Satisfactory Academic Progress

Federal regulations require institutions to establish and monitor standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress for students receiving federal aid. In addition, state program regulations (Frank O’Bannon Grant, Twenty-First Century Scholars, etc.) require students to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria established for federal student aid. The student’s official academic record maintained by the Office of the Registrar is reviewed to determine student compliance with this policy.

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress standards may differ from the Academic Probationstandards. The standards for financial aid recipients are:

  • Pace – Minimum overall and semester completion rate of 67% or greater
    • Overall earned credit hours >= .67 x Overall attempted credit hours (including transfer credit)
    • Semester earned credit hours >= .67 x Semester attempted credit hours
  • Timeframe – Maximum total attempted credit hours
    • Undergraduate Bachelor’s Degree: 180 overall attempted credit hour maximum (120 credit hours x 150%)
    • Graduate Master’s Degree: calculated by program
  • GPA – Minimum cumulative GPA and minimum semester GPA
    • Undergraduate: 2.0 or greater
    • Graduate: 3.0 or greater

Status Review and Updates

Satisfactory Academic Progress status is reviewed at the end of each semester, including the summer term. A tutorial is available to assist you with Viewing your Attempted Hours, Earned Hours and GPA

You will receive an email sent to your Purdue Northwest email and personal email letting you know when your status has been updated. A message will also be posted to Student Self-Service via the myPNW portal related to your status. If your status is:

  • Satisfactory – you continue to remain eligible for financial aid;
  • Warning – you continue to remain eligible for financial aid, however, you must meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements in order to receive financial aid in future terms;
  • Approaching Max Timeframe you continue to remain eligible to receive financial aid, however, you are approaching the maximum allowable timeframe for your academic program
  • Probation – you must meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements and any other requirements as outlined in your Academic Advisor Assessment. If you have met these requirements, you will remain eligible to receive financial aid. You must update your Academic Advisor Assessment each semester with your Academic Advisor;
  • Ineligible – you are not eligible for financial aid until you once again meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements or have an approved appeal and academic plan.

Students placed in an “Ineligible” status will receive a separate email notification. Students with extenuating circumstances beyond their control may submit an appeal to the Financial Aid Office. The last day to submit an appeal for the spring 2020 semester is April 10, 2020.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeals

Students who need to appeal an ineligible status may use the Satisfactory Academic Progress packet which includes the Appeal Procedures, Appeal Form, Academic Plan Success Contract and Academic Advisor Assessment. The entire packet should be turned into the Office of Financial Aid along with supporting documentation and a written statement. Students currently on probation will need to complete an Academic Advisor Assessment each semester.

Written statements submitted with the Satisfactory Academic Progress appeal should follow the format below:

  1. Explain the situation which affected your academic performance and the dates of your mitigating circumstances.
  2. Explain how your life circumstances have changed or what steps have been taken to support your efforts to achieve Satisfactory Academic Progress.
  3. Explain how these changes or steps will ensure academic success if your appeal is approved.

Academic Support

We encourage you to meet with your Academic Advisor or Faculty Mentor to review your academic progress.

You are also invited to take advantage of the Academic Support offered at Purdue Northwest to help you achieve your academic goals. Additional information on Student Support can be found at the Students webpage.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

1. Pace – Minimum Semester and Overall Completion Rate Percentage (67%)

Number of overall earned credit hours must equal at least 67% of semester and overall attempted credit hours (this includes PNW and transfer credits).

Purdue University Northwest students must demonstrate measurable progress toward earning a degree by successfully completing 67% of all hours at PNW, including all hours accepted in transfer and all hours included in an approved financial aid consortium agreement.

The chart below shows whether a course with a specific course grade or course registration status is included when determining Pace completion rate (attempted and/or earned credit hours) or in the GPA calculation.



GRADE
COUNTED IN ATTEMPTED CREDIT HOURSCOUNTED IN EARNED CREDIT HOURSCOUNTED IN GPA CALCULATION
A+, A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D+, D, D-YesYesYes
E, F, I, IF, IN, IU, IX, N, NS, PI, SI, UYesNoYes
W, WFYesNoNo
S, PYesYesNo
CR (Department Credit)YesYesNo
TR (Transfer Credit)YesYesNo
TX (Transfer Credit)NoNoNo
 Non-Credit CoursesNoNoNo
Repeat Courses (grade removed from prior course)YesYesYes
Courses part of a financial aid consortiumYesYesNo

2. Timeframe – Maximum Total Attempted Hours Percentage (150%)

Example: 120 credit hour program x 1.5 = 180 maximum total attempted credit hours

Student financial aid is available for up to 150% of the number of hours required to complete the degree program.  For most undergraduate programs of study this provides up to 180 attempted semester hours for student financial aid recipients to complete a 120 semester hour program.  Students in undergraduate programs of study requiring more credit hours may have their eligibility for student financial aid extended proportionately.  All attempted hours and transfer hours accepted by Purdue University Northwest count toward the 150% maximum total attempted hours. This includes:

  • credits for which the student did not receive financial aid
  • consortium credit hours as part of an approved financial aid consortium agreement
  • courses attempted toward a minor or second major

Note:  During the last semester of eligibility a student may only receive financial aid for the total number of credit hours remaining in their maximum timeframe.

Students who have attempted the number of credit hours needed to complete a degree may no longer be eligible for federal or state aid.  In addition, a student is ineligible when it becomes mathematically impossible to complete a program within 150% of its length if it is an undergraduate program, or within the maximum timeframe established by the school if it is a graduate program.

DEGREE PROGRAMMAXIMUM CREDIT HOURS (TIMEFRAME)
Associate’s (60 hour program)90 credit hours
Bachelor’s (120 hour program)180 credit hours
Master’sGraduate programs are calculated by program

(# of credit hours required to complete program x 150%)

3. GPA – Minimum Semester and Overall cumulative GPA requirement based on student level

Students who are meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress that have either a semester and/or cumulative GPA below 2.0 for undergraduates or 3.0 for graduates will have one semester of warning for GPA before becoming ineligible. See the chart below:

UNDERGRADUATE FIRST SEMESTER (CURRENT STATUS SATISFACTORY) 
IF: Either Semester GPA or Cumulative GPA is < 2.0THEN: Satisfactory Academic Progress Status will be Warning
Undergraduate Next Semester (current status Warning)
IF: Either Semester GPA or Cumulative GPA is <2.0THEN: Satisfactory Academic Progress Status will be Ineligible
Graduate First Semester (current status Satisfactory)
IF: Either Semester GPA or Cumulative GPA is <3.0THEN: Satisfactory Academic Progress Status will be Warning
Graduate Next Semester (current status Warning)
IF: Either Semester GPA or Cumulative GPA is <3.0THEN: Satisfactory Academic Progress Status will be Ineligible

Students who are on warning for GPA and then meet both the semester and cumulative GPA standards will become satisfactory for GPA again.

Financial Aid Warning Status:  Students failing to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress standards will be placed on Financial Aid WARNING for the following semester during which time they remain eligible to receive federal and/or state financial aid.  Students who fail to achieve the Quantitative and/or Qualitative component(s) of the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy during their WARNING period lose their eligibility for federal and/or state aid for the subsequent semester.  A student will be removed from the Financial Aid WARNING status at the end of the semester if he/she achieves the required Satisfactory Academic Progress Qualitative and Quantitative standards.

Notification:  The Office of Financial Aid will notify students of their Satisfactory Academic Progress status at the completion of each semester, including the summer term, via the student’s Purdue University Northwest email address.  Students may monitor their Satisfactory Academic Progress status and messages from the Office of Financial Aid in Student Self-Service via the myPNW portal.

Student financial aid recipients who fail to maintain the Quantitative and/or Qualitative component(s) of the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy due to circumstances beyond their control may submit an appeal to the Office of Financial Aid explaining their situation.  Student appeals must provide an explanation and supporting documentation.  Extenuating circumstances may include a student’s serious illness or injury, illness or death of an immediate family member, significant trauma in student’s life or other unexpected circumstances beyond the student’s control.  The deadline for submitting an Appeal coincides with the last day to withdraw from classes for the semester. 

Note:  A student who enrolls and attends classes will be held responsible for tuition and fee charges if their appeal is subsequently denied.

Probation Status

A student whose appeal is approved is placed on a Financial Aid Probation status for the following semester.  The student is required to work with his/her academic advisor to complete an Academic Advisor Assessment with the goal of meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress Qualitative and Quantitative standards.

Students on Financial Aid Probation are required to meet the following conditions in order to be eligible to receive financial aid for the subsequent semester:

  • Semester GPA must be greater than or equal to 2.0.
  • Semester Pace (completion rate) must equal 67% or higher
  • Other conditions as outlined on the student’s Academic Advisor Assessment

Students who meet the objectives outlined in their Academic Advisor Assessment, along the GPA and Pace requirements during their Financial Aid Probation period remain eligible to receive financial aid.  Students remain on an academic assessment until they once again meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress standards.

Students who fail to meet the objectives outlined in their Academic Advisor Assessment, or the GPA or Pace requirements during their Financial Aid Probation period become ineligible to receive financial aid and can only regain their aid eligibility once they meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress Quantitative and Qualitative standards.

A student may submit only ONE Satisfactory Academic Progress appeal as an undergraduate and ONE as a graduate student, per instance of ineligibility.

Students may regain eligibility by taking action that brings the student into compliance with the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards.

  • Academic Re-Admission:  University approval of Academic Re-Admissions does not supersede Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements for Financial Aid.
  • Changing Majors:  Students who change majors or degree programs must appeal if additional time is needed to complete their program.
  • Consortium or Study Abroad Courses:  Hours enrolled in Consortium or Study Abroad courses are included in determining a student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress status.  Students may be required to provide the Office of Financial Aid with a copy of their grade report or academic transcript as these courses are included in the 67% Pace and 150% Timeframe calculations.
  • Dropped and Withdrawn Courses:  Students are strongly encouraged not to withdraw from classes as doing so could impact their eligibility for Satisfactory Academic Progress. Dropped and Withdrawn courses will be included in the 67% Pace completion rate and 150% Timeframe calculations unless the course is dropped or withdrawn with a 100% refund.
  • Incomplete Courses:  Students should notify the Office of Financial Aid when a final grade is received. Incomplete coursework will be counted in the attempted hours for Satisfactory Academic Progress.
  • Independent Study:  If grades for an independent study course are not entered prior to the end of the semester the student must notify the Office of Financial Aid when the grades are entered for re-evaluation of their Satisfactory Academic Progress status.
  • Financial Aid Eligible Non-Degree Students:  Financial Aid eligible non-degree students must be meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements if applying for financial aid in the future.
  • Course Repetitions:  All courses that are retaken to improve a grade are counted in attempted hours but only one passing grade is counted toward the Pace completion rate.
  • Students Seeking Dual Bachelor’s Degrees: Students Seeking Dual Bachelor’s Degrees: Students enrolled in two Bachelor’s degree programs simultaneously, must still meet the 150% standard for completing their degrees and are not eligible for additional hours of aid. The 150% Timeframe is calculated for the degree requiring the most hours.
  • Undergraduate Transfer Students:  Undergraduate transfer students are subject to the 67% Pace Completion Rate and the 150% Timeframe requirements.  All attempted hours and all transfer hours accepted by Purdue University Northwest are included in Satisfactory Academic Progress status determination.  In addition, all courses counted as part of an approved Financial Aid Consortium Agreement will be included in the 67% Pace and 150% Timeframe calculations.
  • Excessive Elective Courses:  Students taking an excessive number of elective courses may have their financial aid revoked as these courses do not contribute to making satisfactory academic progress toward earning a degree.
  • Study Abroad and Consortium Courses:  Hours enrolled in Study Abroad or Consortium courses are included in determining a student’s Satisfactory Academic Progress status. Students may be required to provide the Office of Financial Aid with a copy of their grade report or academic transcript as these courses are included in the 67% pace and 150% timeframe calculations.

This policy pertains to applicants for federal, State of Indiana, and Purdue University Northwest-controlled aid programs, including most student loan programs.  If you have any questions about the policy or the appeal process, please contact the Office of Financial Aid.