Find Your Course
Liverpool Hope Logo

Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Policy

In order to be eligible for US Department of Education Student Loans, United States students must meet the following Liverpool Hope University policies, which conform to US Department of Education regulations.

Undergraduate academic courses at Liverpool Hope University are known as “modules” and most commonly are year-long in duration, each carrying 60 credits. The required full-time study programme is four modules (120 credits) per academic year.

Students must successfully complete 120 credits at each level of their degree programme in order to progress to the next year level (Year 1 = Level C, Year 2 = Level I, Year 3 = Level H).

  • BA and BSc Degrees are three-year programmes,
  • The BA QTS Degree is a four-year programme.

Liverpool Hope University evaluates satisfactory academic progress annually.

All assignments with their grade weightings for individual assessments will be provided to students on each course at the beginning of the academic year. The Liverpool Hope University pass mark is 40% out of 100% for all assignments, using the published Liverpool Hope University mark scales.

Student loan recipients are required to be in good standing and to maintain satisfactory academic progress towards their degree requirements for each semester in which they are enrolled. Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) as described below is evaluated each year in June. Failure to maintain satisfactory progress as described below may result in cancellation of financial aid awards, and the student may have to repay any funds already received.

Completion Timeframes

The maximum timeframe for completion of an undergraduate certificate or degree programme, for students taking US Federal Loans, may not exceed 150% of the published length of the programme as measured in credit hours, in accordance with US Federal Loan regulations. 

  • For a three-year BA and BSc the timeframe is 540 attempted credits.  Students normally attempt and complete 120 credits per year, typically divided into two 60-credit blocks.  All credits at one Level of Study must be completed before the next Level is attempted.  Where a student needs to retake one block from a Level, they will attempt 60 credits in the following year, before progressing to the following Level the year afterwards.  Where a student needs to retake both blocks from a Level, they will attempt 120 credits in the following year, before progressing to the following Level the year afterwards.  No credit-rated block may be attempted more than twice.  Where a credit-rated block has been completed, it may not be attempted again.
  • For a three-year BA and BSc the timeframe is 720 attempted credits.  Students normally attempt and complete 120 credits per year, typically divided into two 60-credit blocks.  All credits at one Level of Study must be completed before the next Level is attempted.  Where a student needs to retake one block from a Level, they will attempt 60 credits in the following year, before progressing to the following Level the year afterwards.  Where a student needs to retake both blocks from a Level, they will attempt 120 credits in the following year before progressing to the following Level the year afterwards.  No credit-rated block may be attempted more than twice.  Where a credit-rated block has been completed, it may not be attempted again.

Each year the Board of Examiners considers whether the student is on track to complete within the timeframe; if not there their studies will be normally be terminated.

In exceptional circumstances a student may appeal to extend their timeframe.

Postgraduate (graduate) programmes may have a maximum timeframe which exceeds 150% of the published length of the programme under special conditions of Interruption of Study (see below).

Any period of study in which a student does not receive Federal Loan aid will also still count towards the maximum timeframe for their academic programme, and towards the degree classification [the UK equivalent of a Grade Point Average].

Students do not select the number of credits to take but must register for a full 120 credits each year. Therefore the board each year can determine whether a student is on track to complete. All international students proceed at the same pace of 120 credits a year, except where redeeming failed credits [as above].

Academic Probation and U.S. Federal Aid Probation

Academic Probation does not exist in Liverpool Hope University’s own regulations.  However, students who initially fail to gain SAP are normally given a specified timescale to redeem their position, as follows; this is a de facto system of Academic Probation, and relates to U.S. Federal Aid Probation as shown below. 

1               Students who have not passed 120 credits by June [but who have obtained an aggregate mark of at least 25] will be given an opportunity to undertake further work for August.  Their progress will be reviewed in early September. 

  • If they pass the work submitted in August, they will be deemed to have fulfilled the requirement for Satisfactory Academic Progress [SAP], and will proceed to the next 120 credits according to the standard schedule. 
  • If they fail to satisfy the examiners in any August assessments, they will be deemed to have failed the requirement for Satisfactory Academic Progress [SAP], and will be required to retake all or part of the 120 credits in the following academic session, and will no longer be eligible for U.S. federal student aid. However, such students will be entitled to lodge an Academic Appeal, the outcome of which may be that students be given a specified timescale [usually no more than 2 or 3 weeks] to submit further work to gain the 120 credits in time to proceed to the next 120 credits according to the standard schedule, therefore meeting the requirements for SAP.  Pending the final decision about whether the student’s further work has enabled them to gain the required 120 credits, the student would be placed on U.S. Federal Aid Probation.  In addition to the University’s normal procedures for communication results, students in receipt of U.S. Federal Aid will in relation to all aspects of this paragraph, be informed of the consequences for U.S. Federal Aid.

2          Students who have not passed 120 credits by June [and who have obtained an aggregate mark of below 25] will be deemed to have failed the requirement for Satisfactory Academic Progress [SAP], and will be required to retake all or part of the 120 credits in the following academic session. Such students will be entitled to lodge an Academic Appeal, the outcome of which may be that students be given a specified timescale [usually until the end of August] to submit further work to gain the 120 credits in time to proceed to the next 120 credits according to the standard schedule, therefore meeting the requirements for SAP.  .  Pending the final decision about whether the student’s further work has enabled them to gain the required 120 credits, the student would be placed on U.S. Federal Aid Probation.  In addition to the University’s normal procedures for communication results, students in receipt of U.S. Federal Aid will in relation to all aspects of this paragraph, be informed of the consequences for U.S. Federal Aid.

Transfer Credits

Transfer Credits from another institution of higher education are approved on an individual basis by the transfer student’s accepting academic programme at Liverpool Hope University.  They count toward the attempted and completed credits at Liverpool Hope, thereby reducing the maximum timeframe for completion of the programme.  They also count towards attempted and completed hours.

Change of Majors

Changes in major subjects can in some instances be completed within the original programme timeframe (for example, if a student is able to change their degree programme from Combined Studies to Single Subject Studies within their original academic Faculty (Academic Division), as within Education or Humanities, etc. Within the Combined Studies Degree (two majors), a student can only change one of their major subjects at the end of their first year (Level C), in which case they would have to take an extra year, in a part-time mode of study, to complete 60 credits at Level C of the new subject.

Change of Degrees

If a student changes BOTH subjects or changes to a completely new Degree Programme any previous credits earned will not count and the student is deemed to be starting again with a new timeframe.  However, entitlement to U.S. Federal Aid to cover the new subject[s] will be assessed by the relevant U.S. authorities.

Pursuit of Second Degrees

Liverpool Hope University permits students to pursue a second academic degree, either undergraduate or postgraduate, if they meet the relevant entry requirements for the new degree programme.

Summer Schools

There are no summer semesters or “summer school” courses offered within Liverpool Hope University’s undergraduate or graduate degree programmes at present.

Incompletes

There are no “incomplete” grades at Liverpool Hope University. However, students who do not submit work, but gain 25+ for the course overall will have one resubmission opportunity, currently during the last week in August following the fail in May-June. Resubmission results are published during the second week in the following September in time for a student to progress to the next level of study if they achieve a pass and the required 120 credits for their current level of study.

Grade Change Policy

All Liverpool Hope University grades are technically “provisional” until they are formally approved by each Degree Programme’s Board of Examiners at the end of each academic year in June (and early September for resubmissions). Normally provisional grades are approved unchanged, the only exceptions being: 

  1. The discovery of plagiarism in an assignment after the initial grade is awarded. All discovered plagiarized assignments will receive a fail grade as their final approved mark. But it is still possible to pass on aggregate marks.
  2. A student’s Academic Appeal is upheld by the University’s Academic Appeal Procedure. A student can only appeal against a grade result on the grounds that published assessment procedures were not followed, but not on the grounds that they disagree with the grade awarded.
  3. (Most unusually) the discovery by the Board of Examiners at the end of the academic year that an individual or a group of students was marked unfairly given the published mark scales and assessment criteria.

Repeated Courses

Students are allowed to repeat (retake) any failed module once only. Any retaken course will receive the full credit value but, if the course has been failed due to non-submission or academic misconduct, the overall grade will be no greater than “E” (indicating a bare pass at 40%). All time periods used to pass retakes will count towards a student’s programme timeframe in terms of attempted and completed credits. If a retake is failed, the student’s studies will normally be terminated. Once a course is passed, a student cannot retake it in order to achieve a higher grade.  If a student is required to repeat a failed course, the uncapped aggregate for that course will normally count towards the degree classification [the equivalent of the Grade Point Average].  However, if the original failure had been due either to unexplained non-submission of work or academic misconduct, the grade taken forward from the course for purposes of the classification will be a bare pass [40].

Non-credit Remedial Courses

Liverpool Hope University does not offer non-credit remedial courses.

Appeals Procedure

Students have the right to appeal against any academic decision, including termination of studies, but it must be on one of the following grounds: (1) of Medical evidence or other serious mitigating circumstances (as bereavement of a close family member or life-threatening illness) not previously submitted or (2) the student can produce documentary evidence showing that published academic procedures were not followed in their case. Academic Appeals should be directed to appeals@hope.ac.uk. The University’s full Appeals Procedure is published in the annual Student Handbook available to all students. Appeals will be dealt with in a prompt manner so that, if successful, the student can re-engage with their studies as quickly as possible.   The implications of the appeals process for U.S. Federal Aid are summarised above under “Academic Probation and U.S. Federal Aid Probation”. If the Appeal is successful the Appeals Team will inform the student of any outstanding work that needs completion and/or of their pass and progress status. The appeals process automatically considers if a student had failed to make SAP, and what has changed to allow the student to get back on track.

If the appeals process determines that a student’s progress has been affected by valid mitigating circumstances, the student would be given an opportunity, as if for the first time to submit missed assessments or to attend modules again. The timescale will vary according to circumstances but for assessment-only issues the matter could be resolved by the following semester allowing the student to progress on schedule, in other cases progression would be delayed by 12months.  However, in either case, the establishment of valid mitigating circumstances would lead to a recommendation that entitlement to U.S. Federal Aid be retained.

Termination of Studies

LHU only terminates a student’s registration on grounds of serious lack of engagement with their modules regarding attendance and the submission of assignments, and/or for serious infraction of the University’s Code of Behaviour. Any student who fails a retake of a course (the second attempt to pass the module including the full resit opportunity) will also have their studies terminated.

Termination of Student Aid

When a student formally Interrupts Study, Withdraws from the University, or has their studies Terminated, their student aid will be terminated. Renewal of student aid will only be approved after an Interrupted student has registered for new modules (courses). For all other students in the above categories, student aid can only be renewed after they have reapplied and been offered a place on a Liverpool Hope University academic programme.