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    Apr 19, 2024  
2014-2015 School of Law Bulletin 
2014-2015 School of Law Bulletin [Archived Bulletin]


Academic Standing

Good Academic Standing: All J.D. and LL.M. students with a 2.0 or higher cumulative grade point average are in good academic standing. (AR 106) Students enrolled in their first semester at Hamline Law do not have academic standing.

Academic Support Requirements: Students whose GPA is under 2.400 after the first year must complete a special course offered during the fall of their second year for credit and participate in tutoring through the Academic Success program. Students with a cumulative grade point average under 2.400 in any semester will be required to complete curricula and/or academic support programming. (AR 106) Programming requirements are otherwise structured to address the issues faced by each particular student. Students who need more information about academic support requirements should contact the Director of the Academic Success program.

Probation: J.D. Students: A student whose cumulative grade point average is below 2.000 at the end of any semester is on academic probation. A probationary student has one semester to raise his or her cumulative grade point average to at least 2.0. For purposes of this rule, an academic semester does not include a summer or January term. (AR 106.) Thus, any student on probation after the spring semester must achieve a 2.0 by the end of the next fall semester. January and summer term grades may not be calculated into the cumulative GPA needed to lift a student out of probationary status.

Probationary Student Course Limitations: Students who are placed on probation at the end of a fall semester, including the first semester, may not register for upcoming summer courses without permission from the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. A student must understand the financial aid and credit implications of enrolling in a course while on probation.

The ABA prohibits students who are on probation from participating in study abroad programs at any ABA-accredited law school. (Criteria for Approval of Foreign Summer Programs Section V (B).) Thus, a student on probation by the time study abroad registration is completed will not be able to register for study abroad. As an example, a student who is on probation after a fall semester may not register for a study abroad program if either registration ends or the program begins before July 1, because he or she will not be removed from probation until after spring grades are entered and GPAs are calculated in June.

Students who are on probation also are not eligible to enroll in clinical programs and may not be eligible to enroll in a select number of other courses or programs at the law school. See the particular program for more information.

Academic Dismissal

A J.D. student will be subject to dismissal in any of the following circumstances:

  • He or she fails to achieve a cumulative 2.0 grade point average after completing a probationary semester. An academic semester does not include a summer or January term.
  • He or she fails to complete the requirements of the J.D. program within 84 months.

An LL.M. student will be subject to dismissal in any of the following circumstances:

  • The student fails to achieve a cumulative 2.0 grade point average at the completion of 24 credits.
  • The student fails to complete the requirements of the LL.M. degree within a three-year period.

Voluntary Withdrawals from the Law School: Any student wishing to withdraw from the law school must apply to the OTR. Mere failure to attend classes or unofficial communication of withdrawal to faculty members does not constitute withdrawal. The official withdrawal presumes that the student will not be returning to his or her legal studies at Hamline Law. Should the student later choose to return, that student can do so only by reapplication to the Admissions Committee. (AR 107)

Involuntary Withdrawals From the Law School: A student will be withdrawn from the law school if he or she is academically dismissed, exceeds the 84 month rule, stops attending classes without adequate communication or explanation, fails to register for the next semester, does not return from leave of absence in the scheduled semester, or fails to comply with any conditions of reinstatement, probation or a Code of Conduct settlement. Students should request a leave of absence immediately if they are not attending class or have failed to enroll for the next semester in a timely manner. Students should inform the Dean’s Office if they have good cause for failing to comply with any condition of reinstatement, probation, or a Code of Conduct settlement.

Leaves of Absence: Any student in good standing wishing to leave Hamline Law temporarily and return in a later semester must apply to the OTR for a leave of absence. Unless the leave of absence provides to the contrary, the student will be eligible to return at the commencement of one of the three following semesters. If a student does not return from leave at the commencement of one of the three following semesters, he or she will be administratively withdrawn and can gain admission only by reapplication to the Admissions Committee. Students who are not in good academic standing are not eligible for a leave of absence. (AR 107) First-year students are not normally eligible for a leave of absence.

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) Requirements

Because Hamline University is committed to ensuring that their graduate and professional students are successful in completing their degree programs, their progress is monitored on an annual basis and those not meeting SAP criteria may be placed on financial aid probation and eventually suspended from receiving financial aid. Section 484 of the Higher Education Act (HEA) requires that a student be maintaining satisfactory progress in their course of study in order to receive financial aid under the program authorized under Title IV of the HEA. This policy applies to all institutional grants, federal and state work-study funds, federal loans, state loans and private loan programs.

Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress: Financial Aid may only be granted to graduate and professional students who: 1) maintain a cumulative grade point average, after the first two terms, that is equal to or greater than the graduation standards published by their individual program; 2) successfully complete a minimum of 67% of all hours attempted at Hamline University; and 3) complete their programs of study within a period of satisfactory academic progress that is not more than 150% of the hours normally required for the degree.

Minimum Cumulative Grade Point Average: In order to maintain Financial Aid eligibility, J.D. and LL.M. students must maintain a cumulative GPA that is equivalent to the graduation standards published by their program, 2.0.
Minimum Completion Rate: Financial Aid can only be disbursed to students who satisfactorily complete 67% of all credits attempted. Earned credits are those that are successfully completed with a grade of A, B, C, D, and P and all plus and minus variations. Grades of I, W, N, F, and Z or drops are not counted as earned credits. Audit credits are not counted as attempted or earned credits. Failure to maintain a minimum 67% completion rate will result in a financial aid warning for the next term. Failure to raise the overall completion rate equal to or above the minimum 67% by the end of the “warning” term will result in the student being ineligible to receive financial aid, including student loans, until the student raises their overall completion rate to the minimum 67%.
Maximum Timeframe: As a prerequisite to receiving financial aid, graduate and professional students must complete their programs of study by attempting no more than 150% of the credits normally required for attainment of the degree. For J.D. students, the degree program can normally be completed with 88 credit hours, so a student’s financial aid eligibility will typically end once the student has attempted 132 credit hours, whether the student has attained the degree or not. Attempted credits include all grades of “F”, “W”, “I” and “N”. Repeated courses are counted as attempted credits each time they are attempted. All transfer credits accepted by Hamline University count as attempted credits.

Monitoring Process: Every financial aid applicant’s academic progress will be monitored at the end of each year. The assessment will be based on the student’s entire academic record, including all transfer hours accepted. All of a student’s academic coursework is considered in the review process, without regard as to whether or not the student received financial aid for the term(s). Automated reviews are conducted by the Office of Financial Aid at the end of each year, when program grades are anticipated. Because grades may not be available before the next scheduled term begins, it is possible that financial aid may be disbursed before the review is conducted. In the event that a student is found to be ineligible for the financial aid that has been disbursed due to failure to meet one of the Standards, the aid that was disbursed will be canceled and returned to the appropriate program(s). If the student successfully appeals and is granted a probationary period, the aid can be reinstated for that term.

Financial Aid Probation and Termination: Students who do not meet the standards of the Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy at the end of their second semester will automatically be placed on financial aid probation for the following semester. At the end of the probation period, students will be removed from financial aid probation if they are determined once again to be making satisfactory progress as outlined above. However, financial aid will be terminated if a student is still not making satisfactory academic progress.
Academically Dismissed Students: Students who are academically dismissed (and not reinstated on appeal) are immediately terminated from receiving financial aid, without a probation period.

Unsatisfactory Status: Students who are not in compliance with all aspects of the SAP policy are considered to be in an unsatisfactory status. A student whose status is determined to be unsatisfactory is not eligible to receive financial aid until the student: 1) attains the required minimum standards by successful completion of additional credits without the benefit of financial aid, or 2) is granted probationary financial aid during the appeal process, or 3) attains by the end of the probationary period the required minimum standards.

Appeals: Students who have been warned or who have had eligibility for financial aid suspended due to unsatisfactory academic progress may appeal to the Director of Financial Aid for an extension of time to meet the standards detailed in this policy. A student whose academic performance was affected by circumstances beyond his or her control including, but not limited to, personal or family accident, illness or crisis; death of a close family member; loss of employment or employment transition; or divorce, may request a review of his or her situation.

Appeal Process: To appeal the warning or denial of financial aid due to extenuating circumstances, a student must, within 15 days of notification, submit a letter detailing the circumstances that were beyond his or her control. The letter must be directed to the Financial Aid Director identifying how those circumstances affected his or her ability to meet the satisfactory progress standards. Additionally, independently verifiable supporting documentation from an identifiable third party is required in most instances.

Appeal Decisions and Probationary Periods: The Director of Financial Aid will issue a concluding opinion. A second appeal may be filed with the Provost, whose decision in all cases will be final. A student may have financial aid reinstated for an additional probationary semester under the following circumstances: 1) The student appeal is approved by the Director of Financial Aid; 2) Incomplete coursework is made up, thus advancing the student’s cumulative credit standing and grade point average; and 3) The student completes required coursework at another institution during an academic leave of absence and has been officially readmitted to Hamline.

Reinstatement Of Eligibility Upon Meeting The Standards: A student who has failed to meet the SAP Standards will be reinstated for financial aid eligibility upon the following conditions: 1) The student’s Hamline University transcript demonstrates that the student now meets all of the SAP standards and 2) The student has submitted a financial aid application for the current award year.

Time limitation (150%) - Students can only receive subsidized loans for 150% of the published length of the borrower’s educational program (assuming the borrower hasn’t reached their annual or aggregate limit listed above). For example, a student in a 4 year program can only receive subsidized loans for 6 years at most.