Article I, Section N, Item 2c – Prospective Student-Athlete Compete During Inter-term

Bylaw: Article I, Section N, Item 2c

“Identification during an inter-term (unlike summer school) does identify the student with the institution provided the student is enrolled for at least three fourths (or two-thirds, if three-fourths is not appropriate) of the normal academic load and either participates in athletics or begins to establish residency. In this instance, the inter-term would not, however, be charged against the allotted 10 semesters of attendance but would count in meeting the institutional credit-hour rules of the NAIA.

NOTE: Two-thirds would be used if the normal inter-term load is divisible by three, otherwise the fraction three-fourths will be used.”


A transfer student is not required to enroll in winter inter-term courses in order to compete immediately upon arriving at the NAIA institution. However, if the student does not enroll in inter-term classes, the student would be required to identify by enrolling in the spring term and be certified as eligible for the spring academic term. This is because a student is never required to be enrolled in inter-term courses in order to compet over the winter break.

In order for the mid-year transfer student to begin competing immediately during the inter-term, the inter-term must be declared as stand-alone or attached to the spring in order for the student to be certified to compete during the inter-term. A school that attaches the inter-term to the fall cannot permit a mid-year transfer to begin competing until after the inter-term is over.

However, if the student wishes to begin their residency for the 16-week transfer residency period per Article V, Section G, Item 1, they must be enrolled in enough institutional credits to be considered identified during the inter-term.


A basketball student transfers mid-year to an NAIA institution that has a stand-alone inter-term. Can he begin competing immediately?

If the student is transferring from a four-year school where he competed, the student must either serve a 16-week residency period or satisfy the exception by having a written release and a cumulative 2.0 GPA.

If he satisfies the exception or did not compete at his last four-year school, he may compete immediately assuming he meets all eligibility requirements. To be certified, he has two options: (1) be enrolled in 12 institutional credit hours for the spring term and be certified for spring, or (2) be enrolled in enough inter-term hours to identify in the inter-term and be certified for the inter-term.

Related Bylaws:

Article I, Section N, Item 1

Article V, Section B, Item 15

Related Interpretations

ECP Certification of Inter-Terms – Attached to Fall

ECP Certification of Inter-Terms – Stand-Alone


NEC Interp – Creation Date: May 2017