NCAA Rules for Academic Eligibility
To participate in intercollegiate athletics at an NCAA institution, you must meet various academic benchmarks throughout your career. The criteria below must be met each semester prior to your being declared eligible for intercollegiate competition. If you are not eligible at the beginning of a semester, you will not be allowed to compete for the entire semester.
To be eligible for practice, competition, and financial aid, you must be enrolled in a minimum of 12 credit hours during each team during the academic year. Prior to graduation, if you need fewer than 12 credit hours to graduate, you may enroll in only these final hours and still be eligible for practice, competition, and financial aid.
The Six-Hour Rule
A student-athlete must successfully complete at least six degree applicable credit hours in a regular term to be eligible for competition during the next regular term. Graduate students must also abide by this regulation along with satisfying conference and university eligibility terms.
NCAA Five-Year Rule
The NCAA states that you have five calendar years in which to complete four years of competition in a sport. This five-year clock begins when you enroll as a full-time student at any collegiate institution. If you are not enrolled in school at any time during these five years, you do not regain that time. In special cases, you may be granted an extension of the five-year eligibility clock.
The NCAA has recently revised its academic standards in an attempt to ensure the established measures increase the graduation rates of student-athletes. The standards include credit hour and grade point average (GPA) benchmarks that are required prior to the start of each term. The specific requirements are shown in the table.