Financial Aid Policies

Financial Aid Policies

Students who receive federal, state, and/or institutional financial aid should be aware of all financial aid policies that affect eligibility to receive student aid.  Several important policies are provided below for review.

Attendance Policy

The College outlines the student attendance requirements that each student must follow. Students should become familiar with and adhere to these requirements to comply with federal regulations governing attendance. This procedure is applied to all credit courses, whether or not student financial aid funds have been utilized to pay for the course(s). Failure to comply with attendance procedures may result in the course being marked with an NS designation for non-attendance.

Eligibility for federal student financial aid is, in part, based on your enrollment status for the semester in which you are enrolled. Federal regulations require that students attend all registered classes to receive federal financial aid funds. Students who register for courses but do not attend will be reported as a No Show for non-attendance by your instructor(s). Your financial aid will be adjusted to reflect your financial aid eligibility only for those classes that you attend.

Students who attend a course and cease attendance at a later point may be required to repay all or a portion of financial aid due to the student’s failure to complete the course. Students who are marked as No Show from courses due to non-attendance, as reported by the instructor, must obtain permission from the instructor to re-enroll in a course. Students’ financial aid will not be adjusted until the passing grades have been posted for all courses, including the course marked with the designation No Show.

Book Voucher Policy

Eligible Courses Policy

Federal regulations require that financial aid be applied only towards required courses listed in a student’s program of study. It is important to note that federal financial aid can only pay for coursework fully acceptable to the eligible degree program in which you are enrolled. Federal student aid cannot pay for coursework consider to be beyond the requirements for a student’s program of study.

Student financial aid will be adjusted based upon the number of eligible credit hours that a student enrolls. Failure to register for eligible courses may result in the student being responsible for payment towards the student account balance.

Cincinnati State uses the degree audit system to determine the number of eligible courses a student is enrolled. For more information or guidance with course registration, meet with your Program Chair or Academic Advisor.

Federal regulations require that financial aid be applied only towards required courses listed in a student’s program of study. It is important to note that federal financial aid can only pay for coursework fully acceptable to the eligible degree program in which you are enrolled. Federal student aid cannot pay for coursework consider to be beyond the requirements for a student’s program of study.

Student financial aid will be adjusted based upon the number of eligible credit hours that a student enrolls. Failure to register for eligible courses may result in the student being responsible for payment towards the student account balance.

Cincinnati State uses the degree audit system to determine the number of eligible courses a student is enrolled. For more information or guidance with course registration, meet with your Program Chair or Academic Advisor.

Federal regulations require that financial aid be applied only towards required courses listed in a student’s program of study. It is important to note that federal financial aid can only pay for coursework fully acceptable to the eligible degree program in which you are enrolled. Federal student aid cannot pay for coursework considered to be beyond the requirements for a student’s program of study.

Student financial aid will be adjusted based upon the number of eligible credit hours that a student enrolls. Failure to register for eligible courses may result in the student being responsible for payment towards the student account balance.

Cincinnati State uses the degree audit system to determine the number of eligible courses a student is enrolled. For more information or guidance with course registration, meet with your Program Chair or Academic Advisor.

Financial Aid Disbursement Policy

This policy applies to  students. Institutions are required to use the following disbursement policy for student financial aid every semester of the academic year.

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Packaging Policy

Repeated Courses Policy

In general, students may repeat a course when a grade of B, C, D, or F has previously been earned. When the same course is repeated, the highest grade is calculated in the cumulative GPA. (Note that all grades remain posted on the official student transcript.) However, federal financial aid funds may be used only one time to repeat previously passed courses, for which the student has already earned a passing letter grade. For example, if you have passed a course with a grade of D and have received credit for the course, you may repeat the course to improe your grade only one time and receive federal financial aid funds to pay for the previously passed course.

In some degree programs, students may be required to retake a course as many times as necessary to achieve a grade of C in order to advance to the next level course. However, you will not receive financial aid for the same course more than two times, if you have received credit for the course.

In some cases, it is possible that your total amount of financial aid may cover your account balance when repeating courses. Your financial aid award will be calculated based on the number of eligible financial aid credit hours, excluding non-repeated courses. If you have student loans, you must be enrolled in at least six (6) credits of non-repeated coursework to receive your student loan.

Student Loan Policy

Enrollment & No Show Designation Policy

No Show (NS) Mark Policy for Title IV Recipients

According to federal regulations, an institution must have a procedure for determining whether a Title IV recipient began attendance during a payment period (Office of Financial Aid defines a payment period as a semester), completed the period or should be treated as a “No Show”.

It is an interpretation of the “NS” mark to facilitate compliance with Federal Title IV Regulations. This policy only pertains to those students receiving Title IV funds and will determine the student’s enrollment status with relation disbursement and to the Return of Title IV (R2T4) process.

At the time of disbursement, the Office of Financial Aid reviews and determines student eligibility for Title IV aid. If it is determined that a student receives a “NS” mark for one or more classes, the student Title IV aid will be adjusted accordingly.

Students who receive a “NS” designation for one or more classes, who have been incorrectly marked with a “NS”, it must be determined whether or not this was institution error. Students who have been incorrectly marked with “NS” must wait until passing grades have posted to their academic record in order for the Office of Financial Aid to adjust the student aid for that semester.

If a student receiving Title IV aid receives a “NS” mark for one or more classes and does not receive an earned passing grade (such as an “A”, “B”, “C”, or “D”) upon completion of a class, no financial aid will be disbursed for such classes. Incompletes will not count as a passing grade.

Enrollment

Financial aid will be adjusted according to your hours of enrollment.

For financial aid purposes:

  • Full-time enrollment = 12 or more eligible credit hours
  • Three-quarter time enrollment = 9 to 11 eligible credit hours
  • Half-time enrollment = 6 to 8 eligible credit hours
  • Less-than half-time enrollment = 1 to 5 eligible credit hours

Students must be enrolled for at least half time (six credit hours) in eligible credit hours to be eligible for loans. Any time a Stafford loan-borrowing student withdraws to less than six eligible credit hours, takes off a term, or enrolls less than half time, exit counseling is required. Even though a student may intend to return to Cincinnati State within at least six credit hours, the student is required by federal regulations to complete exit counseling as their repayment deferment time period has begun.

Class attendance is required

Each student is expected to attend all scheduled classes. Each Cincinnati State faculty member will take attendance at every class session for the first two weeks of the semester to establish the student began attendance. Each student should check with his or her instructor to determine how attendance will be taken, and in what ways, if any, attendance is a factor in grading. A student who enrolls but did not attend any classes, does not officially drop or withdraw from the class, or withdraws from a course without having attended the class, will be designated as a no show (NS). The “NS” designation does not appear on a student’s official academic transcript, however:

  • A student who receives an “NS’ designation is financially responsible for payment of the course.
  • A student is not permitted to withdraw from a course in which a “NS” designation has been assigned.
  • A student who registers and receives student loan proceeds but attends less than half-time (six credit hours) is ineligible for all loan proceeds. Cincinnati State will return to the Department of Education (ED) any loan proceeds used to cover tuition cost and notify ED that the student has failed to qualify for the loan. Students who receive a refund of their loan proceeds to cover educational expenses must first repay ED the amount received before Cincinnati State can certify additional loan eligibility for the student.
  • The Office of Financial Aid is required to recalculate a student’s Pell Grant and Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) award to reflect only those eligible credit hours and classes for which the student actually began attendance.

The following are various scenarios the Office of Financial Aid may encounter when processing the return of federal student financial aid, known officially as Return of Title IV Funds or R2T4:

A student receiving a “NS” mark in all class(es): Is considered to never have begun attendance in their classes and no financial aid will be disbursed to student account. Student is responsible for payment of courses.

A student receiving a combination of “NS’s” and “W’s:”If any W is after disbursement, the enrollment status should be considered as an official withdrawal and the date of the withdrawal should be used in the R2T4 calculation.

A student receiving a combination of “NS’s” and “F’s”: Is considered an unofficial withdrawal if the NS’s and F’s are reported grades. If in the event, the student earned the grade of F, it is the student responsibility to contact the instructor to complete the appeal e-form. This form is used to review students earn grade and determine if it should be used in the R2T4 calculation.

If it is determined that the student’s enrollment status is as an unofficial withdrawal, or the student receives all failing grades, the instructor will report the student last date of attendance and will be used in the determination of the R2T4 funds.

A student receiving a combination of “NS’s” and Letter Grades (such as an “A”, “B”, “C”, or “D”): Does not require a R2T4 as the student has completed a class.
U.S. Department of Education Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) GEN-04-03 Code of Federal Regulations 34 CFR 668.22

Code of Federal Regulations 34 CFR 668.22(c)
Code of Federal Regulations 34 CFR 668.22(c)(1)(iii)
Code of Federal Regulations 34 CFR 668.22(c)

Return of Title IV Funds Policy (Official and Unofficial Withdrawals)

I. Purpose

The Return of Title IV policy is to establish the processes for returning federal funds for students who completely withdraw from the institution and/or withdraw from all courses in a given period of enrollment. As defined by the U.S. Department of Education, these students must have a Return of Title IV Funds (R2T4) calculation performed to determine the percentage of aid earned based on the amount of time the student was enrolled at the Institution.

II. Institutional and Student Responsibilities

Cincinnati State’s responsibilities in regards to the Return of Title IV funds:
1. To provide each student with the information in this policy;
2. To identify students affected by this policy and completing the Return of Title IV Funds (R2T4) calculation;
3. To inform the student of the R2T4 calculation and inform them to check their balance owed to Cincinnati State as a result of a required return of funds;
4. To return any unearned Title IV aid that is due to the Title IV programs and, if applicable, notifying the borrower’s holder of federal loan funds of the student’s withdrawal date;
5. To notify student and/or PLUS loan borrower of eligibility for a Post‐Withdrawal Disbursement, if applicable.

Student’s responsibilities in regards to the Return of Title IV funds:
1. Becoming familiar with the Return of Title IV Funds (R2T4) policy and how withdrawing from all courses affects eligibility for Title IV aid;
2. Resolving any outstanding balance owed to Cincinnati State resulting from a required return of unearned Title IV aid;

III. Withdrawals and Financial Aid

Federal Financial Aid (Title IV aid) is awarded under the assumption that a student will remain in attendance for the entire period of enrollment for which aid was awarded. When a student withdraws from all courses, regardless of the reason, the student may no longer be eligible for the full amount of the federal financial aid originally awarded. Instead, the student will only be eligible to keep a portion of the federal financial aid the student received for that term (semester).

Therefore, students who receive federal financial aid and who do not remain in attendance through the end of the term could be responsible for repaying a portion of the financial aid originally received.
Federal regulations require a recalculation of financial aid eligibility if a student:
• Completely withdraws from all classes;
• Stops attending before the semester’s end;
• Does not complete all parts of term (modules) in which the student is enrolled as of the start date of the period of enrollment;
• Fails to earn a passing grade in any class

Note: Cincinnati State’s institutional tuition refund policy is separate from the federal R2T4 regulations to return unearned aid. Even though a student may receive a tuition/fee refund from Cincinnati State, the student may still be required to return unearned financial aid to the U.S. Department of Education.

IV. How to Calculate Earned Aid

Students who receive federal financial aid must remain in their registered classes to “earn” the aid they originally received. The amount of federal aid earned is based on a pro-rated formula. Students who withdraw or do not complete all classes in which they were enrolled may be required to return some of the aid originally awarded to the student.
Institutions, in accordance with federal regulation 34 CFR 668.22, are required to determine the percentage of federal aid “earned” and return the “unearned” portion to the appropriate federal aid programs. The following explains the formula used to determine the percentage of unearned aid to be returned to the federal government:
• The percent earned is equal to the number of calendar days completed up to the student’s withdrawal date divided by the total number of calendar days in the period of enrollment.
• Breaks of 5 days or more are not included in the count of total days in the period of enrollment.

This calculation must be performed within 30 days of the date the school determines that a student has completely withdrawn. The institution must return the unearned funds within 45 days of the calculation.
When calculating the percentage the student completed in the period of enrollment, if a student attended more than 60% of the period of enrollment, the student is considered to have earned 100% of the Title IV funds the student was scheduled to receive during that period.

Institutional Charges
The institutional charges used in the calculation are the charges initially assessed the student’s account for the period of enrollment. Initial charges may only be adjusted by those changes the institution made prior to the student’s withdrawal. The items to be included in the Institutional Charges for the period of enrollment include:
• Tuition
• Mandatory fees
• Course fees
• Special instruction fees
• Meal plans
• Payment Plan fee

The charges excluded from institutional charges for the period of enrollment include, but are not limited to:
• Parking permits
• Library fees
• ID card replacement fee

V. Students Enrolled in Modules

Module Classes are defined as any class that does not span the entire length of the (semester) period of enrollment. These classes may be referred to as ‘mid semester’ or ‘flex’ classes.
Any student who is enrolled in at least one class that is less than the length of the term is classified for that term as a ‘module student”. This means that even if the student enrolls in and passes a module class or classes, then drops or stops attending remaining full term classes, he/she may be subjected to a Title IV Return calculation.
On 09/03/2020, the Department of education released final regulations revising its approach to R2T4 for students withdrawing from modules in 34CFR 668.22.
• Effective 7-1-2021, a student who withdraws from a program offered in modules is not considered to have withdrawn for R2T4 purposes if the student successfully completes:
• The requirements for graduation before completing all scheduled days in the payment period; or
• One module, or a combination of modules that when combined contain 49% or more of the number of days in the payment period.
• Coursework equal to or greater than the definition of half-time enrollment for the payment period.
Scheduled breaks of five or more consecutive days and all days between modules are excluded from the number of days in the payment period used to calculate whether the module(s) completed by the student comprise 49% of the payment period.
• A student who withdraws from a module class within the term without completing a module or combined modules that include 49% or more of the days in the term must still be attending another class or is considered to be a withdrawal, even if registered for future classes starting within the term. In this scenario, the student must—at the time of withdrawal from a module –provide a written statement to the College Financial Aid Office indicating intent to attend (within 45 days) a future class within the term, or the student is considered to be a withdrawal; and a Return to Title IV calculation must be completed. (If the student doesn’t actually attend that future class, a Return to Title IV calculation is still required; withdrawal date/last date of attendance dates back to originally confirmed withdrawal date.)
• Cincinnati State will not implement the “R2T4 Freeze Date” option.

VI. When a Student Fails to Begin Attendance

Students who do not begin attendance in their scheduled classes are not eligible for federal financial aid. If the student owes a balance to Cincinnati State, a financial hold is placed on the student’s account by the Cashier’s office. This means he/she will not be permitted to register for classes or receive transcripts until the amount owed to Cincinnati State is paid in full.

VII. Official Withdrawals
• Student has submitted an official withdrawal form to the Registrar’s Office to notify school of official intent to withdrawal.
• Or student has emailed the Registrar’s Office indicating intent to withdrawal.
• If student withdrew during first two weeks of the term, the official date of withdrawal will be determined as the “last day of academic activity.” Instructors are required to take attendance for the first two weeks of the semester.
• If student withdrew following the first 2 weeks of the term, the official date of withdrawal will be determined as the day the Registrar’s Office receives the notice to withdraw.

a. Reporting
A report is generated by the Financial Aid Office. The report is used to identify those student’s whom have officially withdrawn from all of their Title IV eligible courses in the period of enrollment. This report will also list people that have completed a module class that are no longer attending any other classes.

b. Students Withdrawing Prior to Census
A student may add and/or remove courses before the census date. During this period, the OFA will adjust the student’s financial aid according to the student’s new enrollment status in the period of enrollment.

VIII. Official Withdrawal R2T4 Process
a. The student withdrawals online, emailed the Registration Office or submits a completed Withdrawal Form to the Registration Office at Cincinnati State.
b. The Registration Office will process the withdrawal in Colleague and will enter the withdrawal was submitted.
c. Cincinnati State’s Office of Financial aid will complete an R2T4 calculation to determine the amount of federal financial aid the student earned.
d. Cincinnati State’s Office of Financial aid will return funds to the federal programs, in the order according to federal regulations, on the student’s behalf and the return could result in a balance owed to the school.
e. Cincinnati State’s Office of Financial aid will send an e-mail notification to the student’s e-mail address indicating that a return of funds took place and to check their student account summary to determine if they have a balance.
f. The student is responsible for any and all Cincinnati State charges resulting from an R2T4 calculation.

IX. Unofficial Withdrawals

• A student is considered to be an unofficial withdrawal in the event they receive all F grades or a combination of all F, W, I and U grades at the end of the semester.
• Instructors provide a last date of academic activity for all ‘F’ grades

Cincinnati State is a college that is not required to take attendance. Therefore, if the student has not earned a passing grade in any class the OFA will use the 50% midpoint of the payment period or period of enrollment as the withdrawal date unless the school chooses to use the last date of attendance in an academically related activity.
Cincinnati State will use the withdrawal date that benefits the student when deciding between the midpoint and LDA.

a. Reporting
At the end of the period of enrollment (semester) and after grades are officially posted, a report is created to identify those student’s whom did not earn a passing grade. This report will include the following grades F, W, I, U. It will also include students who only received a passing grade in a module class but had all other grades of F, W, I and U’s.

b. Earned F Grade vs Stopped Attending F Grade
For students who received one or more F grades, their LDA will be reviewed to identify if the student earned the F grade or if the student stopped attending.
• If at least one F grade is (student earned F), the OFA will not complete an R2T4 calculation because the Instructor confirmed the student attended after completing 60% of the semester to earn the F grade.
• If the F grades are not earned (student stopped attending) and there are no earned F’s or any passing grades, the OFA will consider the student as an unofficial withdrawal because the student did not successfully complete at least one course in the period of enrollment. OFA will use the 50% point as the withdrawal date for these students unless the LDA from the instructor would benefit the student.

X. Order of Return to Federal Aid Programs

Cincinnati State must return Title IV funds to the financial aid programs from which the student received aid during the payment period or period of enrollment, in the following order, up to the net amount disbursed from each source:
1. Unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan
2. Subsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan
3. Federal Direct PLUS Loan received on behalf of the student
4. Federal Pell Grant
5. Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant
6. Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

XI. Loan Repayment Information

The loan grace period begins on the withdrawal date from the school or when a student ceases to be enrolled at least half-time. If the student does not re-enroll as a half-time student within 6 months of withdrawal or less than half-time enrollment, the loan(s) enters repayment. The promissory note signed by the borrower outlines the repayment obligations. The student should contact his/her loan servicer to make repayment arrangements.

XII. Post-Withdrawal Disbursements (PWD)

A post-withdrawal disbursement may be required if the total amount of the Title IV aid earned as of the withdrawal date is more than the amount that was disbursed to the student.. To be eligible to receive a post-withdrawal disbursement, students must have a complete financial aid file (verification completed and all tracking requirements satisfied) and meet all eligibility requirements.

a. Grant PWD
Grants from a PWD may be credited to the student’s school account without obtaining student permission.

b. Loan PWD
The College must obtain confirmation from the student, or from a parent for a Direct Parent PLUS Loan, before making any disbursement of loan funds. The student/parent has 14 days from the date of the notification to the student/parent to accept the PWD. Also, for a Direct Loan, the institution must have originated the loan prior to the withdrawal.

XIII. Consequences of Non-Repayment
Cincinnati State will return funds on behalf of a student who owes an overpayment and consider the returned funds as the student’s debt to the institution.

Students who owe Cincinnati State because of an R2T4 calculation will be placed on a financial hold by the Cashiers Office. Students will not be allowed to register for subsequent semesters or receive academic transcripts until the balance is paid in full or until payment arrangements have been made with Cashiers Office. In addition, at the time the R2T4 calculation is completed, if the student received Federal Direct Loans, the OFA will notify students of the federal Loan Exit Counseling requirements.

XIV. Future Eligibility

A withdrawal may affect a student’s completion rate. Please refer to the OFA’s Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) for additional information.

XV. R2T4 Deadlines

a. Withdrawal date of determination without notification:
30 days after the end of the term
b. Return of unearned Title IV funds:
• No later than 45 days after the date the OFA determines the student withdrew
c. Post-withdrawal disbursement for outstanding current allowable charges:
• No later than 180 days after the date the OFA determines the student withdrew
d. Written notification to students to accept PWD for loans:
• Within 30 days of the school’s determination that the student withdrew
• Student has 14 days from the date of the notification to the student to accept the PWD
e. Post-withdrawal disbursement to the student:
• From the date school determined student withdrew: o Loans -No later than 180 days, and
o Grants -No later than 45 days

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

The Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy is required for institutions with students who receive federal financial aid, to measure student academic progress towards a degree or certificate. The policy applies to all students.

Federal regulations require that Cincinnati State Technical and Community College review the academic progress of students receiving federal financial aid. The review process evaluates whether a student is “making measurable progress toward completion of their course of study in order to continue receiving federal financial aid.” All credits attempted, since the first semester of enrollment, and transfer credits, must be included, whether or not federal financial aid was used.

At Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) is evaluated at the end of each semester (Fall, Spring, and Summer) as well as when a FAFSA is received after the evaluation period for the semester. If it is determined that the student is not making satisfactory academic progress, the student will receive an e-mail notification.

SAP must be met by all students receiving Federal Student Aid (FSA), under Title IV programs, including: College Work-Study, Pell Grant, Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, Subsidized and Unsubsidized Direct Loan, and Parent PLUS Loan programs. These standards also apply to State of Ohio funded programs. All Cincinnati State scholarship recipients are expected to adhere to the Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy.

Minimum Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Standards
A student’s cumulative grade point average (GPA) and the percentage of credits completed are used to determine SAP. The review is based on students’ entire enrollment history at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College including any enrollment period in which a student did not receive financial aid, and all transfer credits received. Although withdrawing from a class, or receiving an Incomplete or No Show grade will not affect a students’ grade point average (GPA), it will affect the percentage of credits attempted.

It is the student’s responsibility to read, understand, and adhere to the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy in order to remain eligible for financial aid. Failure to comply with this policy can result in the student’s financial aid being terminated at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College.

Completion Rate & Grade Point Average (GPA) Requirements
To be making satisfactory academic progress, a student must:

  • Maintain a minimum cumulative (GPA) of 2.0 to remain eligible, and
  • Complete at least 67% (or two-thirds) of all courses attempted.
    •  Earned grades of A, B, C, D, P or S are considered completed credits and are calculated in a student’s cumulative grade point average (GPA),
    • Withdrawals (W), incompletes (I), No Show (NS), and failing grades (F) are not considered completed credits but count toward a student’s attempted credits.
    • Students who drop courses from the time of registration through the fourteenth calendar day of the semester are not counted towards credit hours attempted.
    • If an incomplete (I) grade turns into a passing grade of A, B, C, D, P, or S, during the next evaluation period it will be considered as completed credits.
    • If an incomplete (I) grade turns into a failing grade of F, or U, during the next evaluation period it will be considered as attempted credits.
    • Academic Forgiveness does not count in the computation of the cumulative GPA or course completion percentage for Financial Aid purposes.

Failure to meet the GPA and/or Completion Percentage Requirements of SAP leads to these steps:

Financial Aid Warning: (After 12 credit hours attempted)
Students who are not meeting SAP after attempting at least 12 credit hours will be placed on financial aid warning and will be notified of their financial aid status. Students are eligible for federal financial aid and are encouraged to re-evaluate their academic progression toward the completion of their course of study, obtain academic advising, and other academic support resources to support their academic success.

Financial Aid Suspension: (any semester after being placed on a Financial Aid Warning) Students, who are not meeting SAP after failing to meet SAP after being placed on Financial Aid Warning, will be placed on financial aid suspension and notified of their financial aid status.
Students who are placed on financial aid suspension will be ineligible to receive financial aid unless they have an approved SAP Appeal. Due to the limited amount of processing time between semesters, students who have elected to register for the next semester will be held financially responsible for all tuition and other institutional charges on their student account.

Financial Aid SAP Appeal:
Students may appeal the suspension of their federal financial aid by documenting any extenuating and/or mitigating circumstances that may have led to their inability to maintain satisfactory academic progress. Students who submit a financial aid appeal are not automatically reinstated for federal financial aid. The Office of Financial Aid considers the students’ written appeal, other supporting documentation, and federal regulations when making a final determination of financial aid reinstatement.

Federal regulations restrict those circumstances that may enable a SAP appeal from being successfully approved. Students should provide as much documentation as possible regarding unusual and/or mitigating circumstances with their appeal to be afforded full consideration. The Office of Financial Aid considers students’ written appeal, supporting documentation, and federal regulations when making a final determination.

There are several reasons a student may file a SAP appeal. These include the following: death of a family member; disabling illness or injury to the student; disabling illness or injury of an immediate family member that required the student’s care, the student’s emotional or mental health issue that required professional care, or other unusual circumstances beyond the student’s control and/or demonstrated progressive academic improvement.

A student must properly document the basis for his or her appeal in accordance with the SAP appeal requirements. A student should refer to the Satisfactory Academic Progress appeal E-form

Approved SAP Financial Aid Appeals:

  • Probation: the granting of financial aid for one semester, based on an approved appeal in which the student must meet all aspects of SAP when grades post for this semester or their aid will be terminated.
  • Academic Plan: the granting of financial aid for each semester until the student is meeting all aspects of SAP, based on an approved appeal, in which the student must receive at least a 2.5 GPA and complete at least 75% of the credit hours attempted when grades post.

Denied SAP Financial Aid Appeals:

A student that has a SAP appeal that has been denied is ineligible to receive financial aid as a result of not meeting minimum SAP requirements. Students may re-appeal when meeting all aspects of SAP. Financial aid awards cannot be paid retroactively for semesters during which a student was ineligible to receive financial aid.

Maximum Time Frame (MTF) for Financial Aid Eligibility:

The maximum number of credits a student can attempt and continue to receive financial aid is dependent on the number of credit hours required to complete the student’s program as indicated in the college catalog.

  • All periods of enrollment at Cincinnati State count towards a student’s MTF regardless of:
    • receiving Financial Aid for those courses,
    • the courses being attempted for another major,
    • receiving academic forgiveness,
    • the courses being withdrawn, or
    • the courses receiving a grade of incomplete.
  • Each course repetition with grades of W, I, or U count towards the student attempted credits.
  • Each course repetition with grades of A, B, C, D, P, or S, count towards the student completed credits.
  • Audited courses are not included in the calculation of credits attempted.
  • Transfer credits that are applicable to a student’s program, are counted towards the student’s MTF. However, this is taken into consideration during the appeal process as the Office of Financial Aid needs confirmation from the student’s academic advisor as to how many of the transfer credit hours count toward the student’s program.
  • Once a student graduates from a program, they are no longer eligible for Financial Aid.
  • Even if a student completes a program, but has not completed a Petition to Graduate, the student is no longer eligible for additional financial aid.
  • Remedial (Academic Foundation) and English as a Second Language (ESL) courses are not counted toward a student’s Maximum Time, but rather have their own maximum number of attempted credit hours. Students may attempt up to thirty (30) credit hours of these combined courses for Financial Aid.

Students will receive a warning notification when they have attempted 100 percent of the number of credit hours required for their program, whether those credit hours were attempted for their current program or not. For example, if the student’s current major has 60 credit hours listed in the catalog to complete the program, once the student has a combination of 60 attempted credit hours (that not ESL or Academic Foundation) and college transfer, they will receive the warning. Once the student has a combination of 90 (60 x 150%) attempted credit hours (that not ESL or Academic Foundation) and college transfer, their financial aid will be suspended.

If a student has a double major, MTF is calculated using the program with the larger number of credit hours. Once that MTF is met, the student must appeal for the Office of Financial Aid to determine the 150% of both programs.

MTF SAP Appeal Process: 

Once a student is suspended for MTF, they may appeal for further financial aid eligibility by completing a Maximum Time Frame Appeal E-form and asking their academic advisor to complete a Progress Review E-Form.

MTF Appeal Outcomes:

  • Approved MTF Appeals: Students with approved Maximum Time Frame Appeal may only complete the number of credit hours approved and must continue to meet all other aspects of SAP.
  • Denied MTF Appeals: Students with a denied MTF Appeal may not receive further Financial Aid at Cincinnati State.

Course Repeats

As long as a student is otherwise eligible to receive financial aid, students may receive financial aid for the next repetition of a previously passed class regardless of the student receiving financial aid for the first instance of passing the course.

A course is considered passed if the student receives a grade of A, B, C, D, P or S.

For purposes of SAP, repeated courses are counted as attempted however many times the course is taken, but only considered completed once, even if the course is passes more than once. This impacts the course completed portion of SAP. For instance, if a three (3) credit hour course is taken twice, with the first attempt receiving a grade of B and the second attempt receiving a grade of A, the course completion percentage of the class would be 3/6 = 50%. The GPA for which the student receives higher grade will be used for the calculation of the student’s cumulative GPA.

Students should check with the academic advisor to determine if they are eligible to take another repetition of a previously passed class as it may be dependent on the grade they received in the course.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy 34 CFR 668.34