Undergrad Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Aid Policy

Federal regulations require that all students who receive any federal or state financial assistance make measurable academic progress toward a degree at the University of Pikeville. Progress is determined by length of program, hours attempted versus hours earned (passing rate) and grade point average (GPA).


The minimum standard for full-time enrollment at the undergraduate level is 12 credit hours per semester. A minimum standard for part-time enrollment (at least half time) at the undergraduate level is six credit hours per semester.

Maximum Timeframe for Completion (MTFC)

The time frame in which a student must complete their degree cannot exceed more than 150% of the published length of the student’s program of study. All undergraduate students at UPIKE are required to complete a minimum of 120 hours to complete a bachelor’s degree. Therefore, the student can attempt up to 180 hours and still be eligible for financial aid. Once it is mathematically impossible to complete within the 150% timeframe (180 credits), the student will no longer be eligible for financial assistance. All semesters and classes attempted are used for the SAP Length of Program calculation regardless of whether the student received any financial aid for those specific classes. All classes taken, whether they are transferred, dropped, failed, repeated, or taken to change a major, will count as credit hours attempted toward the maximum time frame. If a UPIKE student is attempting an associate degree, which requires a minimum of 64 credit hours, the maximum to receive financial aid is a total of 96 credit hours. Once it is mathematically impossible to complete within the 150% timeframe (96 credits), aid will be suspended.

Passing Rate

For a student to be on-track to graduate with a degree from the University of Pikeville at an acceptable rate, the student must successfully complete at least 67% of all credit hours attempted. Successful completion is defined as completing the course with a grade of A, B, C, D, or P. For example, a junior who has attempted 75 credit hours must have passed at least 50 (75 x 0.67 = 50.25) of those hours to be making satisfactory progress. Likewise, if a student registers for 18 hours, they must pass 67% (or 12) of the original 18 hours the student initially registered for at the beginning of the term. Please note that courses attempted but withdrawn from (received a grade of W) will count against the passing rate.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

Satisfactory Academic Progress GPA requirements for a UPIKE student ensures the student is maintaining a satisfactory academic level to be successful in his/her academic endeavors. The minimum acceptable grade point average for undergraduate students that have completed less than 30 hours is 1.5. The minimum acceptable grade point average for undergraduate students that have completed 30 or more hours is 2.0.

How to Regain Financial Aid Eligibility

Students must graduate or take courses at their own expense until they improve their GPA or Passing Rate.

Improve GPA: Student must raise GPA above the minimum requirement by taking courses at their own expense. Once this is achieved, the student is required to notify the Office of Student Financial Services that they have reached the minimum GPA requirement for further financial aid processing. Students may not use hours earned off-campus to improve the UPIKE GPA.

Improve Passing Rate: Student must take the next semesters’ courses at his/her own expense and meet the minimum requirement of passing at least 67% of the attempted credit hours. Once the classes have been taken and passed successfully, the student must notify the Office of Student Financial Services for further financial aid processing.

SAP Progressions

FINANCIAL AID SAP WARNING – Student that do not meet the GPA or Passing Rate criteria their first term will be placed on FA SAP Warning.  You are still eligible for financial aid during this term but you must bring your GPA and/or Passing Rate up at the end of the semester you are on WARNING.

FINANCIAL AID SAP SUSPENSION – If while on WARNING you fail to improve your GPA and/or Passing rate to the required level, you will be placed on SAP SUSPENSION.  While on SAP SUSPENSION, you will be ineligible for Federal, State, or institutional aid.

Students Rights

Student’s Right to Appeal a SAP Suspension: If you, as a student, have had an extenuating circumstance that has prevented you from completing the minimum standards set within the UPIKE Satisfactory Academic Progress policy, you have the right to appeal the decision with the UPIKE Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeals Committee. The appeal must be submitted in writing and must explain the following items:

a. What extenuating circumstance (i.e., death, personal injury, or illness, etc.) caused you to fail to meet the minimum requirement of Satisfactory Academic Progress?

b. What has changed to explain how you can now make the minimum requirements and be in satisfactory progress for the next evaluation period? i.e., what is your academic plan of action? i.e., include an academic plan.

c. Submit documentation necessary to prove that the circumstance was beyond your control.

If the appeal is denied, the student will not be eligible to receive any institutional, state, or federal financial assistance. The student will be required to pay for classes at their own expense or through a private loan. Students receiving a denial will be informed by mail/email.

If an appeal is approved, the student will be informed by mail/email. The student will be placed on Financial Aid Probation and may be placed on a SAP Academic plan for one or more terms. After the probated term, the student will be monitored again and must be meeting the minimum standards of SAP or completing the SAP academic plan successfully that was designed for the student upon SAP appeal approval.

SAP Academic Plans are designed on a student-by-student basis. Plans and student progress will be monitored each term and reported by the Center for Student Success, as outlined in each student’s academic plan.

SAP appeal decisions are final and cannot be appealed/escalated to the Department of Education.