Office of Financial Aid

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Effective: 2013-14

Federal regulations require that all students make satisfactory academic progress in a program of study to maintain eligibility for federal aid programs, including, but not limited to, the federal Pell Grant, the federal Student Educational Opportunity Grant, the Perkins loan, the federal Stafford loan, the federal PLUS loan, and federal work study. The same regulations apply to the Colorado College Responsibility Program Grant, State work study, Institutional Need-Based Award, and Institutional work study.

Students may be impacted by other academic progress policies, including institutional and departmental academic standards, as well as academic progress policies for other types of aid, including, but not limited to institutional merit scholarships, athletic aid, and veterans benefits. 

Students must take responsibility to clarify the academic progress policies that impact them.

Components of Satisfactory Academic Progress

The following standards will be monitored to determine eligibility for financial aid:

  •     Qualitative Standard
    • Cumulative grade point average
  •     Quantitative Standard
    • Maximum time frame
    • Cumulative pace

Cumulative Grade Point Average

To remain eligible to receive financial aid, students must have a cumulative grade point average as specified below when evaluated at the end of the spring and summer payment periods.  Students who do not meet the standard will be placed on financial aid suspension.

  • Bachelor’s Degree Candidates – cumulative grade point average of 2.00 or higher in courses numbered 100-499 and cumulative grade point average is greater than or equal to 1.66 in courses numbered 001-099 (remedial courses);
  • Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Candidates – cumulative grade point average of 2.75 or higher in courses numbered 100-499;
  • Master of Arts in Education Degree Candidates – cumulative grade point average of 3.00 or higher in courses numbered 600-700.

The impact of grades of A, AU, AW, B, C, CW, D, F, I, MW, NC, NG, S, SW, and W on the cumulative grade point average are specified in the Catalog of Courses published on the Fort Lewis College website. The impact of grades for repeated courses is also specified in the Catalog of Courses.

Maximum Time Frame

To remain eligible to receive financial aid, students must not have attempted more than the specified number of credits for their academic program.  Students who exceed maximum time frame will be placed on financial aid suspension.

  • Bachelor’s Degree Candidates – 150% of the number of credits for their degree program as published in the Catalog of Courses;
  • Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Candidates – 150% of the number of credits for their licensure program as published on the Department of Teacher Education website;
  • Master of Arts in Education Degree Candidates – 200% of the number of credits for their degree program as published in the Catalog of Courses.

The program length for most Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees is 120 credits; therefore, for most students, the maximum time frame is 180 attempted credits.  Teacher preparation and engineering programs are authorized to require additional credits.  For students in those programs, maximum time frame is adjusted to 150% of the credits required.  Students in the Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Program who received their baccalaureate degrees from Fort Lewis College are allowed up to 234 attempted credits.  Students in the Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Program who received their baccalaureate degrees elsewhere are allowed up to 54 attempted credits.  The program length for the Master of Arts in Education degree program is 30 credits; therefore, for graduate students, the maximum time frame is 60 credits.   

For Bachelor’s Degree and Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Candidates, all credits attempted in courses numbered 100-499 at Fort Lewis College and at other institutions, except those taken under the audit option, are included in the calculation of maximum time frame.  Also included in the calculation are the number of credits earned through credit by examination and credit for prior learning processes.  For Master of Arts in Education Degree Candidates, all credits attempted in courses numbered 600-700 at Fort Lewis College and in graduate courses at other institutions, except those taken under the audit option, are included in the calculation of maximum time frame.

Bachelor’s Degree Candidates who have not previously been awarded a bachelor’s degree who are pursuing more than one major, a minor, or a dual degree, and Bachelor’s Degree Candidates pursing a second or subsequent bachelor’s degree receive no additional allowances for maximum time frame.  Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Candidates receive no additional credit allowances for deficiency requirements or additional endorsements.  Master of Arts in Education Degree Candidates pursuing a second or subsequent master’s degree receive no additional allowances.

Pace

To remain eligible to receive financial aid, students must meet the cumulative pace standards specified for their academic program.  Cumulative pace is calculated by dividing the cumulative number of credits completed by the cumulative number of credits attempted.    Students who do not meet cumulative pace standards will be placed on financial aid suspension.

  • Bachelor’s Degree Candidates – 67% of the number of credits attempted in courses numbered 100-499, excluding those taken under the audit option;
  • Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Program Candidates – 67% of the number of credits attempted in courses numbered 100-499, excluding those taken under the audit option;
  • Master of Arts in Education Degree Candidates – 100% of the number of credits attempted in courses numbered 600-700, excluding those taken under the audit option;

For included coursework, completed credits for Bachelor’s Degree Candidates and Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Program Candidates are courses taken at Fort Lewis College that earned a grade of A, B, C, D, S, or P in all enrollment periods, including those for which financial aid was not received, plus credits in courses earned through the transfer of credit, credit by exam, and evaluation of prior learning credit processes.  For Master of Arts in Education Degree Candidates, grades of D are excluded from completed credits.

For included coursework, attempted credits for Bachelor’s Degree Candidates, Post-Baccalaureate Teacher Licensure Candidates, and Master of Arts in Education Degree Candidates are courses taken at Fort Lewis College that earned a grade of A, AW, B, C, CW, D, F, I, MW, NC, NG, P, S, SW, and W in all enrollment periods, including those for which financial aid was not received, plus the number of credits that were earned through the transfer of credit, credit by examination, and evaluation or prior learning processes.

REVIEW OF SATISFACTORY ACADEMIC PROGRESS

Students will be reviewed for satisfactory academic progress after each spring and summer payment period, unless they are:

  • On probation, in which case they will be reviewed after each fall, spring, and summer payment period;
  • On an approved extended campus program, in which case they will be reviewed after grades have been posted or at the end of the subsequent payment period, whichever comes first;
  • Have had a grade changed, in which case they will be reviewed at the time the grade is posted.

Financial Aid Status

After evaluation, students will be assigned a status of good standing or suspension.  Students reinstated from suspension will be assigned the status of probation. 

Good Standing

A student is in good standing and eligible to receive additional financial aid if the student has not completed degree and program requirements and has met the cumulative grade point average standard and the cumulative pace standard and has not exceeded the maximum time frame standard.

Suspension

A student is suspended from financial aid if the student completed degree and program requirements or did not meet the cumulative grade point average standard and/or the cumulative pace standard and/or exceeded the maximum time frame standard.  Students on financial aid suspension will be notified by an individual email to their Fort Lewis College email account that they are not eligible to receive financial aid unless they re-establish eligibility through the appeals process or by achieving standards attending the college without benefit of aid. 

Probation

Students are on probation if they were reinstated from suspension.  Students on probation are eligible to receive aid so long as they meet the conditions of their probation as specified by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee.

APPEAL PROCEDURES

A student unable to meet cumulative grade point average and/or cumulative pace standards because of illness or injury of the student or a family member, death of a family member, or another unforeseen circumstance may appeal for re-establishment of eligibility to receive aid.  Students who have exceeded maximum time frame may also appeal for reinstatement if they have a plan for degree completion.

Students make the appeal by submitting required documents to the Office of Financial Aid.  The deadlines to submit these documents are published on the Office of Financial Aid website.

The required documents for students who were unable to meet cumulative grade point average and/or cumulative pace standards are:

  • Financial Aid Suspension Appeals Form – complete and signed (available on Office of Financial Aid website); 
  • Personal Statement – explaining reason for not meeting satisfactory academic progress standards and what will be changing that will allow these standards to be met in the future and;
  • Documentation – supporting the basis of the appeal, such as a letter from a medical or mental health professional licensed or certified to provide diagnosis and treatment, obituary/death certificate, police report, insurance claim, or social services agency statement.

The required documents for students who have exceeded the maximum time frame are:

  • Financial Aid Suspension Appeal Form – complete and signed (available on Office of Financial Aid website);
  • Personal Statement – explaining reason for exceeding maximum time frame and plan to graduate and;  
  • Documentation – semester-by-semester degree plan signed by an academic advisor showing the student’s graduation plan.

In order for the students’ appeal to be considered by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee, the student must be eligible to register. 

The Financial Aid Appeals Committee will consider appeals on a case-by-case basis taking into consideration the appeals package submitted by the student and the student’s academic, financial, and disciplinary records.

Students will be individually notified of the committee’s decision by email to the Fort Lewis College account.

Students suspended because they failed to meet cumulative grade point average and/or cumulative pace standards, who were denied on appeal, who did not appeal, or who rejected an Academic Plan must re-establish eligibility for aid by meeting satisfactory academic progress standards by attending the college without benefit of financial aid.  It is the responsibility of the student to notify the Office of Financial Aid when standards have been met.

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