Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Federal regulations require that all federal financial aid recipients be enrolled in a degree or approved certificate program and maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) to maintain eligibility.

The Community College of Baltimore County complies with this requirement by monitoring each student’s academic progress against three standards: minimum cumulative financial aid grade point average (GPA), minimum completion rate and maximum time frame for completion of a degree or certificate, consistent with the provisions of this policy. All federal and state aid financial aid programs administered by CCBC are governed by this policy. New rules impose limits on how long a student may continue to receive federal and state financial aid in order to make up deficiencies in meeting SAP standards.

A review of satisfactory academic progress will be done at the end of each semester/payment period. Summer terms are considered a semester/payment period; therefore SAP will be evaluated at the end of the summer session as well, if the student enrolls and attends summer session(s). The evaluation period will be based on attendance in all prior semester(s) and will include all classes attempted whether federal aid was received or not.

Each student who receives either federal or state assistance (including student/parent loans) must make satisfactory academic progress toward the attainment of his or her degree or certificate as a condition of receiving financial aid.

The programs governed by these regulations are (but not limited to):
  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Federal Direct Stafford Loans (Subsidized & Unsubsidized)
  • Federal Direct Parent Loan for Undergraduate Students (PLUS)
  • Student Employment (Federal Work-Study and Institutional Student Employment)
  • CCBC Opportunity Grant
  • CCBC Completion Scholarship
  • CCBC Foundation Scholarships
  • Maryland State Education Assistance and Guaranteed Access Grants
  • Maryland State Distinguished Scholar, Delegate & Senatorial Scholarships
  • Maryland State Workforce Shortage Grant

All financial aid applicants are responsible for knowing the financial aid SAP policy. The Financial Aid Office sends an email notification of aid eligibility (or ineligibility) to a student who has been placed on warning or suspension status. Students will also be notified through their SIMON account. The responsibility for meeting the minimum SAP requirements to qualify for student aid remains with the student. Students who are not eligible for financial aid may enroll at CCBC. Payment arrangements can be made by contacting the Bursar's Office.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Standard Measurements

Cumulative financial aid grade point average (GPA)

Billable Credits Required GPA
1 — 18 1.50
19 — 31 1.75
32 — 44 1.85
45 or more 2.00

Please note your financial aid GPA may be different than your college GPA. Developmental coursework is counted in the cumulative financial aid GPA.

Completetion rate

Students must complete at least 67% of their total attempted coursework, including billable hours and credits, to remain eligible for federal and state financial aid.

Maximum time frame

Students must keep within a maximum timeframe which would be limited to no more than 150% of the published length of the program for undergraduate study. Students enrolled in associate degree programs who have attempted 90 credits/billable hours or more, including transfer, developmental, and credit courses, will be required to meet with an academic advisor to complete a degree audit. Students appealing their suspension due to maximum time frame must submit a completed SAP appeal form with the degree audit, signed by an academic advisor, to the Financial Aid Office. If the appeal is approved, additional degree audits will NOT be accepted. Students who have exceeded maximum time frame will be suspended and will not receive a warning status.

Loss of financial aid

Students who are not in compliance with the cumulative GPA and/or completion rate SAP standards will be granted a one semester warning status. Students who have exceeded the 150% time limitation for degree programs are not eligible for the warning term. Students who were previously placed on warning or are ineligible for an appeal and do not meet the published standards by the next review will be suspended from eligibility for Federal Title IV Aid, state funded programs, and any other aid programs requiring that students meet SAP standards.

SAP terminology

Good Standing

A student is meeting all SAP standards.

Warning

A student receives a warning when he or she does not meet SAP standards for the first time. No appeal is necessary.

  • The Financial Aid Warning period applies to the next semester the student is enrolled in classes.
  • A student will continue to receive financial aid while on Financial Aid Warning.

Suspension

A student receives a suspension when he or she does not meet all SAP components. He or she is ineligible for financial aid.
  • A student is not eligible for financial aid until minimum SAP standards are met.
  • A student has the right to appeal and request reinstatement of federal and state financial aid eligibility.

Probation after appeal (PA)

Status assigned by an institution to a student who fails to make SAP and who has appealed and regained eligibility for financial aid.

Academic Plan

A plan of action that will help the student achieve minimum SAP standards within 1 to 3 semesters. The academic plan is part of the appeals process.

How to keep your financial aid eligibility

What happens Your status What you need to do
If your financial aid GPA drops below the required GPA for the number of attempted credits/billable hours. Warning – You may continue to receive financial aid for one semester. Raise your financial aid GPA to the minimum financial aid GPA required.
If your completion rate is less than 67% of your cumulative attempted credits/billable hours. Warning – You may continue to receive financial aid for one semester. Raise your overall completion rate to at least 67%.
After you have exhausted your semester of Warning, if your financial aid GPA remains below the minimum required financial aid GPA and/or your overall completion rate is less than 67%. Suspended – You are not eligible for financial aid. You may appeal if you have extenuating circumstances. If your appeal is approved you will need to successfully complete the requirements/academic plan associated with your appeal.
If you attempt over 150% of your degree program (major). Suspended – You are not eligible for financial aid. You can appeal if you have extenuating circumstances. If your appeal is approved you will need to successfully complete 100% of all classes and are required to maintain an overall GPA of 2.0 or higher.
If you have completed your semester of probation and not achieved the minimum SAP requirements or have not successfully completed the academic plan associated with your appeal. Suspended – You are not eligible for financial aid. You can regain eligibility after taking classes at your own expense and meeting minimum requirements of a 2.0 financial aid GPA, minimum 67% completion rate, and does not exceed the 150% maximum time frame.

Regaining financial aid eligibility

A student whose financial aid has been suspended may regain eligibility after taking classes at his/her own expense and meets the minimum requirements of a 2.0 financial aid GPA, minimum 67% completion rate, and does not exceed the 150% maximum time frame.