Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy and Appeal Process

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Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Federal Financial Aid Title IV Recipients

SAP guidelines for financial aid renewal vary depending upon the type of financial aid:

  • SJU Grants & Scholarships:  Full-time undergraduates must complete at least 24 credit hours per academic year.  Additionally, students must maintain the minimum, cumulative GPA requirement as stated in their scholarship letter.  The cumulative GPA is the calculation of all grades received while an undergraduate student at Saint Joseph’s University.  Should a student’s cumulative GPA fall below the stipulated requirement, the following adjustments are made to SJU merit scholarships awarded: 
  • 20% reduction for the next academic year

Should a student continue to fall below at the end of the next academic year:

  • an additional 5% totaling 25% reduction for the next academic year, but never going lower than 75% of original amount.

Should a student obtain the required year-end cumulative GPA, the original scholarship will be reinstated for the next full academic year (i.e.-beginning with fall semester).   

  • PHEAA State Grants:  Successful completion of 24 credits for every two semesters of full-time PHEAA State Grant aid received (12 credits/year for part-time students).
  • Title IV/Federal Financial Aid (Pell Grants, Federal Direct Stafford Loans, SEOG Grants, Federal Work Study and Federal Direct PLUS Loans).


Title IV (Federal) Satisfactory Academic Progress

Saint Joseph’s University is required, by federal guidelines, to monitor students’ satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward completion of their degree.  Students cannot receive federal aid for a timeframe greater than 150% of the standard required time it typically takes to complete the degree (example:  Maximum of 12 semesters for a four-year bachelor’s degree student attending on a full-time basis.  See chart below).  The University has the authority to set its own SAP standards; however, the standards must include both qualitative and quantitative standards. Students must meet both standards.  SAP is measured at the end of each academic year, once spring grades are posted, in order for federal financial aid to be renewed the following semester/academic year.  Credits from the preceding summer may count toward SAP.  SJU does have the authority to evaluate and grant a reprieve, on a case-by-case basis, to students who are not meeting the standards. 

The Saint Joseph’s University Title IV SAP Policy for Undergraduates is as follows:

Quantitative Standard

Successful completion of 70% of all attempted credits* for prior academic year.  See definition of Earned Credits and Attempted Credits below.

Example: If a student attempts 30 total credits in an academic year, he/she must minimally successfully pass (no F grades) 21 credits for that given academic year. 21/30=70%

Qualitative Standard

  • Less than 60 credits completed toward degree:  1.8 cumulative GPA
  • 60 or more cumulative credits completed toward degree:   2.0 cumulative GPA

Maximum Hours to Earn Degree: To quantify academic progress, a school must set a maximum time frame in which a student is expected to complete a program. For an undergraduate program, the maximum timeframe cannot exceed 150% of the published length of the program measured in credit hours attempted.

Degree Program

Credits Required

Maximum Credits Allowed


120 credits

180 credits


*Earned Credits:  Credits earned toward degree completion. This includes transfer credits, advanced standing and advanced placement credits and repeat courses. It does not include courses assigned a grade of: F, FA, I, W, X (audited) courses.  

*Attempted Credits: Includes all transfer credits that apply toward one’s degree program, English as a Second Language (ESL) and SJU-registered credits, including Pass/No Penalty courses and courses from which a student enrolled but subsequently withdrew (courses for which a student is registered for at the conclusion of the formal drop/add period do count toward attempted credits). Does not include audited (non-credit) courses. Repeat courses count in attempted and earned credits. 
For more detailed information, please visit our web page at 

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Article ID: 52746
Thu 4/26/18 10:31 AM
Wed 10/31/18 1:27 PM