Graduate—Satisfactory Progress Policy Statement
Federal financial aid regulations require students to make satisfactory academic progress towards their degree to remain eligible for financial aid. The financial aid programs affected by this policy include:
Federal Work Study
Federal Direct Subsidized Loan
Federal Perkins Loan
Federal Direct Unsubsidized Loan
Federal Direct Graduate-PLUS Loan
This policy defines the minimum requirements for financial aid eligibility at Michigan Technological University and should not be confused with any other academic status policy enforced by other departments, schools, or colleges at Michigan Tech. Students should understand the renewal criteria of each of their respective scholarships and awards. Some scholarships/awards (e.g., fellowships) may have more stringent requirements than those listed in this policy.
Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) will be measured at the end of each semester. All periods of enrollment by a student will count towards their SAP (Fall, Spring, Summer), including enrollment periods when the student did not receive financial aid. A student must meet all three (3) of the following requirements to be eligible for financial aid:
Requirement 1: University Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA)
A graduate student must maintain a university cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above.
Requirement 2: Cumulative Pace of Completion
A graduate student must maintain a minimum pace of completion of 67%. Pace of completion is calculated by dividing the cumulative credit hours successfully completed by the cumulative number of attempted credit hours.
Requirement 3: Maximum Time Frame for Degree Completion
Graduate students are permitted to receive financial aid for 150% of the average number of credits needed to earn their degree. At Michigan Tech, graduate students take, on average, 43 credits to complete a master's degree and 96 credits to complete a doctoral degree.
150% of 43 = 65 credits for a master's degree
150% of 96 = 144 credits for a doctoral degree
A student enrolling in a semester after attempting 65 credits for their master's degree or 144 credits for their doctoral degree is no longer considered to be making satisfactory progress toward that degree. A student's credit total includes all Michigan Tech attempted credit hours at the graduate level.
Examples of Maximum Time Frame for Financial Aid Eligibility:
Graduate students pursuing a first time master's degree may not exceed 65 attempted credit hours.
Graduate students pursuing a second master's degree may not exceed 65 attempted credit hours for each of the degrees.
Graduate students who are concurrently pursuing two master's degrees may not exceed a total of 130 attempted credit hours.
Graduate students who are pursuing a doctoral degree without completing a master's degree may not exceed 144 attempted credit hours.
Graduate students may not receive Federal Title IV Student Aid after exceeding a total of 144 attempted credit hours pursuing any combination of master's and/or doctoral degrees.
Students who start the semester making SAP and complete the semester not meeting requirements 1 or 2 will be placed on financial aid warning for their next semester of attendance. While on financial aid warning, a student will continue to be eligible to receive financial aid without filing an appeal. A student who does not meet requirement 3 because they exceed their maximum time frame will be considered not making satisfactory progress. A continuation of their financial aid will be on an appeal basis only.
A student with this status is not making progress toward a degree and is ineligible for financial aid. Students with certain circumstances may appeal.
When a student starts a semester on financial aid warning and continues to fail to meet requirements 1 or 2 at the end of that semester, he or she will be ineligible for financial aid. To be reconsidered for financial aid, the student must submit an appeal to the Michigan Tech Financial Aid Office. An approved appeal will result in the student being placed on financial aid probation. While on financial aid probation, the student is eligible for financial aid for only one semester. At the completion of the semester of financial aid probation, the student must meet all three requirements of SAP or lose their financial aid eligibility until the requirements are met.
A student who is currently ineligible for financial aid and has his or her appeal approved may be placed on an individualized academic plan, which will detail the requirements necessary to bring him or her back into eligibility. While on an academic plan, the student is eligible for financial aid as long as the plan's criteria are being met. Also, see the definition of academic plan.
Academic Plan - Graduate Academic Plan: the student must maintain a minimum 3.0 semester GPA the each of the three semesters immediately following the approval of the graduate academic plan. The student's progress is evaluated at the completion of each semester while on this plan. At the conclusion of this three-semester plan, the student is required to have a 3.0 cumulative GPA.
Academic Plan - Renewal: this plan is granted to a student who has successfully appealed his or her academic renewal status. The student's progress is evaluated each semester while on this plan. Undergraduate students must maintain a minimum 2.0 semester GPA, and graduate students must maintain a minimum 3.0 semester GPA.
Reestablishing Eligibility for Financial Aid
If a student has become ineligible to receive financial aid due to a failure to meet one or more of the SAP requirements, that student can reestablish their eligibility to receive financial aid in one of two ways:
Reestablishing Eligibility on Your Own
A student will regain eligibility for financial aid automatically once they meet all three of the SAP requirements again.
Reestablishing Eligibility by Appeal
A student not meeting the satisfactory progress requirements due to extenuating circumstances (i.e. death of a relative, illness or injury of the student, etc.) may request reinstatement of financial aid by submitting an appeal through his or her Banweb account. The appeal must describe the circumstance(s) which prevented the student from meeting the satisfactory progress requirements, and the action(s) the student plans to take to bring him or her back into a satisfactory progress status.
Additional Related Information
Students with Transfer Credit
Transfer credits accepted by Michigan Tech are counted as both attempted and successfully completed credit hours for measuring pace of completion and will be counted toward a student's maximum time frame. Michigan Tech does not transfer in the GPA from another institution, and it is not calculated into the GPA for this policy.
Students Changing Majors
If a student changes their major, all previously attempted Michigan Tech graduate-level classes will continue to be included in the evaluation of their SAP going forward.
The Federal Student Aid program regulations make no provision for the concept of academic renewal. If a student has been granted any level of academic renewal, the student must submit an appeal to be eligible for financial aid.
Academic plan is an individualized plan developed by the SAP Appeal Committee for a student. The plan, if followed, will ensure that the student is able to meet the institution's satisfactory academic progress standards by a specific point in time.
Attempted credit hours are used to calculate the SAP Pace of Completion. The ‘Financial Aid Attempted Hour’ value includes all credits enrolled in at the completion of each semester PLUS any transfer credits PLUS any credits dropped after the financial aid census date* LESS any audit credits.
*The financial aid census date is Wednesday of the second week of class for full-semester courses. If a course is a Track A or Track B course, the census date will vary. Enrollment is frozen on the financial aid census date, reported to the federal and state governments, and semester financial aid is paid accordingly. NOTE: the financial aid census date is not equivalent to the last day to drop a course without a grade. For example, in the spring 2014 semester, the financial aid census date was January 22nd (Wednesday of week 2) and the last day to drop a full-semester course without a grade was January 31st.
Audited courses are courses taken for a grade of U or V. Students will not receive financial aid for audited courses. Audited courses are not counted as attempted or successfully completed credit hours and are not included in GPA calculations.
Remedial course work consists of courses numbered below 1000. Currently Michigan Tech does not offer remedial course work for credit.
Repeat course is a course that is repeated in a semester subsequent to when it was originally taken. For each semester the attempted credit hours are counted but only the most recent grade will be used to determine whether the course was successfully completed or not; only the most recent grade is used in the GPA calculation. For example, a 4-credit hour course taken twice will total 8 attempted credit hours, a maximum of 4 credit hours successfully completed and the GPA will include only the most recent grade of A through F. Also, see Repeating a Course.
Successfully completed credit hours (or earned credit hours) are credit hours that have been earned and have a grade value of A through D, S, or EP.
|Grade Type||Grade||Counts as Attempted||Counts as Successfully Completed||Included in GPA Calculation|
|Audit||U or V cannot receive aid for audits||N||N||N|
If an I becomes an F
|Missing||M temporary until grade is processed||Y||N||N|
If a P becomes a Q (inadequate progress)
|Conditional||X computed in GPA as an F||Y||N||Y|
|In Session||IS no grade course in session||Y||N||N|
S given for work equal to A to C
E given for work equal to CD to F
|Credit||CR given for advanced placement||Y||Y||N|
Credit grades (CR) are given for advanced placement or examination. CR grades count as attempted and successfully completed credit hours but are not included in GPA calculations.
Conditional grades (X) are given for courses where the student fails to complete a segment of a course, but in the judgment of the instructor does not need to repeat the course. X grades are counted as attempted credit hours but are not successfully completed credit hours. X grades are changed to the appropriately earned grade when the required course work is submitted. The X grade becomes an F if it is not made up by the close of the next semester.
Failure grades (F) are 0.00 grades points per credit. F grades are included in GPA calculations and count as attempted but not successfully completed credit hours.
In-session grades (IS) are given when a course remains in session after the term's final grade deadline. IS grades count as attempted credit hours but are not successfully completed credit hours. IS grades are not included in GPA calculations.
Inadequate Progress (Q) may be used for approved 3000- or 4000-level project courses where projects carry over for more than one semester. Q grades are not included in GPA calculations. Q grades count as attempted credit hours but do not count as successfully completed credit hours.
Incomplete grades (I) are given for courses taken and not completed within the semester. Incomplete grades are counted as attempted credit hours but are not successfully completed credit hours. Incomplete grades are not included in GPA calculations. An I grade becomes an F when the course work is not completed in the specified time designated by the university. F grades are included in GPA calculations and count as attempted and not completed courses and will impact students' pace of completion.
Missing grades (M) are a temporary grade assigned when a final grade has not been received by the grading deadline. Missing grades are counted as attempted hours but not as successfully completed credit hours. M grades are not included in GPA calculations.
Progress grades (P) are counted as attempted and successfully completed credit hours but are not included in GPA calculations.
Pass-fail grades (S and E) are given in courses taken for credit but not for a grade. Grades of S (given for work equal to A or C) and E (given for work equal to CD to F) are given under this option. These courses are counted as attempted credit hours but are not included in GPA calculations. S grades count as successfully completed credit hours, and E grades are unsuccessfully completed credit hours.
Satisfactory audit grades (V) are given for courses taken for audit. V grades are not included in GPA calculations. They do not count as attempted credit hours or successfully completed credit hours.
Unsatisfactory audit grades (U) are given for courses taken for audit. U grades are not included in GPA calculations. They do not count as attempted credit hours or successfully completed credit hours.
Withdrawal grades (W) are given when a student drops a course after the third week of the semester or withdraws completely from the university after the official add/drop period, resulting in a W grade being assigned for all dropped courses. W grades are counted as attempted, but are not successfully completed credit hours. W grades are not included in GPA calculations.
Also see Registrar's Grading Information.