she believes extenuating circumstances prevented him/her from meeting the standards of the policy. Examples of extenuating circumstances would include prolonged illness for which medical attention was received, or extreme personally uncontrollable circumstances. Appeals must be in writing and include documentation of the circumstances that led to the student’s academic performance along with an academic plan. Appeals should also address changes made to ensure future academic success. An Appeals Committee determines whether the appeal is approved. The decision of the committee is final and cannot be appealed further.
If an appeal is approved, and the student is mathematically capable of reaching a Satisfactory status after one term of work, a student is placed on Probation. If the appeal is approved, but the student is mathematically incapable of reaching a Satisfactory status after one term of work, the student is placed on Academic Plan status. Students on Probation must reach Satisfactory status after one term of work or they will go on Suspension. Academic Plan students must follow the academic plan until their cumulative record meets the standard or the student graduates. If a student fails to follow the academic plan and maintain a 2.0 GPA and a 75% pace for each term, he/she will be placed on Suspension.
Federal regulations stipulate that students must complete their educational program in a reasonable length of time, which is defined as no more than 150% of the credit hours required for graduation in that program, regardless of major changes. For example, if a student is working towards a Liberal Arts-AA, which is 62 credit hours; he or she can receive aid up to 150% of the credits for that program, which is 93 credit hours. Once a student has exceeded 93 earned credits, he/she will be placed on suspension. All transfer credits are included in the earned credits including those earned as part of another degree or diploma. Students have the right to appeal the suspension. To do so, they need to complete a Pace Academic Plan form in conjunction with their academic advisor or department coordinator. That form will be sent to the Appeals Committee. If approved, to continue to receive financial aid, they must follow their academic plan and only take courses that are required for their program. Students will be warned of this status at 125% of the credits required for graduation in their program. Students can contact the One Stop Office with questions regarding SAP.
For a step-by-step process of filing an appeal, go here.
Note that this policy was updated for the 2016-17 award year.