What is Federal Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)?
It measures your semester GPA, cumulative GPA, and progress toward your degree. If you don’t meet all the requirements, you aren’t making SAP. You then become ineligible to receive federal aid programs like Pell Grant, SEOG Grant, Direct Loans, Parent PLUS Loans, Perkins Loans and Work-Study. If you lose eligibility for Federal Work-Study, you can still work under the RIT Campus Employment Program.
If you have no interest in federal financial aid programs, then these requirements don’t apply to you.
What are the requirements to be making SAP?
You must meet all of these requirements:
||2.0 or greater
||2.0 or greater
|Progress toward degree (total completed credits divided by total attempted credits)
||67% or greater. No rounding allowed.
|Maximum Timeframe (credits required to complete your degree x 150%)
You must be able to earn your degree before meeting the maximum attempted credits.
|Varies depending on program of study.
Example: 120 credit program x 150% = 180 maximum attempted credits.
How will the new pass/fail options allowed for the spring 2020 semester impact SAP?
Coursework taken under the pass/fail option are not counted in your semester GPA nor in your cumulative GPA.
However courses taken under this option can influence your progress toward your degree requirements and maximum timeframe to complete your degree. The equivalent of a pass will count toward both completed and attempted credits. The equivalent of a fail will only be considered attempted credits. Remember, the total completed credits divided by total attempted credits must be 67% or greater.
For more information on alternate grading options, academic actions, and recognitions policies:
Important Academic Policy Updates – Office of the Registrar
Changes of alternate grading options and pace measurement for federal SAP
What happens if I change my pass/fail grade to a letter grade or I have an Incomplete (I) grade and the “I” grade changes?
The grade change will be considered in your next semester of attendance. For example, a grade change occurs in the fall 2020 semester, the change for federal SAP would be considered in the spring 2021 semester. It is not necessary for you to notify us, since we capture the changed grade the next semester we review your SAP.
You may, as an option, notify us of a change in your academic record in writing. Email is acceptable, but you must use your RIT email account. The change in your academic record must occur prior to the start of your next semester of attendance.
For example, you took a course in the spring 2020 semester using an alternate grading option. Your next planned semester of attendance is the fall 2020 semester. Your grade change must be approved by the Registrar prior to the fall 2020 semester and you have to notify us for it to be counted for the fall 2020 semester.
We will verify with the Registrar that the grade change occurred prior to the start of the semester and what impact, if any, on your federal SAP eligibility status. Changes will be reflected in eServices.
How do I find out if I’m meeting these requirements? How will I know if I’m not?
Review a copy of your unofficial transcript. Look at your most recently completed semester. It shows your semester GPA, cumulative GPA, your total credits attempted, and total credits completed. Compare your transcript to the requirements above. You can also contact your primary academic advisor.
The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships (OFAS) will review your academic transcript at the end of each semester you attend using information received from the Registrar. OFAS will only notify you if you aren’t meeting SAP requirements or is unable to determine your SAP status.
What happens if I’m not making SAP?
It affects your eligibility for federal financial aid programs like grants, loans, and work-study. Other aid programs like state grants have their own rules. Scholarships and grants directly from RIT are not typically impacted.
NTID sponsored aid programs are determined by the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), but if you are not meeting SAP requirements you may not be eligible for NTID scholarships and grants.
The first time you are not making SAP you are placed on Federal Financial Aid Warning for your next semester of attendance. This allows you to continue to receive federal financial aid for one semester even though you don’t meet the SAP requirements. Some students aren’t eligible for Federal Financial Aid Warning because they have had a previous Financial Aid SAP contract and/or have been on Federal Financial Aid Probation.
OFAS will notify you if you are eligible for Federal Financial Aid Warning.
I’ve used my Financial Aid Warning already. What happens now?
If you have good reasons for not making SAP and can demonstrate those reasons won’t happen again, you may request Federal Financial Aid Probation so that you can continue to receive federal aid while you work toward regaining SAP. You need to work with your primary academic advisor to develop a Federal SAP Action Plan that outlines the number of semesters it will take you to meet SAP requirements.
How do I apply for Federal Financial Aid Probation?
Only request Federal Financial Aid Probation if you desire to receive federal financial aid and file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Follow these steps to request Federal Financial Aid Probation:
- Complete the Request for Financial Aid Probation form.
- Meet with the appropriate person in your primary academic unit (usually your academic advisor) to create a Federal SAP Action Plan. This tells us what you will achieve academically to meet SAP requirements.
- Submit your Request for Financial Aid Probation and your Federal SAP Action Plan to the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships at the same time.
What happens after I’ve filed for Federal Financial Aid Probation?
The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships notifies you of the decision. If approved, you will need to meet the conditions outlined in the Federal SAP Action Plan to continue to be eligible for federal financial aid. If you don’t meet the conditions or if your request is not approved, then you are not eligible to receive federal aid again until you meet SAP requirements or are allowed to appeal again.
How many times may I receive Federal Financial Aid Probation?
It depends on your degree program:
Baccalaureate - Maximum of two times, each lasting no longer than three consecutive semesters.
Associate - One time only, lasting no longer than two semesters.
Certificate - One time only, lasting no longer than one semester
These are cumulative. For example, if you used a Federal Financial Aid Probation while pursuing an associate degree, but then transfer to a baccalaureate degree, you would only have one probation left.
Where can I find out more information?
Detailed information on RIT Undergraduate Federal Financial Aid SAP policy is available on the Graduate and Undergraduate Bulletins website.
Please note the following addendums:
Undergraduate Bulletin addendum
Graduate Bulletin addendum
Download the Request for Federal Financial Aid Probation PDF.