Satisfactory Academic Progress

To be eligible to receive financial aid at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).

SAP is a combination of qualitative and quantitative components and is measured by:

  • Grade point average
  • Number of credit hours earned in relation to number of credit hours attempted (including transfer and A.P. credit hours)
  • Number of credit hours attempted in relation to number of credit hours necessary to complete the degree or certification program (including transfer and A.P. credit hours)

To be eligible to receive financial aid at VCU students must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). As required by federal regulations, Virginia Commonwealth University has adopted and administers this institutional SAP policy. The minimum policy criteria required by the federal government are outlined in sections 668.16, 668.32 and 668.34 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Each institution participating in federal financial aid programs must use these criteria to develop its own SAP policy that must be applied consistently to all financial aid recipients. VCU’s policy is designed to encourage students to improve their academic performance.

How is SAP determined?

SAP is a combination of qualitative and quantitative components and is measured by the following:

  • Grade Point Average (GPA)
  • Completion Rate – Number of credit hours earned in relation to number of credit hours attempted (transfer and A.P. credit hours are included)
  • Maximum Credits of Eligibility – Number of credit hours attempted in relation to number of credit hours necessary to complete the degree or certification program (including transfer credit and A.P. credit hours)

In order to maintain SAP Students must meet the following criteria:

GPA – The student’s cumulative GPA must be a least at the GPA minimum for appropriate grade level. Transfer hour are included.

Completion Rate – The student must complete at least 67% of their overall attempted hours at VCU (including transfer and A.P. credit hours).

Maximum Credits of Eligibility – The student must not attempt more than 150% of the hours required for their degree program (including transfer and A.P. credits).

Students who receive or apply for financial aid must have a review of their SAP status completed at least once per academic year. Continuing students who applied for financial aid during the academic year will have their SAP status evaluated after the end of the spring semester. Transfer students, students readmitted to the university, and students who did not apply for financial aid will have their SAP status for the academic year evaluated after their FAFSA results are received by VCU. The maximum timeframe calculation is performed at the end of each semester.

Repeat coursework

Federal regulations now state that if repeated coursework falls under the following condition, it cannot be included in a student’s enrollment status for Title IV aid eligibility:

Any course that has already been passed (D or higher) can only be taken one additional time. Any repeated attempts after that will not be eligible for financial aid.

A passing grade is defined by the federal policy as a grade of D or higher (the grade of D or higher is set by federal policy and not VCU). However, there are some majors at VCU that require a passing grade of C or higher for matriculation.

Please note that all coursework attempted is included in your overall Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) calculation, which is completed on an annual basis. Students are required to meet minimum SAP requirements to remain eligible for financial aid.