Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

**Temporary SAP Policy Adjustments Due to COVID-19**

Federal regulations require that institutions monitor the academic progress of recipients of federal and state aid. Schools are required to withhold funds from students who do not make satisfac­tory and measurable progress toward their educational goal. Lincoln College students receiving Title IV (Pell Grant, SEOG Grant, Federal College Work-Study and all federal loans) and state funds (MAP Grant) whether or not they have received financial aid in the past must meet the satisfactory progress guidelines listed below.

Students who do not meet ALL of the following standards will lose their financial aid eligibility. Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) will be measured at the end of each semester. Students who fail to meet the minimum progress requirements will be placed on financial aid probation or suspension.

Warning: Students who are not meeting SAP at the end of their first semester at Lincoln College will be placed on warning. The student will be notified in writing that they are on warning. The student may continue to receive financial assistance during the warning period which consists of one additional semester. The purpose of a financial aid warning is to alert the student that they are on track to lose their Title IV eligibility. The student will be reevaluated at the end of the additional semester to determine if they are meeting SAP requirements or must complete an appeal.

Suspension: A student, who has not met the requirements of SAP after their warning time frame will be placed on financial aid suspension and must complete a SAP appeal for reinstatement. This also applies to a student who did not meet SAP after their probation period mentioned below. Any student who has not met the requirements of SAP after either their probation semester, or any semester thereafter as a Lincoln College student, will need to appeal their suspension. The requirements a student must meet are outlined below.

Probation-Reinstatement: Students are placed on probation after a SAP appeal is approved and eligibility for financial assistance is reinstated. Students on probation are encouraged to meet with a member of the academic advising staff to develop a plan for the upcoming semester to ensure the student is able to meet the SAP requirements. We recommend at least 2 visits with their academic advisor. The student will continue to be monitored each semester thereafter to make sure they are still meeting SAP requirements below.


  1. Minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) for classes taken at Lincoln College – A student is determined to be making SAP when the student meets the minimum cumulative grade point average for their cumulative hours attempted. Please note remedial courses are counted in the calculation for GPA:
Cumulative Hours Attempted Minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average
01-16 1.70
17-32 1.85
33-48 1.95
49+ 2.00

2. Minimum Hours Earned – A student must earn a minimum number of credit hours each year in order to graduate within a specified time frame. Withdrawing from Lincoln College or repeatedly dropping courses may affect student ability to maintain academic progress and could jeopardize financial aid eligibility. Students are required to pass at least 67% of all credit hours attempted (including remedial, transfer, withdrawal, incompletes, failed, and repeated hours).

Even if classes are not eligible for financial aid, or you paid for the classes, they are included in financial aid hours attempted, GPA , and Maximum time frame calculations.

3. Maximum Time Frame – Students are allowed a maximum of 150% of a program’s length in order to complete a degree. For example, a student enrolled in the Associate of Arts (AA) degree program may attempt a maximum of 91 credit hours (60 X 150% = 90) towards the degree’s 60 credit hour requirement. Included in the number of credit hours attempted are: remedial, transfer hours (accepted from another institution), withdrawals, incompletes, repeated courses, and grades of “F”.

NOTE: Students whom have successfully completed a degree program can request a one-time reset of their hours through the SAP appeals process.


A student enrolled in the Associate of Arts (AA) degree program may attempt a maximum of 90 credit hours (60 X 150% = 90) towards the degree’s 60 credit hour requirement. Included in the number of credit hours attempted are: transfer hours (accepted from another institution), withdrawals (after add/drop period), incompletes, repeated courses, remedial courses and grades of “F”.

A student enrolled in the Bachelor of Business Administration in Business Management (BA) degree program may attempt a maximum of 180 credit hours (120 X 150%=180) towards the degree’s 120 credit hour requirement. Included in the number of credit hours attempted are: transfer hours (accepted from another institution), withdrawals (after the add/drop period), incompletes, repeated courses, remedial courses and grades of “F”

SAP Appeal Procedure

Download visual instructions.

A student whose financial aid eligibility has been suspended may appeal through the e-verification site. The process has changed from previous years in which the student will not be required to submit paper documents to the Director of Financial Aid. The financial aid SAP appeal is separate from the Appeal for Academic Suspension, if the student is in violation of both two separate appeals will need to be completed. As a reminder the two decisions are not connected, a student can be approved for Academic Standing and be denied for SAP or vice versa.

In order to complete SAP appeals please follow the steps below:


Determine the semesters you need to discuss in your appeal, which are the semesters in which you failed to meet minimum academic standards. We call these your “semester(s) in question.” In order to identify the semesters in question, we recommend that you contact the Financial Aid Office, or a member of the Professional Advising Staff here at Lincoln College.


Determine whether you have mitigating circumstance(s) (unforeseen situations or events beyond your control that directly impacted your academic performance) for each semester in question. If the above mentioned scenarios do not apply to you we offer another alternative. We require you the student to take and pass with C’s or higher six credits of transferable hours into your current program at Lincoln College. These courses must be taken at an outside intuition. It is the students’ responsibility to check with their advisor and or registrar if the courses they plan to take will transfer into our program here at Lincoln College. If the above mention options are not available to you, you have the option to pay for your semester out of pocket in full. At the end of the semester as long as you have met the standards for SAP you can appeal to have your financial aid reinstated.

Note: In most cases, you cannot use the same mitigating circumstance over multiple semesters. The expectation is that when unforeseen circumstances arise, you will take action to resolve them before returning for another semester.


Gather valid documentation, which supports your mitigating circumstance(s). When you appeal online, you will need to upload documentation relevant to each semester in question. Please review our mitigating circumstances guide to see examples of documentation, which must come from an objective third-party on official letterhead.


Appeal online by logging into the e-verification site if you do not have an account you will need to click create an account prior to getting started.

Note: If we do not have a FAFSA on file for the year in which you are trying to obtain Financial Aid for the system will not allow you to create an account.


Monitor your Lincoln College student e-mail account, and your postal mail for communications in regard to your SAP appeal status. In addition be on the lookout for additional communication from the Office of Professional Advising regarding some important next steps.

If your appeal has been approved you will then be placed on a probationary status in which you must meet the following guidelines for the upcoming semester for which you have been approved:

  • Must earn a 2.0 GPA for each semester which you are enrolled.
  • Must complete 100% of credits for which you were enrolled. The credits will be measured after the census date.
  • Must meet with a member of the Professional Advising Staff twice over the upcoming semester.

Failure to Meet Requirements: A student’s failure to meet any of the requirements while on probation will result in them losing their Title IV eligibility. The student will be notified by mail and/or email if they have lost their aid due to failure to meet the requirements listed in Step 5.