Satisfactory Academic Progress

Below you will find a listing of topics relating to the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy at Glendale Community College (GCC).  To go to a specific topic click on the appropriate link below. 


Basics of SAP
Financial Aid Term and Dismissal  
 Financial Aid Progress and Dismissal
Financial Aid GPA and Dismissal
Financial Aid Term and SAP Appeal Process


Basics of SAP

Federal and state regulations require students receiving federal student financial aid and Cal Grants to maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP).  In compliance with these regulations, Glendale Community College has established the following Satisfactory Academic Progress standards that students must meet to be eligible for financial aid programs.  Students not meeting any or all three standards will not be eligible for financial aid.  These standards are not currently required for the Board of Governors' (BOG) Fee Waiver program. 

You must meet all of the following Satisfactory Academic Progress standards:

  • Complete your program within a maximum time frame, i.e. AS, AA or transfer program within 72 progress units or the number of units required for your vocational/certificate program
  • Maintain a cumulative 2.0 GPA
  • Successfully complete 67% of all attempted units                                                                              

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1.  Maximum Time Frame (Term Dismissal):

Standards Required by the US Department of Education:  Students must complete their program within 150% of the units required for that program.  The number of units required for degrees, certificates and transfer are listed in the college catalog.  All attempted units, including units transferred in from other colleges, must be included, with the exception of ESL units and up to 30 units of remedial courses.  Attempted units are any units for which a student received a grade or "W" (Withdrawal).

Glendale Community College Policy:  Students enrolled in a degree or transfer program who exceed 72 attempted units and students enrolled in certificate programs who exceed 30 attempted units have exceeded the maximum time frame requirement and will be placed on Term Dismissal status.  Click to print the Appeal Form.

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2.  Progression (SAP Dismissal): 

Standards Required by the US Department of Education:  Students must successfully complete their courses at a pace that will allow them to meet the maximum time frame requirement.

Glendale Community College Policy:  All students must successfully complete 67% of all attempted units, including units transferred in, to meet this standard.  ESL and lower-level remedial classes are not included in this calculation.  Units for which a student receives a grade of "F", "I" (incompletes) or "W" are not successfully completed.  Students who do not meet this standard will receive a Warning Notice.  If the student does not meet this standard by end of the warning period (one semester), the student will be placed on SAP Dismissal and financial aid will be terminated until the semester the student meets this standard. Click to print the Appeal Form.

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3.  Grade Point Average Requirement (SAP Dismissal): 

Standards Required by the US Department of Education:  Students must maintain a Grade Point Average (GPA) consistent with graduation requirement and have a 2.0 GPA. 

Glendale Community College Policy:  As stated in our college catalog, Glendale Community College requires students to maintain a cumulative 2.0 GPA to be in good academic standing.  This standard also applies to financial aid eligibility.  All attempted Glendale College units and any units transferred into Glendale College are included when the cumulative GPA is calculated for financial aid purposes.  Any student not meeting this standard will be placed on Warning Status for one semester.  If the student's GPA remains below 2.0 at the end of the warning period, the student will lose financial aid eligibility until the GPA is 2.0 or higher.  Eligibility will be automatically reinstated when the student earns a GPA of at least 2.0.  Click to print the Appeal Form.

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At the end of each semester, student records are reviewed for Satisfactory Academic Progress.  Students who are not meeting these guidelines will be placed on one of the following statuses:

Financial Aid SAP Warning:

Students who have not met the SAP standards in the most recent semester will have one semester to meet those standards and will remain eligible for financial aid during that semester. Students will receive an email through their MyGCC account and an item on their “TO DO’ list notifying them of their Warning Status.

Financial Aid SAP Dismissal:

Students who are still not meeting SAP at the end of the semester they were given a Warning Status will be disqualified from further financial aid until all SAP standards are met. Students with extraordinary mitigating circumstances beyond their control that prevented them from meeting the SAP standards may submit an appeal in accordance with the procedures listed below.

Financial Aid Probation:

Students on Financial Aid SAP Dismissal status may submit an appeal in accordance with the Appeal Procedures listed below.   A student whose appeal is approved is placed on Financial Aid Probation and is eligible for one additional semester of financial aid and must meet all SAP Standards by the end of that semester.  Students placed on a Financial Aid Contract (Academic Plan) due to their SAP Appeal, will be approved for one additional semester. Failure to meet minimum SAP standards after Probation and/or after being placed on a Financial Aid Contract will return the student to SAP Dismissal status.

Appeal Procedures for SAP and Term Dismissal:  

Students disqualified from financial aid for not meeting all of the Satisfactory Academic Progress standards have the opportunity to submit an appeal to the Financial Aid Office. If the appeal is approved, the student will regain eligibility as of the semester the appeal was approved. Appeals cannot be approved retroactively to apply to semesters prior to when the appeal was submitted. 

1. If mitigating circumstances beyond the student’s control caused or contributed to the student not meeting a Satisfactory Academic Progress standard, the student may appeal. Examples of mitigating circumstances are illness, death of a parent, disability, a work schedule conflict, or a change in major. These are typical, but not the only, mitigating circumstances that might occur.

2. All appeals must be submitted in writing with documentation supporting the circumstances cited in the appeal. Medical records, court documents, and statements from employers are examples of documentation that might be submitted as part of an appeal.  Lack of documentation may result in a denial of the appeal. 

3. Students submitting a Term Dismissal appeal must meet with their Academic, EOPS or CSD counselor and include the counselor’s recommendation and an updated Student Education Plan as part of the submitted appeal. Along with all other school transcripts and transcript evaluation. 

4. Appeals may be submitted to the SAP Appeals Committee for further review at the discretion of the Associate Dean for Financial Aid. The Appeals Committee meets on a monthly basis.

 5. Appeals may be denied or approved: 
    a. Denied appeal: student is ineligible for further federal student aid 
    b. Approved appeal: student regains eligibility as of the semester the appeal was
    c. Probation status: the appeal is approved on the condition that the student: 
        i. Meets the Progress and/or GPA standard by end of semester or; 
        ii. Adheres to a Financial Aid Course Contract. Students on a Financial Aid Contract will only receive financial aid for the specific courses listed on the Contract and must successfully complete all contract courses within the designated timeframe to remain eligible for financial aid. Students may appeal a Contract Dismissal status if mitigating circumstances exist.

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Glendale Community College and the Financial Aid Office provide this information for students, prospective students, and parents to help you make informed choices about your financial aid options.  The information on this web page is compiled from a variety of state, federal, and College sources.

This information is subject to change due to changes in federal or state regulations, College policy, Financial Aid Office procedures, or budgeting by any agency supplying financial aid funding.  If you discover discrepancies with regard to other sources of information (federal publications, College publications, etc.), please notify us at  The information on this web page is superseded by any federal, state, or College publication.

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Disclaimer: Some websites to which the Financial Aid Office provides links are for the convenience of users and are not managed or maintained by Glendale Community College.  The College and the Financial Aid Office do not review, control, or take responsibility for the contents of those sites.