top of page

Academic Standards

Student eligibility for financial assistance requires that the student complete the following forms each academic year for which he/she is requesting assistance. Financial Aid packets containing these required forms are available from the campus Financial Aid Office.


USC Supplemental Financial Aid Verification/Compliance Form

All students applying for Financial Aid or receiving agency funding at USC are required to complete this data form prior to receiving any financial assistance. This form collects important information and provides the student with an opportunity to notify the Financial Aid Office of any special circumstances that might affect his/her eligibility for financial assistance.


Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

This form is used to determine the student's eligibility for the Federal Pell Grant, and Federal SEOG. Additionally, information from this form will determine the student's eligibility for Federal Subsidized and Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loans and New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP).


Express Tap Application (ETA)

Students from New York State attending USC full time (12 credit hours per semester) receive a preprinted Express TAP Application in the mail from New York State Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC). It includes preprinted information taken from his/her FAFSA. The student must review the form for accuracy, provide the additional information requested, sign and forward it to the USC Financial Aid Office to be copied and mailed to HESC for processing.


Federal Direct Student Loan Master Promissory Note

Students who need to borrow additional funds to cover a portion of their educational expenses may use this application to apply for a Federal Subsidized Direct Loan and/or a Federal Unsubsidized Direct Loan.


Maintaining Eligibility for Financial Aid

USC is required to establish and maintain a policy to monitor the academic progress of students who apply for and/or receive federal, state, and institutional financial assistance. A student must be a matriculated student (enrolled in a degree-seeking program) to be eligible for financial assistance. Only credit courses that count toward a degree or certificate are included when determining aid eligibility. (A student can receive aid for a limited amount of remedial coursework that is included as part of a regular program.)


To maintain eligibility for financial assistance from the institution, Federal Title IV programs (Federal Pell Grants, Federal SEOG and Federal Direct Loans), and the NYS Tuition Assistance Program (TAP), a student must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress. Progress is defined as successfully completing a required number of credits attempted each semester with an appropriate grade point average.

Standards of Satisfactory Progress

(For students entering prior to the Fall 2010 semester)

Student academic progress for financial aid at USC will be checked at the completion at each semester per the following Standards of Satisfactory Progress chart for all students:









Standards of Satisfactory Progress -- Tuition Assistance Program (TAP)

(For Students entering Fall 2010 or later)

Student academic progress for financial aid at USC will be checked at the completion at each semester per the following Standards of Satisfactory Progress chart for all students:








Pursuit of Program

In addition to the Standards of Satisfactory Progress, students are required to receive a passing or failing grade (A-F or P letter grade) in a certain percentage of courses each term.











Students who fail to maintain Standards of Academic Progress and/or Pursuit of Program will lose all Title IV and New York State financial assistance until a Request for Academic Appeal has been reviewed and approved.


A student who is permitted to re-enroll because of an exception to the satisfactory academic progress policy is not necessarily eligible for financial aid. The Appeals Committee may reinstate eligibility for Federal and/or NYS financial aid programs if the student can demonstrate mitigating circumstances.


Provisions for eligibility for a TAP Waiver allow a student no more than one waiver as an undergraduate student throughout his/her collegiate career. TAP Waivers will be considered only for documented medical emergencies after concurring with the student that issuance of the TAP Waiver is in his/her best interest.

bottom of page