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Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

US Federal loans - Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy: in line with the US Department of Education regulations, in order to be eligible for US federal loans, students are required to make satisfactory academic progress (SAP).

This policy applies to all students taking federal loans (also referred to as ‘financial aid’ and ‘Title IV aid’) at Brunel University London, particularly Direct Subsidised, Unsubsidised, Grad PLUS and Parent PLUS loans.

Brunel University London is required to ensure that all Federal Aid students maintain a minimum level of academic progress as specified by Senate Regulations. The link to these Regulations can be found below.

All students in receipt of the US federal financial aid are encouraged to read and understand our SAP policy.  Please see the  Brunel University London Senate Regulations.

Measuring SAP

SAP is assessed in line with Brunel University London Senate Regulations. 

Qualitative standard (grades): Students must achieve minimum standards as required by the academic department and supervisor/tutor and academic standing consistent with graduation requirements. For more details please refer to the Senate Regulations and contact your department.

Quantitative standard (pace): Students must progress through their programme at a pace which ensures that they will graduate within the maximum timeframe. The maximum timeframe for completion is 150% of the standard, published timeframe for a course.  Periods of abeyance will not count towards this calculation.

Failure to meet SAP and regaining eligibility

A student who fails to make Satisfactory Academic Progress will be issued with a ‘Financial Aid Warning’ by email. The warning will last for 1 payment period (i.e. until the next disbursement), during which time a student can still receive Financial Aid. If the student fails to meet SAP standards by the next disbursement, they will be notified by University Funding Team that they are ineligible for further disbursements of US Federal Aid.


Please note that you can regain eligibility for your federal loan, only by submitting a successful appeal to be placed on probation or by taking action that brings you into compliance with the SAP standards. The appeal to reinstate your federal loan is separate from any mitigating circumstances or academic appeal that you may submit.  Reinstatement of your loan eligibility should not be interpreted as confirmation of acceptance of your mitigation or a successful outcome of any academic appeal.

A student who fails to meet SAP standards may submit an appeal if exceptional circumstances can be demonstrated (e.g. injury, illness, death of a relative, or other special circumstances). The appeal must explain why the student failed to make SAP and what has changed in their situation that will allow them to make SAP at the next evaluation point. Evidence should be attached where possible (e.g. medical notes, death certificates, letters from a social worker etc.).  

Appeals must be submitted in writing, either by email or by post to:

The Operations Manager
Directorate of Governance, Legal, Academic & Student Services
Business Support
St John’s Building, Brunel University London,
Uxbridge, Middlesex, UB8 3PH,
United Kingdom

The decision of the appeal will be communicated to the student in writing within 14 days of submission, if all necessary supporting evidence is complete.  Please note that there may be a need on occasion to refer to the US Federal Loans for a decision.

Please note that the appeal outcome is final.

Consequences of failure to meet maximum time limit requirement

Students exceeding the maximum time limit for their program are denied further student financial aid at that level.

For more information on SAP please contact the University Funding Team via email.