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Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Business Process for Financial Aid

As required by the Higher Education Act Sec. 484(c), 34 CFR 668, at the end of each payment period Wilberforce University (WU) evaluates Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) to determine eligibility to receive financial aid funds.

For financial aid purposes, the academic year at Wilberforce begins with Fall and concludes with Summer.


Satisfactory Academic Progress will be measured at the end of fall, spring, and the end of the summer terms. System generated SAP statuses are as follows:

MEETS – The student has met both quantitative and qualitative requirements; no review is needed.

PROBATION – A student who fails to meet SAP (excluding Maximum Timeframe) at the end of a semester will be placed on Warning, not to exceed one semester. During the Warning semester, the student may receive financial aid despite not meeting SAP standards. If the student does not meet cumulative SAP standards at the conclusion of the Warning semester, financial aid eligibility will be suspended for future terms. A student may be placed on Warning more than once, however, never in two consecutive semesters. If the student does not attend the Warning semester, the status can be carried over to the next semester of enrollment. An override to Warning may be performed to correct the calculated status in this circumstance.

FAIL – A student becomes ineligible for all financial aid funds if the SAP review indicates he or she does not meet one or more of the requirements and was on Financial Aid Warning for the preceding semester.

MAX – A student immediately becomes ineligible for all financial aid funds if the total attempted hours exceed 150% of the published program length. Only one Warning semester is given for Maximum Timeframe.

Students who do not meet Satisfactory Academic Progress standards have the option to appeal the status based on extenuating circumstances.


Students whose SAP status is FAIL or MAX will require an appeal to be submitted for consideration of eligibility.


WU receives the appeal and reviews the appeal to ensure that extenuating circumstances and documentation are present.


Wilberforce University applies(ed) changes to the above SAP standards as allowed by Section 3509 of the CARES Act. Wilberforce will exclude from the quantitative component (pace measurement and maximum timeframe) of the satisfactory academic progress (SAP) attempted credits from SAP. Wilberforce will have reasonably determined that the student’s failure to complete those credits was a result of a COVID-19 related circumstance. Allowable circumstances include, but are not limited to, illness of the student or family member, need to become a caregiver or first responder, economic hardship, added work hours, loss of childcare, inability to continue with classes via distance education, inability to access Wi-Fi due to closed facilities. It is not necessary for a student to file a SAP appeal for Wilberforce to exercise this flexibility.

The modification will continue through Spring 2021. At the conclusion of the Spring 2021 semester, student statuses will be evaluated using the Universities established standards for meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).

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