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NCAA Certification

What is Certification?

  • The institution is responsible for ensuring student-athletes meet all applicable NCAA, conference, and institutional eligibility requirements prior to competing.
  • The NCAA requires that student-athletes:
    • Be enrolled as a full-time student (or meet an exception),
    • Be in good academic standing, and
    • Maintain progress toward a baccalaureate or equivalent degree.
  • Certification requires communication and cooperation of the following: Academic Advisors, Athletic Advisors, Compliance and the Registrar/Faculty Athletic Representative.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Credit Hour Requirements (NCAA Bylaw
    • Must pass 6 credit hours each full-time term (not including summer terms)
    • Must pass 18 credit hours during the regular academic year (not including summer terms)
    • Must pass 24 credit hours prior to start of third semester (Includes summer terms)
  • Designation of Degree Requirement (NCAA Bylaw
    • The student-athlete is required to designate a degree program in which they wish to study prior to their fifth semester.
    • Once the fifth semester starts, hours are only acceptable towards the credit hour requirement when they are applicable to the student-athlete’s designated degree program.
  • Percentage of Degree Requirement (NCAA Bylaw
    • 40% prior to fifth semester
    • 60% prior to seventh semester
    • 80% prior to ninth semester
  • GPA Requirements (NCAA Bylaw 4.3.3)
    • 1.8 prior to the third semester
    • 1.9 prior to the fifth semester
    • 2.0 prior to the seventh semester
    • Note: University of Houston requires a 2.0 GPA every semester (Good Academic Standing)

Certification Process (Chart)


Regular Meetings with Compliance and Faculty Athletic Representative

  • Meetings will be scheduled with the members of the Compliance Office, University Registrar’s office and the Faculty Athletic Representative to review internal processes and receive additional training on various athletic and academic rules and regulations.

Certifying Officials

  • The Chancellor is responsible for approving the procedures for certifying the eligibility of an institution’s student-athletes under NCAA legislation.
  • The Chancellor has designated the Director of Athletics as the individual responsible for the institution’s rules compliance, and the Director of Athletics has assigned oversight of the compliance program to the Senior Associate Athletics Director. The staff of the Senior Associate Athletics Director works in concert with the staff in the University Registrar’s Office to monitor compliance and certify athletes.
  • As the Certifying Officer, the University Registrar Office is responsible for approving and signing the “Eligibility Declaration” to certify that student athletes meet the Institutional, Conference, and NCAA requirements for eligibility. Certification of eligibility must occur prior to allowing a student-athlete to represent the institution in intercollegiate competition (see Bylaw 14.10.1).

Retention of Records

  • Certification documentation connected to student files follow the retention and disposition schedule of “Student Folders File”, currently held for ten years from the student’s initial enrollment. (Retention of these records exceeds the University’s recommendation that all certification records be kept for at least seven years from initial enrollment). The Declaration of Eligibility Rosters approved and signed by the University Registrar are maintained separately and retained permanently.