Academic Progress Policies

Enrollment Status

Undergraduate full-time status is defined as enrollment in a minimum of 24 credit hours (units) in an academic year or 8 credit hours (units) each trimester.

Undergraduate part-time status is defined as enrollment in a minimum of 12 credit hours (units) in an academic year or 4 credit hours (units) each trimester. Less-than-part-time status is defined as anything less than 4 credit hours (units) each trimester.

Graduate full-time status is defined as enrollment in a minimum of 18 credit hours (units) in an academic year or 6 credit hours (units) each trimester.

Graduate part-time status is defined as enrollment in a minimum of 9 credit hours (units) in an academic year or 3 credit hours (units) each trimester. Less-than-part-time status is defined as anything less than 3 credit hours (units) each trimester.

 

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Whether or not a student is making satisfactory academic progress (SAP) towards the completion of his or her program is evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Maintaining a satisfactory GPA
  • Maintaining a minimum course completion pace

Student records are evaluated against these criteria at the conclusion of each trimester. Students who are not maintaining SAP are subject to academic discipline including academic warning, probation, suspension, or dismissal according to the criteria below.

For students receiving Federal Student Aid, the results of each evaluation will impact whether the student remains eligible to receive aid funds as described in the Financial Aid Progress policy.

Minimum Grade Point Average

The C, or 2.00 cumulative GPA, is the mark of acceptable work and good standing for undergraduate programs. The B, or 3.00 cumulative GPA, is the mark of acceptable work and good standing for graduate and doctoral programs.

Transfer credit accepted from other institutions will not count towards quality points (will not impact the student’s GPA) at Shiloh University. Only courses taken at the University will be considered in GPA calculations.

Minimum Course Completion Pace

Students (Undergraduate and Graduate) must maintain a satisfactory course completion pace of at least 67%. Course completion pace is calculated by dividing the number of semester hours (units) completed by the number attempted. Courses where a student earns a final grade of A, B, C, or D are considered completed. Courses where a student earns a final grade of F, W, WF, or I are considered attempted but incomplete. Dropped courses (final grade of X) are excluded from this calculation.

Example:
A student who enrolls in nine 3-unit courses in an academic year completes 6 courses, fails (F) 1 course, and withdraws (W) from 2 courses. The student completed 18 units of the 27 units attempted which yields a course completion pace of 67% (18 / 27 = .67)

While transfer credit accepted from other institutions does not impact the student’s University cumulative GPA, transfer credit will count towards cumulative units attempted and units completed.

 

Academic Discipline

Students who are not maintaining satisfactory academic progress (SAP) are subject to successive measures of academic discipline as described below. If a student reestablishes SAP at any point, they will be returned to good standing and any penalties associated with academic discipline will be lifted. Measures of academic discipline include academic warning, academic probation, academic suspension, and academic dismissal.

If Shiloh University determines at any point during the academic disciplinary process that SAP cannot be reestablished within a reasonable time frame, it reserves the right to dismiss the student. Factors considered as part of this determination include, but are not limited to, the number of failing grades, past academic performance, the number of withdrawn or dropped courses, and any academic conduct violations. In particular students will likely be subject to academic dismissal if their GPA falls below 1.0 or if they withdraw from the majority of their coursework during any stage(s) of academic discipline. See the Academic Dismissal policy below for more information.

Academic Warning

If, at any point, a student’s satisfactory academic progress (SAP) falls below the acceptable minimums, they will be placed on academic warning for a period of 9 attempted credits for undergraduate students or 6 attempted credits for graduate students. For the purpose of this policy, courses completed and courses withdrawn from are considered attempted credits. The Registrar’s Office will notify the student and the student’s advisor of this status as well as the possible consequences associated with failure to reestablish SAP within the allowed timeframe.

Students receiving Federal Student Aid must refer to the Financial Aid Progress policy to determine the impact of unsatisfactory progress on their eligibility to receive aid funds.

Academic Probation

If, after academic warning, the student has failed to reestablish satisfactory academic progress (SAP), they will be placed on academic probation for a period of 9 units for undergraduate students or 6 units for graduate students. For the purpose of this policy, courses completed and courses withdrawn from are considered attempted credits. The Registrar’s Office will notify the student and the student’s advisor of this status as well as the possible consequences associated with failure to reestablish satisfactory progress within the allowed timeframe.

If deemed necessary by the advisor, a student’s academic course plan may be revised including adjustments in enrollment pace and requiring the student to repeat courses for grade improvement.

Academic Probation Appeal

Students may appeal their academic probation to their Academic Dean if they feel that extraordinary circumstances are the cause of their failure to meet SAP requirements. Appeals must be submitted to the Academic Dean via a SAP Appeal Form.

Extraordinary circumstances may include illness, emergency, or disaster that prevents the completion of coursework for a sustained period. Approvals of such appeals will only be given for legitimate reasons and additional documentation may be required. Neglect, typical work responsibilities, or events planned in advance are not considered legitimate reasons.

The approval of an Academic Probation Appeal does not cancel academic probation status nor does it affect the period of enrollment covered by the academic probation. However, students with an approved appeal will be able to determine their own course enrollment pace.

Academic Suspension

If, after academic probation, the student has failed to reestablish satisfactory academic progress (SAP), they will be subject to Academic Suspension. The Registrar’s Office will notify the student and the student’s advisor of this status. A student’s first suspension will last for one trimester, during which they will not be allowed to take courses with Shiloh University. After reinstatement the student will be able to resume his or her enrollment, and a new academic probation period begins.

If the student fails to reestablish SAP after reinstatement and an additional academic probation period, the student will be subject to a second academic suspension. The Registrar’s Office will notify the student and the student’s advisor of this status. A student’s second suspension will last for two trimesters, during which the student will not be allowed to take courses with Shiloh University. After reinstatement the student will be able to resume his or her enrollment, and a new academic probation period begins.

If a student is making progress towards reestablishing SAP within an allowable timeframe, academic suspension may be waived at the discretion of the student’s advisor or Academic Dean. At that point an Individual Student Progress Plan will be established which will serve as the student’s SAP policy (see the Individual Student Progress Plan policy below)

Academic Suspension Appeal

Individual Students may submit an Academic Suspension Appeal to their Academic Dean if they feel that extraordinary circumstances are the cause of their failure to meet SAP requirements. Appeals must be submitted to the Academic Dean via a SAP Appeal Form.

Extraordinary circumstances may include illness, emergency, or disaster that prevents the completion of coursework for a sustained period. Approvals of such appeals will only be given for legitimate reasons and additional documentation may be required. Neglect, typical work responsibilities, or events planned in advance are not considered legitimate reasons.

If an Academic Suspension Appeal is granted, the student will be allowed to continue taking courses provided that the student and the student’s advisor complete an Individual Student Progress Plan. This plan will then serve as the student’s SAP policy (see the Individual Student Progress Plan policy below).

Student Progress Plan

An individual student progress plan may be established as an alternative to the standard satisfactory academic progress (SAP) policy under the following conditions:

  • The student is not maintaining SAP and has already progressed through the warning and probation stages of the Academic Discipline policy.
  • The student was granted an Academic Suspension Appeal or academic suspension was waived by the student’s advisor.
  • Note: An individual student progress plan may be established at an earlier time for student’s receiving Federal Student Aid at the discretion of the Financial Aid Administrator.

This plan must be established in writing by the student and advisor, and then submitted to and approved by the Registrar’s Office, which will then administer the plan on a trimester basis. The plan must address how the student will reestablish SAP within an allowable timeframe. Both factors of academic progress must be included (minimum GPA requirements and minimum completion pace). Throughout the length of the plan, all course enrollments will be subject to review and approval by the student’s advisor who shall have the power to require adjustments in enrollment pace and/or to require the student to repeat courses for grade improvement.

If at any point the student fails to meet any plan benchmarks, they will be subject to standard academic discipline and may be dismissed. In all cases, a student must reestablish SAP in order to graduate from his or her program.

Academic Dismissal

If the student has failed to reestablish satisfactory academic progress (SAP) after all above stages of academic discipline have been exhausted, the student will be subject to academic dismissal. The Academic Dean or Dean’s designee will notify the student, in writing, of the dismissal.

A student who is subject to academic dismissal may reapply to the University no sooner than one year after dismissal. The Admissions Committee will be informed of the student’s past academic performance with Shiloh University and may require additional admission documentation from the student. Readmission will be granted only if there is a strong likelihood that the student possesses the motivation and capacity to successfully complete the academic requirements.

The University reserves the right to either reinstate the student in his or her original program or in the version currently available at the time of admission, whichever is mutually beneficial to the student and the University. Coursework previously completed at Shiloh University may or may not be carried over to the student’s new program depending on the grade earned and its impact on the student’s GPA as well as the age of the credit (especially for contemporary application courses taken more than ten years prior to readmission).

 

Financial Aid Progress Policy

Federal Student Aid Warning

If a student receiving federal student aid does not maintain satisfactory academic progress (SAP) at the time of evaluation, they will be placed on financial aid warning. Students given this status may continue to receive financial aid funds for one trimester. During this trimester, the student must reestablish SAP in order to continue receiving aid funds. If a student does not accomplish this, he or she may submit a SAP Appeal form. If an appeal is accepted, the student will be placed on Financial Aid Probation status (see below). If an appeal is not accepted, the student will no longer be eligible for financial aid until the student reestablishes minimum SAP.

Federal Student Aid Probation

If a student placed on Financial Aid Warning status does not improve his or her satisfactory academic progress (SAP) during the subsequent trimester, the student may submit an SAP Appeal to continue receiving funds. If this appeal is approved the student will be placed on Financial Aid Probation status for one trimester.

As part of the appeal approval process the University may require that the student takes an adjusted course load or prescribed course schedule. If the student does not reestablish SAP during that trimester he or she will no longer be eligible to receive Federal Aid funds unless the student establishes an Individual Student Progress Plan (see policy above) with his or her Advisor and the Financial Aid Administrator. Otherwise the student will lose aid eligibility, which he or she may regain once SAP is reestablished.

 

Leave of Absence Policy

Leave of Absence

If degree students feel that they need to interrupt their academic progress by taking a trimester off, they may request a leave of absence. A leave of absence (LOA) must be communicated in writing to the Registrar’s Office via a Leave of Absence form. Note that if students require a short leave of absence during a trimester but still wishes to complete their course(s), they should refer to the Course Extension Policy.

A degree student may not typically request a LOA for more than one trimester in any given 12-month period. Any Leave of Absence that exceeds one trimester will be considered a program withdrawal unless the extended leave was preapproved via appeal. Students wishing to appeal for an extended leave may do so using a new Leave of Absence form.

Financial Aid Recipients

Students receiving Federal Student Aid cannot appeal to extend a Leave of Absence. If a student fails to return after an approved one trimester absence, it will be considered a program withdrawal. The program withdrawal date will be considered the first date of the approved absence (the first day of the absent trimester) and that time will count as part of the student’s 6 month loan repayment grace period.

Military Leave of Absence

In accordance with Iowa State law any member (or spouse of a member if the member has a dependent child) of the Iowa National Guard or reserve forces of the United States who is ordered to national guard duty or federal active duty will receive the following Military Leave of Absence (MLOA) accommodations. Students from other states will receive similar accommodations in accordance with applicable State and Federal laws.

First, since all of the classes are taken online, students have multiple unique options for completing their coursework. They may work with their instructor to finish course work early, continue with their course(s) while deployed, or (if deployment is less than one month long) they may request a course extension (see Course Extension policy). If such arrangements are made, since the student is attempting to complete the course in a timely manner, tuition and fees will not be refunded.

However, if students are not able to complete their course work via the methods described above, they may receive an Incomplete (I) grade for the course. For any course for which an incomplete grade is assigned, it is understood that students intend to complete the course at a later time and therefore tuition and fees will still be collected.

Alternatively, students may withdraw their trimester registration and receive a full refund of tuition and fees for that trimester’s course(s). In this case, a pre-Withdrawal-Deadline grade will be assigned regardless of the actual withdrawal date.

A Military Leave of Absence (MLOA) may be granted for a period of not more than five cumulative years. Students returning from an MLOA need not apply for readmission. They will be readmitted into the same program they were originally enrolled or an up-to-date equivalent if a program update is advantageous for them.

In order for an MLOA to be granted, students must be in good standing in their program, must have met participation requirements, and must be receiving a passing grade at the time of deployment.

Note: When students are taking multiple courses in a trimester, any combination of the above options may be applied to each course.

Military Leave of Absence Request Process

Students must inform the Registrar’s office in writing (email is preferred) as soon as possible after receiving notification of deployment or movement due to military necessity. Communication must include a copy of applicable military orders.

Any withdrawal from courses related to deployment must be explicitly communicated to the Registrar’s Office to ensure that a full refund of tuition and fees will be made. If payment for courses has already been made, refunds may first be applied to any outstanding obligations and to any applicable scholarship, grant, or loan the University has directly received on behalf of students.

Reinstatement after a Military Leave of Absence

If an MLOA was not requested prior to the start of the deployment, it will be necessary to send a copy of the student’s military orders to the Registrar’s Office along with a letter explaining the circumstances in order to ensure that the student will not be required to re-apply for admission to the University. If the MLOA was submitted prior to deployment, it is only necessary for the individual to notify the Registrar of intention to return to studies.

 

Unofficial Withdrawal

Per federal regulations, schools are required to review students who received federal financial aid and did not pass any classes. An assessment must be made to determine whether the student earned the non-passing grades while continuing to substantively participate in classes or stopped participating in classes but did not officially withdraw. Students who stopped participating in classes may be required to repay a portion of the federal financial aid for that trimester. If it is determined that a student never began participating in some or all classes, aid may be cancelled completely.

Federal financial aid recipients who are identified as not attending one or more courses will receive an email from the Financial Aid Office outlining the University’s policy on official and unofficial withdrawals. Students no longer attending class are encouraged to officially drop individual courses or withdraw entirely from their program via communication to the Registrar’s Office.

If a student follows University procedures and withdraws, he or she will have an official withdrawal date and a financial aid refund calculation will be completed according to the Federal Return of Title IV Funds Refund Policy.

At the end of each trimester, all federal financial aid recipients who receive no passing grades (any combination of F, I, IP, NP, WF) will be reviewed to determine if the non-passing grade was earned while participating or was a result of no longer participating in class(es). The Financial Aid Office will consult course participation records to determine the last date of substantive participation.

Substantive participation is defined as significant discussion forum interaction, submission of an assignment, completion of quiz or examination, or significant correspondence with an instructor. Logging into the classroom site does not constitute substantive participation, nor does cursory posts in discussion forums such as “good job” or “I agree”.

The midpoint of the trimester is used to calculate the amount of federal financial aid refund the student owes unless a later date of substantive participation can be verified. If participation cannot be verified, it will be assumed that the student did not ever attend the class. If half-time participation cannot be verified, all aid may be cancelled.

If substantive participation beyond the midpoint of the trimester can be verified in even a single class by the student or an instructor and the student began participation in all classes, the amount of financial aid the student is required to repay may be reduced. If academic activity beyond the 60% point of the trimester can be verified in even a single class and the student began participating in all classes, the student may not need to repay any financial aid.

If a student unofficially withdraws, he or she will not receive a downward adjustment in contracted University charges. Therefore, any refund owed to a federal financial aid program is the student’s responsibility and will appear as a charge on the student’s next University bill. Students with outstanding balances on their account statement cannot register for classes, and cannot receive official transcripts.

 

Course Policies

Late Assignment Policy

Assignments and discussions are considered late if not received by Sunday 11:59 p.m. of the week they are due. However, specific due dates within a class week may apply to individual assignments. A 20% grade penalty will be applied for the first week an assignment is late. An additional 20% penalty (40% total) will be applied for the second week an assignment is late. Assignments submitted more than two weeks after the due date will not be accepted. Note: Late penalties are not assigned to tests and assignments that are scored by computer. Instructors may choose to adopt a stricter late assignment policy. This will be noted in the course syllabus.

If a student experiences extraordinary circumstances such as illness, emergency, or disaster that prevents him/her from completing an assignment(s) on time, the student may request an assignment extension. Approvals of such will only be given for legitimate reasons and documentation may be required. Neglect, typical work responsibilities, or events planned in advance are not considered legitimate reasons.

Extension requests are to be submitted at least one day before the assignment due date; retroactive extension requests will not be accepted. Extension requests must be submitted to the instructor via an Assignment Extension Request Form. Informal email requests are not accepted.

Course Extension Policy

If a student experiences extraordinary circumstances such as illness, emergency, or disaster that prevents him/her from completing coursework before the trimester end date, the student may request a course extension. Approvals of such will only be given for legitimate reasons and documentation may be required. Neglect, typical work responsibilities, or events planned in advance are not considered legitimate reasons.

Course extension requests are to be submitted at least one week before the end of the trimester; retroactive extension requests will not be accepted. Extension requests must be submitted to the instructor via a Course Extension Request Form. Informal email requests are not accepted.

If granted, an incomplete (I) grade will be assigned. After the established due date, which cannot extend beyond the end of the following trimester, the student’s final grade will be calculated. The earned final grade will be counted in the computation of the GPA.

Course Retake Policy

Undergraduate and graduate students may repeat a course one time only to improve a grade of C (2.0) or below. The grade earned in the repeat course, if higher, replaces the original grade.

Repeated courses will count toward the calculation of full-time or part-time enrollment status. Repeat courses that were previously incomplete will count towards units attempted and completed. Repeat courses that were previously completed and are being taken for grade improvement will count towards units attempted but not towards units completed. Credit hours earned for the course will be assigned only once. Failure of a repeated course may affect the student’s ability to maintain satisfactory academic progress.

Remedial Course Policy

Students may be required to improve specific skills by taking remedial coursework. Remedial courses are not included in GPA calculations, and they do not count towards units attempted or units completed.

Non-Scheduled Course Policy

In rare cases, when a student’s progress towards graduation is significantly impeded by a lack of required course options in a given trimester, he/she may request a non-scheduled course offering via a Non-scheduled Course Agreement. A non-scheduled course is not a directed study course: an instructor will be substantially involved on a regular basis, it will be administered through the online classroom, and it must be completed in 15 weeks. Only current courses (those listed in the current Academic Catalog) are eligible. Non-scheduled courses may not be requested in order to bypass portions of the curriculum or for the convenience of the student alone.

In order to be eligible to request a non-scheduled course, students must:

  • Be degree-seeking with Junior or Senior standing (Undergraduate) or 2nd or 3rd year status (Graduate)
  • Be meeting Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements
  • Need the course to satisfy his/her graduation requirements

Students may only take one non-scheduled course in a given trimester, and no more than two non-schedule courses in a given program. Course contact hours typically completed via discussions or any other student-to-student course components must be adequately replaced so the amended course meets required credit hour rules.

Non-Scheduled Course Request Process

To apply for a non-scheduled course offering, the student must:

  1. Discuss his/her options with his/her Advisor and receive approval from an Academic Dean before submitting a Non-Scheduled Course Agreement. If approved, the Academic Dean will select a supervising instructor for the course.
  2. Complete a Non-Scheduled Course Agreement – and all required enclosures – with the supervising instructor.
  3. Submit the signed, completed agreement to the Registrar’s Office during the trimester registration period.
  4. After receipt of registration confirmation, pay the standard course tuition as well as a $55 non-scheduled course fee.

Students may only take one non-scheduled course in a given trimester, and no more than two non-schedule courses in a given program. Course contact hours typically completed via discussions or any other student-to-student course components must be adequately replaced so the amended course meets required credit hour rules.