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Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

Life University’s
SAP Policy

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

Effective 7/1/2011 (supersedes all former policies)

The United States Department of Education and most agencies providing financial assistance require students to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) in their course of study to continue receiving funding. Failure to maintain SAP will result in the loss of Federal Title IV financial aid as well as State and other aid. Federal Title IV financial aid includes the Pell Grant, Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG), Subsidized Stafford Loan, Unsubsidized Stafford Loan, Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS), Graduate PLUS loan and Federal Work-Study. State aid includes the Georgia Tuition Equalization Grant (GTEG), HOPE Scholarship Zell Miller Scholarship, Georgia Student Access Loan and Leveraging Educational Assistance Partnership Grant (LEAP).  The student’s entire academic history is evaluated to determine whether or not he/she is maintaining SAP.  This evaluation is not affected by whether or not aid was previously received or whether a student has changed programs.  The Federal Student Aid program regulations make no provision for the concept of academic amnesty or grade forgiveness.

Doctor of Chiropractic and Undergraduate Program
Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) and Undergraduate (UG) students will be evaluated annually at the end of each spring quarter. Students in the DC and UG programs are expected to complete at least 67% of all attempted hours with a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0. When students are evaluated and are not meeting both SAP requirements they will become ineligible for federal financial aid. State and institutional financial aid may be effected, as well. Students may regain eligibility by enrolling using their own resources or alternative funding sources until they have met a cumulative 2.0 GPA and completed 67% of their courses.

Master’s Program
Students in the Master’s (GR) program are expected to complete at least 67% of all attempted hours with a minimum cumulative grade point (GPA) average of 3.0. GR students will be evaluated after their first (and all subsequent) quarter in the program because of the short duration of the Master’s program.  Students not meeting SAP will be placed on financial aid warning for one quarter.  If at the end of their warning quarter students are still not meeting SAP, they will become ineligible for federal financial aid. Institutional financial aid may be effected, as well. Students may regain federal eligibility by enrolling using their own resources or alternative funding sources until they have met a cumulative 3.0 GPA and completed 67% of their courses.

SAP is measured in three ways:

1. Qualitative Standard (Grade Point Average – GPA):

  • The cumulative GPA is provided by the Registrar’s Office, and is listed at the bottom of the student’s transcript.
  • D.C. and UG students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or higher.
  • GR students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or higher.

2. Quantitative Standard:

  • All students (UG, GR, D.C.) are expected to complete at least 67% of all courses attempted.
  • Attempted courses are defined as those for which one has registered and been charged, in which grades of A, B, C, D, F, W, WF, I, P, SP, NP, WNP or IP are given.
  • Completed courses are defined as those in which grades of A, B, C, D (in some UG courses only) SP or P are given.

Example of meeting the SAP requirements:

  • At the end of Spring quarter 2011, Kevin Smith, UG student, has attempted 45 credit hours.
  • He has earned grades of “C” in all 45 hours. He has met the qualitative standard because his cumulative GPA is 2.00.
  • He has successfully completed all of the courses he attempted. He has met the quantitative standard because his completion rate is 100%.

Example of not meeting the SAP requirements:

  • At the end of Spring quarter 2011, Susan Moore, D.C. student, has attempted 95 credit hours and completed 70 of those 95 credits.
  • Her cumulative GPA is a 1.90. She did not meet the qualitative standard since her GPA is below a 2.00.
  • She met the quantitative standard because her completion rate is 73%.

3. Time Frame
All students (UG, GR, and DC) are expected to finish their degrees after having attempted coursework not to exceed 150% of their program requirements (measured in credit hours attempted).

UG: Students seeking an Associate degree may not receive financial aid after having attempted 147 credit hours. Students seeking a Bachelor’s degree may not receive financial aid after having attempted 282 credit hours.
GR: Students seeking a Master’s degree may not receive financial aid after having attempted 78 credit hours (for 52 credit hour programs), 67 credit hours (for 45 credit hour programs), or 109 credit hours (for 73 credit hour programs).
D.C.: Students seeking a Doctor of Chiropractic degree may not receive financial aid after having attempted 525 credit hours.

4. Repeating Courses

  • Students who receive an “F”, “W”, “WF”, “WNP” , “NP” or an “SP” for any given course(s) that is required toward graduation, must repeat this / these course(s).
  • The College of Chiropractic requires that this / these course(s) be repeated the student’s next quarter of attendance in which it is offered.
  • Student in College of Undergraduate Studies (and College of Chiropractic prior winter 2006) who repeat courses will have their grade from their “last attempt” calculated toward their cumulative GPA.
  • A prior grade is not removed from the permanent record when the course is repeated, but the prior grade is removed from the calculated cumulative average. Specifically, a grade of “F”, “W”, “WF”, “WNP”, or “NP” is not removed from the permanent record when the course is repeated, but the previous “F” and “WF” will be removed from the cumulative average calculation. (This applies only those students as described above, but not to any new College of Chiropractic nor to any College of Graduate Studies and Research Program students).
  • All College of Chiropractic and College of Graduate Studies and Research Program students whom repeat courses will have their all grades attempted calculated toward their cumulative GPA

Appeals

If there are extenuating circumstances beyond their control, students have the right to appeal their SAP determination. The appeal must be directly relatable to the academic period for which the student is being evaluated and cannot have been previously submitted for review.  Appeals must be submitted in writing using the SAP appeal form obtained by speaking with the Financial Aid Counselor and MUST include supporting third-party documentation.  Appeals without supporting documentation will not be accepted. Students are required to submit a statement regarding why the student failed to make SAP, and what has changed in the student’s situation that would allow the student to demonstrate Satisfactory Academic Progress at the next evaluation.

Submitting an appeal does not guarantee approval and if the appeal is denied students will be responsible for paying the Institution any balance owed without Federal funds.  The Financial Aid Appeals Committee (FAAC) will consider each appeal on its own merits and the decision of the FAAC committee is final.

During the FAAC review it will be determined if the student can or cannot meet SAP after the next quarter of enrollment.  This will be done by looking at the student’s current transcript of completed classes and GPA for all quarters attended at Life University in the appropriate program.  Any student who has their SAP decision successfully appealed and cannot meet SAP after the next quarter of enrollment will receive an Academic Plan and be placed on Financial Aid Probation.  The Academic Plan will be individualized and specific to each student in order to put the student on track to successful academic progress in no more than four quarters. If at any time during an Academic Plan students don’t not meet the terms of their plan, they will lose their Federal aid and will not be eligible to appeal.  If, when presented with the Academic Plan, the student chooses not to accept it, the student will need to pay using other resources until meeting the minimum requirements for SAP.

Students who choose not to appeal or have their appeal denied may regain their eligibility for financial aid by enrolling using their own resources or alternative non-Federal funding and bringing their academic performance into compliance with this policy.

Students who separate from the Institution without appealing when not meeting SAP, lose their right to appeal the decision.  Students returning to the Institution and not meeting SAP upon their return will be responsible for using their own resources or using Private loans.  Once the students are meeting SAP, they must self-identify to the Financial Aid Office and request to be reevaluated for Federal aid.

Financial Aid Probation: A status assigned to a student who has successfully appealed and has had eligibility for aid reinstated. Probation can only be granted if the school determines the student should be able to meet the school’s SAP standards by the end of the subsequent quarter. A student on Financial Aid Probation may receive Title IV funds for one quarter.

Financial Aid Warning: Is a status assigned to a student who fails to make Satisfactory Academic Progress and has his/her academic progress evaluated at the end of each payment period, and is utilized when an Institution chooses to allow students who fail its progress standards to continue to receive aid. (At LIFE, this status only applies to Graduate students, i.e. Master’s students).

Obtaining a Second Degree at LIFE: For SAP purposes, students who have earned one degree at LIFE and wish to work toward a second degree will start over again, just as if they were new students.

Transfer Courses: For SAP purposes, transfer courses accepted as credit toward the Life University degree will be counted in the quantitative standard, but not the qualitative standard