Financial Aid: Satisfactory Academic Progress

The United States Department of Education requires all students who receive federal student financial assistance to make progress toward their declared degree. This measurement is called Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). LMU is required to have policies that ensure students are making this progress by measuring both qualitatively and quantitatively. Starting with the Fall 2011 semester, LMU has established the following SAP policy. SAP will be reviewed at the end of each semester, including the summer.

A student whose academic performance drops below the minimum standards will be placed on financial aid warning. A student may retain financial aid while on warning for one semester but must meet Satisfactory Academic Progress by the end of that semester or be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.

Students who fail to maintain SAP may not receive the following types of student financial assistance: Federal Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG), Tennessee Student Assistance Awards, Tennessee Education Lottery Scholarships, Lincoln Grant, Federal Work-Study, Federal Direct Loans, Federal PLUS Loans, other aid involving Title IV funds, and/or any other aid for which SAP is a requirement. These policies apply only to those eligible to receive financial aid.

Students enrolled in undergraduate programs must earn a minimum cumulative GPA to maintain financial aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). For graduate programs, please refer to specific graduate catalogs for GPA requirements.

Qualitative: (GPA)

Hours Attempted Cumulative GPA
0-29 1.50 GPA
30-45 1.75 GPA
46-59 1.90 GPA
60+ Hours 2.00 GPA

Quantitative: Hours Attempted vs Hours Earned (Completion Rate)

A student is considered to have made satisfactory academic progress provided he/she passes at least 67% of the cumulative credit hours attempted. For instance, a student who attempts 45 credit hours must complete at least 30 of those credit hours to make satisfactory academic progress.

Quantitative: Maximum Time Frame

No student will be eligible to receive financial aid for more than 150% of the published length of their declared program. This time is measured by credit hours attempted. For example, a student seeking a baccalaureate degree totaling 128 credit hours cannot receive aid for more than 192 attempted hours (128 x 150% = 192). Failing a class or withdrawing from a class, whether passing or failing, can affect SAP. SAP will be reviewed at the end of each semester.

SAP Notification

All Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress notifications will be sent in two ways: a letter will be sent to the student at the home address and an e-mail notification will be sent to his/her LMU e-mail address. These notifications will be sent no later than four weeks after the end of the academic term reviewed.

SAP Appeals

Students who are on Financial Aid Suspension may appeal this decision by contacting Student Financial Services. The appeal must be made in writing and explain why the student failed to make SAP and what has changed that will allow the student to make SAP at the next evaluation. An approved appeal would typically contain an extenuating circumstance beyond your control along with supporting documentation.

Student Financial Services will review the appeal along with any additional recommendations from appropriate faculty or staff members to determine if the student will be able to meet SAP standards by the next evaluation. If the appeal is denied, the student may take classes at his/her own expense to try to regain SAP. If the appeal is approved, an academic plan will be developed to help the student meet SAP standards.