Satisfactory Academic Progress - Physical Therapy

Federal law and regulations require that all students receiving financial assistance maintain satisfactory academic progress according to both qualitative and quantitative measures. The following policy presents the standards adopted by the Program in Physical Therapy and the Student Financial Aid Office and applies to all students receiving financial aid, including Federal Direct (Stafford) Student Loans.

The Graduate Program in Physical Therapy is a joint program between the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), and San Francisco State University (SFSU), and is referred to as the UCSF/SFSU Graduate Program in Physical Therapy. Students will enroll at UCSF and SFSU but will receive financial aid from UCSF throughout the duration of their program. Coursework will be taken simultaneously on both campuses and end-of-term transcripts will be exchanged between institutions. After successful completion of the program, the Doctor of Physical Therapy degree (DPT) is jointly awarded by UCSF and SFSU. UCSF is responsible for distributing the diplomas.

The academic requirements for the DPT include the satisfactory completion of the curriculum designated by the faculty. Once a quarter, the core faculty will meet to assess the performance of each student. This review will include an assessment of any incomplete grades or any classes from which the student has withdrawn and their impact upon the student's progress. If any students are having academic problems, the Academic Review Committee will be asked to review the situation and make recommendations.

Qualitative Measure (GPA)
Students must have a 3.00 cumulative grade point average (GPA) at both UCSF and SFSU at the end of each quarter/semester of enrollment to be considered in good standing. If a student's cumulative GPA at the end of any given quarter/semester is below 3.00 at either school, he/she will be placed on academic and financial aid probation. If students receive a "D" or "F" in a required class, they must retake the class, and their progress will be monitored by the faculty. The Graduate Program in Physical Therapy is responsible for notifying the Student Financial Aid Office if students are placed on probation.

Quantitative Measure (Pace)
The normal time frame for completion of required course work is 36 months. Throughout the 36 months, students will register for classes at both campuses and pay fees at the following campus:

  • Year 1 (UCSF) first summer session and for fall, winter, and spring quarters;
  • Year 2 (SFSU) second summer term;
  • Year 2 (UCSF) fall, winter and spring quarters;
  • Year 3 (SFSU) third summer term;
  • Year 3 (UCSF) fall, winter and spring quarters

First year
Students register and pay fees at UCSF for summer, fall, winter, and spring quarters. Students register for classes at both campuses

Second year
Second Summer Term: Students register and pay fees at SFSU. Students take 9 quarter units of clinical clerkships at SFSU in addition to units of didactic courses at UCSF. The Program Director at SFSU will submit a memo to the UCSF Student Financial Aid Office, which indicates that the students are full time.
Second Fall, Winter and Spring Quarters: Student register for classes at both campuses and pay fees at UCSF.

Third year
Third Summer Term: Students register and pay fees at SFSU. Students take 18 quarter units of clinical clerkships. The Program Director at SFSU will submit a memo to the UCSF Student Financial Aid Office, which indicates that the students are full time.
Third Fall, Winter and Spring Quarters: Students register for classes at both campuses and pay fees at UCSF.

Implementation
The Director of Student Financial Aid and the Graduate Program in Physical Therapy shall have joint responsibility for implementation and enforcement of the satisfactory academic progress policy. The Director of Student Financial Aid notifes each student about the policy at the time of initial enrollment. The Graduate Program in Physical Therapy will monitor the student's performance and will notify the Student Financial Aid Director of any students who are on academic probation or are not completing the program within the required time frame. The Director will notify students of implementation of probationary status and suspension.

Time To Degree
The Doctor of Physical Therapy degree program normally takes 36 months. Students may advance to candidacy after completing the equivalent of 103 semester units (155 quarter units). To graduate, the student must complete 123 semester units (185 quarter units). Students occasionally take longer because of academic or personal difficulties. The Academic Review Committee and/or an academic advisor may then establish a schedule for the student which departs from the norm. Such students will register on the campus where they are taking the greatest number of units. The committee or advisor will monitor the student's progress to ensure that he/she is making sufficient progress to complete the program within the specified time. A student not doing so will be viewed as not making satisfactory academic progress and will be placed on financial aid probation.

Financial Aid Probation
A student placed on probation for not making sufficient quantitative or qualitative progress may receive financial aid during the probationary period (one or two quarters or semesters as designated by the Graduate Program in Physical Therapy). The student must be making progress towards a 3.0 GPA both to stay in the program and to receive financial aid. At the end of the probationary period, he/she must have achieved a 3.00 grade point average and have completed enough course work to complete the physical therapy program within the 36-month period or as specified by the advisor or Academic Review Committee. A student who fails to do so is suspended from financial aid eligibility and may not receive additional funds. A student shall regain financial aid eligibility when he/she is again meeting the progress standard.

Appeals
The program is ready to respond to mitigating circumstances which may arise in individual situations. Students may appeal loss of eligibility for financial aid to the Student Financial Aid Director, who will consider whether the mitigating circumstances offer justification for altering customary standards of academic progress.

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