NAIA Eligibility

The NAIA Eligibility Center will determine your eligibility based on your academic records and additional information you provide.  Here’s how it works:


High School Students

If you will graduate from high school this spring and enroll in college this coming fall, the requirements are simple. High school graduation, plus two out of three of these requirements

— Achieve a minimum overall high school GPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale.

— Graduate in the top half of your high school class.

Achieve the NAIA's minimum test score requirement: 

  • 18 composite score on the ACT for tests taken before March 2016*
    *EXCEPTION: Per NAIA Bylaws V.C.2a, "For ACT tests taken beginning March 2016, a minimum score of 16 will satisfy this requirement. This exception will apply through the 2018-19 academic year, after which time the exception will expire."
  • 860 on the SAT (Evidence-Based Reading and Writing & Math)


Early Decisions for High School Seniors

Students who have completed their junior year of high school with an overall 3.00 GPA on a 4.00 scale OR students who have completed the first half of senior year with an overall 2.5 GPA on a 4.00 scale, plus meet the NAIA's minimum ACT or SAT test score requirements, may receive an eligibility decision prior to high school graduation. To receive an early decision, register with the NAIA Eligibility Center, have your high school send official transcripts to the Eligibility Center and contact ACT or SAT to have their test scores sent directly (the NAIA code is 9876 with ACT and SAT).


Transfer Students

If you’re transferring from a two- or four-year college and never played previously in the NAIA, the Eligibility Center will determine your eligibility based on academic records received directly from the previous institution(s).


Current NAIA Students Playing Sports for the First time

If you’re a current NAIA student who has not previously competed in the NAIA, the Eligibility Center will determine your eligibility based on academic records received directly from your current insitution and any previous institution(s) you've attended.


Have You Taken Time Off?

Some students will also need to provide more detailed information about their participation in sports outside the college setting.  This information will be required if you:

  • Graduated from high school and did not enroll in college full-time after a year
  • Did not maintain continuous enrollment in college (e.g., withdrew from college for one or more semesters/quarters)
  • Did not participate in college sports for one or more years during your collegiate enrollment


NAIA Ongoing Eligibility Rules

For students already enrolled at NAIA institutions, your best resource for eligibility questions is your campus Faculty Athletics Representative.  The NAIA Official Handbook outlines all association rules governing eligibility.

Check out NAIA schools

The NAIA has hundreds of campuses in the U.S. and Canada. Find one that's right for you.

Attend a Showcase

NAIA Showcase events are one-day, one-stop recruiting opportunities to showcase your skills in front of NAIA coaches.

NAIA Eligibility Center

Register today to determine if you're eligible to play in the NAIA.