Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Financial Aid Recipients

Colleges and universities are required to establish minimum standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) for students receiving federally funded (Title IV) financial aid, as well as all Delaware Valley College grants and scholarships. In order to maintain eligibility for Federal Title IV financial aid that falls under the United States Department of Education a student must continue to make both satisfactory qualitative ( grade point average) and quantitative (pace) academic progress. Title IV aid programs governed by the United States Department of Education include:

  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Federal College Work-Study Program
  • (SEOG) Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
  • Perkins Loans
  • Federal Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized Loans
  • Federal Direct Parent PLUS Loans
  • Federal TEACH Grant

The Financial Aid Office will monitor student progress towards their degree annually and cumulatively at the end of each academic year (after conclusion of spring semester).

Undergraduate students receiving financial aid must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (qualitative) and make steady progress toward the completion of their degree (pace) as described in the sections below.
Qualitative Standard: A student must earn a GPA of 2.0 or better to earn his/her degree at Delaware Valley College. In order to remain in good academic standing and retain federal and institutional financial aid eligibility, the student must reach the following GPA levels as he/she attempts credits toward the desired degree. This is the same academic standard published in the college catalog under Academic Regulations. However, please note that Satisfactory Academic Progress for continued financial aid monitors attempted credits – in addition to credits earned as outlined under the Academic Regulations. Failure to meet the standard will result in the loss of Title IV aid. Please note that Satisfactory Academic Progress for financial aid eligibility should not be confused with the College’s academic progress policy. These are two distinct and completely separate policies of which Students must be aware. It is possible to fail to meet minimum standards of one policy and pass the minimum standards of the other.

The qualitative standard for baccalaureate degrees is as follows:

Credits attempted GPA required
0 -32 1.75
33 and above 2.0

Students must have completed 67% of attempted credits.

Students enrolled in certificate programs one year or less in duration are monitored per semester. Students must have a 2.0 after term completion to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress.

Quantitative Standard

A student must make steady progress towards their degree. This includes the total time to earn a degree and the rate of completion or credits towards the degree. Remedial credits may count towards the quantitative standard (pace) requirements.

Financial aid cannot exceed more than 150 percent of the normal time it takes for a student to achieve a degree. For example, if the student curriculum is structured to allow a student to earn a bachelor’s degree in four years, students who take longer than four years can keep their financial aid eligibility for up to six years. A student must complete 67% of their attempted credits each year in order to meet the quantitative (pace) requirement.

Examples of Credit Completion Requirement:

  • A student who has attempted 24 credits must have successfully completed at least 16 credits.* (24 x .67 = 16.08).
  • A student who has attempted a total of 59 credits must have successfully completed at least 40 credits.* (59 x .67 = 39.53)
  • A student has 30 transfer credits and 50 DVC credits for a total of 80 attempted the student must have successfully completed 54 credits.*
  • (30 TR + 50 DVC) x .67 = 53.6

*Calculations not resulting in whole numbers are rounded to the nearest whole credit

Students who have failed to meet both the qualitative (GPA) and/or quantitative (pace) standards will receive notification from the financial aid office in writing – by mail and/or by email. Students who fail to make satisfactory progress after the warning period will lose their aid eligibility for the following term unless they successfully appeal and are placed on probation or the student attends summer school and successfully meets the stated requirements.

Attempted Credits

Transfer credits brought in to the college are counted towards attempted credits and are also counted as earned credits and are applied to pace. Withdraws (W), incompletes (I), and course failure (F, FA) are counted towards attempted credits. Remedial course are counted as attempted credits. Remedial courses may count towards the pace requirement for first year students.Repeat courses will not count towards attempted credits if the repeat course is taken to achieve qualitative (GPA) Satisfactory Academic Progress. As defined by the Department of Education, Delaware Valley College will only allow a student to retake previously passed coursework one time and count the coursework in the student’s enrollment status. For example, the student is retaking the coursework in an attempt to meet an academic standard such as better grade for financial aid consideration.

Incomplete Grades

The student must contact the financial aid office when a grade of Incomplete is received. If an Incomplete grade is not completed by the timeline indicated in the Academic Regulation policies the grade could revert to an F and will then count towards the qualitative (GPA) progression requirement. Students who change majors will have their coursework for their original major count as attempted credits.

Reinstatement of Financial Aid after SAP failure: As stated above, students who fail to successfully complete the minimum credit completion rate, fail to complete their program in the maximum time frame, or fail to meet the cumulative GPA requirement will have their financial aid suspended for the following term. Reinstatement of financial aid can be achieved by taking at least one of the following actions:

  • The student submits a letter of appeal (see Appeals Process)
  • The student attends summer school to eliminate deficiency (consult academic support)
  • The student attends DelVal during the suspension semester, pays for tuition and fees without the help of student aid and does well enough to satisfy SAP standards.

Students are to notify the financial aid office regarding their plans to satisfy SAP policy.

Appeals Process

Any student may appeal the discontinuation of financial aid if failure to meet the standard was the result of undue hardship or special circumstances that prevented academic progress. All appeals must be submitted in writing to the Director of Financial Aid. The appeal must explain and specify the extenuating circumstances which prevented the student from achieving academic progress. Also the student should explain what has changed in his situation that will allow him/her to make satisfactory progress at the next evaluation. In addition, the appeal must include any supporting documentation of the mitigating circumstances.

For example, the following types of mitigating circumstances may be considered when a student files an appeal: injury or extended illness of student; death in the family, or change in educational objectives. Students will be notified in writing of the decision. f an appeal is denied, financial aid will be reinstated only after the student achieves the minimum standards as listed above.

If an appeal is granted the student will have Federal funding reinstated for one semester and the student will be placed on “probationary status” for Title IV aid. The “probationary status” is for one payment period only. Students will be required to have an academic plan in place prior to beginning the term. The academic plan should be made in conjunction with the student’s academic advisor and student support services. The academic plan must be submitted to the Financial Aid Office. Progress will be monitored after the probationary term. If progress is achieved, Federal funding will continue until the next SAP review period.

Students who fail to achieve satisfactory progress after the probationary term will be notified in writing. The student may appeal this determination. If the student appeals he/she must continue to have an academic plan in place in order to continue Federal funding. The new academic plan must be submitted in writing to the financial aid office at the time he/she submits the appeal. If this appeal is granted, federal aid will continue during that semester. Should the student fail to make progress federal funding will cease until the student has met the qualitative GPA) and quantitative (pace) standards as listed above. 

State grant financial aid requirements

State grants may have a different standard of academic progress then the Federal standards. Students from out of state who have other state grant funds should check with their state of residence for academic eligibility requirements.
Pennsylvania state grant (PHEAA) recipients are required to complete 24 credits per academic year to retain Pennsylvania State Grant assistance. The Financial Aid Office will notify students in writing if they have failed to make this requirement.

Students’ decisions to withdraw from courses after the term begins may affect their ability to complete the academic standards for state or federal assistance. It is the students’ responsibility to contact the Financial Aid Office to verify the effect that any course withdrawal may have on financial aid eligibility.