SAP Policy for College of Medicine Students

As required by regulations, the University of Kentucky College of Medicine must evaluate and determine whether a student meets Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements to receive federal and state and certain institutional financial aid programs. SAP requirements comprise of qualitative, quantitative, and maximum time frame measures, and the standards are required to be as strict as or stricter than the College of Medicine academic policies.

SAP evaluation for Doctor of Medicine students occurs at the conclusion of each payment period, which is at the end of the fall and spring semesters. The student’s entire academic history must be considered when determining SAP status irrespective of whether the student received financial aid.

Requirements of the SAP Policy:

Qualitative (Grade Point Average)

Because the College of Medicine grades students on a pass/fail basis, students are not subject to the qualitative measure.

Quantitative Measure (Calculating Pace or Completion Ratio)

The quantitative component corresponds to the pace at which the student must progress through his or her program of study. This evaluation is to ensure completion within the maximum timeframe permitted and provides for the measurement of the student’s progress at the end of each period of enrollment. 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 quantitative requirement, the student’s completion ratio must be 66.7% or higher. To determine the completion ratio percentage, earned credit hours are divided by attempted credit hours.

Maximum Time Frame Measure

The maximum timeframe is a period of no longer than two years beyond the expected duration to complete the degree. Students must complete the degree requirements within a maximum time period from matriculation, including any leaves of absence approved by the Student Progress and Promotions Committee.


Expected Duration

Maximum Duration

Regular M.D.

4 years

6 years


5 years

7 years


5 years

7 years


8 years

10 years

Treatment of Courses Transferred In

Transfer students who are admitted into the Doctor of Medicine Degree program do not transfer in credit and therefore neither qualitative nor quantitative measures apply, only maximum timeframe. Depending on the coursework completed at the student’s previous institution, the student enters the Doctor of Medicine Degree program either as second- or third-year student. The following maximum time-frame measure standards apply to transfer students.


Expected Duration

Maximum Duration

Regular M.D. 2nd Year Transfer

3 years

5 years

Regular M.D. 3rd Year Transfer

2 years

4 years


College of Medicine Academic Policy Requirements

In addition to the measures referenced above to determine a student’s SAP, a student who is placed on probationary status by the College of Medicine Student Progress and Promotions Committee is considered to have not met the standards of Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress.

Treatment of Audited Courses

Because audited courses do  not apply to the student’s degree and students cannot receive financial aid for these, they are not evaluated for SAP.

Treatment of Pre-requisite Courses

Pre-requisites or preparatory courses are those which a student must complete to meet admission requirements into a degree program but do not count toward the student’s degree requirements. Therefore, they are excluded from SAP evaluation.

Treatment of Repeated Courses

If the student repeats a course, those credits are counted when calculating the quantitative and maximum timeframe measures.

(Courses that a student repeats may be included when determining a student’s enrollment status for Title IV-federal student aid purposes as long as it is not a result of 1) more than one repetition of a previously passed course, or 2) any repetition of a previously passed course due the student failing other coursework. This rule is not related to SAP requirements but is a general financial aid eligibility requirement.)

Effect of Dropping or Never Attending Courses

Courses a student registers for but drops prior to the end of drop period are not included in the calculation of SAP. Courses in which the student registers but never attends (i.e., assigned a grade “N”) are not included in the calculation of SAP.

Effect of Withdrawn Courses

Credits for withdrawn courses (i.e., assigned a grade “W”) are counted as attempted credit hours in the quantitative and maximum timeframe measures but are not counted in the qualitative measure.

Effect of Incomplete Grades

Credits for incomplete courses (i.e., assigned a grade “I”) are counted as attempted credit hours in the quantitative and maximum timeframe measures.

SAP Definitions:

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

SAP is the term used to define successful completion of degree requirements to maintain eligibility for federal and state financial aid.

Financial Aid Warning

Under Financial Aid Warning status, the student’s financial aid eligibility is reinstated for one payment period without the requirement of an appeal. Only students who were meeting SAP standards during the prior payment period for which they were enrolled may be placed on Financial Aid Warning status.  

Financial Aid Probation

Financial Aid Probation status is assigned to a student who fails to make SAP and who has successfully appealed. A student who is placed on Financial Aid Probation may receive financial aid for one subsequent payment period. A student assigned a Financial Aid Probation status will be placed on a Financial Aid Academic Plan and is required to sign a Financial Aid Academic Probation Agreement. At the conclusion of the SAP Academic Probation payment period, the student must either meet the SAP standards or fulfill the requirements specified in the Financial Aid Academic Plan to receive financial aid for a subsequent payment period.

Financial Aid Academic Plan

If the student fails to meet SAP standards or the requirements set forth in the Financial Aid Academic Plan, the student is deemed ineligible for financial aid, but may appeal again for a future payment period by published deadlines.

Continued Financial Aid Probation

Continued Financial Aid Probation status is assigned to a student who was placed on Financial Aid Probation during the previous payment period and at the end of that payment period did not meet the standards of SAP but met the conditions of the Financial Aid Academic Plan.

SAP Appeal Procedures:

Students failing SAP standards who have had mitigating circumstances (e.g., death in the family, illness, involuntary military leave) may request reinstatement of their financial aid eligibility by completing the SAP Appeal Form and submitting it to the College of Medicine Financial Aid SAP Appeals Committee at by the published deadlines.

The appeal, which must be typed, includes the following student requirements:

  1. A completed and valid Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by the deadline dates specified below.
  2. Detailed explanation for failure to meet SAP standards for each payment period the student failed to perform satisfactorily.
  3. Documentation to support the reason for failure.
  4. Detailed explanation of what has changed that will now allow the student to comply with SAP standards, a statement of academic objectives, and corrective action plan.

SAP Appeal Deadlines:

2022 Fall Semester: Last day to add classes (August 1, 2022) 2023

Spring Semester: Last day to add classes (January 2, 2023)

SAP Appeals Committee and Decision:

Students will be notified by email of the decision of the College of Medicine Financial Aid Appeals Committee. The decision of the College of Medicine Financial Aid Committee is final; however, the student may appeal again by the published deadlines for a future payment period.