Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Procedure

This procedure is subject to change at any time should Federal regulations require.

The Federal Student Aid program requires that schools maintain a Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) procedure  in order to ensure that students are progressing successfully through their program(s) as a condition of receiving financial aid.  Students’ complete Gateway Technical College academic record is used to determine if each student meets the Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) criteria as outlined in this document. All credits attempted at or transferred to Gateway Technical College, including those attempted without the use of financial aid, are included in these calculations.

Each student's financial aid SAP status is calculated upon receipt of their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), as well as at the end of each semester if a student has submitted a FAFSA and attempted coursework. Students that have not met the SAP requirements as outlined in this document are notified via their Gateway student email account and My Gateway > Financial Aid Self-Service.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Criteria

To maintain financial aid eligibility, students must meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria as outlined below:

  • Minimum 2.0 semester Grade Point Average (GPA)
  • Minimum 67% semester completion rate (also known as Pace) - 67% = credits completed divided by credits attempted
  • Minimum 2.0 cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) - Cumulative GPA is calculated on all credits attempted at Gateway
  • Minimum 67% cumulative completion rate (all credits completed at Gateway and transferred to Gateway divided by total credits attempted)

Unlike a student’s academic GPA and/or completion rate, all attempted coursework is included in calculations involving Satisfactory Academic Progress for financial aid eligibility. This means that courses with a final grade of F, U, W, WF or WP, DX, D-X, D+X, FX are included in these calculations as non-completions with zero grade points (this is the same as receiving a final grade of “F” in a course).

Remedial and developmental courses are also included in SAP calculations. All repeated courses (R) are included as the final grade or status that were earned for each attempt.

Grades of Incomplete (I) are excluded from Satisfactory Academic Progress calculations until such a time that a final grade is issued. Once a final grade is issued, the results will be included in the cumulative results of any and all subsequent Satisfactory Academic Progress calculations.

Courses with grades of Pass (P) or Fail (F) are included when calculating completion rates but are not used when calculating a GPA.

A grade of NG (No Grade) is given if a student drops a course during the add/drop period. Courses resulting in an NG grade are not included in SAP calculations. The NG procedure was updated effective September 27, 2021. Before this date, NGs were included in SAP calculations and processed as a non-completion with zero grade points (the same as an earned F).

The academic GPA and/or completion rates may not match the GPA and/or completion rate as calculated on My Gateway > Financial Aid Self-Service SAP screens due to these differences.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Statuses

Financial Aid Warning (FAW)

Students failing to meet the Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria listed above will automatically be placed on Financial Aid Warning (FAW) status. Students on Financial Aid Warning remain eligible to receive financial aid. Students on Financial Aid Warning are not restricted in the number of credits they may take, but must meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria as outlined above in all future semesters to avoid being placed on Suspension - Need Appeal (SNA) status.

Suspension – Need Appeal (SNA)

Students in Financial Aid Warning status who fail to meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria will be placed in Suspension - Need Appeal (SNA) status.

Students in Suspension - Need Appeal status may file a SAP Appeal Plan form and appeal to have their aid eligibility reinstated. Students choosing not to file a SAP Appeal Plan form must meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria listed in this document in order to be eligible to receive any further financial aid.

Approval Appeal Plan (AAP)

Students who submit the SAP Appeal Plan form and are approved must follow the terms of their approved SAP Appeal Plan. This includes the following requirements:

  • Minimum 2.0 semester Grade Point Average (GPA)
  • Minimum 67% semester completion rate (also known as Pace)
  • Taking only courses required to complete the current active program listed on the SAP Appeal Plan form
  • Any and all other criteria as outlined on the SAP Appeal Plan form

Students in Approved Appeal Plan (AAP) status are strongly encouraged to meet with their program advisor to ensure that they are only taking required coursework. Students on an Approved Appeal Plan status that do not meet all of the criteria outlined above will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension (FAS).

Financial Aid Suspension (FAS)

Students are placed into Financial Aid Suspension (FAS) status if they have:

  • Completed a SAP Appeal Plan form and it has been denied
  • Had a SAP Appeal Plan form approved, but did not meet a future semester’s SAP criteria specified by the approved SAP Appeal Plan form
  • Have exceeded the maximum duration limit of financial aid eligibility (150% Rule) as outlined below

Students in the Financial Aid Suspension (FAS) status are not eligible to receive financial aid and are not eligible to appeal the suspension.

Students on Financial Aid Suspension (FAS) may regain financial aid eligibility if they complete financial aid eligible coursework with alternate funding sources and meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria. Students that meet this criteria will be notified of their reinstatement via their Gateway student email and will be eligible to receive aid. Students that have had their financial aid eligibility reinstated and do not meet all Satisfactory Academic Progress criteria in any subsequent semester will immediately be placed back on Financial Aid Suspension (FAS).

Meeting the 150% Duration Limit Rule (M150)

Students that have attempted 150% of the published credits for their current active program, as listed on their program curriculum requirement sheet, will immediately become ineligible for financial aid and will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension (FAS).

All credits that a student has transferred to Gateway Technical College, as well all credits attempted at Gateway Technical College count toward the 150% limit. All attempted credits are included in this calculation regardless of:

  • Program status
  • Program(s) being pursued
  • Financial Aid received/not received
  • Length of time since the credits were attempted

The maximum duration of financial aid eligibility is calculated by taking the number of credits required to complete the current, active program requiring the most credits and multiplying by 150% (1.5). For example, a program requiring 70 credits to complete would have a maximum duration of eligibility of 105 credits. ( 70 Credits x 150% (1.5) = credits)

Note: The maximum duration of eligibility for students active in more than one program is calculated using the active program requiring the most credits to complete. It is not calculated on the basis of multiple programs.

Students who meet or exceed the 150% limit for a certificate or technical program, who are subsequently accepted into an associate degree program, must notify the Financial Aid Office to have financial aid eligibility reassessed under the SAP procedure. Students that remain in the M150% status as of the census date for a given semester are ineligible to receive aid for that semester.

M150 Suspension Appeal

Students meeting the Maximum Time Frame Limit (M150%) will be marked as Financial Aid Suspended (FAS-M150) at the end of every semester. Students in this status will need to complete a new M150 Appeal form at the end of every semester. Financial Aid Suspension - M150 status will automatically receive an email notification directing them to complete the M150 Appeal form.

Just because an M150 Appeal was approved in the past, it does not guarantee the approval of subsequent appeals. Appeals are approved based on the student’s explanation of extenuating circumstances, number of credits needed to graduate and prior semester(s) grades. There is no limit to the number of M150 Appeals a student may be approved for.

If an M150 Appeal is approved, it only reinstates financial aid eligibility for one semester. Regardless of completed coursework and grades earned after this appeal is approved, a student who exceeds the maximum number of allowed attempted credits will always be suspended after the semester ends. These students will need to complete an appeal after every semester.

The M150 Appeal procedure was published effective 12/11/2021. There is no retroactive process to allow FAS-M150 students to appeal prior to the Fall 2021 semester.