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Maintaining Aid Eligibility

Federal regulations require you to make satisfactory academic progress (SAP) toward the completion of a GRCC certificate or associate degree to be eligible for financial aid. SAP is reviewed for financial aid applicants at the end of each semester. 

SAP for Credit Hour Students

Course and Credit Requirements

You must complete at least 67% of all attempted credit hours with passing grades, whether or not financial aid was received for those credits.

Passing letter grades: D- and above.

Letter grades that are not considered to be passing include: E, I, X, V, W, DR, WP, WF, N, and NS.*  Withdrawal-related grades of X, W, DR, WP, WF, N, and NS are considered unsuccessful completions, but do not impact grade point average (GPA). Note that X, WP, WF, N, and NS grades are no longer issued. Only E grades are considered in the GPA calculation.

Incomplete grades are considered unsuccessful attempts. Incompletes are not counted in the GPA calculation, but are included in completion rate calculations. After a final grade is issued, satisfactory academic progress is reevaluated. Incomplete courses not assigned a grade within one calendar year are treated as failed courses for GPA calculation purposes.

English as a Second Language (ESL) and Developmental Education credits are included in the number of credits attempted and completed. Only 30 Developmental Education credits can count toward your enrollment status for purposes of awarding financial aid.  

Credits accepted from transfer institutions must be included in the total credits attempted and the total credits completed.

If a Course is Repeated

  • A student may receive aid when repeating a course that was previously failed (received a 0.0 or No Pass), regardless of the number of times the course was attempted and failed.
  • A student may receive aid (if electing to repeat a previously passed course) one additional time. Whether the repeated course is passed or failed, the student is no longer eligible to receive aid for that course.
  • If a student chooses to retake a course, and that course is not eligible for aid, the Office of Financial Aid will recalculate the student's aid to exclude the credits for financial aid purposes.
  • The higher grade replaces the lower grade in determining your grade point average (GPA).
  • Credits for both classes are considered attempted credits, but only the credits from the class with the higher grade are considered successfully completed.

GPA Requirements

Credit Hours Attempted Minimum Cumulative GPA
1-14 1.5
15-28 1.75
29 and above 2.0

Financial Aid Requirements for Degree/Certificate Completion

SAP requires you to complete your associate degree or certificate within 150% of the published length of the program. For example, if you are in an associate degree program that requires 60 credits, the degree must be completed within 90 credits, including both attempted and completed course credits.

Refer to the GRCC Catalog to find the number of credits required for your degree or certificate program, then multiply that number by 1.5 to determine the maximum number of credits.

If you change your program or pursue a second degree or certificate, the maximum number of credits will be calculated based on the number of credits required for your new program of study.

Financial aid eligibility ends when the maximum number of credits has been attempted.

All attempted credits (including transfer, Developmental Education, and ESL) must be considered when determining the maximum number of credits used toward your degree, whether or not you received aid for those attempted credits. 

Transfer Credits

Starting with the Summer 2022 semester, all transfer credits will be evaluated for SAP purposes and students who are over the maximum allowed attempted credits based on their program of study, will be placed immediately to maximum time frame suspension at the end of their first term of enrollment.

Financial Aid Warning

If you fall below the standards of academic progress you will be placed on financial aid warning for the following semester, but can still receive financial aid for that semester. You must meet SAP standards at the end of your warning semester in order to continue receiving financial aid.

Financial Aid Suspension

If you do not meet the SAP standards at the end of the financial aid warning semester you will be placed on financial aid suspension. While on suspension you are not eligible to receive any type of financial aid.   

Suspension Appeals

If you are unable to meet SAP standards due to circumstances beyond your control, you may appeal your suspension. Extenuating circumstances may be grounds for a successful appeal.

Financial Aid Probation

If your appeal is approved, you will be placed on financial aid probation for one semester. You must follow these conditions to continue receiving financial aid.

Financial Aid Academic Plan

You must follow this academic plan until you meet SAP requirements:

  • Receive a passing grade in 100% of the classes you enroll each semester.
  • Not withdraw or drop any courses after the 100% refund period.
  • Earn a minimum semester grade point average of 2.0.

If these requirements are not met, your financial aid will be suspended.

Reinstatement of Financial Aid

Your financial aid suspension will be removed and you will be considered for future financial aid if:

  • You improve your cumulative GPA and course completion rate above the required levels while taking classes paid out of pocket. This applies to students whose suspension is based on GPA and/or completion rates.
  • Your suspension appeal is approved. 
  • There was a change in a grade from a previous semester which improves your SAP standing. You must notify the Financial Aid office and request a reevaluation of your eligibility after the grade change(s) occur.



E = Failing

I = Incomplete

X = Absent from final exam (Inactive)

V = Audit

W = Student Initiated Withdrawal

DR = Administrative Withdrawal (Effective Fall 2018)

WP = Withdraw–Passing (Inactive)

N, WF = Withdraw–Failing (Inactive)

NS = No Show (Inactive)

Addendum to policy

(April 20, 2020)

Changes in grading procedures due to the Coronavirus pandemic will allow for credit (CR) or no credit (NC) grades to be given for Winter 2020 semester classes. Students will be provided the opportunity to exercise this option after Winter 2020 semester grades have been posted. A letter grade of C or better is needed for the CR grade to be given.

Additionally, any attempted credits that were not completed by the student due to the national emergency can be excluded from the quantitative component of Satisfactory Academic Progress calculation without requiring an appeal. These credits will be identified with DR, W, E, I and NC grades for the Winter 2020 semester for all students. The students and classes will be tagged for future satisfactory academic progress calculations. For students who meet academic progress standards or who have met the conditions of their probation, no further action is required. With those who calculate as warning or needing to appeal, a supplemental process will be developed to review their eligibility.