Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is basic academic standards to ensure successful completion of coursework leading to the timely receipt of a degree.  In order to receive federal financial aid, state grants, or university need-based aid, students must meet SAP standards established by the university in accordance with federal regulations.  Federal regulations require the evaluation of both qualitative and quantitative academic progress. 

All students enrolling for the first time at FSU (including transfers) will be considered to be meeting academic progress at FSU; subsequent reviews will include all course work (including transfer work).  The exception to this policy are students who are already exceeded the maximum timeframe with credit hours (see Maximum Timeframe requirements below); those students are not eligible for financial aid unless they appeal and the appeal is approved. 

Students are strongly encouraged to monitor their academic progress through their FELiX and email account.  Notifications of the change of SAP status will be sent to the student via email to their mycampus email account.  In addition, the SAP status and details are available anytime in FELiX.  It is the student's responsibility to ensure they are meeting the requirements to maintain financial aid eligibility.

View the status of your financial aid academic progress on FELiX under the Financial Aid tab, Click on "Eligibility", then click on "Academic Progress".

Cumulative GPA and Completion Rate

(Reviewed annually at the conclusion of the Spring term after the university has posted grades for the term)

The cumulative "Grade Point Average (GPA)" as shown on your academic transcript.

  • Undergraduate students must meet the following cumulative GPA requirements:
    • 01-29 attempted credit hours — minimum cumulative GPA >= 1.5
    • 30-59 attempted credit hours — minimum cumulative GPA >= 1.8
    • 60 attempted credit hours and above — minimum cumulative GPA >= 2.0
  • Graduate students must meet the following minimum cumulative GPA: >= 3.0

The "Completion Rate" is defined as the rate at which attempted academic credits are successfully completed. This is calculated by taking the cumulative number of hours successfully completed and dividing by the cumulative number of hours attempted. Grades of “W”, “F”, and “I” count as attempted hours. Transfer hours that appear on your transcript are also included.

  • All undergraduate and graduate students must be successfully completing 67% of all hours attempted (attempted credits include all graded courses, transferred courses, testing credits, pass/fails, and repeats).
  • The calculation will be rounded to the closest whole number.

Maximum Time Frame

(Monitored at the conclusion of each term after the university has posted grades for the term) 

Undergraduates:  150% of the hours required to complete their degree programs (defined as credit hours attempted which includes all graded courses, transferred courses, testing credits, pass/fails, and repeats)

  • Associate program of 60 hours--complete within 90 attempted hours.
  • Baccalaureate program of 120 hours--complete within 180 attempted hours.

A student who has completed all the necessary requirements for a specific degree program but still fails to obtain the degree, is not eligible for further federal student aid funds for that program.  Students are strongly encouraged to complete a degree audit to review graduation eligibility under their current major.    A degree audit is easily obtained online on the Registrar page through a tool called "Degree Works".  Students can also make an appointment with the Academic Advising Staff.

Post-graduate work: 

  • Credits taken after receiving first associate's degree must be completed within 30 hours if working toward a second associate's degree.
  • Credits taken after receiving first bachelor's degree must be completed within 60 hours if working toward a second bachelor's degree.
  • Credits taken after receiving first graduate degree must be completed within 18 hours if working toward a second graduate degree.

Since all classes attempted will count toward the maximum hour limit, students should meet with their academic advisors to determine what classes are required for completion of the second degree.

Students who are within 15 credit hours of approaching their maximum time frame are sent a warning notice to their myFairmontState email account. 

Failure to Meet SAP Standards

Students who fail to meet the Cumulative GPA, Completion Rate, or Maximum Time Frame standards by the end of the Spring Semester, will be placed on “suspension”.  The “suspension” will be effective immediately and will remain until SAP standards are reevaluated the following spring semester.  If a student meets these standards prior to the next scheduled evaluation, students may speak with a financial aid counselor for reconsideration of financial aid eligibility.

Appeal Process

A student may appeal the loss of financial aid through the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships. To appeal, the student must have experienced extenuating circumstances which have impacted academic progress. Examples of extenuating circumstances are death of immediate family member, injury or illness or other unusual circumstances evaluated by the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships. The appeal must include the following:

  1. Why the student failed to make satisfactory academic progress;
  2. What has now changed that will allow the student to make satisfactory academic progress at the end of the next semester (statements of good intent are not sufficient);
  3. Documentation to verify extenuating circumstances (email to or fax to 304-367-4789).

If the appeal is granted, the student will be placed on financial aid "probation" for one semester and may receive aid during that "probation" semester. At the end of the probation semester the student MUST meet the defined SAP standards or meet the academic plan that was developed for the appeal.

Deadline dates for appeal submissions are:

  • Summer 2022:  May 6, 2022
  • Fall 2022:  July 29, 2022
  • Spring 2023: January 6, 2023

Late appeals will not be accepted. Students who wish to enroll and have missed the deadline date should make plans to pay all charges through personal means. 

Appeals will be reviewed by the following and in the following order:  

  • Financial Aid Appeals Committee
  • Director of Financial Aid and Scholarships
  • Faculty Senate Financial Aid Appeals Committee. This committee will meet one time during the week prior to the start of the Fall and Spring Semesters. Denial of an appeal by the Financial Aid Director for the Summer Semester is final.

Students are limited to one appeal per level of review and one appeal per semester.

Financial Aid eligibility can be re-established once the student meets SAP standards. Students who continue enrollment before re-establishing eligibility are required to pay for charges through personal means.

Academic Amnesty Courses

Candidates for academic forgiveness may receive financial assistance during the readmission semester if under Financial Aid Probation and/or Academic Plan. If the student does not meet the financial aid standards of SAP or the requirements of their Academic Plan at the end of the readmission semester, student’s financial aid will be suspended as dictated by the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy. Candidates must notify the Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships once officially readmitted in order for financial aid eligibility to be determined at that time.  

Repeating a Course

If a student earns a grade of “D” or “F” (which includes failures due to regular and/or irregular withdrawal) on any course prior to the students attempt of 60 credit hours and prior to receiving a baccalaureate degree, the original grade will be disregarded and replaced with the grade earned through repeating the course.  The new grade will be used to determine grade point average, however; the original grade will remain on the student’s records.  Please note that courses passed with a grade "C" or better may not be legally repeated.  (See current catalog for more information).  Also, note that students who repeat a previously passed class may have limitations on financial aid eligibility.

Nonstandard Courses

Federal student aid cannot be awarded for courses that do not count toward a student’s program completion. Examples include non-credit courses, audited courses, and English-as-a-Second-Language courses that are not part of an ESL program.

Net Price Calculator

Net Price Calculator
Fairmont State is pleased to provide the student aid calculator to assist you in estimating your costs to attend FSU.  Results are based on 2022-2023 Estimated Cost of Attendance figures and student aid eligibility requirements which are subject to change.  These results should assist you in determining an estimate of your out-of-pocket expense to attend Fairmont State.

Office Hours

  • Monday-Friday:  8:00 am - 4:00 pm




Contact Info

Office of Financial Aid
Turley Student Services Center
Room 303
Phone: (800) 641-5678, Opt. 2
(304) 367-4141
Fax: (304) 367-4789

School Code:  003812