Graduate Satisfactory Academic Progress

Graduate Satisfactory Academic Progress


School for Graduate Studies and School of Nursing and Allied Health


Graduate Student and Academic Services


Graduate Studies



Effective Date:


Implementation History:

First approved in September 1993 and updated in May 2003, June 2011, & July 2012. Split into separate Academic Standing and Satisfactory Academic Progress Policies in 2019


Graduate, satisfactory, academic, progress, warning, dismissal, reinstatement, financial aid

Background Information:


Academic conditions under which a graduate may remain eligible for financial aid.




This policy statement describes the academic conditions under which a graduate student is eligible for financial aid.

A student is expected to complete courses, to accumulate credit in proportion to the credit attempted (i.e. meet academic progress expectations), and to make progress toward a
degree/ certificate.

Sometimes a student makes less academic progress than expected. When this occurs, the university notifies the student satisfactory progress warning or dismissal.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Determination

  1. A student is making satisfactory academic progress when s/he consistently earns credit toward the degree or certificate sought, which is defined as earning 67% of attempted credits.
  2. Academic progress is monitored at the end of each term.
  3. Academic progress is cumulative across graduate programs at the university.
  4. Completion of prerequisite/deficiency requirements for admission to a master's program does not count toward the credit required to earn a master's degree. Therefore, these credits do not count toward meeting satisfactory academic progress expectations.
  5. Academic progress advances only when a student earns credit toward the degree or certificate sought. A student earns no graduate-level credit and makes no progress academically when the student receives any of the following grades for a graduate course:
    • Incomplete (IN)
    • F
    • No Pass (NP)
    • Administrative Withdrawal (ZW)
    • Withdrawal issued on or after 29th day of term (WD)

These grades count in the determination of credits attempted, and thus affect the calculation of the student's cumulative rate of progress.

Financial Aid Warning

A student is placed on financial aid warning the student earns credit for less than 67% of the student's attempted credits.

Rescinding an Financial Aid Warning

A financial aid warning is in effect until it is rescinded or financial aid is suspended. A financial aid warning is rescinded when the student's progress rate returns to a satisfactory level.

Financial Aid Suspension

  1. A student receives a financial aid suspension when after one subsequent term of enrollment after being placed on financial aid warning the student's progress rate does not return to a satisfactory level.
  2. A student who is on financial aid suspension may continue to take coursework without financial aid as long as s/he maintains satisfactory academic standing.

Appeal of Financial Aid Suspension

A student may appeal Financial Aid Suspension to the dean, or designee, of the appropriate school. An appeal of a Financial Aid Suspension must present written evidence that the student is ready and able to make satisfactory progress and include an academic plan co-developed with the student's academic advisor, which includes the number of terms within which the student will return to satisfactory academic progress. Appeals of financial aid suspension are granted at the discretion of the dean, or designee. If approved, the dean, or designee, will grant a specific number of terms by which a student must return to satisfactory academic progress. If the student returns to satisfactory academic progress by the end of the designated number of terms, the student returns to good standing. If the student does not return to satisfactory academic progress by the end of the designated number of terms, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.

A student placed on Financial Aid Suspension for a second time, is not eligible to receive financial aid for graduate study at Empire State University in the future.


An explanation of the appeals process is in the Academic Appeals Policy and Procedures.

Applicable Legislation and Regulations


Related References, Policies, Procedures, Forms and Appendices

Graduate Evaluation and Grading Policy, financial aid policies