Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

If you receive financial aid from the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships at UNCG, you will need to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) to remain eligible for receiving aid in future semesters. SAP is measured once final grades are published in December, May, and July or upon re-entry to the University.

When calculating SAP, the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships examines each student’s:

  • Current UNCG Academic Standing
  • Cumulative UNCG GPA (includes all grades earned at UNCG)
  • Completion rate of cumulative attempted hours*
  • Maximum time frame to degree completion*
    • Per federal regulations, students become ineligible for financial aid once it is determined they will surpass the maximum time frame allowed to graduate.  Refer to the SAP Policy for maximum time frame limits.

*These criteria are based on a student’s cumulative attempted hours. A student’s cumulative attempted hours calculation is the total of all UNCG courses they have attempted (including courses they earned credit for, failed courses, withdrawn courses, and repeated courses) and transfer courses. This does not include any courses that were dropped prior to when hours are locked for financial aid purposes in a given term. This date is recorded on the Academic Calendar.

To maintain SAP, students need to:

  • Remain in Academic Good Standing
  • Cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.0 for all attempted hours
  • Earn 67% of their cumulative attempted hours
  • Complete their first undergraduate degree within 180 cumulative attempted hours

Students who do not maintain SAP may be placed on Financial Aid Warning or lose eligibility to receive financial aid. 

Students in good financial aid standing who do not meet the SAP requirements after a term will first be placed on Financial Aid Warning. These students can still receive financial aid and no additional action needs to be taken by the student except addressing the SAP benchmarks that are not meeting standards.

Students may be placed on Financial Aid Warning more than once but may not have two consecutive terms on Financial Aid Warning. If a student who is already on Financial Aid Warning does not make SAP at the end of the following term, they will become ineligible for financial aid. 

Note: Students who are not able to meet the maximum time frame policy are ineligible for Financial Aid Warning

Students who do not meet SAP during their semester of Financial Aid Warning, or who will exceed maximum time frame, are ineligible to receive financial aid. Students must cover costs without using funds disbursed from the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships or work toward financial aid reinstatement via the SAP Appeal process.

Financial Aid Reinstatement

If you experienced extenuating circumstances that contributed to the loss of your financial aid, you may submit a SAP appeal to request that your financial aid be reinstated. View this guide for helpful advice on navigating the SAP appeal process. Not all SAP appeals are approved, so we suggest also having alternate plans in place.

SAP Appeal Components:

SAP appeals are reviewed on a rolling basis. Students should allow one to two weeks for review and processing after all documents are submitted. We recommend submitting your SAP appeal at least three weeks before the semester begins to avoid any delays in disbursement and course cancellation. 

All appeal documents must be turned in to the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships via the online Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Appeal Portal.  Students will receive appeal-related notifications via their UNCG email account and in UNCGenie. Be sure to check your accounts regularly so you don’t miss important information! 

If you haven’t experienced extenuating circumstances, you can work toward reinstatement by restoring compliance with the SAP policy.  To restore compliance with the SAP Policy, you will need to enroll in and earn credit for courses that are paid for by funds from a source other than federal financial aid and institutional (UNCG) scholarships. See below for more details and options for how you might do this.  Where you can take courses to restore SAP compliance is determined by which part of the policy you are not in compliance with. 

First, determine which part(s) of the SAP Policy you are not in compliance with, then make a plan for restoring compliance. 

  1. Failed to maintain Academic Good Standing?  You will need to restore Academic Good Standing (pull your cumulative GPA up above a 2.0) before you can restore compliance with the SAP Policy. Remember, transfer credits do not impact your UNCG GPA, so you must take your courses at UNCG!
  2. Failed to earn 67% or more of your cumulative attempted hours? You will need to earn enough credit hours to pull yourself to 67% or higher cumulative attempted hours completion before you can restore compliance with the SAP Policy. We refer to this as making up your deficient hours. You can choose to make up your deficient hours at UNCG or at another school.  You may find that you are eligible for federal financial aid at another institution.  
  3. Failed to do both of the above? You’ll need to pull your cumulative GPA to a 2.0 or higher AND pull yourself to 67% or higher cumulative attempted hours completion before you can restore compliance with the SAP Policy. To improve your GPA, you will need to take classes at UNCG.

Regardless of how you have restored compliance with the SAP Policy, once you have completed courses, submit a SAP Appeal. In your letter, include information about and documentation of how you restored compliance with the SAP Policy.

Options to cover educational costs without funds from the without federal financial aid and institutional (UNCG) scholarships include:

  • Setting up a payment plan* 
  • Enrolling in fewer classes to control costs
  • Taking a break in enrollment while securing the funds necessary to continue
  • Attending a community college, where educational costs are more affordable
    • Consult with an academic advisor regarding whether or not a community college may fit your academic needs
  • Some students use private loans. We do not necessarily recommend this option, as private loans often have very high interest rates associated with them. 

*We strongly discourage students from enrolling in a payment plan if keeping up with payments will place a significant burden on the student or their family.

Need Assistance?

Students First Office staff can help by:

  • Providing general information about the SAP Appeal process
  • Providing feedback on SAP Appeal materials
  • Reviewing and signing Graduation Plans
    • Submit your graduation plan to [email protected] to receive feedback from an advisor via within 3 business days
    • NOTE: SFO cannot approve graduation plans for the following programs:
      • All majors in the Bryan School of Business
      • All majors in the College of Visual & Performing Arts
      • Liberal Studies
      • Environment and Sustainability
      • Professional Studies Online (formerly Integrated Professional Studies)
      • International and Global Studies

Although the Students First Office works closely with the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships and can answer general questions to help you understand your SAP standing and prepare your SAP appeal, it is always best to contact the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships directly with specific questions.