Policies and Procedures

Lincoln Memorial University recognizes the problem of constantly increasing educational costs and thus offers a substantial program of financial aid to help students pay for their education. The University makes every effort to ensure that qualified students are not denied the opportunity to attend LMU due to their limited financial resources.

Frequently, it is less expensive to attend a private college than a public University since institutional funded financial aid is designed to equalize educational costs.

At LMU, more than $100 million is awarded to qualified students under federal, state, and institutional financial aid programs. Except for specific academic and athletic scholarships, all financial assistance at LMU is based on financial need. Need is defined as the difference between the cost of attending LMU and the calculated expected family contribution toward that cost. After the student submits the necessary application forms, the Financial Aid Office will determine the student’s eligibility for financial assistance.

Each applicant for financial aid must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA should be submitted to the federal processing center in time to be received by April 1 for students entering the following fall. The priority deadline to apply for financial aid is April 1.

The following policies and procedures relate specifically to Financial Aid requirements.

Financial Aid: Satisfactory Academic Progress

The United States Department of Education requires all students who receive federal student financial assistance to make progress toward their declared degree. This measurement is called Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). LMU is required to have policies that ensure students are making this progress by measuring both qualitatively and quantitatively. Starting with the Fall 2011 semester, LMU has established the following SAP policy. SAP will be reviewed at the end of each semester, including the summer.

A student whose academic performance drops below the 23 minimum standards will be placed on financial aid warning. A student may retain financial aid while on warning for one semester but must meet Satisfactory Academic Progress by the end of that semester or be placed on Financial Aid Suspension.

Students who fail to maintain SAP may not receive the following types of student financial assistance: Federal Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG), Tennessee Student Assistance Awards, Tennessee Education Lottery Scholarships, Lincoln Grant, Federal WorkStudy, Federal Direct Loans, Federal PLUS Loans, other aid involving Title IV funds, and/or any other aid for which SAP is a requirement.

Qualitative: GPA

Students enrolled in undergraduate programs must earn a minimum cumulative GPA to maintain financial aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP). For graduate programs, please refer to specific graduate catalogs for GPA requirements.

Hours Attempted Cumulative GPA

Hours Attempted Cumulative GPA
0 - 29 1.5 GPA
30 - 45 1.75 GPA
46 - 59 1.90 GPA
60 + Hours 2.0 GPA

Quantitative: Hours Attempted vs Hours Earned (Completion Rate)

A student is considered to have made satisfactory academic progress provided he/she passes at least 67% of the cumulative credit hours attempted. For instance, a student who attempts 45 credit hours must complete at least 30 of those credit hours to make satisfactory academic progress.

Quantitative: Maximum Time Frame

No student will be eligible to receive financial aid for more than 150% of the published length of the program. This time is measured by credit hours attempted. For example, a student seeking a baccalaureate degree totaling 122 credit hours cannot receive aid for more than 183 attempted hours (122 x 150% = 183). Transfer credits will be evaluated and those credits that count toward the student’s current academic program will count as both attempted and completed hours. Failing a class or withdrawing from a class, whether passing or failing, can affect SAP. Incomplete grades will not count against attempted hours, until a grade is recorded or the candidate is withdrawn from the class or classes. Satisfactory academic progress will be reviewed at the end of each semester.


Students who are in SAP suspension may appeal this decision to the LMU Financial Aid Appeals Committee. The appeal must be made in writing and explain why the student failed to make SAP and what has changed that will allow the student to make SAP at the next evaluation. This letter should be sent to the Executive Director of Financial Aid, 6965 Cumberland Gap Parkway, Harrogate, TN 37752. The committee will review the appeal along with any additional recommendations from appropriate faculty or staff members to determine if the student will be able to meet SAP standards by the next evaluation. If not an academic plan can be developed to ensure that the student will be able to meet SAP standards by a specific point in order to graduate from a program. If the committee does not approve the appeal, the student may take classes at his/her own expense to try to regain SAP. If the appeal is approved, the student will be placed on “Financial Aid Probation” for one semester. At the end of the next semester, the student must be making SAP to continue receiving financial assistance. If any additional appeals are approved beyond one semester, an academic plan must be developed for the student and approved by the academic advisor, division Dean or the Vice President for Academic Affairs. The academic plan must detail exactly what courses are required for the student to complete their intended program of study at LMU.


All Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress notifications will be sent in two ways: a letter will be sent to the student at the home address and an e-mail notification will be sent to his/her LMU e-mail address.

Regaining Eligibility: Quantitative-Maximum Time Frame

To regain eligibility, you must graduate and advance to a new academic level (UG to GR).

Quantitative: Hours Attempted vs. Hours Earned

To regain eligibility, take courses at your own expense in a subsequent term or terms and meet the standards according to the cumulative credit hours completion ratio outlined above under the heading Quantitative. Once you have taken the courses and earned passing grades, you will need to notify the Office of Financial Aid.

To regain eligibility, complete courses at your own expense and raise your cumulative GPA to the acceptable standard. Once you have completed the course and raised your GPA, you will need to notify the Office of Financial Aid to evaluate the coursework taken to see if financial aid can be awarded.

Withdrawal from the University and Financial Aid

Any student withdrawing from the University and has received financial aid must make an appointment with the Financial Aid office.