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Financial Aid

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy for Financial Aid

In order to be eligible to receive federal financial aid, students at UW-Stevens Point must demonstrate “Satisfactory Academic Progress” (SAP) which is a function of the following three components:

 

Grade Point Average (GPA): 

All undergraduate students receiving financial aid must maintain a minimum 2.0 UWSP cumulative GPA (all coursework transferred in is considered into this cumulative GPA), while graduate students receiving financial aid must maintain a UWSP minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.  Note: Standards of satisfactory academic progress for financial aid are different from the University’s probation/suspension requirements listed in the UWSP Catalog. Additionally, academic bankruptcy is not counted when calculating SAP.
 

Pace (67% Rule): 

All full-time and part-time undergraduate and graduate students at UWSP who receive financial aid must stay on pace to graduate on time.  Pace is calculated by dividing the total credits a student completed per term by the number of credits they have attempted per term.  When this calculation falls below 67%, a student is no longer on pace to graduate on time and is ineligible to receive financial aid.  Transfer credits are considered within this pace calculation as credits attempted and credits earned. Pace Chart.
 

Maximum Time Frame (150% Rule): 

An eligible undergraduate, graduate, or second degree-seeking student can receive federal financial aid while attempting up to, but not exceeding, 150% of the university’s completion length.  Credits transferred to UWSP and any credits attempted at UWSP, with or without the benefit of financial aid, must be taken into consideration.  As an example, a student who is required to earn 120 credits to graduate with a baccalaureate degree, the maximum time frame would be 180 credits (120 x 150% = 180).  Students will be required to graduate within two terms following the appeal for maximum time frame.  Subsequent appeals for maximum time frame will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
 

Evaluation Process 

The GPA, Pace and Maximum Time Frame requirements are evaluated by the Financial Aid Office after every term (Summer/Fall/Spring), once grades are posted. A student who does not meet the GPA, Pace, or Maximum Time Frame requirement(s) will be ineligible to receive financial aid.
 

Student Options: 

  1. Choose to continue to enroll in classes without financial aid until they earn an academic standing that meets the minimum criteria for financial aid purposes, i.e. bring the cumulative GPA up to at least a 2.0 for undergraduate students or 3.0 for graduate students and/or successfully complete 67% of accumulative attempted credits.  Once the student has corrected the SAP deficiency of Pace/GPA, it is possible for aid to be reinstated.
  2. Provide documentation to the Financial Aid Office to correct any errors made, and/or
  3. Submit an appeal that explains the extenuating circumstances that prevented successful Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and specific steps on how they will reach SAP by the next evaluation period.  This appeal may also require the development and submission of an academic plan.
 

Appeal Process 

A student who did not meet SAP for financial aid and is currently ineligible to receive financial aid may appeal for reinstatement of eligibility by completing an Appeal for Reinstatement of Financial Aid Eligibility form.  This form must include a clear explanation of why the student failed to meet SAP and specifically, what steps the student plans to take to meet SAP by the next evaluation.  Additional supporting documentation confirming the appealed situation may also be required.
 
Additionally, certain appeals must also include an academic plan identifying dates by which the student will meet all aspects of the SAP policy.  If the appeal is approved, the student is subsequently placed on Financial Aid Probation Status for one term, after which, the student must be meeting SAP or be following their approved academic plan.  If the student is not meeting SAP and/or not following their approved academic plan at the next evaluation, the student will not receive Financial Aid until they are once again in compliance.
 
Students with extenuating circumstances that prevented them from making SAP have the right to appeal their situation to the Financial Aid Office.  Extenuating circumstances include, but are not limited to, student injury or illness, death of a student’s relative or other reasons resulting in undue hardship to the student.  Students must submit the Appeal for Reinstatement of Financial Aid Eligibility form, a copy of their Degree Progress Report (DPR), an Advisor/Chair (or designee)-approved academic plan, and any other related documentation that supports the appeal (see additional information on supporting documentation).  Per Federal regulations, an appeal may only be approved if the student shows that they will be able to meet SAP by the next evaluation, or the student’s academic plan ensures SAP by a specific point in time.  Incomplete/inaccurate appeals and/or Academic Plans will not be approved.  The authorized Financial Aid officer(s) will serve as the final arbiter of appeals and will inform the student of the decision regarding their appeal and the status of their financial aid eligibility.  All decisions are final and are not subject to further appeal.
 
If denied, the student may attend UWSP, without financial aid, and re-appeal when all components of SAP are met.  If the appeal is approved, the student is placed on Financial Aid Probation Status for one term, after which, the student must be meeting SAP or be following their approved academic plan.  If the student is not meeting SAP or following their academic plan at the next evaluation, they will be ineligible to receive financial aid until they are in compliance.
 

Academic Plan 

Certain appeals require an academic plan identifying dates by which the student will meet all aspects of the SAP policy.  Students with an undeclared major should meet with an Academic Advisor in the Student Academic Advising Center (SAAC) and students who have declared a major should meet with the Chair (or their designee) of their academic area to create their own individualized academic plan.  Whoever the student meets with and who makes the decision on the appeal, must sign off on this.  An academic plan is automatically required if the student has a cumulative GPA of 1.8 or lower for undergraduate students and GPA of 2.8 or lower for graduate students.  Failure to earn credits in a term greater than 50% of attempted coursework will also automatically require an academic plan.  An academic plan is also required if the student is appealing the Maximum Time Frame (greater than 150%). 
 
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