Satisfactory Academic Progress

Students Not Receiving Title IV, Federal Financial Aid see Institutional Academic Progress Policy.

Satisfactory Academic Progress – Title IV, Federal Financial Aid recipients only

American Sentinel University’s Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy for students receiving Federal Financial Aid is a cumulative measure of a student’s academic performance and includes all terms and semesters of the student’s enrollment at the university. Both quantitative and qualitative standards are used to evaluate SAP.

American Sentinel evaluates a student’s SAP at the end of each semester/ payment period for students receiving federal financial aid. American Sentinel will notify any student who is failing to achieve SAP standards in writing. The following chart provides the minimum quantitative and qualitative requirements:

Satisfactory Academic Progress Level Total Semester Credits Attempted (including transferred credits*) Minimum Cumulative Credits Completed Minimum CGPA Required for Financial Aid
Bachelor’s Degree 0-45 67% 1.50
  46-60 67% 1.50
  61-90 67% 1.75
  91+ 67% 2.00
Master’s Degree 0-36 67% 3.00
Doctoral Degree 0-42 67% 3.00

*Credits transferred in from another college or university via an official transfer credit evaluation is factored into the above calculation but transfer credits do not affect the student’s GPA calculation.

  • A course withdrawal (W) assigned after the add/drop week is not included in the GPA but is considered in the measurement of a student’s non-completion of attempted course work.
  • An incomplete (I) grade is not included in the GPA but is considered in the measurement of a student’s non-completion of attempted coursework until the grade is replaced with a permanent grade and the progress can be re-evaluated.
  • A failing (F) grade or an attendance failure (AF) are treated as attempted credits that were not earned and are included in both qualitative and quantitative calculations.

Maximum Timeframe for Completion

All students who receive federal financial aid under Title IV of the Higher Education Act are required to complete their programs of study within 150% of the published length of the program. The following maximum timeframes apply to each American Sentinel degree program:

  • Bachelor’s degrees – The published length is 120 semester credits. The maximum period must not exceed 180 total semester credits attempted.
  • Master’s degrees – The published length is 36 semester credits. The maximum period must not exceed 54 total semester credits attempted.
  • Doctoral degrees – The published length is 42 semester credits. The maximum period must not exceed 63 total semester credits attempted.

Students residing in the state of Arkansas should refer to the State Regulatory section of the catalog for specific information regarding credit hour requirements and the impact that might have to their financial aid.

Repeated Courses Counted Toward Maximum Timeframe for Completion

Students receiving Title IV federal financial aid may repeat a course in accordance with American Sentinel’s academic policy. Credits from both course attempts will be counted in total semester credits attempted and in minimum cumulative credits completed at American Sentinel, but only the highest grade received will be included in the calculation of minimum cumulative GPA. Credits from both course attempts will also count toward the maximum timeframe for completion.

Financial Aid Warning and Probation

Failure to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) may result in academic probation and loss of federal financial aid. SAP is measured after each payment period (at the end of each semester) for financial aid students. If a review of the student’s academic record indicates SAP has not been met, the student will be given a financial aid warning. The student will remain eligible for federal student aid for one semester, after which SAP will again be reviewed. Students will receive a financial aid warning letter via email.

Financial Aid Denied Status

If the cumulative GPA and completion rate continues to be less than the minimum standard at the end of the probationary evaluation period, the student will lose eligibility for Title IV federal financial aid. The student must successfully appeal ineligibility for Title IV to be placed on probation. No aid will be disbursed during the subsequent semesters unless the student makes an appeal and the appeal is granted for that semester. There are no exceptions to this requirement. Students given Financial Aid Denied status will be notified via email and will be given a deadline for appeal.

Financial Aid Denied Status Appeals Process

The student must submit a written appeal of Financial Aid Denied status to the Financial Aid Office before the deadline mentioned in their initial email discussing their status (see previous section). The appeal must include documentation of the circumstance that led to his or her inability to meet SAP standards as well as a description of how they will be able to meet SAP at the end of the next payment period. Circumstances that may be considered acceptable include death of a family member, unexpected injury or illness of the student, or other circumstances as supported with documentation.

The Financial Aid Appeals Committee will review the appeal and notify the student in writing of their decision after the Appeals Committee meets and makes its determination. Appeals will not be granted unless the student’s proposed enrollment in the upcoming semester would be adequate to reestablish their progress under these standards.

Re-Establishment of Financial Aid Eligibility

Once a student submits a written letter of appeal regarding their failure to make SAP and the Financial Aid Appeals Committee grants the appeal, the student is placed on financial aid probation for the next payment period. At the end of that probationary semester, the student’s SAP status will be reevaluated. The student must meet all SAP requirements at the end of that semester or they will return to Financial Aid Denied status and must reestablish eligibility.

Transfer and Readmitted Students/Students Changing Majors

If a student transfers to American Sentinel from another institution, the transfer credits accepted by the university will count as total semester credits attempted and total semester credits completed. The grades from such credits, however, will not be included in the calculation of minimum cumulative GPA.

If a student is readmitted to American Sentinel, credits that are applicable to the student’s current program will count as total semester credits attempted, and credits from American Sentinel will count toward the student’s minimum cumulative credits completed at American Sentinel. The grades from such credits will be included in the calculation of minimum cumulative GPA.

If a student changes majors, American Sentinel credits applied to the new program of study will count as total semester credits attempted and count toward the student’s minimum cumulative credits completed at American Sentinel. The grades from such credits will be calculated into the minimum cumulative GPA.

Incomplete Grades

Credits associated with courses in which a grade of incomplete (I) is received will count toward total semester credits attempted and in minimum cumulative credits completed at American Sentinel. Such credits will also count toward the maximum timeframe for completion. An I grade does not impact the calculation of cumulative GPA.

Institutional Credit

Institutional credit is granted when developmental, college success remedial or skills classes are successfully completed. These credits are included in the total semester credits attempted but are not included in minimum cumulative credits completed at American Sentinel or the minimum cumulative GPA.