Academic Progress

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East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania has developed standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) in accordance with federal regulations. These procedures measures qualitative (cumulative quality point average), quantitative (number of credits completed) and maximum time frame for completion.

A student must maintain satisfactory academic progress to continue to receive federal Title IV aid. Federal financial aid includes Federal PELL Grant, Federal SEOG, Federal Perkins Loan, Federal Work Study, Federal Direct Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized), Federal Direct PLUS Loan and Federal Graduate PLUS Loan.

Failure to maintain satisfactory academic progress, according to these standards, will result in the loss of Federal Title IV financial aid until such time as the student is again maintaining satisfactory academic progress. All periods of enrollment are included, whether or not the student received federal financial aid during that time.

These procedures are separate from the University's academic standing/scholarship policy.

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Requirements
[effective 2012-2013]

A student must meet all of the following requirements in order to be making satisfactory academic progress for Title IV aid:

  1. Successfully complete 70% of the total cumulative credits attempted. Credits attempted are credits you were enrolled in including credits for courses you failed or withdrew from. Transfer credits that have been accepted will be included in credits attempted when determining SAP.
  2. Undergraduate students must have a cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of at least 2.000. Graduate students must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.000.

    Each student will be reviewed for progress on an annual basis after the completion of the spring semester. The review determines student aid eligibility for the next enrollment period (which includes the summer session and/or the following academic school year).

All students are subject to the progress requirements regardless of previous receipt of federal financial aid during that time.

Maximum Time Frame

Undergraduate students may receive federal aid for up to 180 cumulative credits attempted including transfer credits. State grant eligibility may vary (Pennsylvania allows up to 8 full-time semesters). Students who have attempted 180 credits with or without the benefit of financial assistance are no longer eligible to receive federal financial aid.

Graduate students may receive federal aid for up to 72 cumulative credits attempted.

Effect of Incompletes, Withdrawals, Failures, and Repeats

All incompletes, withdrawals, failures, and repeats are included as attempted credits when determining SAP for financial aid. Remedial courses successfully completed will count towards satisfactory academic progress. However, remedial courses do not count towards graduation.


Credits Attempted: Credits for which a grade of A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D, E, F, I, L, P, S, U, W, X, Y, Z has been received.

Successfully Completed Credits: Credits for which a grade of A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-, D, L, S, or P has been received. Grades of E, F, I, U, W, X, Y, Z and grades in repeated courses do not count as successfully completed credits.

Repeated classes will not count toward academic progress if the class was passed the first time the student was enrolled and received a passing grade. Only repeated classes that the student originally failed will be counted toward academic progress. Each time a class is repeated it will be included in the cumulative credits attempted.

Eliminating Deficiencies

If a student is deficient in credits and/or GPA at the end of the academic year, summer school classes may be used to eliminate the deficiency. No federal financial aid will be provided to help defray summer costs. Students may apply for an alternative/private loan or should discuss payment options for summer school with the staff in Enrollment Services.

If students opt to not enroll in summer school at ESU to help eliminate their deficiency, please note the following:

  • Transient clearance must be obtained prior to taking courses elsewhere to ensure that these credits will be accepted at ESU;
  • Courses taken elsewhere will not affect the GPA. If the student's deficiency is in GPA, taking courses at another institution will not make up that deficiency. The only exception is students who were approved to participating in the PASSHE Visiting Student program.
  • In addition, credits received from Advanced Placement Exams, College Level Examination Program (CLEP) tests or any other type of prior learning will not be used to satisfy a credit deficiency.

Reentry to East Stroudsburg University

A period of non-enrollment does not reinstate financial aid eligibility. Students who are readmitted to ESU will have their financial aid progress reviewed and all previous coursework will be measured according to these procedures upon reentry.

Pennsylvania State Grants

Students are required to make satisfactory academic progress for receipt of State Grant aid. For each academic year (summer fall and/or spring term) during which State Grant aid is received, a student must successfully complete the minimum number of credits appropriate to the student's enrollment status during the terms for which State Grant aid was received. Full–time students must complete 12 new credits per term and part–time students must complete a minimum of 6 new credits per term.


  1. A student enrolled full–time for Fall and Spring semesters who received a PA State Grant for both terms would be required to complete 24 new credits during that time.
  2. A student enrolled full–time fall and full–time spring received a PA State Grant for the spring only term. This student would be required to complete 12 credits during the spring term. Credits completed in the fall semester will not count towards academic progress.
  3. A student enrolled full–time fall and half–time spring who received a PA State Grant for both terms would be required to complete 18 new credits during that time.
  4. A student enrolled full–time summer and full–time academic year who received a PA State Grant for all three terms would be required to complete 36 new credits during that time.

Remedial Credits—the successful completion of a remedial class may not always count towards the PA State Grant academic progress requirement. Students receiving a PA State Grant who are taking remedial courses should consult with the Center for Enrollment Services.

Financial Aid Appeals

A student who has been denied federal aid for failure to meet the satisfactory academic progress requirements may appeal that denial. By federal regulations, the grounds for an appeal are:

    1. The death of a relative of the student
    2. An illness or injury of the student or
    3. Other extenuating circumstances which are beyond the student's control

The student must submit a written appeal indicating why they failed to make satisfactory academic progress and what may have changed in the student's situation that will allow the student to demonstrate SAP at the next review (one semester). Supporting documentation must be included with the appeal such as medical documentation, a copy of a death certificate, etc.

The appeal must be submitted to Enrollment Services where the Financial Aid Academic Progress Review Committee will review the request. Students who are granted an appeal will have one semester to regain eligibility. Submitting an appeal does not guarantee approval. The deadline to submit an appeal for the fall semester is July 15th. The spring semester deadline is Dec. 15th.

Note: The above appeal process is for Federal Title IV aid only. This does not apply to the Pennsylvania State Grant program (PHEAA). All appeals of State Grant progress must be sent directly to PHEAA State Grant Division. For additional information on Pennsylvania State Grant appeals, please call 1-800-692-7392.