Satisfactory Academic Progress
All students are expected to make reasonable progress toward the completion of a degree to be eligible for financial aid. The following standards have been adopted to monitor progress. To be eligible for federal financial aid at Northwest Nazarene University (NNU), a student must be enrolled, be in good standing, and be making reasonable progress toward the completion of a degree. NNU’s policy is to review students once each semester for cumulative grade point average (GPA), total credits completed versus credits attempted, probationary status, and prior appeal conditions. This includes first-time freshmen. All students who are not meeting SAP guidelines will be notified in writing of their SAP status prior to the start of the semester. Non-receipt of this letter will not change this status.
A. GRADE POINT (QUALITATIVE) REQUIREMENTS
All undergraduate students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 1.75 while classified as a Freshman, and a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 for Sophomore or above to remain eligible for university and federal aid.
B. PACE (QUANTITATIVE) REQUIREMENTS
All undergraduate students must maintain a minimum pace of completing 67% of the attempted credits to remain eligible for federal aid. Only passing grades count as successful completion. Incomplete, in-progress, failing grades, and drops/withdrawals are not considered completed courses, but are considered as attempted courses for purposes of the 67% completion requirement. All cumulative attempted hours are counted whether or not the student received aid for them. Transfer and concurrent/dual credit hours accepted or received at NNU count toward both credits attempted and completed, however the GPA from these courses is not calculated in the qualitative progress for this policy.
AID DISBURSED FOR REPEAT COURSE: University and federal aid eligibility for repeat courses follow federal guidelines. These state that students can receive aid for repeat courses to improve an already passing grade only once. However, students can receive aid for repeat courses to improve an already passing grade only once. However, students can continue to receive aid for repeat courses for which they are not passing until a passing grade is achieved. Remedial courses that are pass/fail are counted in credits attempted and earned, but do not count toward GPA.
MAXIMUM TIMEFRAME REQUIREMENTS: To ensure students complete programs within a reasonable amount of time, a limit has been placed on the number of credit hours students can attempt. This limit is 150% of the minimum number of credits required to complete the program (i.e., 186 credits for a 124-credit hour undergraduate degree). Once a student reaches the 150% limit or it is determined that a student cannot complete the program within the 150% limit, the student will no longer be able to receive federal financial aid. Repeated courses count towards the 150% limit. Students who have reached the maximum timeframe may not appeal or regain eligibility.
The Office of Financial Aid verifies each student’s enrollment in the required number of credits for the aid they are receiving before funds are credited to the student’s account.
C. SAP STATUSES
Warning Status—This status is assigned to students who fail to meet SAP as stated above at the end of a semester in which they are enrolled. Students in a warning status may receive financial aid for one semester without completing an appeal. The first time a student fails to meet the qualitative cumulative GPA (1.75 for Freshman or 2.0 for Sophomore or above) or pace (minimum 67% of attempted courses completed) requirements stated in this policy, the student will be placed on financial aid warning. Students may only reach warning status one time in their undergraduate program.
Suspension Status—Financial aid suspension is a semester in which the student loses university and federal aid eligibility. The student can regain university and federal aid eligibility once they reach a cumulative GPA in line with the SAP guidelines and/or complete 67% of the credits they attempted (see Section D). Students can move to a financial aid suspension after a warning semester if they:
- Continue to not meet one or all of the SAP guidelines.
- Exceed 186 credits.
- Have ever previously been placed on a SAP warning status at NNU.
Not enrolling in the subsequent semester (at NNU or another college) after a warning or suspension status is determined, does not change this status should the student return.
Probation Status—If a student placed in suspension status then appeals and is granted aid based on the appeal the student is considered to be in a probation status. During probation, a student must continue to meet the SAP guidelines in order to retain university and federal aid eligibility.
D. REINSTATEMENT OF AID
Students who are not eligible for university and federal aid due to reaching suspension status for reasons other than reaching the maximum timeframe may have their aid reinstated by:
- Submitting an appeal that explains the unusual or unforeseen circumstances that led to the suspension (see Section E)
- Continuing to attend NNU without university or federal aid or attend another regionally accredited college until they are able to achieve both:
- A cumulative 2.0 GPA, and;
- A 67% cumulative and semester completion rate (NNU and other college combined).
Note: A student at NNU may only reach suspension status three times in their undergraduate program. After the third time, the student will be placed on automatic suspension of aid and may not appeal or regain eligibility. Students who have reached the maximum timeframe also may not appeal or regain eligibility.
E. APPEAL PROCESS
Students have the option to appeal university and federal aid suspension if unusual or unforeseen circumstances which have contributed to the suspension status occur within a semester. Circumstances that MAY warrant an appeal include major sickness, injury, a death in the family, or other life-changing even.
All appeals must be in writing by submitting the SAP Appeal Form provided on the Office of Financial Aid website, or in the Office of Financial Aid's physical office located in the Emerson Administration Building. The form is due by the first day of each semester. Students who are in a suspension and have not submitted an appeal by this date will be denied university and federal aid for that semester.
Appeals are reviewed by the SAP Appeals Committee. Submitting an appeal does not guarantee approval, and the decision of the Committee is final. The student is responsible for all semester charges incurred in semesters when federal financial aid is denied. If the appeal is approved, a student’s university and federal aid eligibility will be reinstated for one semester, and the student is considered to be in a probation status. If the appeal is denied, the student becomes ineligible to receive either university or federal aid until they are able to achieve both a cumulative 2.0 GPA and a 67% cumulative and semester completion rate as stated in Section D above. An academic plan may be a condition of an approved appeal and is at the discretion of the Committee (see below). During probation, a student must meet the SAP guidelines in order to retain university and federal aid eligibility. Failure to meet these guidelines will be cause for suspension.
ACADEMIC PLAN: If a student has a GPA so low that it is mathematically impossible within one semester to achieve the required cumulative 2.0 GPA with reasonable grade expectations, the SAP Appeals Committee has the discretion to reinstate university and federal aid based on an academic plan. If the requirements of the academic plan are met and the student is able to bring his or her cumulative GPA back to a 2.0 over more than one semester, the student will remain eligible for university and federal aid.