Wait... Grades are Important?!?! What grades do I need to play in College?

Time to read
1 minute
Read so far

Wait... Grades are Important?!?! What grades do I need to play in College?

Sun, 06/18/2017 - 12:02
Posted in:

There are minimum academic requirements to compete in both Division I and Division II athletics. Division I uses a sliding scale – as your GPA gets higher, your minimum required test scores get lower, and vice-versa. You should still work as hard as possible to keep your GPA high – test scores can be a wild card and you don’t want to depend on a high score on a high-pressure standardized test for your academic eligibility.

Remember that these are just minimum requirements – you will still need to be admitted to any college where you want to play. Make sure to check the admissions sections on the websites of specific schools you are interested in to see the typical GPA and test scores of admitted students.

Division I Requirements:

  1. Graduate from high school
  2. Pass these 16 core courses:
    • 4 years English
    • 3 years Math (Algebra I or higher)
    • 2 years Natural/physical science (1 year of lab if offered by high school)
    • 2 years Social Science
    • 1 year Your choice of additional English OR Math OR Science
    • 4 years Any of above OR foreign language OR non-doctrinal religion/philosophy
  3. Satisfy the GPA and test score requirements on the Division I sliding scale

Depending on your test scores, you will need a GPA somewhere between 2.0 and 3.55 to qualify. Regardless of your test scores and your athletic ability, you cannot play Division I athletics with a GPA below 2.0. For instance, with a GPA of 2.75, you would need either an SAT score of 720 or an ACT sum score of 59 to qualify.

For purposes of qualifying for athletics, your GPA will be calculated using only the 16 core courses listed above. Physical education and other electives not listed will not count towards your qualifying GPA.

You can use either the SAT or the ACT to fulfill your standardized testing requirement. A note on the ACT: the qualification requirements do not use the conventional ACT “composite” score (from 1-36) but a “sum” score. The composite score averages the four ACT sections (English, Mathematics, Reading, Science), and that is how you will usually see ACT scores written. The sum score that Division I uses is the total of the four sections (they are 36 points apiece) and so is on a scale from 4 to 144.

Division II Requirements:
Unlike Division I, Division II does not use a sliding scale for academic eligibility.

1. Graduate from high school

2. Earn a 2.0 GPA or better in these 14 core courses:
• 4 years English
• 2 years Math (Algebra I or higher)
• 2 years Natural/physical science (1 year of lab if offered by high school)
• 2 years Social Science
• 1 year Your choice of additional English OR Math OR Science
• 3 years Any of above OR foreign language OR non-doctrinal religion/philosophy

3. Earn an SAT score of at least 820 OR an ACT sum score of at least 68.

Division III Requirements

  1. Division III does not have a uniform set of eligibility requirements. Each Division III school determines their own academic requirements for their athletes.

NAIA Requirements:

  1. Graduate from high school
  2. Meet 2 of 3 of these requirements:
    • 860 or better on the SAT OR an ACT composite score of 18 or better (see explanation of ACT scores above)
    • Overall high school GPA of 2.0 or better
    • Graduate in the upper 50% of your high school graduating class