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Apply yourself. Get all the education you can, but then do something. Don't just stand there, make it happen.
- Lee Iacocca
Participation in collegiate athletics involves preperation, determination and hard-work both on the field and in the classroom. The Collegiate Center provides helpful information and advice for student-athletes and their families on college admissions, testing and eligibility rules.

GPA and Course Work

As a high school freshman or sophomore, keep in mind that the grades you're earning are just as important as the course work you select. A good GPA is essential, but it is important not to take easy classes for the sole purpose of your improving your GPA. Most colleges require completion of specific high school courses for admission. Confirm you are taking the right courses or seek guidance so you'll be considered for admission to the school of your choice.

Testing and eligibility

Grades do not tell the whole story about your academic ability. Colleges will also ask you to submit scores from a national standardized test. The ACT and the SAT are the two national exams used for this purpose.
It is also important to become familiar with the NCAA rules for eligibility to participate in college athletics.
What is the ACT?
Your ACT composite score, together with your high school grades, indicates how prepared you are for college. In addition, the scores from the various sections of the ACT will help your college place you in the right classes, matching your skills with course requirements. The ACT is accepted or preferred by more colleges and universities—including all of the Ivy League colleges—than any other entrance exam. For more information on the ACT go to http://www.actstudent.org.
I need tips for the ACT.
  • Carefully read the instructions on the cover of the test booklet.
  • Read the directions for each test carefully.
  • Read each question carefully.
  • Pace yourself—don't spend too much time on a single passage or question.
  • Pay attention to the announcement of five minutes remaining on each test.
  • Use a soft lead No. 2 pencil with a good eraser; do not use a mechanical pencil or ink pen.
  • Answer the easy questions first, then go back and answer the more difficult ones.
  • On difficult questions, eliminate as many incorrect answers as you can, then make an educated guess among those remaining.
  • Answer every question. Your scores on the multiple-choice tests are based on the number of questions you answer correctly. There is no penalty for guessing.
  • If you complete a test before time is called, recheck your work on that test.
  • Mark your answers neatly. Erase any mark completely and cleanly without smudging.
  • Do not mark or alter any ovals on a test or continue writing the essay after time has been called or you will be dismissed and your answer document will not be scored.
I need tips for the English section on the ACT.
  • Be aware of the writing style used in each passage.
  • Consider the elements of writing that are included in each underlined portion of the passage.
  • Some questions will ask you to base your decision on some specific element of writing, such as the tone or emphasis the text should convey.
  • Be aware of questions with no underlined portions—that means you will be asked about a section of the passage or about the passage as a whole.
  • Examine each answer choice and determine how it differs from the others. Many of the questions in the test will involve more than one aspect of writing.
  • Read and consider all of the answer choices before you choose the one that best responds to the question.
    Determine the best answer.
  • Reread the sentence, using your selected answer.
I need tips for the Mathematics section on the ACT.
  • Read each question carefully to make sure you understand the type of answer required.
  • If you choose to use a calculator, be sure it is permitted, is working on test day, and has reliable batteries. Use your calculator wisely.
  • Solve the problem.
  • Locate your solution among the answer choices.
  • Make sure you answer the question asked.
  • Make sure your answer is reasonable.
  • Check your work.
I need tips for the Reading section on the ACT.
  • Read the passage carefully.
  • Read and consider all of the answer choices before you choose the best response to the question.
  • Refer to the passage when answering the questions.
I need tips for the Science section.
  • Read the passage carefully.
  • Refer to the scientific information in the passage when answering the question.
  • Read and consider all of the answer choices before you choose the best response to the question.
  • Note conflicting viewpoints in some passages.
I need tips for the Writing section.
  • Carefully read the instructions on the cover of the test booklet.
  • Do some planning before writing the essay; you will be instructed to do your prewriting in your Writing Test booklet. You can refer to these notes as you write the essay on the lined pages in your answer folder.
  • Do not skip lines and do not write in the margins. Write your essay legibly, in English.
  • Carefully consider the prompt and make sure you understand it—reread it if you aren't sure.
  • Decide how you want to answer the question in the prompt.
  • Then jot down your ideas on the topic: this might simply be a list of ideas, reasons, and examples that you will use to explain your point of view on the issue.
  • Write down what you think others might say in opposition to your point of view and think about how you would refute their arguments.
  • Think of how best to organize the ideas in your essay.
  • At the beginning of your essay, make sure readers will see that you understand the issue.
  • Explain your point of view in a clear and logical way.
  • If possible, discuss the issue in a broader context or evaluate the implications or complications of the issue.
  • Address what others might say to refute your point of view and present a counterargument.
  • Use specific examples.
  • Vary the structure of your sentences, and use varied and precise word choices.
  • Make logical relationships clear by using transitional words and phrases.
  • Do not wander off the topic.
  • End with a strong conclusion that summarizes or reinforces your position.
  • If there is time, do a final check of the essay when it is finished.
  • Correct any mistakes in grammar, usage, punctuation, and spelling.
  • If you find any words that are hard to read, recopy them so your readers can read them easily.
  • Make any corrections and revisions neatly, between the lines (but not in the margins).

**For more information go to http://www.actstudent.org.**

What is the SAT?
The SAT is a widely-used admission test. Many colleges accept either the SAT or ACT, but some require one or the other. The SAT measures students' verbal reasoning, critical reading, and math problem-solving skills. It tells colleges how well students use the skills and knowledge they've learned so far, both in and out of school. For more information on the SAT go to http://www.collegeboard.com
I need tips for the SAT.
  • Answer easy questions first. The easier questions are usually at the start of the section, and the harder ones are at the end. The exception is in the critical reading section, where questions are ordered according to the logic and organization of each passage.
  • Make educated guesses. If you can rule out one or more answer choices for multiple-choice questions, you have a better chance of guessing the right answer.
  • Skip questions that you really can't answer. No points are deducted if an answer is left blank.
  • Limit your time on any one question. All questions are worth the same number of points. If you need a lot of time to answer a question, go on to the next one. Later, you may have time to return to the question you skipped.
  • Keep track of time. Don't spend too much time on any group of questions within a section.
  • Use your test booklet as scratch paper.
  • Mark the questions in your booklet that you skipped and want to return to.
  • Check your answer sheet to make sure you are answering the right question.
  • Make sure you use a No. 2 pencil. It is very important that you fill in the entire circle on the answer sheet darkly and completely. If you change your response, erase it as completely as possible.
I need tips for the Critical Reading section on the SAT.
  • Work on sentence completion questions first. They take less time to answer than the passage-based reading questions
  • The difficulty of sentence completion questions increases as you answer them in order.
  • Reading questions do not increase in difficulty from easy to hard. Instead, they follow the logic of the passage
  • The information you need to answer each reading question is always in the passage(s). Reading carefully is the key to finding the correct answer. Don't be misled by an answer that looks correct but is not supported by the actual text of the passage(s).
  • Reading questions often include line numbers to help direct you to the relevant part(s) of the passage. If one word or more is quoted exactly from the passage, the line number(s) where that quotation can be found will appear in the test question. You may have to read some of the passage before or after the quoted word(s), however, in order to find support for the best answer to the question.
  • Do not jump from passage to passage. Stay with a passage until you have answered as many questions as you can before you proceed to the next passage.
  • If you don't know what a word means in a sentence completion or reading passage, consider related words, familiar sayings and phrases, roots, prefixes, and suffixes. Have you ever heard or seen a word that may be related to it?
  • In your test booklet, mark each question you don't answer so that you can easily go back to it later if you have time.
  • Remember that all questions are worth the same number of points regardless of the type or difficulty.
I need tips for the Mathematics section on the SAT.
  • Familiarize yourself with the directions ahead of time.
  • The test does not require you to memorize formulas. Commonly used formulas are provided in the test book at the beginning of each mathematics section. It is up to you to decide which formula is appropriate.
  • Read the problem carefully. Note key words that tell you what the problem is asking. Ask yourself the following questions before you solve each problem: What is the question asking? What do I know?
  • With some problems, it may be useful to draw a sketch or diagram of the given information.
  • Use the test book for scratchwork. You are not expected to do all the reasoning and figuring in your head. You will not receive credit for anything written in the booklet, but you will be able to check your work easily later.
  • Decide when to use a calculator.
  • For multiple-choice questions, you may want to refer to the answer choices before you determine your answer.
  • Eliminate choices. If you don't know the correct answer to a question, try some of the choices. It's sometimes easier to find the wrong answers than the correct one. On some questions, you can eliminate all the incorrect choices.
  • Make sure your answer is a reasonable answer to the question asked. This is especially true for student-produced response questions where no answer choices are given.
  • All figures are drawn to scale unless otherwise indicated.
I need tips for the Writing section of the SAT.
  • Read the directions carefully, and then follow them.
  • Look at the explanations for each correct answer when you use practice materials. Even if you got the question right, you may learn something from the explanation.
  • Eliminate the choices you are sure are wrong when you are not sure of the answer. Make an educated guess from those that remain.
I need tips for the Essay section on the SAT.
  • There are no short cuts to success on the SAT essay. You will not receive high scores on your essay just because it is long, or has five paragraphs, or uses literary examples. The high school and college teachers who score the SAT reward essays that insightfully develop a point of view with appropriate reasons and examples and use language skillfully. So what can you do to write a successful SAT essay?
  • Read the entire assignment. It's all there to help you. Every essay assignment contains a short paragraph about the issue. Imagine that you are talking to the author of the paragraph about the issue. Would you argue with him or her, or agree? What other ideas or examples would you bring up? Answering these questions will help you develop your own point of view.
  • Don't oversimplify. Developing your point of view doesn't mean coming up with as many examples as you can.
  • Rushing to give multiple relevant examples can lead you to oversimplify a complex topic. An essay with one or two thoughtful, well-developed reasons or examples is more likely to get a high score than an essay with three short, simplistic examples.
  • There's nothing wrong with "I." You are asked to develop your point of view on the issue, not give a straight report of the facts. This is your opinion, so feel free to use "I," and give examples that are meaningful to you, even ones from your personal life or experiences. Of course you need to support your ideas appropriately, and show that you can use language well, but remember: the essay is an opportunity for you to say what you think about an issue relevant to your life.

**For more information go to http://www.collegeboard.com.**

What is the Eligibility Center?
The NCAA Eligibility Center formerly known as the NCAA Clearing House is where a student wishing to play a Division I or II sport at any university must register. The NCAA Initial Eligibility Center handles all student eligibility issues and the website also contains all of the information and forms that you need to look at. Among the topics that the NCAA Initial Eligibility Center deals with are of course eligibility, recruiting processes and allowances, amateur/professional issues, other rules and compliance issues and much more. By having everything together under one umbrella, the NCAA Initial Eligibility Center makes it easier for parents and students to understand what is expected and needed of them, and to get help when needed.
What can affect my eligibility?

Many different things can affect prospective student-athletes eligibility. Additionally, there are many other rules that need to be remembered in order to receive and maintain that eligibility, active participation and amateur status. The NCAA Initial Eligibility Center - NCAA clearing house - contains information pertaining to the subjects of:

  • Gambling and betting on sports: Sports betting is strictly prohibited and guarded against in college athletics.
  • The NCAA's drug testing program: The NCAA has a mandatory and scheduled drug testing program. Information includes what drugs are banned and what the drug testing program entails.
  • Academic requirements: All student athletes are by definition, students first. There are academic requirements in terms of what you need to complete in high school as well as what you need to accomplish in college while playing your sport.
  • Agents/Amateurism: The information pertaining to your amateur status, how obtaining an agent can change that or take that away and what you need to be wary of with shady individuals providing incentives and money.
  • Additionally, information, forms and rules for specific cases where individuals participating in college sports are also participating in competitions outside of the NCAA which involve sponsorship and/or prize money.
  • Recruiting processes: What is to be expected and what is and is not allowed with the recruiting process. There are many coaches, assistant coaches or boosters of athletic programs that try to bend the rules and could end up costing you your eligibility.
  • Sportsmanship and Ethical Conduct: These are on the field and in the community guidelines for how a student athlete needs to carry his or herself and treat others. Additionally, there are awards for those that stand out in this area, as there are academic awards as well.
    **These are just a few rules**
    **For more information go to http://www.eligibilitycenter.org.**
I need requirements for NCAA.

-NCAA Division I requires 16 core courses as of August 1, 2008. This rule applies to any student first entering any Division I college or university on or after August 1, 2008.

-NCAA Division II requires 14 core courses. Division II will require 16 core courses beginning August 1, 2013.

Test Scores
-Division I has a sliding scale for test score and grade-point average.
-Division II has a minimum SAT score requirement of 820 or an ACT sum score of 68.

-The SAT score used for NCAA purposes includes only the critical reading and math sections. The writing
section of the SAT is not used.

DIVISION I
16 Core-Course Rule

16 Core Courses:

-4 years of English.
-3 years of mathematics (Algebra I or higher).
-2 years of natural/physical science (1 year of lab
if offered by high school).
-1 year of additional English, mathematics or
natural/physical science.
-2 years of social science.
-4 years of additional courses (from any area
above, foreign language or nondoctrinal
religion/philosophy).

DIVISION II
14 Core-Course Rule

14 Core Courses:

-3 years of English.
-2 years of mathematics (Algebra I or higher).
-2 years of natural/physical science (1 year of lab
if offered by high school).
-2 years of additional English, mathematics or
natural/physical science.
-2 years of social science.
-3 years of additional courses (from any area
above, foreign language or nondoctrinal
religion/philosophy)

-The ACT score used for NCAA purposes is a sum of the four sections on the ACT: English, mathematics,
reading and science.

Grade-Point Average
-Only core courses are used in the calculation of the grade-point average.
-Be sure to look at your high school’s list of NCAA-approved core courses on the Eligibility Center's Web site to make certain that courses being taken have been approved as core courses. The Web site is http://www.eligibilitycenter.org
-Division I grade-point-average requirements can be found on http://www.ncaa.org
-The Division II grade-point-average requirement is a minimum of 2.000.

PLEASE NOTE: Beginning August 1, 2013, students planning to attend an NCAA Division II institution will be
required to complete 16 core courses.

OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION
-Division II has no sliding scale. The minimum core grade-point average is 2.000. The minimum SAT score is 820 (verbal and math sections only) and the minimum ACT sum score is 68.

-14 core courses are currently required for Division II. However, beginning 2013, students will be required to complete 16 core courses.
-16 core courses are required for Division I.
-The SAT combined score is based on the verbal and math sections only. The writing section will not be used.
-SAT and ACT scores must be reported directly to the Eligibility Center from the testing agency. Scores on transcripts will not be used.
-Students enrolling at an NCAA Division I or II institution for the first time need to also complete the amateurism questionnaire through the Eligibility Center Web site. Students need to request final amateurism certification prior to enrollment.

**For more information go http://www.ncaa.org. Click on “Academics and Athletes” then “Eligibility and Recruiting.” Or visit the Eligibility Center Web site at http://www.eligibilitycenter.org.**

I need requirements for NAIA.

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) serves as the governing body of nearly 300 colleges, universities, athletic conferences, and organizations. Today, NAIA has around 50,000 student athletes participating. Currently within the NAIA, there are 23 conferences within 14 Regions and 23 championships in 13 sports.

Requirements:
1. An entering freshman student must be a graduate of an accredited high school or be accepted as a regular student in good standing as defined by the enrolling institution.
2. An entering freshman student must meet two of the three entry level requirements:

a. A minimum score of 18 on the Enhanced ACT or 860 on the SAT (for tests taken on or after April 1, 1995).
NOTE: In order to meet the requirement of Article V, Section C, item 2, paragraph a above, an entering freshman taking the SAT as of March 1, 2005 must achieve a score of 860 or higher on the Critical Reading and Math sections.
b. An overall high school grade point average of 2.000 or higher on a 4.000 scale.
c. Graduate in the upper half of the student's high school graduating class.

Home-Schooled Students
To meet the NAIA freshman requirements a home-schooled student must receive the certificate (or equivalent) granted by the appropriate state agency verifying that the student successfully completed the home schooling requirements of that state. “Equivalent” can be interpreted in several ways but the key is that in some way the appropriate state has verified in an official capacity that the student has fulfilled the proper home school requirements. The student must also achieve a minimum score of 18 on the ACT or 860 on the SAT as mandated under item 2(a).

In rare instances, a student may have been home schooled in a state that has no home school requirements or a state agency that can verify that the home school requirements have been successfully completed. In that instance the institution will need to seek an exception to the standard rule for the student under the process detailed at Article V, Section L of the NAIA Bylaws. In prior requests, a student who has scored well on the ACT or SAT has had an outstanding chance of receiving an exception.

International Students
An incoming international freshman student must meet the same requirements required of a domestic freshman student. If high school GPA and class ranking cannot be determined then the international student can be determined eligible by meeting the NAIA institution’s admission criteria for international students and by meeting the following NAIA criteria:

1. A minimum score of 18 on the ACT or 860 on the SAT as mandated under item 2(a).
2. Meet the entering freshman requirements as defined for students from each country in the most current Guide to International Academic Standards for Athletics Eligibility (GIAS on freshman form) published by the NCAA using AACRAO guidelines.

**For more information go to http://www.naia.org. **

I need requirements for NJCAA.

National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) serves as the governing body for 510 two year community colleges, junior college athletic departments, athletic conferences, and organizations. Rules and guidelines are developed for athletics eligibility and athletics competition for each of the three NJCAA divisions. NJCAA offers competition in the following 17 sports.

Requirements:
A. A student-athlete must be a graduate of a high school with a duly recognized academic diploma or a General Education Department test (GED) that has been:
1. Authorized by a State Department of Education or other State recognized education agency.
or
2. Authorized by a Regional Association as defined by the United States Department of Education.
or
3. Approved by the NJCAA National Office after submission of a request letter, appropriate transcripts and documentation.

B. Non-high school graduates can establish eligibility for athletic participation by completing one term of college work passing 12 credits with a 1.75 GPA or higher. This term must be taken after the student-athlete's high school class has graduated.

C. Non-high school graduates who have earned sufficient credit for high school graduation status can establish eligibility for athletic participation by completing one term of college work passing 12 credits with a 1.75 GPA or higher. This term can be completed before the student-athlete's high school class has graduated.

D. Student-athletes classified under Section 3.B. or 3.C. may be added to the eligibility roster after completion of the requirements in the respective Section. (May not be added until the term is over.)

E. Student-athletes who are completing high school and are simultaneously enrolled in 12 or more credits at a college are eligible for athletic participation with the completion of the NJCAA High School Waiver Form (Form 3.e). This form must be signed by the student-athlete's high school Principal and the College President. This provision is applicable to only those student-athletes whose high school class has not graduated at the time of college enrollment.

**For more information go to http://www.njcaa.org.**

Links:
NCAA- http://www.ncaa.org
NAIAA- http://www.naia.org
NJCAA- http://www.njcaa.org
ACT- http://www.actstudent.org
SAT- http://www.collegeboard.com
NCAA Eligibility Center- http://www.eligibilitycenter.org