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Law Graduate Students
Satisfactory Academic Progress Guidelines

To receive and remain eligible for Federal Title IV and institutional financial aid, students must progress toward the completion of their program of study at a rate that will ensure graduation in a reasonable length of time. Widener Law Commonwealth has established a policy that measures academic progress both quantitatively (credit hours) and qualitatively (grades) at the end of each academic year.  

Students must meet the following minimum academic progress standards to receive Federal Direct Loans and Widener Law Commonwealth institutional funds. Academic progress is measured at the end of each academic year. The academic year consists of summer, fall, and spring. Therefore, the Financial Aid Office will review satisfactory academic progress after spring grades have been received and verified by the Registrar’s Office.

Students who do not meet the minimum standards will be contacted by email using their Widener address. Notification will outline student options to re-establish eligibility, such as attending subsequent classes or submitting an appeal for a waiver by a specified date.

Quantitative Measurement

Students must successfully complete a minimum of 60 percent of the total credits attempted while enrolled at Widener Law Commonwealth. Successful completion is based on the percentage of the total (cumulative) credit hours attempted compared to the total credit hours completed. Earned credits for a course cannot be counted more than once. Grades of “I” (incomplete), “W” (withdrawal), “F” (failure), “NP” (no pass), and “Z” (no grade submitted) count as credits attempted but do not count as credits completed. Transfer credits must be treated as both attempted and completed credits for purposes of measuring academic progress.  

Qualitative Measurement

Graduate students must achieve a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.00.

Maximum Time Frame Requirements

The maximum time frame to complete the credits required for graduation is measured from the date of matriculation. Students must complete their degree requirements within 84 months of matriculation. Matriculation shall mean the date on which a student first begins legal studies at ay law school accredited by the ABA, not including a Trial Admission Program.   


Academically dismissed or suspended students are ineligible for financial aid while suspended and must request reinstatement (or formal appeal) of aid upon readmission to regain financial aid eligibility for subsequent semesters. Academic readmission does not automatically grant reinstatement of financial aid eligibility.


Reinstatement of financial aid eligibility is possible once the student has earned 60 percent of total credits attempted and has achieved the required grade point average, either at the student’s own expense or by completing unfinished class assignments, except when aggregate hours (total hours attempted) are the cause of ineligibility. To request reinstatement of financial aid, submit a written request to the Financial Aid Office.  


A student may appeal for a waiver from the progress rules and regulations based on such extenuating circumstances as the death of a close relative, serious personal illness or injury, change of educational objective, or other extenuating circumstance. The student must be able to demonstrate that the extenuating circumstance had a direct impact on the student’s academic performance. Students should submit a written appeal to the Financial Aid Office. Appeals should be accompanied by an academic plan developed with input from the Director of Student Affairs. If the appeal of progress is approved, the student will be placed on financial aid probation.

Appeals for maximum time frame (excessive aggregate hours) to complete a degree must address, at a minimum, any degree program changes and include a degree completion plan from the Director of Student Affairs.