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DI Committee on Academics discusses transfer eligibility

Members review potential academic criteria

The Division I Committee on Academics continued a discussion of potential models that would allow student-athletes in all sports who meet academic criteria to compete immediately after transferring. The committee met Feb. 11-12 in Indianapolis.

After implementing a moratorium on transfer legislation last fall, the Division I Board of Directors asked the committee to explore criteria that would provide immediate eligibility at a new school for transfer students who are best prepared to succeed academically after the move.

Committee members reviewed academic data for transfer student-athletes, including transferrable credits, grade-point average and progress-toward-degree information and what academic achievements generally predict graduation at different points in a student’s academic career.

Generally, research shows that transferring slows a student’s academic progress toward graduation, and the later a student transfers in his or her academic career, the more difficult it is to stay on track to graduate.

The committee members studied several models. The models included components like minimum GPAs, in some cases tied to the number of years a student has been in school, and meeting percentage-of-degree requirements at the new school.

 “Our goal as the Committee on Academics is to offer our best thoughts on criteria that predict graduation success after a student transfers,” said John J. DeGioia, committee chair and president at Georgetown. “Our recommendations will be based on data and aimed at supporting academic achievement.”

The committee also continued its comprehensive review of the Academic Performance Program, including the Academic Progress Rate calculation. Members had the opportunity to provide feedback on the 10 areas under consideration for change during a series of webinars over the past several months. Committee members reviewed the input gathered through those webinars.

The Subcommittee on Data narrowed its focus and will consider specific changes in the composition of the cohort, calculation of retention for postgraduates, APR components and calculations, the extension of the criteria that allow limited resource schools to avoid APR penalties in certain cases and the head coach APR database.

The subcommittee’s focus does not preclude changes in the other five areas listed in the holistic review: delayed graduation points, the professional departure adjustment, how the APR accounts for transfer students, whether student-athletes who don’t receive financial aid or count against limits are included in the APR and the public recognition program.

The committee hopes to have recommendations in both the academic benchmarks for immediate eligibility after transfer and the holistic APP review after its spring meeting.