Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy
To be eligible to receive any federal, state or private educational loans funds, students must adhere to the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarship's (OSFAS) policy on Satisfactory Academic Progress. The intent of this policy is to ensure that students who are receiving federal and state financial aid as well private educational loans for their education are making measurable progress toward completion of a degree in a reasonable period of time. Students are measured on GPA, Completion Rate and Maximum Timeframe. Students who fail to meet SAP standards will be ineligible to receive any federal, state or private educational loans funds. Students who are found ineligible may appeal this determination under specifically prescribed conditions.
Minimum USC Cumulative GPA Requirements
|Undergraduate||2.00 USC Cumulative GPA|
|Graduate/Graduate Business (Master's)||3.00 USC Cumulative GPA|
|Law/Pharmacy/Medical||2.00 USC Cumulative GPA|
|Certificate of Graduate Studies||3.00 USC Cumulative GPA|
Measurement and Time Frame
Satisfactory academic progress is measured annually by the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships. The academic year for Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) eligibility determination is comprised of the fall, spring, and summer terms. This measurement occurs at the conclusion of each spring semester after the spring grade processing is complete. However if a student attends summer school, they will also be reviewed at the end of the summer session. This measurement will determine if the student has made sufficient progress to be eligible for financial aid for the subsequent fall, spring and summer semester. Students whose records are not reviewed at the end of spring or summer, will be reviewed when they submit a FAFSA for upcoming year, submit a Private loan application or receive a state scholarship.
Doctoral students are only assessed on percentage completion. Doctoral students must earn 67 percent of all hours accepted at USC plus transfer hours accepted regardless of whether federal financial aid was received.
Maximum Time Frame
The maximum time frame for undergraduate, graduate, and professional students varies depending on your degree program. Once students reach their maximum time frame or it’s determined they cannot complete their degree within the maximum time frame limit, they are no longer eligible to receive federal, state, or private loan funds.
|Graduate (Master's)||75 Hours|
|Graduate Business (Master's)||105 Hours|
|Certificate of Graduate Studies||36 Hours|
An undergraduate student’s academic record will be assessed once the student has attempted 165 credit hours to ensure that they can complete the degree within the maximum time frame limit. This assessment will occur during the fall and spring semesters. At any point during the academic year, if the sum of the two items listed below exceeds 180 credits, the student will be deemed ineligible to receive federal, state, and private educational loan funds.
The number of credits the student attempted (includes all credits: earned, failed, transfer hours accepted, Incompletes, and Withdrawals)
The number of remaining credits needed to complete the degree
If the student exceeds the maximum time frame or it is determined that the student cannot complete the degree within your maximum time frame, the student’s financial aid will be cancelled immediately.
All students at the University of South Carolina are expected to earn 67 percent of all hours attempted at USC plus transfer hours accepted.
Satisfactory Academic Progress At a Glance
Financial Aid Covered Under SAP
Federal Pell Grants
Federal Work-Study Program
Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants
Federal Perkins Loans
Federal Direct Loans, subsidized and unsubsidized
Federal Direct PLUS Loan
Federal Direct Grad PLUS Loan
Nursing Student Loans and Scholarships
Health Professions Loans, Scholarships and Grants
Private Educational Loans
South Carolina Teachers Loan Program
South Carolina Career Changers Loan
South Carolina Need-Based Grant Program
National Guard CAP
South Carolina LIFE Scholarship
South Carolina HOPE Scholarship
South Carolina Palmetto Fellows Scholarship
Other federal or state programs as required
The Satisfactory Academic Progress policy standards will not apply to any hours forgiven under the University of South Carolina Academic Forgiveness Program. Students who have been granted academic forgiveness must contact the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships (OSFAS) for further assessment.
Change of Major and Second Degrees
Students who must remain enrolled beyond their maximum time frame due to a change of major or completing a second degree will be required to submit an appeal once they reach their maximum time frame.
In determining a student's SAP standing, classes in which a student receives a W, WF, I, U, NR, or F are counted as attempted hours but not hours earned. Only grades of A, B, C, D, S, and T are counted as attempted hours and hours earned. Students enrolled in audit courses (AUD) will not receive financial aid for these classes. Grades of W, NR, I, U, S, T and AUD are not used when computing GPA. Receiving grades of W, WF, I U, NR, or F can negatively impact the percentage of completion.
Repeated courses and transfer hours accepted by USC will be counted in both the attempted hours and hours earned.
To be eligible to receive any federal, state, and/or private loan funding as a transient student, a student must have earned a USC cumulative Grade Point Average of 2.00 or higher.
The deadline for receipt of appeals in the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships is 14 business days prior to the end of the semester for which aid is requested. See the list of appeal deadlines by semester.