Satisfactory Academic Progress
Credit Hour Programs
In order to become an ABTU graduate, a student must meet certain academic standards. There are two standards of measurement used to evaluate satisfactory academic progress (SAP): “qualitative,” which means overall GPA—the quality of one’s grades, and “quantitative,”—the quantity of courses completed, which means successfully completing at least 67% of the attempted courses, within an acceptable time period.
Students will have these two aspects of their academic progress evaluated at least at the end of every academic term. An academic term consists of two eight-week modules, over a period of 16 weeks. This academic term is also referred to as a semester on the Academic Calendar or “payment period” for students who are eligible to receive Federal Student Aid funds. Regardless of the number of courses taken during a 16-week academic term, academic progress is evaluated at least at the end of every academic term (semester). With the traditional academic calendar followed by ABTU, academic terms are the same for all students regardless of which semester (Fall, Spring, or Summer) a student begins their academic program.
Qualitative Standard (Cumulative Grade Point Average)
In order to meet this standard, a student must earn a cumulative grade point average (cGPA) of 2.0 in all program required courses, for undergraduate programs. Graduate level programs require a cGPA in all program required courses of 3.0 or higher. This is a graduation requirement and can never be waived under any circumstances. The student’s compliance with this requirement is formally evaluated at the end of every academic period/semester of 16 weeks as described above. However, academic advisers and Success Coordinators are regularly reviewing the academic performance of students, in the interest of providing needed support services. If a new student has not progressed academically by the mid-point of his/her first course (end of the fourth week of an eight-week course), the student’s enrollment at the University may be cancelled. Our goal is to work proactively and collaboratively with students who are facing challenges relating to the successful completion of their academic work. While ABTU reserves the right to dismiss students who fall below the qualitative standard, the overall goal is to ensure that the student is making a wise investment in their educational program, and to prepare for success in the workplace.
Quantitative Standard (Completion Rate and Maximum Time Frame)
Students must successfully complete 67% of all courses attempted in order to remain in good academic standing (to maintain satisfactory academic progress). If a student falls below the 67% completion rate, they are not making satisfactory academic progress. The student’s compliance with this requirement is evaluated at the end of every academic period of 16 weeks as described above. However, academic advisers are regularly reviewing the academic performance of students, in the interest of providing needed support services.
The student must also complete their academic program within 150% of the published length of the program; a program that takes 80 weeks to complete on a full-time basis must be completed within 120 weeks on a full-time basis. The completion rate is calculated by dividing the cumulative number of hours the student has attempted by the cumulative number of hours the student has successfully completed. Likewise, the maximum time frame (150%) serves as a second measure. Students facing extenuating circumstances may appeal the maximum time frame, but ordinarily not the 67% completion requirement.
Students who progress beyond their first course to complete a 16 week academic term, and who fall below the required minimums at their evaluation point, will be placed on Warning. Students will be notified electronically via their student email account of this status. This status will also be reflected on their student web portal. A student may be on Warning for a maximum of one academic term of 16 weeks. ABTU may dismiss a student on Warning who is not improving their academic record, prior to the completion of the next full academic term (semester). This dismissal can occur at any point in time once the student is placed on a warning status. In light of the fact that the mission of ABTU is to assist students to achieve their academic and career goals, ABTU provides regular academic support through Academic Advisers. Students in a warning status are required to have regular contact with their Academic Adviser to ensure that they are making satisfactory academic progress.
Probation, Appeals and Academic Plans
If a student fails to improve their academic record during their warning period, they will be placed on Probation, held out of their next scheduled course(s) and, if applicable, Federal Student Aid funds will be suspended. An Academic Plan will be prepared and provided to the student with an assigned deadline. If the student does not sign the Academic Plan by the deadline they will be dismissed. The Academic Plan can be created for a period longer than an academic term (semester) when it will be mathematically impossible or highly unlikely that the student will be able to make the required improvement within the 16-week probation period. If the student is meeting the terms of the Academic Plan at the end of the probation period the student will be placed on Warning for the next academic term (semester). If the student has not met the terms of the Academic Plan at the end of the probation period they will be dismissed.
The student may appeal the suspension of Federal Student Aid by completing the SAP Appeal Form and submitting it via email to the Registrar along with all required supporting documentation. If the appeal is approved Federal Student Aid funds will be reinstated for the probation period, which will last one academic term (semester).
Appeals will be considered for the following conditions:
- Death or serious illness of an immediate family member. Supporting documentation must include medical documentation, death certificate, obituary, and/or memorial notification.
- Prolonged hospitalization or confinement at home for reasons that resulted in required extended absences from classes. Supporting documentation must include medical documentation, legible doctor’s note, court documents, and/or other relevant material.
- A one-time emergency situation that impacted your grades and/or your ability to attend class for a short, specified period. Supporting documentation must include relevant material that specifies the date(s) and/or duration of the occurrence.
- Other situations which effected your grades and/or ability to attend class. Supporting documentation must include relevant material that specifies the date(s) and/or duration of the occurrence.
Appeals WILL NOT be considered for:
- Lack of knowledge or understanding of the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards.
- Medical appeals based on long-term or chronic conditions that were known and existed before financial aid was accepted and received.
- Medical appeals for illnesses or hospitalization for dates that do not correspond to the semester of sub-standard progress.
- Any reason for which you have previously filed an appeal.
You MUST include the following supporting documentation with your appeal:
1.Your detailed statement:
- Provide specific dates
- Fully describe what occurred
- Explain how this situation affected your academic performance
- Include the preventative steps you have taken to ensure you will be able to meet the SatisfactoryAcademic Progress standards in the future, and
2.Your supporting documentation on letterhead, such as:
- Statement(s) from instructor(s), as applicable
- Statement(s) from physicians, hospitals, therapists, police reports, death certificates, etc., as applicable
- Statement(s) from support members, court documentation, etc., as applicable
If the student does not appeal their Financial Aid suspension, or if the appeal is denied, they will be required to find an alternate funding source until their Financial Aid can be reinstated. If the student cannot find an alternate funding source they will be dismissed.
Statuses which impact GPA, Completion Rate and Maximum Time Frame
Incomplete: An incomplete course must be completed within eight weeks of the published end of the course. Failure to do so will result in failing the course. This impacts completion rate, GPA, and maximum time frame.
Withdrawal: A student withdrawing before the midpoint of a course (end of the fourth week of an eight-week course) will receive a W for the course. This impacts maximum time frame and completion rate but does not impact GPA. If a student withdraws after the midpoint of the course he/she will receive a grade of F for the course. This impacts maximum time frame, GPA, and completion rate. Please see the Withdrawal Policy for more details.
Repeated Course: A student who repeats a failed course will have the F grade super ceded by the new grade. The original grade of F will be replaced by an R, which means that a grade was replaced by a more recent attempt. This impacts maximum time frame, GPA, and completion rate.
Transfer Credits: Transfer credits are counted as both attempted and completed hours, and impact maximum time frame as appropriate. ABTU does not award transfer credits for transitional/remedial courses. Only two D’s will be accepted from a student’s prior transcript, otherwise only grades of a C or above will be accepted. Transfer credits may impact financial aid awards and eligibility.
Unsatisfactory Progress in first Academic Term: If a student has a GPA of 1.0 or less, the college has the option to dismiss the students without allowing for any warning. However, the academic advising and student support efforts offered by ABTU allow for numerous opportunities for conversation about academic performance prior to dismissal.
Updated 3/16/2021 to include appeals requirements, by Ramsey Atieh.
Updated 11/20/2020 to improve clarity for SAP requirements by Ramsey Atieh.
Updated 10/14/2019 to include vocational program SAP requirements by Ramsey Atieh.
Updated by Ramsey Atieh on 12/28/2018: Updated all semester / academic term lengths to 16 weeks. Updated course lengths to 8 weeks. Updated Transfer Credit policy reference.