Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy - Financial Aid Office

Federal regulations require that all financial aid recipients maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP) and remain in good academic standing. Academic progress is reviewed at the end of each semester and prior to the disbursements. To maintain SAP, you must:

  1. Complete 67% of the total units attempted. Classes in which student receives a letter grade (A, B, C, D, F, W, P, NP, I, IP) are counted as attempted units. Courses in which student successfully complete (A, B, C, D, and P) are counted as completed units. In determining student’s completion percentage, we divide your units completed by your units attempted.


    • 8 completed credits / 12 attempted credits = 0.666 or 67%
    • 7 completed credits / 12 attempted credits = 0.583 or 58%
  2. Maintain a cumulative 2.0 Grade Point Average. If you have previously enrolled at Ohlone College and have Cumulative GPA of less than 2.0, your academic standing will be affected as well.

These standards apply to all students who apply for and receive financial aid from the following programs.

  • Cal-Grants B and C
  • Federal Pell Grant
  • Direct Loan Program
  • Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)
  • Federal Work-Study (FWS)

NOTE: The Board of Governors Fee Waiver (BOGW) was established in 1984 as an integral part of legislation that first created the community college enrollment fee. Its purpose is to ensure that the enrollment fee does not pose a barrier to the enrollment of low-income students. This program is omitted from the listed programs because these provisions do not dictate eligibility for BOGW. As long as a student is eligible to enroll under the college’s satisfactory academic progress provisions, fee waivers from BOGW will be granted irrespective of the student’s status under these provisions.

Financial Aid Statuses

  1. FA Satisfactory Status: Will be issued.

    1.  If you have maintained a cumulative 2.0 GPA and completed at least 67% of total units attempted at the end of each semester;  And
    2. You have not reached 85% of the maximum (attempted) units needed to complete a degree/Certificate of Achievement program.
  2. Warning Status:

    1. FA Academic Warning: will be issued if your Cumulative GPA below 2.0 GPA and/or you did not complete 67% of (registered) attempted units. While on Warning status, you may still receive financial  aid but are expected to meet satisfactory academic progress at the end of the Warning term;


    2. FA Warning-maximum timeframe: will be issued once you have reached 85% of the maximum units needed to complete a degree/Certificate of Achievement program. The Department of Education sets the maximum timeframe to receive financial aid is 150% of units needed for a Title IV eligible program (Degree/Certificate). You are not required to turn in the appeal. However, it is highly recommended that you meet with a counselor to discuss, develop your Student Ed. Plan, and follow your SEP. Once you have attempted maximum timeframe, you are no longer eligible for aid. No exemption.

    * Summer term counts regardless you receive aid or not.

  3. Disqualification Status:

    1. FA Academic Disqualification Status: will be issued if your cumulative GPA below 2.0 and/or you did not complete 67% of units attempted at the end of the Warning term.   Remember: your Financial Aid Status rolls over during semesters when you are not enrolled or not receiving aid.

      While you are on FA Academic Disqualification status, you are not eligible to receive aid, but have a right to appeal. You must meet the following criteria in order to have your appeal reviewed:

      • You must enroll in a minimum of 6 credits
      • You must clearly explain your extenuating circumstances and provide supporting documents
      • Your Student Educational Plan must list one goal (major) only and must have the signature from a counselor

      The Application for Appeal Form (PDF) can be found online at or obtained at the Financial Aid kiosk.

      If Appeal is approved: You may receive your disbursement (if aid eligible) after your appeal is processed and is on the next Financial Aid Scheduled Refund Date.  You will be expected to complete 6 units, complete 67% of units attempted, with CGPA of 2.0 or higher at the end of the award period.

      Students who have successfully appealed and received aid, but do not meet SAP requirements at the end of the probation period will be placed on disqualification. No second appeal consideration.

      If Appeal is denied, you will be given conditions to become reinstated the following term

      * Summer term counts regardless you receive aid or not.

    2. FA Maximum Timeframe Disqualification Status: Will be issued if you have attempted 150% maximum timeframe.  Federal law requires that students must complete their educational program within 150% maximum timeframe. All period of enrollments count regardless if you have received aid previously or not.

      In order to determine if you are still eligible for aid, you are required to submit an Application for Appeal and Student Education Plan (SEP). The SEP must outline the courses required to complete the student’s degree/CA or transfer program. Students will receive financial aid only for the non- repeating courses listed on the SEP and up to the maximum timeframe. You must schedule an appointment with an academic counselor to review/develop a Student Education Plan.  EOPS/DSPS students can meet with the department’s counselor. If you have prior college coursework, be sure to bring the transcript (unofficial if necessary) to the meeting.

      Up to 30 developmental/remedial units will be excluded in the calculation of the 150% maximum time frame.  ESL classes will be included in the Federal SAP calculation, but may be excluded from attempted credit calculation upon a successful Appeal.

      Once you are on FA Maximum Timeframe Disqualification Status, you will receive a notification at the end of each term. No appeal and Student Educational Plan are needed if you have already submitted during the previously term and you are following your Student Educational Plan.

Ohlone College offers a number of Certificate of Achievement programs, each requiring a specific number of units for completion. Students enroll in Certificate of Achievement programs of more than one year in duration qualify for Financial Aid. Students must complete their goals by the time they have completed 150% of the number of units required for the specific certificate.  

  • For example: a student enrolled in the American Sign Language & Deaf Studies Certificate Program, which is a 34 unit Certificate, must complete that goal by the time he or she has attempted 51 total units (150%*34=51 units); or an associate degree requires 60 credit hours to complete, he/she must complete the program by the time he/she has attempted 90 total units (150%*60=90). High major units (i.e., Nursing, Respiratory Therapy, and Engineering) require more than 90 units to complete.

Note: You are allowed up to three declared majors while receiving Financial Aid.

Revised July 2015.

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