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Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal

We’ll Help You Stay On Track

While you are expected to meet minimum Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements to maintain your financial aid eligibility, we understand that extenuating circumstances can sometimes prevent you from making satisfactory progress toward your degree.

If you are ineligible for financial aid because you are not meeting SAP requirements before the beginning of the academic year, and extenuating circumstances have hindered your academic performance, you may submit a SAP Appeal to have your eligibility reconsidered.

If your SAP Appeal is approved, you will be responsible for following specific conditions each term in order to maintain your financial aid eligibility during that academic year. We will notify you via email of the conditions you are required to meet to maintain eligibility, and we will review your progress before we disburse any additional aid to you each term.

If your SAP Appeal is denied, you will be responsible for all costs associated with your enrollment during the academic year. The Financial Aid and Scholarships Office will certify a private educational loan if you secure a loan and are approved by a private lender.

Submitting an appeal does not guarantee approval.

Be sure to submit your appeal early, before the start of the term, so you can receive a timely decision, allowing you to plan accordingly.

If you do not submit your appeal in a timely way, and later find out your appeal is denied after the term has started, you will be responsible for any and all costs incurred, including any costs related to a decision to withdraw from the semester. 


Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Appeal Process for Undergraduate and Graduate Students

Have you received a message in Cal Central advising you to complete an SAP Appeal? Not sure what steps to take to re-establish your financial aid eligibility? Follow these simple steps or see an adviser in Cal Student Central for assistance.

The Financial Aid & Scholarships Office strongly encourages you to submit your appeal as soon as possible. The deadlines for SAP Appeals are: September 18, 2020 for Fall 2020 and February 5, 2021 for Spring 2021. There are no SAP appeals reviwed in Summer.  We will not consider any appeals retroactively after the term is over.


​​Preparing Your Appeal


Be aware of key deadlines, including cancellation and tuition/fee refund dates and the SAP Appeal deadline. Make advising appointments ASAP

Write Your Letter

Your letter of explanation should include the exceptional circumstances that may have prevented you from meeting financial aid SAP requirements. Please refer to some EXAMPLES for help in writing your letter.

Give Examples

In your letter, include changes you will make or resources you will use to ensure your future academic success (e.g., EOP advising, counseling, tutoring, etc.).

Gather Documentation

Complete appeals; include documentation to support your letter of explanation (e.g., medical documentation, pay check stubs, transcripts, etc.).

Meet With Your Academic Adviser(s)

Discuss your circumstances, review your transcript and your supporting documentation, and prepare a manageable academic plan.

If you are an Undergraduate student, the academic plan accompanying your SAP Appeal must be reviewed and approved by your college advisor before it is submitted to the Financial Aid & Scholarships Office. It must also be reviewed and approved by your major advisor, if you are a declared Letters & Science major, and your DSP advisor, if you are approved for a reduced course load through DSP. 

If you are a Graduate Student, the academic plan accompanying your SAP Appeal must be reviewed and approved by both your Faculty Graduate Advisor/Head Graduate Advisor and the Dean of Graduate Division (318 Sproul Hall), Dean of Optometry School, Director of Program Office at Haas or Dean of Students at Berkeley Law before it is submitted to the Financial Aid & Scholarships Office.

Prepare Backup Plan

If your appeal is not approved, you may need to seek alternative enrollment options or sources of funding.


Reviewing Your Appeal

If approved, review the terms of your approval. Make sure you understand what successful completion means and the number of units you must complete each term to maintain your financial aid eligibility.

If you are approved and considering a change in your course load, discuss your academic plan options with both your academic adviser(s) and a Financial Aid and Scholarships counselor prior to making any adjustments to your schedule.


Questions? Contact Cal Student Central: 510.664.9181 or 120 Sproul Hall