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Financial Aid

Satisfactory Academic Progress Workshop

Understanding the Satisfactory Academic Progress & Student Success

  • Your record is reviewed cumulatively at the end of each semester:
    • The SAP calculation takes account of all courses taken within the nine LACCD colleges, regardless of when the courses were taken, and whether or not you received financial aid for those courses
  • If cumulative GPA and/or completion rate standards are not met for two consecutive semesters the student will be disqualified from financial aid the following semester.
  • Students may appeal their disqualification and have their financial aid reinstated by going through the appeal process. Approval is not guaranteed.

SAP Standards

  • To keep financial aid eligibility, students must:
    • maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher.
    • maintain a completion rate of 67% or higher of all attempted units.
      • Attempted Units are all officially enrolled units not dropped before the published deadline
    • not exceed 150% of the length of your academic program as stated on your record
      • Example: an AA in Music requires 60 units. Students would be disqualified once they attempt 90 units
      • Example: a Certificate in Applied Photography requires 18 units, student will be disqualified once they reach 27 attempted units

Types of Appeals

  • Reinstatement Appeal
    • For students with a cumulative GPA and/or Completion Rate below the standards
  • Extension Appeal
    • For students exceeding 150% of the length of their major
  • Combination Appeal -  Reinstatement and Extension
    • Students who are in both categories described above

Maintain a High GPA

  • Complete your semester with at least a 2.0 average
    • Avoid F’s and D’s
    • Talk to your professor if you feel you are not doing well in the class
    • Plan on at least 2 hours of study for each hour of class time. 
      • For example, if in 12 units, plan for 24 hours of study for a total commitment to school of 36 hours per week – it’s rare that a student that can work over 20 hours per week and go to school full time and still be successful
    • Look for tutoring programs
    • Look for extra credit opportunities

 Keep a High Completion Rate

  • Complete at least 67% of your attempted units
    • Avoid F’s, W’s, INC’s, and NP’s
  • If you plan to drop a class, do it before the drop deadline to avoid a “W”
  • Talk to both, Financial Aid and Counseling offices before withdrawing from a class.
    • Dropping a class may affect your current and future financial aid eligibility
  • Always go through official procedures to drop a course. It is your responsibility. Do not assume that your professor will drop you.

 Stay below 150% of the Length of Your Major

  • Establish your Student Educational Plan with a counselor
    • Decide on your major sooner rather than later
      • Visit the Career Center (SSB 235) if you are undecided
      • Most LACC programs like EOP&S, Guardian Scholars, TRIO, OSS, CalWORKS, etc. have their own Counselors
    • Follow your academic plan
      • Avoid taking classes you do not need and classes that do not count towards your program; the more unsuitable courses on your transcript the more likely of your extension appeal being denied.
    • Plan ahead, meet periodically with your counselor and discuss any changes
    • Avoid changing majors as much as possible

Improve Your Academic Record

  • Talk to your counselor to determine what are the appropriate Math and English level courses for you:
    • Take your math every semester. Don’t put it off.
      • If you struggle with Math or English:
        • Enroll in English and math supporting courses and tutoring,
        • Talk to your professor
        • Form study groups
        • Practice, practice, practice – do your homework
        • Visit www.khanacademy.org for instructional videos for Math assistance.
  •  There are several tools to improve your record:
    • Course repetition: repeat classes, generally for degree applicable or transferable courses, for which you have bad grades. Speak with your counselor or the Admissions Office for more information
    • Academic Renewal: have your substandard academic performance reviewed by the Admissions Office (conditions and limitations apply). Meet with your counselor for guidance.
    • Enroll in your Math and English appropriate level coursework
    • Take less units to improve your GPA
    • Work less hours if possible
    • Get tutoring early in the semester

Limits on Your Financial Aid

  • Financial Aid will pay for the completion of up to two academic programs completed within 90 units
    • 1 AA and 1 transfer
    • 2 AA’s
    • 1 certificate and 1 AA
    • 1 certificate and 1 transfer
    • 2 certificates
  • Attempting a third program will disqualify the student and will need to submit an appeal for extension.
  • 600% Federal limitation to Pell Grant lifetime usage
    • Students are eligible to receive Pell Grant for up to 6 full time years (12 full time semesters)

 Academic Goals

  • Talk to your counselor about your goals:
    • When pursuing both an Associates Degree and a Transfer program, be strategic; select a major where classes will count for both programs. Otherwise, it may take you several semesters longer and decrease your Pell Grant eligibility when you transfer
      • Remember that Pell Grant is limited to 6 full-time years
    • If your goal is to transfer, in most cases you only have to complete the transfer program requirements. Obtaining an Associates Degree is not always necessary to transfer. 

 Do Your Research

  • If your goal is to transfer to a UC or CSU, use the website below for a list of the lower division major requirements you need to transfer:
    • www.assist.org
      • Enter your current school: Los Angeles City College
      • Enter the University where you plan to transfer
      • Enter your major
      • Major requirements to take at LACC will be listed in the right column
      • Equivalent classes at the university will be listed in the left column
      • Meet with your counselor for assistance

 The Appeal Process: Reinstatement Appeal

  • If you are notified about being disqualified from financial aid due to GPA and/or Completion Rate, you may submit an appeal to be reinstated.
  • Answer all the questions thoroughly. Many appeals are denied as a result of incomplete forms:
    • Explain in detail the circumstances that prevented you from successfully completing your courses. Include an explanation for ALL substandard semesters – you can review your academic record by viewing your unofficial transcripts on your student portal.
      • When possible, provide supporting documentation such us doctor letters, death certificates, court documents, hospital records, police reports, etc. Use this documentation to back up your circumstances.
    • Explain in detail any changes you made that will help you to successfully attain your educational goal.
      • Tell the appeal review committee that you resolved the issues that prevented your academic success – you may have reduced your work hours to focus better in your classes; you may have found childcare for your children; you bought a car that will allow you to be on time for your classes, etc.

The Appeal Process: Extension Appeal

  • If you are notified about being disqualified from financial aid due to exceeding 150% of the length of your program you may submit an extension appeal.
    • Log in to the Student Portal – mycollege.laccd.edu
    • Click on the Finances menu
    • Find the SAP Petition Form link
    • Follow the instructions along the process
    • Extension appeals require an updated Educational Plan; even if you already have a plan, it would be a good idea to meet with your counselor to review it or revise it.
      • Ask your counselor for a comprehensive plan if possible

The Result of Your Appeal

  • The average timeframe for a response on your appeal is about 45 calendar days.
    • It may take longer during peak times, such as the beginning of the semesters. Be patient, the financial aid office receives over one thousand appeals per semester.
    • If approved, your appeal will establish certain conditions.
    • You don’t have to appeal in the future if you meet these conditions every semester after the appeal.
    • The appeal result notification will disclose the required conditions, which may include: 
      • Complete your semesters with a 2.25 GPA.
      • Complete 75% of the classes attempted,
      • It may restrict the approval to only the classes required for your stated goal and major
      • Other conditions deemed necessary by the appeals committee

 Resources For Your Success

  • Career Center
    For help with major and career selection, internships, counseling, and more.
  • Counseling Center
    Academic counseling provides guidance with career/major exploration and supports students in their academic, career, and personal endeavors.
  • Extended Opportunities & Services – EOP&S
    Provides assistance for students facing educational or economic barriers. Counseling, tutoring, book vouchers, and much more
  • Office of Special Services
    ​Assists students with physical and learning disabilities; offers tutoring, study strategies, extended exam times, and more
  • University Transfer Center
    The Transfer Center at Los Angeles City College assists students with the process of meeting the requirements to transfer to four-year colleges and universities.
  • Child Development Center
    Provides child care for student parents to assist them in completing their educational goals. The Center offers a preschool program for children 2 to 5 years of age.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Workshop Quiz:

Please complete the quiz below to demonstrate your understanding of the Satisfactory Academic Progress & Student Success measurements.

After successfully completing the quiz you will be given the opportunity to submit a Reinstatement Appeal.


What is the minimum GPA that is required to maintain eligibility for financial aid?:




What percentage of attempted coursework must be completed cumulatively in order to meet the completion standard?:




Which of the following will help you to complete your objective before you have exceeded 150% of your program’s published program length?:




Which Two Offices Should You Speak With Before Deciding to Drop A Class?:




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