Use of Non-Term Credits – Reliance on Transcript

For the 2021 Convention, the membership passed a bylaw on how to apply inter-term credit earned for eligibility purposes. While this bylaw application is listed under Article V, Section B, Item 10: Definition for Inter-Term, the guidance on how to evaluate inter-term credits covers all non-term credits such as summer courses or online, non-traditional courses. Note that inter-terms are considered non-terms. A student cannot identify during the inter-term, and hours earned during the inter-term are considered non-term hours and shall be applied toward eligibility accordingly.

With the advent of many online programs and non-traditional course offerings, it has become difficult to determine how a course may be applied for eligibility purposes. Especially if the NAIA school does not apply the non-term credit to a specific academic term. This is where the guidance found in Article V, Section B, Item 10 regarding the reliance of the institution’s transcript comes into play.

For a variety of different eligibility rules, the NAIA bylaws have been consistent in relying on the issuing school’s official transcript in determining how credits can be used towards eligibility. Part ‘b’ of this bylaw walks through a three-tiered process in determining the timing of when a credit is considered earned, which clarifies how credits can be used towards eligibility.

Step 1: Completed non-term credit can be used toward eligibility requirements once the grades are posted in the normal manner and as long as the credit is shown to be earned before the start of the term in which certification will occur.

Step 2: Credit is considered earned at the end of the academic term that the course is attributed to on the issuing institution’s transcript, pursuant to Article V, Section B, Item 3. I.e., credit earned in the first eight-weeks of a mini-session in a semster calendar cannot be used for eligibility until the full 16-week semester has concluded.

Step 3a: If the issuing institution’s transcript does not attribute the course to an academic term and instead includes specific start/end dates, the end date listed on the transcript will be used.

Step 3b: If neither a term nor dates appear on the issuing institution’s transcript, dates of the course as verified by the institution’s registrar may be used.

For students with continuing identification at the same NAIA institution, the credit must be approved and accepted by the NAIA institution and appear on the NAIA institution’s transcript.