Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

The University of Arizona cares about your academic success and encourages you to complete your degree in the most efficient, successful manner possible.

In order to remain compliant with the Department of Education, we require you to meet Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) standards in order to continue to receive your financial aid. Federal regulations require Arizona to establish, publish, and apply standards to monitor your progress toward completing your degree program.

There are three SAP standards:

  • GPA
  • Pace
  • Timeframe

According to federal regulations, students who fail to make satisfactory academic progress towards their degree or certificate will lose their ability to receive federal student aid.

The Office of Scholarships & Financial Aid (OSFA) monitors students at the end of every semester on all three SAP standards. If you are unable to meet these standards, you may lose your federal financial aid eligibility. This could also affect other non-federal financial aid. Law, Medicine, and Pharmacy students are monitored by their respective colleges.

SAP Status Review and Notification Timeframe

OSFA completes the review of students' SAP statuses in the weeks following the end of the respective semester. For Fall 2023 SAP status, OSFA will review the week of December 18th for all students who have all of these fall grades posted. If all of your grades have not yet been posted, the review will be completed after the week of January 2, 2024.
Please note: incomplete grades count towards the SAP calculation at the time SAP is processed. Once you have a grade that replaces your incomplete, your SAP status will not be reevaluated until the following term the student is enrolled.

Students will receive emails notifying them of their SAP status and to-do items/holds (if applicable) in their UAccess student center during this timeframe. Students can review their SAP status by navigating to the Financial Aid Summary page and clicking the Satisfactory Academic Progress link near the bottom of the page. There students will find current SAP Status, Financial Aid Eligibility, and the most recent semester used to calculate SAP status.


Summer 2024 SAP Appeal August 1, 2024
Summer 2024 SAP Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan August 1, 2024

The Spring 2024 SAP Appeal deadline has passed.

Appeals must be submitted by the established deadline depending on the semester you want to receive financial aid. Incomplete or late appeals may jeopardize the reviewing of your appeal in a time frame that would allow the disbursement of financial aid.

Helpful Tips

Helpful information to complete your SAP appeal form:

  • To review which SAP standard you are not meeting go to, Student Center > Financial Aid > Financial Aid Summary > Satisfactory Academic Progress
Satisfactory Academic Progress

  • Submit your completed SAP Appeal Form to OSFA as soon as you are notified of your SAP suspension (if applicable) to ensure you meet the submission deadline mentioned above. 
  • You will need to meet with your Academic Advisor to complete your SAP Appeal form, schedule your appointment with them early in the semester.
  • Incomplete or late appeals will not be reviewed after the deadline.
  • To receive financial aid, you must reestablish eligibility for financial aid no later than the last day of the semester. SAP appeals submitted after this date cannot be approved.
  • Utilize your Advisement Report in your Student Center, which contains your degree requirements.
  • View a flowchart here of the SAP Appeal steps you need to take complete.
  • Attend one of our Getting Your SAP Back on Track Workshops. Find more information here.
  • Review each of the drop downs below for additional information regarding the University of Arizona’s SAP Standards, SAP Statuses, and how to regain your financial aid eligibility (including detailed instructions on how to complete a SAP appeal):

You must successfully meet the minimum cumulative GPA as shown below:

Undergraduate 2.0
Graduate 3.0
Law 2.0
Medicine Must receive passing grade in all courses
Pharmacy Must pass all courses with a B or higher

The following courses do not count towards the SAP GPA:

  • Incomplete*
  • Withdrawn
  • Transfer credits

The following courses do count towards the SAP GPA:

You must meet Pace and progress toward graduation by successfully completing 2/3 of the cumulative units you attempted.

Pace = Cumulative completed units with passing grade / Total cumulative attempted units

Below are examples of how a student would meet or not meet the Pace SAP standard.

Student A 67 100 67% Yes
Student B 60 100 60% No

We encourage you to be mindful of how many units you are attempting throughout your career. Work with your academic advisor to create a plan to complete your courses at a steady, but manageable pace.

The following outcomes count as both attempted and completed in the Pace SAP calculation:

  • Passing grades (including College of Medicine Honors grades)
  • Accepted transfer units

The following outcomes count as attempted (but not as completed) in the Pace SAP calculation:

  • Incomplete*
  • Failed
  • Withdrawn
  • More than one repeat of any previously passed course

The following attempted or completed courses do not count in your Pace SAP calculation:

  • Correspondence
  • Audit
  • Credit by exam

*Incomplete classes that are later converted into a grade will be counted in the GPA and Pace standards in accordance with the Registrar's Incomplete Grade Policy.

Federal financial aid is meant to enable you to make progress toward the completion of your degree(s). To calculate academic progress, the University of Arizona sets a maximum timeframe in which you are expected to finish a program. Students who are exceeding the Maximum Timeframe Standard will be placed in “Financial Aid Suspended Status” the first time, there is no “Financial Aid Warning Status” for this SAP standard. Excess units are defined below:

Undergraduate 150% program length
Graduate Monitored by Graduate College
Law Monitored by Law College
Medicine Monitored by College of Medicine
Pharmacy Monitored by College of Pharmacy

The following example shows when an undergraduate student does not meet the Timeframe standard:

If the degree requires 120 units to graduate, you cannot exceed 180 units. This student, attempted 190 units, which exceeds the 150 % maximum timeframe. 
Degree credit requirements 150% Cumulative SAP Status
120 180 190 Not Meeting

Financial Aid Warning Status
The first semester you do not meet either the GPA or PACE SAP standards, you will be placed in Financial Aid Warning Status. During the subsequent semester you are still eligible for financial aid, however you are one semester away from losing your financial aid eligibility.

Financial Aid Suspension Status
If at the end of your warning semester you are still not meeting the PACE or GPA SAP standards, you are then placed in Financial Aid Suspension Status. For the Maximum Timeframe SAP standard, you will be placed in financial Aid Suspension Status the first time you do not meet the standard. You cannot receive federal or institutional financial aid while in the Financial Aid Suspension Status. However, you may submit a SAP appeal to regain eligibility.

Financial Aid SAP Academic Plan Status
If your SAP appeal is approved, you will be placed on a probation status of Academic Plan for one semester. You will be eligible to receive financial aid for this semester and you must successfully follow your SAP Probationary Conditions (and for Maximum Timeframe students, your Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan) while in this status. You will be monitored by OSFA at the end of each semester. 

  • If you meet SAP standards at the end of the semester, you will be placed back into a Meets SAP Status and you will be eligible to receive financial aid for the next semester.
  • If you do not meet SAP standards at the end of the semester but meet your probationary conditions, you will remain in an Academic Plan status and will not need to submit an additional appeal to receive financial aid for the next semester.
  • If you do not meet your probationary conditions (and for Maximum Timeframe students, your Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan), you will be placed back on the Financial Aid Suspension status and you will not be eligible for financial aid. You may appeal this status by submitting a new SAP Appeal (with new extenuating circumstances) in order for your aid eligibility to be re-reviewed.

The SAP Appeal includes three sections:

  • Section 1: Student Circumstances
    • You will answer a set of questions to address the extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented you from meeting one or more of the SAP standards in the past semester and what steps you have taken/will take to ensure that you will be academically successful in the future.
    • If you feel supporting documentation may be helpful in our review, you may submit additional documentation. 
  • Section 2: Academic Advisor Statement, Required
    • This section will be completed by your academic advisor. During a meeting with your academic advisor, you will both determine the best plan of action to regain eligibility. This will include addressing which SAP standard(s) you are currently not meeting and sharing your plan of action.
    • After your meeting with your academic advisor, they will write a statement for our review and sign your form.
  • Section 3: Student Certification In this section, your signature certifies that you understand and agree:
    • To read and complete any necessary requirements that you receive via your University of Arizona email from our office
    • All information submitted with your appeal is true 
    • Submission of the SAP Appeal form does not guarantee approval

If you are not meeting the Maximum Timeframe Standard, you will also need to include the Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan that has been approved by your academic advisor.

The Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan form includes five sections:

  • Section 1
    • Indicate if this is the first time you are submitting an academic plan or if this is an update to a previous academic plan.
  • Section 2: Advising 
    • Must be completed by your Academic Advisor.
    • This section helps us understand your current circumstances more clearly.
  • Section 3: Academic Plan
    • Work with your advisor to determine your academic plan to graduate.You will only be allowed to take the coursework that is listed on this plan
    • We will use this plan to check your progress each semester, so be thorough in your plan.
    • If necessary, advisors may list the general course/tier that is required rather than a specific course number and name.
    • Be sure to total the number of needed units at the bottom of this section.
  • Section 4: Student Certification
    • With your signature, you are certifying that you understand you must follow the academic plan as determined by their academic advisor and failure to do so may result in you becoming ineligible for federal or state financial aid.
  • Section 5: Advisor Certification
    • Your advisor will need to sign this section, certifying that they have met with you and you both agree to the plan as listed above.

We understand you might have questions about how this could impact your funding and your options moving forward. If you were placed in a warning status, here is a list of frequently asked questions to help you plan for the upcoming semester: 

  • Can I get out of the ‘Financial Aid Warning’ status and regain my ‘Meeting SAP Standards’ status? Yes! If you were placed in Financial Aid Warning status because of your GPA and/or PACE you will have one semester to attempt to meet those standards.  If at the end of the semester you are now meeting these standards, you will be placed back to the ‘Meeting SAP’ status.
  • What happens if I do not meet SAP standards at the end of my next semester? If you are still not meeting SAP standards at the end of next semester, you will no longer be eligible for financial aid. If extenuating circumstances prevented you from meeting SAP standards, you may be eligible to submit a SAP appeal, which must be approved by our office to continue to receive aid for an additional semester.
  • What resources are available on campus to support me? Across the Arizona campus, there are countless individuals dedicated to your success and we encourage you to take advantage of some of the services that are available to you, including:

For those not meeting GPA and/or PACE

A student who is suspended for GPA and/or PACE and has an approved appeal will be given probation requirements they must meet within that semester. At the end of the semester, our office will review the student’s academic progress to determine if they have met those conditions. If so, their probation status will roll into the next semester (fall, spring, summer) and they will not be required to submit an additional SAP appeal. 

Rolling Probationary Status Requirements:

  • 2.0 undergraduate semester GPA or 3.0 graduate semester GPA  AND/OR
  • 67% pace completion

*Please note, these are minimum requirements and OSFA may require additional/higher requirements be met for  a student to remain on a probationary status.  

For those not meeting Maximum Timeframe

A student who is suspended for Maximum Timeframe will be asked to submit a Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan in addition to a SAP Appeal Form. They will be required to meet with their Academic Advisor and compile a list of the courses that are needed in order to complete the graduation requirements of their degree(s). 

If their SAP Appeal Form and the Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan is approved, at the end of the following semester, our office will review what coursework the student took during that semester to confirm that only the courses listed on the previously submitted Maximum Timeframe Academic Plan were taken. 

If they have met those conditions, their probation status will roll into the next semester (fall, spring, summer) and they will not be required to submit an additional SAP appeal. 

Students will be placed back in Suspended Status if,

  • A course is taken that is not listed on their Academic Plan,
  • A student withdraws from a course listed on their Academic Plan,
  • Their Academic Plan states that they graduate at the end of the term, and they do not.

Financial aid is available to cover the cost for the first repeat of any previously passed course. 

  • For Maximum Timeframe calculation, each repeat attempt of a course is factored in.
  • For the Pace calculation, any 2nd repeat of a course that was previously passed (with a D or better, including Pass grade) will be counted only as attempted (but not as completed).

Please see the Financial Aid Policy for Repeat Coursework.  

The University of Arizona’s academic repeat policy is different from the federal financial aid repeat regulations.  Academic policies surrounding repeat coursework can be found through the Office of the Registrar, at the Registrar website.

If you withdraw from a course, those units will be factored into the pace and timeframe calculation.

You may choose to take additional coursework at another institution while  also being enrolled at Arizona. If you plan on receiving financial aid to cover courses taken at both institutions, you will need to complete a Consortium Agreement. 

The outcomes of these additional courses may impact your SAP status in the following ways: 

  • GPA: Units taken at another institution that are transferred back to Arizona are not counted in your cumulative GPA calculation.
  • Pace: Units taken at another institution that are transferred back to Arizona will count as attempted and completed in your Pace calculation. If you are not meeting the SAP Pace standard, please note that only ‘C’ grades or better will count toward attempted and completed.
  • Timeframe: Units taken at another institution that are transferred back to Arizona will count as completed in your Timeframe calculation.

All students participating in a consortium agreement must submit transcripts after the semester ends. Please note, due to the timeframe in which transfer units are sent and received, your SAP status may be determined before the consortium units or transfer units are received by Arizona.