Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Students Receiving Federal or State Financial Aid

Students receiving financial aid from federal and state programs must be making satisfactory progress toward their diploma, certificate, or degree. Students are responsible for maintaining an acceptable level of progress regarding quality and quantity of work. Financial aid regulations require that we monitor course completion rate as well as cumulative GPA. To maintain eligibility for financial aid at Lanier Technical College, students must earn a cumulative GPA (grade point average) of 2.0 or better, and satisfactorily complete at least two-thirds (66.6%) of all course work (credit hours) attempted.

Effective Summer Quarter 2008, Lanier Technical College will provide a three day "NO HARM-NO FOUL" drop period for all students. Students who withdraw from a course by the end of the third instructional day of the term will not receive a grade for the course and these courses will NOT appear on the student's academic transcript. Note: An instructional day is based on the academic calendar, not an individual student's schedule. Classes dropped after the end of the third instructional day of the term will appear on each student's academic transcript and will receive a grade of W (withdraw), WP (withdrawn passing), and/or WF (withdrawn failing). Grades of I, W, WP, and IP are not used in calculating a student's GPA, but are counted as course work attempted. Courses receiving grades of W, WP, WF, I, IP, and F are not considered satisfactorily completed hours and will affect a student's future financial aid eligibility.

Coronavirus Pandemic:

  • The grade of Z was given to students who withdrew from a course after the 60% point in the term due to COVID-19.

  • The Z grade are not used in calculating a student’s GPA, but are counted as coursework attempted.
  • Students who earned a Z grade still had SAP calculated at the end of the Spring 2020 term.
  • If suspension was calculated and they were on warning the previous term, then the student was automatically put on Warning for the next term of attendance.
  • If suspension was calculated and they were on suspension the previous term, then the student was left on suspension.
  • If suspension was calculated and they were on an academic plan the previous term, then the academic plan was automatically extended through summer 2020.

The Offices of Student Affairs and Financial Aid have developed the following standards of satisfactory progress which a student must achieve in order to maintain federal/state aid eligibility:

General Provisions & Eligibility Requirements

  1. Students must be enrolled in an eligible program to be approved for federal or state financial aid. Students accepted into the Special Admission status are not eligible for Title IV aid. Regular or provisionally admitted students may receive Title IV benefits if eligible. Technical certificate programs are evaluated on an individual basis to determine if they meet the minimum training requirements for Title IV benefits.
  2. Effective with the 2012-2013 award year, a student must have: a high school diploma, or a GED certificate, or completed homeschooling at the secondary level as defined by state law to receive Title IV funds. However, students who were enrolled in an eligible educational program of study before July 1, 2012 may continue to be considered Title IV eligible under the Ability to Benefit (ATB) test standards or by completing at least six credit hours of college work that is applicable to a degree or certificate.
  3. Exempted and audited courses may not be counted in the calculation of a student's total credit hours for determination of Title IV financial aid benefits.
  4. Title IV aid can be awarded to students enrolled in diploma, degree and approved certificate programs who are taking online/internet courses.
  5. Transfer students will be assumed to be maintaining satisfactory academic progress for the first semester enrolled. After the first semester, the student will be responsible for meeting all Lanier Technical College academic progress requirements.
  6. "I" (incomplete) is used to indicate that the student is doing satisfactory work but has not completed all requirements for the course by the end of the semester. Any course receiving an "I" designation must be completed by the midterm of the following semester or the "I" will convert to a grade of F.
  7. Learning Support courses are included in hours attempted (qualitative assessment). Students are allowed to receive financial aid for no more than 30 semester hours of Learning Support courses and must show academic progress in the remedial coursework. Successful completion of learning support classes requires a C* or better.
  8. Transfer credits that count toward the student’s current program must count as both attempted and completed hours.
  9. Academic progress determinations will be made each semester after grades have been posted.
  10. To maintain eligibility for financial aid at Lanier Technical College, students must successfully complete 66.6% of all cumulative credit hours attempted and maintain a cumulative GPA (grade point average) of 2.0. Any course for which a student registers will be counted in the maximum time frame and percentage calculations. Quantitative and qualitative standards must be cumulative and must include all periods of the student's enrollment; even periods in which the student did not receive SFA funds must be counted. A student will be notified in writing by the Office of Financial Aid if he/she is in violation of the standards of satisfactory progress.
  11. Courses receiving grades of I, IP, W, W*, WP, WP*, WF, WF*,D*, F, and F* are not considered completed hours. A student who fails to maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or to complete 66.6% of all credit hours attempted will be placed on financial aid warning for one semester. The purpose of financial aid warning is to alert the student that his or her academic performance is not acceptable. A student placed on financial aid warning must attain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 and achieve the required completion rate by the end of the next semester in attendance to remove him/her from the warning status. A student on financial aid warning is eligible for Title IV aid.
  12. Students who do not meet SAP standards under the Warning status at the end of the subsequent semester will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension. Students on financial aid suspension are not eligible to receive financial aid.
  13. Students have the right to appeal the denial of financial aid if they feel there are extenuating circumstances, which prevented them from meeting the specified requirements. Appeals must be written and must specifically address the extenuating circumstances. All documentation and/or letters of appeal must be received by the Office of Financial Aid at least one day prior to the committee's scheduled meeting at the beginning of each semester, specified in the suspension letter. Late appeals may be considered on a case by case basis. The committee will provide a written decision to the student within four (4) calendar days of the committee's meeting.
  14. Students who file an appeal and who should be able to meet the SAP standards by the end of the subsequent payment period will be placed on probation without an academic plan. If the student, based on the appeal, requires more than one payment period to meet progress standards, the student must provide an Academic Plan completed and signed by the student and his/her advisor to the Office of Financial Aid. The student is eligible to receive Title IV aid as long as the student continues to meet the academic plan requirements. A 100% pass rate for the term is required. Any withdrawals or failing grades will result in suspension of the academic plan.
  15. Reinstatement of financial aid after a student's aid has been terminated for lack of satisfactory academic progress can be achieved once a student has attained the required cumulative GPA of 2.0 and has successfully completed 66.6% of all credit hours attempted.
  16. Students must complete their educational objective within a maximum time frame based on enrollment status and program length not to exceed 150% of the published length of the program. For example, for a four semester program, the maximum time frame to receive financial aid is six semesters. Enrollment of less than full-time will be pro-rated accordingly. Students who change their program of study will be allowed the maximum time frame for the new program of study. No financial aid will be available after the specified limits. However, factors beyond the student's control, such as conflicts in scheduling classes, will be considered.
  17. Beginning July 1, 2011 students may receive federal financial aid for one repeat of a previously passed course. For this purpose, passed means any grade higher than an ‘F’, regardless of any school or program policy requiring a higher qualitative grade. A student may be repeatedly paid for repeatedly failing the same course (SAP policy still applies), and if a student withdraws before completing the course that they are being paid TIV funds for retaking, then that is not counted as their one allowed retake for that course. However, if a student passed a class once and then is repaid for retaking it and fails the second time, that failure counts as their paid retake and the student may not be paid for retaking the class a third time.
  18. State aid programs (HOPE) have program specific requirements regarding GPA. This minimum GPA requirement is in addition to maintaining the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements as stated above. Students must earn a 3.0 GPA at all checkpoints in order to maintain eligibility for HOPE funding. Refer to the HOPE regulations for specific eligibility requirements.


Regulatory Citation: 668.16

Students have the right to appeal the denial of financial aid. This appeal must be turned in through the student’s BannerWeb account using our secure online portal. The appeal must contain a letter from the student explaining their extenuating circumstance and then provide documentation for why they are not meeting the standards of academic progress.

The Financial Aid Director will present the appeal to the Financial Aid Review Committee. This student will be notified, in writing, of the committee’s decision.

Financial Aid Review Committee

This institutional committee shall be appointed annually and will meet each term to serve as an appeals committee for students who request a hearing. This committee may include, but is not limited to, one faculty representative, one administrator, and one staff member, with the Financial Aid Director participating as a non-voting member.

Academic Plans

Students’ appeals can be approved and placed on an academic plan. An academic plan is where the committee places conditions on their appeal approval. For example, a student must maintain a C or better in their classes that semester and they cannot earn an F, W, WF, or I. The student must be able to be in good standing after the academic plan if followed correctly. If the student does not meet the conditions, then their financial aid is not approved for the following semester. Each academic plan must have an end date.