The College is required, by Federal regulations and State policy, to monitor academic progress toward a degree or certificate for all financial aid applicants. These standards ensure that only those recipients demonstrating progress toward the completion of their education continue to receive financial aid. This policy is applied consistently to all students regardless of enrollment status.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy
Students are considered to be meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards if the following three requirements are met:
- Course Completion Rate
- Cumulative Grade Point Average
- Maximum Timeframe Standard
Compliance is measured at the end of each semester. Students who meet all three requirements are placed on Good Standing
Course Completion Rate Requirement
Students’ total earned (completed) hours must be equal to or greater than 67% of the cumulative total of students’ attempted credit hours for all periods of enrollment at College of DuPage. Hours attempted are courses for which any grades appear on your college record, including transfer credits and remedial courses. All attempted hours are counted for all terms, even those for which a student did not receive financial aid, as well as those waived under the Grade Forgiveness Policy *.
- Grades of A, B, C, D, P and S are considered earned hours.
- Grades of F, I, R and W are NOT considered earned hours.
- W grades from the Spring 2020 semester using a COVID-19 drop code will not be included in the calculation.
- Students with an incomplete class at the end of a term who are placed on warning or suspension must notify the Office of Student Financial Assistance when a grade change has been posted.
- Repeated courses count as attempted hours and the higher grade is used in the GPA calculation.
- Non-credit courses are not counted in attempted hours or GPA.
- Below 1000 level courses and pass/fail courses count in the attempted hours.
- Students that receive a zero completion rate their first term will be immediately suspended.
Cumulative Grade Point Average Requirement
Each student must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0. All attempted hours are counted for all terms, even those for which a student did not receive financial aid, as well as those waived under the Grade Forgiveness Policy *.
- Students that receive a zero GPA their first term will be immediately suspended.
Maximum Time Frame Requirement
The maximum time frame students have to complete their degree or certificate is equal to 150% of the credit hours required for the completion of the degree or certificate (calculated as program length x 1.50). All attempted hours are counted for all terms, even those for which a student did not receive financial aid, as well as those waived under the Grade Forgiveness Policy *. It includes completed, failed and withdrawn classes. Transfer hours that are accepted count as both attempted and completed hours. Students may receive financial aid for up to 30 remedial credits, which are not computed into the maximum time frame requirement. Eligible ESL coursework is not included in attempted hours. The total attempted hours are not adjusted for a student who changes majors or pursues an additional degree.
Examples of maximum attempted hours:
- Certificate Program requiring 30 credit hours: 30 X 1.50 = 45 Maximum Credit Hours Attempted.
- Degree Program requiring 64 credit hours: 64 X 1.50 = 96 Maximum Credit Hours Attempted.
Students will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension Status once they have exceeded 150% of the required credit hours needed to complete their program. The College will notify students who are close to reaching the maximum time frame limit.
Note: Students with a Bachelor’s Degree must appeal to receive aid due to the maximum time frame standard associated with the Federal standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress. College of DuPage uses all attempted credits, including transfer credits, when calculating the maximum time frame for a student's program. Since College of DuPage only offers certificate and associate degrees, students that have already earned a Bachelor’s Degree have exceeded the maximum time frame for the degree they are seeking at College of DuPage.
Financial Aid Warning
- Students failing to meet GPA and/or completion rate requirements are placed on Financial Aid Warning for one semester. While on Warning, students are eligible to receive financial aid. College of DuPage does not have a Satisfactory Academic Progress forgiveness policy. Students on warning will remain on warning even after an extended absence of enrollment.
- The Warning semester is meant to inform the student of academic problems.
- Students who meet both the GPA and completion rate requirements after the Warning semester will be returned to Good Standing.
Financial Aid Suspension
- Students who fail to meet GPA and/or completion rate requirements after the warning semester will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. Students exceeding 150% of the required credit hours needed to complete their program will also be placed on suspension. College of DuPage does not have a Satisfactory Academic Progress forgiveness policy. Students on suspension will remain on suspension even after an extended absence of enrollment.
- While on Suspension, students are not eligible for any Federal and certain forms of State Financial Aid.
- Students that receive a zero completion rate or zero GPA their first term will be immediately suspended.
Reinstatement of Financial Aid
If financial aid is suspended for failure to maintain the required 2.0 GPA and/or failure to successfully complete the minimum of 67% of all hours attempted or a zero completion rate and/or GPA. Financial aid may be reinstated by:
- Enrolling at the student’s own expense and successfully completing the appropriate number of credit hours needed to achieve the 67% standard and/or bring the GPA to 2.0.
If financial aid is suspended for failure to maintain the required 2.0 GPA and/or failure to successfully complete the minimum of 67% of all hours attempted and/or exceeding 150% of the credit hours require to complete a program or a zero completion rate and/or GPA. Financial aid may be reinstated by:
- Receiving approval for Probation status based on a successful appeal submitted to the Financial Aid Appeals Committee.
Financial Aid Probation
- This status is assigned to students who have successfully appealed their Suspension.
- Eligibility for financial aid is reinstated on a probationary basis, for the period covered in the student’s approved educational plan. If students fail to meet the requirements of the approved appeal they will once again be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.
- Students who are meeting the requirements of their approved educational plan, but have not yet reached Good Standing Status after the plan expires, may continue to be eligible for aid on a term-by-term basis under Probation Status after a new educational plan has been submitted and approved. Students remaining on Probation Status must continue to meet the requirements of their approved appeal each term, or they will once again be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.
Students may appeal their suspension status if circumstances beyond their control (i.e. serious illness or injury, death of an immediate family member, etc.) prevented them from maintaining a 2.0 GPA and/or completing 67% of their attempted coursework and/or completing a program within 150% of the maximum time frame or completing zero coursework. Circumstances that will not be considered in an appeal include, but are not limited to, being unprepared for college, not aware of SAP policy, lack of attendance due to work, etc. All appeal circumstances must be fully documented.
The appeal must:
- Clearly state the extenuating circumstances for failure to meet the SAP requirements.
- Clearly state what has changed in your situation that will allow you to successfully complete all future attempted classes.
- If appealing the Maximum Time Frame Requirement, you must explain the reason for exceeding the Maximum Time Frame Requirement.
- Include all supporting documentation.
- All students must submit an educational plan or course plan as approved by an advisor or counselor.
Documentation of the circumstances and an educational plan must be submitted before an appeal will be considered. When your appeal is complete, you may submit your appeal to the Office of Student Financial Assistance.
Appeals and supporting documentation must be submitted to the Office of Student Financial Assistance by Sept. 30 for the Fall semester, Feb. 28 for the Spring semester, and June 30 for the Summer semester. Appeals are considered for the semester in which they are submitted, and are never retroactive to previous terms. Appeals submitted after the current term due date may be considered for the following term.
Federal regulations require the Financial Aid Committee to consider several factors when reviewing an appeal, including whether or not a student will be able to meet GPA and/or course completion rate requirements within the student’s allowable Maximum Time Frame. All appeal documentation must be submitted directly by the student. The Committee will not contact third parties (doctors, counselors, family members, etc.) for additional information. All Committee deliberations are confidential, and the decisions of the Committee are final.
Students are limited to two (2) approved SAP appeals during their entire enrollment at College of DuPage.
Grade Forgiveness Policy
The Academic Regulations Committee reviews all requests for petition of failing grades. If you meet the following criteria there will be a notation on your official transcript indicating that you have been granted forgiveness for the failed course(s).
- Only F grades will be considered.
- A period of at least 36 months of non-enrollment has elapsed since the end of the last term of grades to be forgiven (excluding non-credit classes).
- Upon return, a minimum of 12 consecutive semester hours with no grades of 'D', 'F', 'S', 'I', or 'X' and no more than two 'W' grades must be earned at College of DuPage before forgiveness will be considered. In addition, a student must earn the same number of credit hours with a grade of 'C' or better equal to the number of credit hours of 'F' grades to be forgiven.
- A maximum of 25 quarter hours or 18 semester hours of 1000-level courses and above will be forgiven.
- Forgiveness will be granted one time only for each student.
Refer to Standards of Academic Progress in the Academic Information section of the current College of DuPage Catalog for additional information.
Office of Student Financial Assistance
Student Services Center (SSC), Room 2220
Fax: (630) 942-2151
- Monday and Tuesday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Wednesday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.