Understanding SAP standards

To remain eligible for federal, state, and institutional financial aid programs, students must comply with CCBC’s standards for Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).

Students, who are not in compliance with the cumulative GPA and/or completion rate SAP standards, will not be granted a one semester warning status. Students who were previously placed on warning (attendance prior to fall 2016) 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.

Minimum SAP standards

Cumulative financial aid Grade Point Average (GPA)

A student is in violation of SAP for financial aid purposes if they do not maintain the required cumulative financial aid GPA relative to the number of credits/billable hours attempted.

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

The financial aid GPA calculation includes all courses taken at CCBC including legacy coursework (Catonsville Community College, Dundalk Community College, and Essex Community College). Developmental coursework, including English as a Second Language (ESOL), is counted in the cumulative financial aid GPA. Please note the cumulative GPA on a student’s college transcript may not match the cumulative GPA for the financial aid calculation.

ESOL, English, and Reading developmental course grades of satisfactory will be treated as a “C” grade and unsatisfactory will be treated as an “F” grade for financial aid GPA calculations. Mathematics developmental course grades will be treated as posted by the instructor (A, B, C, or F).

Completion rate

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

Maximum timeframe

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 for the degree/certificate the student is currently seeking.

Students enrolled in an associate degree program who have attempted 90 credits or more, including transfer courses, and students appealing their suspension due to maximum timeframe must submit a completed SAP appeal form. A degree audit will be requested from Academic Advising to confirm the remaining courses to complete the declared program of study.

Other factors

Developmental coursework

Developmental coursework will be included in the completion rate and the financial aid GPA calculation. Students may receive financial aid for developmental courses up to a maximum of 30 billable hours.

ESOL courses will be included in the completion rate and financial aid GPA but are not included towards the maximum 30 billable hours of developmental courses.

Withdrawals, incompletes, repeats, and audits

Credits/billable hours with a grade of “W” (withdrawal) assigned after the drop/add period of a term are treated as attempted but not earned. Credits/billable hours with a grade of “I” (incomplete) or “AU” (audit) are treated as attempted but not earned.

Credits for repeated courses are treated as attempted but not earned except for the course with the highest grade, which is included in the GPA calculation.

Billable hours for developmental coursework with a grade of “S” (satisfactory) are treated as attempted and earned. A grade of “U” (unsatisfactory) is treated as attempted but not earned.

Repeated coursework

Repeated courses count as credits attempted during each semester the student is enrolled in the course; however, they will be counted once as credits completed the first time a passing grade is received for the course. Credits for repeated courses are treated as attempted but not earned except for the course with the highest grade, which is included in the GPA calculation. Any second or subsequent repetition of the passed course will not be included in the student’s enrollment status for purposes of the Title IV programs.

Example: If you receive an “F” the first time you take a course and subsequently passes the course with a “D”, you may only receive financial aid once to improve your “D” grade.

Transfer credits

Credits transferred from another college are counted in the number of credits attempted and completed to measure completion rate and maximum timeframe. Transfer credits are not counted in the calculation of grade point average.

Second degree students

Financial aid is available for students pursuing a second degree. Credits/billable hours attempted and/or completed toward a prior degree will be included in the measures of completion rate and maximum timeframe along with any transfer credits. Students seeking a second degree will only receive financial aid for the required courses to complete the program of study. Financial aid will not pay towards prerequisite courses for the second degree.

Students with double majors are monitored like any other students under this policy. Students will be limited to receive financial aid for only two majors.

Change of degree program

If a student changes degree programs, the credits from the prior program will be counted as attempted and earned credits. If the student does not meet the minimum SAP requirements, the student may appeal on the basis of a change in degree program. It is up to the Financial Aid Office to use professional judgment to allow a student to change the program of study after an appeal has previously been approved. If the revised program of study requires more than 24 credits to complete the degree, the appeal may be denied.

Should a student exceed the 150% maximum timeframe allowed for their degree program, the student may appeal if they have extenuating circumstances. All transfer hours accepted by CCBC will be included when determining maximum timeframe eligibility.