2018-2019 Graduate Academic Catalog

Financial Aid and Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Students receiving financial aid need to work toward fulfilling their degree requirements by earning attempted credits and maintaining positive grades. 

The satisfactory academic progress (SAP) policy is applied consistently to all students within each academic program whether graduate or undergraduate, full time or part time. All periods of enrollment, including those periods for which a student may not have received federal aid will be reviewed to confirm continued academic progress. Lesley University is responsible for establishing the specific requirements for satisfactory academic performance, tracking students' progress, and enforcing the consequences of unsatisfactory progress. 

To maintain eligibility for federal student assistance, students must maintain satisfactory progress in their academic programs. Progress has both qualitative and quantitative aspects; meaning, students must be attaining acceptable grades over a limited time period in order to complete the academic objective. Satisfactory progress considers both the Grade Point Average (GPA) and the completion rate of courses attempted. 

Undergraduate students are eligible for financial aid through their first 180 attempted credits their 120-credit degree program. Graduate students are eligible for financial aid through a period of attempted credits not to exceed 150% of the published length of their academic program. 

To meet these federal guidelines, Lesley University students need to maintain academic progress as defined by their program in the course catalogue: 

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Degree Completion Undergraduate Students:

  • Minimum GPA: 2.0
  • Minimum Completion: 75% of Attempted Credits

Online Management Students:

  • Minimum GPA: 2.0 
  • Minimum Completion: 75% of Attempted Credits

  • College of Art and Design Undergraduate Students:

  • Minimum GPA (Less than 30 credits attempted): 2.0
  • Minimum GPA (30 or greated credits attempted): 2.3
  • Minimum Completion: 75% of Attempted Credits
  • Graduate Students:

  • Minimum GPA: 3.0
  • Minimum Completion: 75% of Attempted Credits

  • Graduate Students in Pass/Fail Programs (MFA and Individually Designed):

  • Minimum Completion: 75% of Attempted Credits


  • Process: Each summer, the Financial Aid Office officially reviews all students' academic work to confirm that they are meeting the qualitative and quantitative requirements so as to confirm continued eligibility for federal, state, and Lesley institutional funding for the next academic year. Students who are not meeting the academic requirements of their program are emailed a notification that all federal financial aid eligibility has been cancelled until the student is once again meeting their program's requirements. Students are notified in the email that at the end of a period of enrollment, they should contact the Financial Aid Office so that an academic progress re-evaluation can determine if, based upon the most recent completed academics, they have reestablished their eligibility to receive federal financial aid. The student will then be reinstated to an eligible status for a subsequent term.

    • Withdrawals, incompletes, and failures (W, I, and F grades) are considered attempted but not completed (or not earned) hours and are not considered passing grades. 
    • Passing credits received for pass/fail courses are considered attempted and completed (or earned) credits; failing grades in pass/fail courses are considered attempted but not completed (or not earned). 
    • Repeated courses are included in the calculation of both attempted and completed (or earned) hours. Accepted transfer credits are included in the credit completion rate and maximum time frame calculations, but not the GPA.

    Students who are not making satisfactory academic progress (SAP) as defined by their academic program can submit an appeal. 

    The appeal application availability is announced in the failure to meet progress notification emails. 

    The appeals application will request the student explain why the student failed to meet the satisfactory academic progress (SAP) standards and what circumstances have changed that will allow the student to make SAP at the next evaluation period. Examples of unusual circumstances can be, but are not limited to, documented personal injury, illness, health problems, family difficulties, and emergencies. A student must document the reason for the progress issue and what has changed to allow the student to regain academic progress. 

    Please note that appeals will not be approved more than one time during enrollment at Lesley University nor can an appeal be approved unless it can be calculated by the Financial Aid Office that the student could meet the SAP standards after the first semester of the appeal. 

    If an appeal is granted, the student will be placed on "probation" which shall continue for as long as the student meets all requirements of the appeal approval communication and follows the academic plan, if applicable.