Satisfactory Academic Progress for Federal Financial Aid

The Office of Financial Aid is required to monitor satisfactory academic progress as it relates to the renewal of financial assistance. To remain eligible for most types of financial aid, particularly Federal Title IV and state assistance, students must meet minimum academic requirements at the conclusion of each semester

Please note that these standards may differ from the Degree Requirements established by the Registrar’s Office.

The financial aid satisfactory academic progress policy requires that students meet the following standards:

  • Successfully complete 67% of cumulative course units attempted at the end of each semester which is considered the PACE at which a student must progress within the maximum permitted timeframe (12 semesters).
  • Achieve an appropriate cumulative grade point average (GPA) at the end of each semester.

1.5 GPA: between 1 to 3 course units
1.8 GPA: more than 3 and up to 6 course units
1.9 GPA: more than 6 and up to 10 course units
2.0 GPA: more than 10 course units

Satisfactory academic progress reviews at Gettysburg College will take into consideration only those course units posted to the student's academic record by the Registrar's Office. Grades for courses transferred into Gettysburg College are not included in the student's cumulative grade point average (GPA). For new transfer students, course credits from another institution which are accepted toward the student's educational program at Gettysburg will count as both attempted and completed course units.

Treatment of course withdrawals, incomplete(s) and repeated courses

Withdrawals: Courses dropped within the 100% refund period (during the add/drop period) will not count as attempted. However, classes dropped after this point will count as attempted and will be factored into a student's satisfactory academic progress.  Students who take a leave of absence mid-semester may have difficulty meeting the satisfactory academic progress standards upon their return to the College.  We encourage those students to file a Letter of Appeal requesting a review of the situation and the development of an “academic plan” that will permit them to continue receiving financial aid from Title IV Federal Student Aid resources.

Incompletes: A student will not lose eligibility because of a course incomplete, unless he/she is already on financial aid warning or probation. However, the final grade results might impact future eligibility. Grades submitted by the mid-point of the semester will be considered for the current semester; grades submitted later in the semester will not be considered until the following semester.

Repeated courses: Courses that are repeated will show as units attempted each time they are taken; however, only the final attempt will be included as a course completed. Only the last reported grade will be included in the student's GPA.

Failure to maintain satisfactory academic progress

The Office of Financial Aid will notify students who do not meet the minimum standards with a letter.  The first time a student fails to meet one or more of the satisfactory academic progress requirements, he/she will be given a financial aid warning for one academic semester.

While on financial aid warning, a student is still eligible to receive financial aid. However, if after the warning period, the student is not deemed to be maintaining satisfactory academic progress, the student will no longer be eligible to receive federal and/or state financial assistance.


A student who is not meeting the satisfactory academic progress standards may petition for reconsideration of Title IV eligibility. The reasons one may file an appeal include: a student’s injury or illness, the death of a relative, or other special circumstances.

The student is required to provide the following appeal information - why the student failed to meet satisfactory academic progress, and what has changed that will allow the student to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress at the end of the next evaluation period.

Appeals need to be submitted in writing with the Letter of Appeal Form and addressed to the Director of Financial Aid at least 30 days before the semester in which the student is seeking financial assistance. The student will be notified in writing of the decision within two weeks from the date the appeal is received. The appeal decision is final.

A student who has a successful appeal with eligibility for Title IV aid reinstated will be placed on Financial Aid Probation for the next academic semester.  If after the probation period satisfactory academic progress standards are not met, the student will no longer be eligible to receive federal financial assistance.


A student who is denied financial aid due to the lack of satisfactory academic progress can have eligibility reinstated once he/she is in good standing with all of the requirements. A student may reestablish eligibility for financial aid at any point during the academic year and be given the same consideration for aid as other students maintaining satisfactory academic progress, provided funds are available.

Satisfactory Academic Progress- VA Educational Benefits

Gettysburg College is required to notify the VA when a student is placed on academic probation. The Gettysburg College Yellow Ribbon Grant will only be awarded once funding from the VA is confirmed.