Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy for Student Financial Assistance
Students receiving financial assistance are required by federal regulation to be making Satisfactory Academic Progress in order to continue to receive financial assistance while enrolled at The University of The Arts.
Federal regulations require that an institution establish, publish, and apply reasonable standards for measuring whether a student, who is otherwise eligible for assistance, is maintaining satisfactory academic progress in his or her program of study. The standards must be the same or stricter than the institution’s standards for a student enrolled in the same academic program who is not receiving financial assistance. Listed below is the complete statement of Minimum Standards for Satisfactory Academic Progress for financial assistance recipients.
This policy is separate from The University of The Arts Merit Aid Terms and Conditions and from any policies that individual colleges or programs may have.
Minimum Standards for Satisfactory Academic Progress for Financial Assistance
Students must complete at least 12 credits per semester and 24 credits per year when full time, or a pro-rated number of credits when enrolled for a portion of the year as calculated below under Quantitative Standards.
Students must complete 66.67 percent of all credits they are registered for on the last day of the drop/add period as calculated below under Quantitative Standards.
Students must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.0 as calculated below under Qualitative Standards.
Students may submit an appeal to the Office of Student Financial Services if they fail to meet the University’s Satisfactory Academic Progress policy two semesters in a row for Student Financial Assistance.
Maximum Timeframes for Completing Degree Requirements
- Students are expected to complete their program of study (degree, certificate or diploma) in the number of semesters indicated by the University's course catalog. Transfer students and students changing programs are placed by their academic chair/director in an appropriate semester on the basis of the number and type of credits transferred. Such students are expected to complete their degree according to the remaining semesters in their program plus one additional semester to allow for scheduling difficulties. Students are strongly advised to review their degree audit and program requirements with their advisor to ensure that their remaining requirements and graduation plan are understood.
- The maximum time allotted for completion of the Baccalaureate degree requirements is six years for full-time students and twelve years for part-time students. Transfer credits earned at other institutions that are applicable to the student’s program of study will be considered in determining the student’s maximum timeframe for program.
- The maximum timeframe for completing certificate or diploma requirements is three years for full-time students and six years for part-time students.
- University-based financial assistance is only available for eight semesters for undergraduate students and four semesters for certificate or diploma students.
Students must make quantitative and qualitative progress toward their educational goals each academic year to receive assistance. The academic year consists of two regular semesters and the summer sessions.
- Undergraduate students must successfully complete a minimum of 66.67 percent of all credits attempted to be making satisfactory progress and maintain financial aid eligibility.
- Full-time undergraduate students must successfully complete a minimum of 24 credit hours each academic year, and a minimum of 12 credit hours each semester. Students admitted in January must successfully complete a minimum of 12 credits during their first Spring semester. Please note that undergraduate students without transfer credits, who only complete 12 credits a semester, will not be able to complete their degree requirements within the eight semesters allotted for financial assistance. Such students will not only lose University-based assistance after eight semesters, but will also incur substantial out-of-pocket costs for all remaining semesters. The same policy and caution applies to transfer students, although the number of semesters is prorated in accordance with the transfer credits awarded. Students are strongly advised to follow the degree plan published in the catalog and established by their advisor.
- Undergraduate students enrolled on a three-quarter-time basis (9-11 credits per semester) must successfully complete a minimum of 18 credit hours each academic year.
- Undergraduate students enrolled on a half-time basis (6-8 credits per semester) must successfully complete a minimum of 12 credit hours each academic year.
- Undergraduate students enrolled on a less than half-time basis (less than 6 credits per semester) must successfully complete all credit hours they attempt each academic year.
- The 150% Rule: The number of attempted credit hours an undergraduate student takes cannot exceed 150% of their overall credits completed to date (attempted/completed credits are reviewed at the end of each Spring semester of the academic year). Additionally, if a student exceeds 150% of their overall required credits to graduate, they are no longer eligible for federal aid.* Example: Students gaining a bachelor’s degree requiring 120 overall credits cannot exceed 180 attempted credit hours. Once a student exceeds 180 attempted credits (150%), he/she will no longer be eligible for federal aid.
Although 12 credits is the minimum per-semester credit accumulation to maintain eligibility for financial assistance, a student completing only this minimum WILL NOT be on track to graduate in four years at this rate. In addition, “D” grades will cause a student to fail the qualitative (GPA) progress standard.
- Undergraduate students must maintain a Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.0 calculated at the end of the academic year in order to be considered a student in good standing.
- Required classes that are repeated as a result of a failed or inadequate grade will only be counted once towards the calculation of credits completed, while all attempts will be included in the calculation of "credits attempted."
- The highest grade of any classes repeated will be counted in the GPA calculation
The maximum number of remedial credits for which a student may receive financial aid is one year’s worth of noncredit remedial course work. The University of the Arts has established 12 credits as one year’s worth of noncredit remedial course work. The need for remedial coursework does not increase the maximum numbers of University assistance available to a student.
If the student is dismissed or suspended from The University, a College, or a program for any reason, the student is automatically ineligible for financial assistance.
Students may petition to the Office of Student Financial Services to re-establish their eligibility for assistance, which may be granted on a permanent or probationary status.
Measurement of Academic Progress Requirements
Academic progress will be measured at the conclusion of every fall and spring semester. Students who were enrolled during the Fall and/or Spring semesters and failed to meet the qualitative and/or quantitative requirements for academic progress can attempt to complete additional credits and bring up their GPA during the summer sessions. Please note that only those credits earned at The University of The Arts will affect the GPA. Credits taken at another college or university post to the UArts transcript as transfer credits only (no grades are posted), and will only affect the number of total credits earned, not the semester or cumulative GPA. Upon completion of the additional credits, a new determination of academic progress will be made.
Students who transfer to the University for the spring semester, and are required to take summer Foundation classes in the Summer semester, are evaluated for adequate progress towards degree after the end of the summer Foundation semester.
All students seeking financial assistance are subject to the Satisfactory Academic Standards regardless of whether or not they received financial assistance previously.
Failures and withdrawals are counted as courses attempted, not completed. Incompletes are not counted toward credits completed until after the course work is successfully completed and grades are posted by the Registrar. Required classes that are repeated as a result of a failed or inadequate grade will only be counted once towards the calculation of credits completed, while all attempts will be included in the calculation of “credits attempted.”
When Minimum Standards of Academic Progress Are Not Achieved – Appeals for Reinstatement of Financial Assistance
A student who does not make satisfactory academic progress for two semesters in a row will be placed on Financial Assistance Suspension until the requirements for satisfactory academic progress are met. The student will be notified in writing of the financial assistance suspension. In such cases, the student can appeal the decision to the Office of Student Financial Services. The appeal must be submitted in writing within two weeks of being placed on financial assistance. suspension and contain the following:
- A specific explanation of the extenuating circumstances which prevented the student from achieving satisfactory academic progress including exact dates and details as appropriate.
- A success plan for the future that addresses the prior issues that prevented academic success and describes the changes that will be made by the student to ensure future success.
- At least one letter of academic support from an instructor that the student has had for a three credit course - and passed - while at The University of the Arts.
- Any appropriate documentation (medical records, death certificate, etc.)
The following types of mitigating circumstances may be considered when a student appeals: extended illness, recent diagnosis of documented learning disability, death in the family, and changes in educational objective. The Office of Student Financial Services may request additional documentation and/or require a personal interview with the student. After the review, The Office of Student Financial Services will notify the student in writing of the action taken.
If the Office of Student Financial Services determines that the Academic Progress Standards can be waived for one semester, the student will be placed on Financial Assistance Probation. At the end of the probationary semester if academic requirements have been met, the probationary status will be removed. If academic requirements have not been met, the student will be placed on Financial Assistance Suspension.
Once financial assistance has been discontinued, it will be reinstated provided:
- The student has successfully achieved the required number of credits and grade point average;
- The student has requested reinstatement in writing; and
- Funds are still available.
Reinstatement is not automatic. The student is responsible for making certain that the grades and credits completed have been properly posted with the Registrar prior to requesting reinstatement of financial assistance. Students are encouraged to file all financial assistance application forms by The University of The Arts’ established deadline so that once reinstatement has been granted, he or she can be considered for assistance as quickly as possible.
A student who is denied assistance based on qualitative or quantitative standards will be considered for assistance when standards have been met. No aid may be awarded retroactively to the semester(s) in which standards were not met.
PHEAA State Grant Appeals
The University has no authority to make exceptions to PHEAA state grant policies. Students wishing to appeal the loss of state grants must write a letter of appeal to PHEAA. Appeal letters must include documentation of those significant events (major illness, severe injury, or family upheaval such as divorce or death) that impacted the student’s academic performance. Students wishing to appeal the loss of state grant eligibility are urged to do so as soon as such information is known, as the state requires several weeks (typically 8-10) to respond to appeals.
Terms and Conditions for Merit-Based Assistance
A merit-based scholarship, grant or award, including Presidential, Director’s, Trustee, Promising Artist, Artist Grant, and Named/Endowed Scholarships or Awards will be renewed under the following terms and conditions:
- The student must enroll as a full-time undergraduate at the University. Full time is defined as completing between 12 and 18 credits each semester. Students who complete fewer than 12 credits each semester may have their scholarship/grant revoked. The award will not be granted for more than eight semesters. The student must maintain satisfactory academic progress in accordance with University regulations.
- The scholarship/grant will be revoked should the student withdraw from the University. The University reserves the right to terminate this scholarship/grant if the student’s enrollment is not continuous from the date of original entry. Students who take an approved leave of absence of no longer than two semesters will be eligible for scholarships/grants upon their return to the University.
- Should the student be subject to disciplinary dismissal, academic probation or dismissal while enrolled at the University the scholarship/grant will be revoked.
- The University reserves the right to reduce this scholarship/grant to eliminate any cash refund should the scholarship/grant when combined with other financial aid, outside scholarships, or benefits exceed tuition or the cost of attendance.
- The Award is a tuition scholarship, which cannot be combined with other University sponsored grants, scholarships, or benefits, (which include but are not limited to tuition remission, tuition exchange, or tuition discounts), to be used toward dormitory fees, or other non-tuition expenses.
- PHEAA and/or other state grant recipients are subject to specific gift aid tests and may not receive grants and scholarships exceeding tuition, fees, and an allowance for books and supplies.
- Should the student decline this scholarship/grant, the offer becomes void and is canceled. If the scholarship/grant is canceled, the student may reapply, but will be considered on a funds available basis may not be awarded the same amount.
- The scholarship/grant cannot be combined with tuition remission, the Legacy or Family Scholarship, alumni discount or the sibling discount. A sibling of a scholarship/grant recipient will, however, qualify for the sibling discount or Legacy or Family Scholarship.
- Scholarship/grant recipients are required to maintain a minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA. The University reserves the right to revoke the scholarship/grant in full or in part should the recipient’s cumulative GPA fall below 2.0.