Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Appealing for satisfactory academic progress


If extenuating circumstances led to your current academic issues (accident or severe illness, death of household member, etc.) you may submit an appeal form, outlining your situation.

Academic Progress Appeal


In accordance with Federal and State Regulations, all students who apply for Federal, State and institutional financial assistance including federal student loans and parent PLUS loans must maintain satisfactory academic progress. A large number of private, credit-based alternative loans also require that the student maintain satisfactory academic progress.  Satisfactory progress standards for cumulative grade point average and successfully completed credits since beginning at MMA are evaluated at the end of each academic year, following the close of the spring semester. After evaluation, aid applicants will be notified if they do not meet the standards to qualify for aid in the coming year. Students who did not apply for financial aid at the time of review will be evaluated when a financial aid application is received.


Massachusetts Maritime Academy Policy

MMA adheres to the standards of undergraduate performance prescribed by the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education and endorsed by the accrediting authority of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc. In accordance with applicable federal regulations, the MMA Satisfactory Progress policy requires that students meet both qualitative and quantitative standards for maintaining satisfactory academic progress for financial aid. 

Qualitative Measure

Students must have a cumulative grade point average (4.00 basis) according to the following schedule:

Total Attempted Credit Minimum cumulative GPA
0 - 12 1.50
12.01 - 36 1.80
greater than 36 2.00

When calculating a student's cumulative GPA, this policy looks at ALL attempted credits at MMA.  Should a student fail a class and subsequently repeat that class with a passing grade, all attempts are included in the GPA calculation.  This calculation may differ from how the Academic Department (Registrar's Office) calculates a student's GPA for academic purposes.


Quantitative Measure (Maintenance of Effort)

The student’s entire MMA academic record is reviewed and the student must successfully complete (pass) at least 67% of all attempted credits. These credits must be credits that can be applied toward the student's degree program.  Withdrawals, incomplete grades and failures will all have a negative effect on a student's completion rate.
Any student who does not meet these standards is not eligible for financial aid. Any aid awarded prior to the determination of unsatisfactory progress will be cancelled. Application of standards to all students and specific policies defining the effect of course incompletes, withdrawals, repetitions and non-credit remedial courses on satisfactory progress are specified in the College Catalog which is distributed to all students.


Regaining Eligibility

Students have the right to appeal the determination of unsatisfactory progress, if extremely unusual circumstances contributed to the student’s failure to maintain academic progress.  Students must submit an official Satisfactory Academic Progress Appeal Form (which is included at the time the student is notified of his/her standing).  All appeals must be submitted in writing to the Satisfactory Progress Committee, c/o Cathy Kedski, Director of Student Financial Services. Appeals for the fall semester must be submitted no later than August 15th, for the spring semester, no later than January 15th.  If the appeal is granted, the student must then submit a signed academic contract, outlining the student's plan to regain eligibility.  

If a student's appeal is denied, the student can regain eligibility by meeting the standards above on his/her own.  If this happens after the fall semester, it is up to the student to contact the Director of Student Financial Services to request consideration for spring financial aid.  Our office only looks at student progress once per year, at the end of the spring semester.


Repeat courses

Federal regulations allow a student, who is meeting the standards of the academic progress policy, to receive financial aid for courses that are being repeated due to previously failing the course.  However, if a student passes a course and wishes to retake that course to improve the grade, financial aid will only pay for one repeat of that particular course, as long as the student is meeting the standards of satisfactory academic progress, as outlined above.  This will be important for students who may receiving a passing grade in a course, but the grade may not be high enough to meet academic requirements for that particular course.