Students must maintain all components of satisfactory academic progress in order to receive financial aid. UW-Eau Claire’s Satisfactory Academic Progress policy is detailed below.
The satisfactory progress standards for financial aid are slightly different from the University’s Academic Standing and Progress policy (see the university catalog). Students are expected to understand and meet the standards of both policies.
Satisfactory Academic Progress Requirements
The following three components are evaluated at the end of each academic year:
- Minimum GPA – Maintain a minimum 2.0 cumulative grade point average.
- Pace - Successfully complete 67% of total attempted credits. A student’s total number of attempted credits consists of all credits that a student has enrolled in after the 10th day of any academic term as well as any post-secondary credits transferred in from other institutions.
A grade of F, W, XF, U, or IN is not considered successfully completing the class. Test credits and non-GPA credits (remedial, retro and pass-fail) will be counted as attempted and earned credits.
- Maximum Time Frame – Complete a degree within 150% of the published length of the degree program. Most undergraduate degrees require 120 credits, which means most students must complete a degree within 180 attempted credits. (120 credits x 150% = 180 credits.)
Once students reach 130 cumulative credits (resident plus transfer) they receive a warning letter about maximum time frame. At 150 or more credits, aid is put on hold and the student must file an appeal explaining the extenuating circumstances that have required the student to attempt so many credits in pursuit of a degree.
Credits attempted by a student during a period where they are not receiving Title IV aid (federal financial aid) must still be counted toward a student’s maximum time frame.
Pursuing multiple degrees or minors simultaneously will not result in a student being allowed to attempt more credits than their maximum time frame permits unless a student successfully appeals their situation based on extenuating circumstances.
If a student has already graduated with a baccalaureate degree and is pursuing another, that student may attempt 90 additional resident credits before they meet the max-time frame limit. If the student has completed at least 70 credits at the time the FAFSA is received, or after spring term grades are submitted, a hold will be put on the students account until they successfully appeal their situation.
You are eligible for financial aid up to 150% of the minimum credit requirements of you program. For example, if your graduate program requires 33 credits, you would no longer be eligible for financial aid when you attempt more than 49 graduate credits (33 x 150% = 49)
The academic progress of all students is reviewed at the end of each spring semester. Students who fail to meet the SAP requirements will be ineligible for financial aid during their next academic year. Once an ineligible student submits a FAFSA for that academic year, they will receive an email stating that their aid is on hold until they successfully meet SAP or appeal their situation and have it approved.
If a student has already been awarded aid for a summer term and they fail to meet SAP standards after spring grades have been posted, they may still receive their summer aid.
Options for Reinstating Aid
Students who do not achieve the minimum standards for satisfactory progress may reinstate eligibility by:
- Submitting an appeal that explains the extenuating circumstances that prevented them from making satisfactory progress. Extenuating circumstances include medical or personal situations that resulted in undue hardship and prevented satisfactory academic progress; or
- Enrolling in classes without receiving financial aid until they have earned an academic standing that meets the minimum criteria, i.e. cumulative GPA is now a 2.0 or 67% of total attempted credits have been successfully completed. Once the minimum standard has been reached, aid can be reinstated; or
- Documenting how they will complete a degree within the maximum time frame.
Procedures for submitting an Academic Progress Appeal
Deadlines for appeal submissions:
For Summer aid eligibility: July 1st
For Fall and Winterim aid eligibility: November 1st
For Spring aid eligibility: April 1st
There are two ways to create a Satisfactory Academic Progress appeal:
1. Complete your appeal via eForm (this way is typically easier and is processed much quicker)
You can access the SAP Appeal eForm online by doing the following:
- Go to http://eform1.uwec.edu
- Enter your UWEC username and password
- Click the “Start New Form”
- Select “Office of Financial Aid” from the drop down menu
- Select “Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Appeal Form”
If you would like to save your progress on your eForm and return to it later all you need to do is:
- Scroll to the bottom of the eForm and click on the Save and Close for Later
- When you are ready to continue working on your appeal, you will simply need to:
- Go to http://eform1.uwec.edu
- Enter your UWEC username and password
- Click on the “View Forms In Process” tab
- Click on the “Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Appeal Form”
2. Submit a paper appeal (these often take much longer to process)
A written letter of appeal should be submitted to Blugold Central for review prior to the end of the semester for which the student is appealing to receive financial aid.
For Pace appeals, students must:
- Explain the extenuating circumstances that prevented them from making satisfactory progress
- Document the measures that have been taken to ensure that the problem does not re-occur.
For GPA appeals, students must:
Explain the extenuating circumstances that prevented student from making satisfactory progress
- Meet with academic advisor and create an academic plan showing how long it will take to raise GPA to at least a cumulative 2.0.
For Maximum Time Frame appeals, students must:
- Explain any extenuating circumstances if they will exceed the 150%
- Include a degree audit
- Document the anticipated graduation date
- Document the courses necessary to graduate – in a semester by semester outline, including the credit value of each course. This plan should be developed with the assistance of an academic advisor.
If an appeal is approved, students will be sent an academic progress plan outlining the required minimum standards per semester that must be met. Students will be monitored every term to ensure the standards of the plan are being met. Once students have met the standards of satisfactory academic progress, they will only be monitored on an annual basis.
If students encounter unexpected circumstances that prevent them from meeting the standards in the academic plan, they should meet with a financial aid counselor to discuss the circumstances and a possible adjustment to the plan.
Students who fail to meet the terms of the plan at the end of each term will be denied further aid until they have met full satisfactory progress standards. Students who fail their plan may appeal the reinstatement of their financial aid; however, the reasons for the appeal must be exceptional.
Appeals that do not meet the approval of the review committee will receive an email notification letting them know what options may be available to them.
Additional Information Regarding Satisfactory Academic Progress
Consortium Agreement Credits: Credits taken at other institutions while on consortium agreement through the UW-Eau Claire will be counted as transfer credits in the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy.
Withdrawals: Withdrawal credits count as enrolled credits in the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy and will be considered attempted credits when determining the student’s pace of completion. Withdrawals that occur after the 10th week count as an ‘F’, and will also impact GPA.
Repeated Courses: Credits for courses that are repeated will count as attempted credits each time the course is taken, but will count only once as earned credits. The new grade will replace the previous grade in calculating grade point average. Courses taken a third time are typically not funded with financial aid – even with special approval to repeat the course.
Transfer Credits: Credits transferred from other institutions will be added to resident enrolled credits to determine total number of enrolled credits when calculating Maximum Time Frame, PACE, and GPA for Satisfactory Academic Progress.
Incomplete Courses: Incomplete course work will not be considered as being successfully completed, but will be considered as attempted for PACE and Maximum Time Frame. Completed courses will be replaced with an official grade and earned credits by the end of the 10th week of the first regular semester following the granting of the incomplete. Courses never completed will then be officially replaced by the grade initially reported with the request for the incomplete by the Registrar’s office. In either case, the new official grade will be considered during the next review of the student’s satisfactory academic progress when determining PACE and Maximum Time Frame. A student who wants their completed incomplete grade considered sooner than the next review is required to notify the Financial Aid office of the new grade.
Remedial Courses: Noncredit remedial courses are allowed and will be funded. These courses will be subject to review under all aspects of the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy.
Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory Courses and test credits: These courses are not counted in GPA requirements, but are included in Maximum Time Frame and PACE determinations.
Audited Courses: Audited courses are not funded by financial aid.
Suspended Students: Students who are suspended will be notified by the institution of their suspension. Students who are not allowed to enroll because of their suspension will be systematically prevented from receiving financial aid.
Courses Taken for a Third Time: Students enrolled in a course for a third time after receiving a passing grade (any grade above an F) will not be able to receive aid for that course and financial aid award will be awarded as if you were not enrolled in that course. Example: A student is enrolled in 12 credits (minimum number of credits to be considered full-time) but one of the courses the student is taking for a third time and has already received a passing grade. The course is a 3 credit course. Aid will be adjusted as if the student was enrolled in 9 credits, which is considered ¾ time enrollment.