Standards of Academic Progress Policy for Financial Aid
The U.S. Department of Education Student Financial Aid regulations require that MCC establish and maintain a policy to measure whether students applying for financial aid are making satisfactory academic progress toward degree completion. MCC has implemented the following Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards necessary to evaluate a financial aid recipient's continued eligibility for funds.
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Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy
The following standards apply to students receiving federal or state financial assistance, including grants, loans and federal work-study.
- Grade point average (GPA) Standard
You must achieve and maintain at least a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 in all credit courses attempted throughout your entire enrollment at MCC; whether or not financial aid was received.
- Cumulative Completion Rate Standard
You must complete at least 67% of the credit courses attempted throughout your entire enrollment at MCC; whether or not you received financial aid. The percentage is found by dividing the successfully completed credit hours by the number of credit hours you attempted.
- Maximum Time Frame Standard
You must complete the program of study within 150 percent of attempted credit hours relative to credit hours required to complete the program. For example, if you are enrolled in an educational program that requires 60 credit hours, you cannot receive financial assistance after 90 attempted credit hours. If during the SAP review it becomes clear you cannot mathematically complete the program within the maximum time frame, you will become ineligible for financial assistance.
For the purposes of financial aid SAP only, the following grades count as ATTEMPTED but NOT COMPLETED: F, W, AW, L, K, NC, I, U, T and P.
- Developmental courses
- Repeated courses
- Withdrawn courses
- Transfer courses
- Audit courses
- Courses that have grades forgiven
- Non-completed courses
A grade of Incomplete (I) and courses still in session (i.e. late starting telecourses) will require instructor confirmation in writing that you are making successful progress and are on schedule for course completion.
You can only receive financial assistance for up to 30 credit hours of developmental courses.
You may be paid one time only for retaking previously passed coursework (i.e. repeating a course because you need to meet an academic standard for that particular course, such as a minimum grade). If you repeat a course, only the higher grade is used in the calculation of the cumulative GPA.
The Illinois Veterans Grant, Illinois National Guard grant and all GI Bill programs are subject to GPA standards only.
Review of Academic Progress Standards
The Office of Financial Aid determines compliance with the academic standards for financial aid recipients by reviewing your cumulative academic record at the conclusion of every semester: fall, spring and summer. For those of you, who have an academic record, including accepted transfer credits, at the College will be evaluated according to the Minimum Academic Standard Requirements and placed in the appropriate status.
- Warning Status
- Financial aid applicants failing to meet the Minimum Academic Progress Requirements will be placed in Warning status. You may receive financial aid if otherwise eligible for one more semester.
- Suspension Status and Maximum Time Frame Status
- Financial aid applicants in Warning status who fail to meet the Minimum Academic Progress Requirements will be placed in Suspension or Maximum Time Frame status and are not eligible to receive financial aid.
- Probation Status
- Financial aid applicants in Suspension or Maximum Time Frame status submits an appeal and the appeal is granted, will be placed in Probation status for one semester. If after that semester you do not meet the Minimum Academic Progress Requirements you become ineligible to receive financial aid. Probation status may receive financial aid if otherwise eligible.
If you are placed in Suspension or Maximum Time Frame status because of failure to meet Minimum Academic Standard Requirements have a right to appeal. All appeals must be complete, provide detailed information and supporting documentation about mitigating circumstances, and must be submitted in writing to the Office of Financial Aid. Mitigating circumstances include, but are not limited to, injury or illness of the student or death of an immediate family member. You should not assume that appeals will be approved.
Submit the following three items as part of the appeal process:
- A Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal form
- A signed and dated typed letter of explanation
Explain why you failed to meet Minimum Academic Progress Requirements and what has changed in your situation that would allow you to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress, describe your educational objectives, and provide a schedule to achieve these objectives.
Submit third party documentation supporting the reason(s) why you failed to meet Minimum Academic Progress Requirements, e.g., a letter from an official familiar with your situation, a police officer, medical or legal documentation, death certificate, etc.
Note: You may be required to complete an Academic Plan at the discretion of the Office of Financial Aid.
Students in Suspension or Maximum Time Frame status who have not returned an appeal or required documentation by the tuition due date of the subsequent semester will have all their federal aid removed! If a student fails to appeal or has had their appeal denied they may regain eligibility for future semesters by meeting MCC's Minimum Academic Standard Requirements set forth in this policy.
The Office of Financial Aid will notify you when you are in placed in Warning, Suspension, Maximum Time Frame and Probation statuses. You will also be notified when your appeal has been approved or denied. However, it is your responsibility to know your academic progress status and how it affects financial aid eligibility.
The MCC Adult Reentry Grade Forgiveness Policy does not impact the Financial Aid Standards of Academic Progress Policy. The College's SAP policy is subject to change without notice to comply with federal or state regulations, or MCC Board of Trustee policy or action. The Illinois Veterans Grant and Illinois National Guard grant programs and all GI Bill programs are subject to GPA standards only.