Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress

Northeast Community College is required to establish minimum academic standards that students must meet to be eligible or maintain eligibility for federal, state and institutional aid including but not limited to grants, loans, federal work study, institutional scholarships and waivers. Northeast Community College must notify students of this policy and monitor the progress of all students receiving financial aid to insure their continued compliance with the policy.

Students who are receiving financial aid or seek to receive financial aid in the future are required to meet these minimum academic standards. Failure to meet these standards means the student is no longer eligible to receive financial aid. It is the responsibility of all students receiving financial aid to familiarize themselves with the policy and to insure that the standards are met.

Enrollment Status

Student status is based on the following semester enrollment:

  • Full time (FT) – Attempting 12 or more credits
  • Three-quarter time (TT) – Attempting 9-11 credits
  • Half-time (HT) – Attempting 6-8 credits
  • Less-than-half-time (LTHT) – Attempting 5 or fewer credits

For financial aid awarding purposes, enrollment status is based on credit hours for which the student is enrolled as of the published date considered to be the tenth day of the term for the majority of students. Financial aid will be adjusted to reflect less-than-full-time status if the student is not registered for at least 12 credits hours on that date. Financial aid will not be adjusted to reflect credit hours added after that date. Students who are registered for a class on the first day of the term but never begin attendance in that class cannot include that class in determining enrollment status for financial aid purposes. Aid will be adjusted if students are reported as a no show in their class.


Grade Point Average

Cumulative GPA: A student must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.000.

Pace Requirement or Completion Ratio

The pace requirement or completion ratio component of the satisfactory academic policy is measuring the pace at which a student must progress through his or her program of study to ensure completion within the maximum timeframe permitted and provides for a measurement of the student’s progress at the end of each evaluation. Pace or completion ratio is calculated by determining the cumulative number of credit hours the student has successfully completed divided by the number of cumulative credit hours the student has attempted. To meet the pace requirement, the student’s completion ratio must be 67% or higher. Attempted credits include any course taken for credit while attending Northeast. Credit hours transferred in from another institution are included in both attempted and completed credits. Successfully completed credit hours include letter grades of A+, A, B+, B, C+, C, D+, D or P. Credit hours that will not count as successfully completed include letter grades of F (Fail) or I (Incomplete), W (Withdrawal), AU (Audit), credit by exam (i.e. CLEP). Repeats of successfully completed credits will be considered in the hours attempted and may be used in determining enrollment status for financial aid purposes. Title IV funds can pay for repeat coursework previously taken in a program as long as it is not a result of: more than one repetition of a previously passed course, or any repetition of a previously passed course due to the student failing other coursework.

Maximum Time Frame Measure

Rate of Program Completion (Maximum Time Frame):  Students are expected to complete their program of study within a reasonable time period.  A student’s maximum time frame is based on total credit hours attempted at Northeast plus any transfer credits accepted towards their program of study and the student’s degree objective.    These limits apply regardless of whether or not the student has received federal funding.  Students are eligible to receive aid for up to 150% of the published number of credit hours for a program of study (see program descriptions in the College catalog).
Example:  If a program of study requires 78 credit hours to graduate, the maximum credit limit you could take and receive financial aid would be 117 (78 x 150 percent).  All credit hours attempted by you including transitional and ESL classes are counted, maximum time frame may be adjusted by the number of transitional or ESL credits taken.

At the end of each semester, the total number of attempted credit hours will be counted to see if you have reached the maximum number of credit hours for your program.  All credit hours are counted.  This includes:

  • Credit hours attempted in semesters you did not receive financial aid
  • Credit hours attempted prior to a change in your program of study.  Students nearing maximum time frame due to a change in their program of study will be reviewed for an academic plan.
  • Credit hours transferred from another institution into your program of study at Northeast


Financial Aid Warning

Financial Aid Warning status is assigned to a student who fails to meet one or more of the SAP measures indicated above at the conclusion of a payment period. During a warning semester, the student may still receive financial aid. The student’s future financial aid eligibility is dependent upon how well the student does during the warning semester. If the student completes the warning semester and now has a cumulative GPA of 2.000 or higher, and the student is meeting the pace or completion ratio requirement the student will be removed from financial aid warning status and restored to good standing. If, however, the student again fails to meet one or both of those requirements, the student will be placed on financial aid suspension.


A student will be placed on financial aid suspension if he/she fails to meet the academic progress requirements at the end of a warning semester.

Regaining Eligibility

A student whose financial aid eligibility has been suspended has two options for regaining eligibility.

  • A student may qualify for reinstatement of financial aid eligibility by enrolling at his/her own expense and bringing their cumulative GPA above 2.0 and by bringing their pace or completion ratio requirement up to 67% to meet the minimum requirements of the satisfactory academic progress policy.
  • A student may appeal their financial aid suspension if extenuating circumstances (death of a relative, injury or illness of the student, or other special circumstance) exist. Appeals must be made in writing to the Director of Financial Aid, and must include supporting documentation of the extenuating circumstances. In the appeal request the student must provide information regarding why the student failed to make SAP, and what has changed in the student’s situation that would allow them to demonstrate satisfactory academic progress at the next evaluation. If a student’s appeal is granted he or she will be placed on Financial Aid Probation. A student on Financial Aid Probation may receive aid (federal, state or institutional) for one payment period. At that point, the student must meet Northeast’s standards of academic progress or the requirements of an academic plan that was established on an individual student basis as a result of the appeal process. Denied appeals may be directed to the Vice President of Student Services in accordance with the Northeast Community College Policy for Student Grievance Procedure.

Additional Information

Transitional Classes

Students may receive financial aid for a maximum of 30 credits of transitional classes.


A student who is placed on warning or suspension because of incomplete credits may request that the Financial Aid Office review his/her status once the course has been completed.

Additional Degree

If a student has completed one program of study, he/she may qualify for federal, state or institutional aid for one additional qualifying program of study. The student will be required to meet with the financial aid office for a credit evaluation to determine eligibility. Students seeking a second degree will not be able to obtain aid for hours above 125% of the credit hours required for that second degree. *Federal aid time limits may apply.

Withdrawal from Northeast Community College

Students withdrawing during a semester will be placed on financial aid warning or suspension. Those students who received financial aid should be prepared to repay a portion of aid received according to federal regulations and the Northeast refund policy, which is printed in the college catalog and financial aid brochure.

Evaluation Timeframe

Northeast Community College will evaluate a student’s satisfactory academic progress and the end of each payment period; fall, spring, and summer. All summer sessions jointly are considered one term. A student placed on financial aid warning or suspension will be notified via U.S. mail to the current mailing or permanent address on record. It is the responsibility of the student to keep their address updated.

Northeast Community College does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion, national or ethnic origin, military veteran status, political affiliation, marital or family status, age, or disability, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity in educational programs, admissions policies, employment policies, financial aid, or other College administered programs and activities. It is the intent of Northeast Community College to comply with both the letter and the spirit of the law in making certain discrimination does not exist in its policies, regulations and operations. Inquiries may be addressed to the Northeast Compliance Officer for Title IX, ADA, Section 504: Associate Vice President of Human Resources, 801 East Benjamin Ave., P.O. Box 469, Norfolk, NE 68702-0469, phone: 402-844-7046, e-mail: or mail:  U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, 10220 North Executive Hills Boulevard, 8th Floor, Kansas City, MO 64153-1367.