Graduate IP Grades

Federal financial aid regulations require an assessment of each student’s progress toward their degree. The University of Cincinnati, as directed by the U.S. Department of Education, has established the Satisfactory Academic Progress policy to meet this requirement.

The IP grade has been used by graduate faculty in the past to indicate coursework that spans over multiple terms or is otherwise still in progress. While it was UC graduate faculty policy to use this grading designation, an IP grade does not meet federal regulations in evaluating course completion and progression toward a degree.

NOTE: The Graduate School, beginning winter 2007, changed university policy to align with federal regulations. An IP grade for courses taken in winter 2007 and beyond is no longer possible. Instead, a student may be assigned an SP (in progress - satisfactory progress) or UP (in progress - unsatisfactory progress).

Student Financial Aid must show that graduate students seeking federal aid are meeting the federal progress measures for progress toward their degree. Therefore, any IP grades for coursework such as research or dissertation hours prior to winter 2007 must be changed to alternate available grades at the time the course was offered. Grades of P (passing) or letter grade of C or better to show completion of work for each term of enrollment would be appropriate.

Updating IP Grades

Students seeking federal aid should work with their individual faculty member to submit grade change forms for each class and term an IP grade was assigned. Graduate passing grades available at the time an IP grade was assigned (P, A, B, C, and associated +/- designations) are the only available grades from that timeframe that would demonstrate satisfactory completion of coursework to meet federal regulations for aid eligibility. The new grade of SP has since been added as a passing grade but can only be used for courses beginning winter 2007 and after.

Some graduate students who fail the academic progress policy can re-establish federal aid eligibility through grade changes for IP courses. The process of getting grade changes may seem a burden. At the same time, Student Financial Aid wants to see your aid eligibility re-established quickly. By working with faculty, you can have little to no interruption in the aid process.

If you have IP grades changed, notify Student Financial Aid at once new grades are posted to your record. You will be updated on your eligibility status within two business days.

Grades Failing to Show Progress

Students who have grades that do not show progress will have to follow the outlined appeal process for possible aid eligibility restoration. Students with I or NG grades may be required to complete requirements for such grades to be updated to passing in order to meet aid eligibility standards.


A conflict between federal aid regulations and the former university graduate grading policy may call into question the federal aid eligibility of some graduate students.

IP grades do not meet the federal definition of showing progress toward course completion and degree progress. Students with IP grades seeking aid will need to work with faculty on grade changes for all courses and terms with an IP grade.