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AB.01.01
April 23, 2001

To: The University of Illinois Senate

From: Ron Guenther

Date: April 9, 2001

Re: Update on Student-Athlete Academic Performance


This summary report is submitted to provide an update on the status of the academic performance of student-athletes.

Grade point averages achieved by the student-athletes during the spring 2000 and fall 2000 semesters are reported. Graduation rates recorded by the NCAA are reported for the years 1999 and 2000. A four-year class average for all students and student athletes is reported for 1999. Information on the freshman cohort entering the University of Illinois in 1993-1994 is reported for the 2000 graduation rates. Graduation rates for student-athletes who have exhausted their eligibility at the University of Illinois are also reported.

We are pleased to report a recent accolade that our student-athletes have achieved. When the Big Ten Conference announced the Academic All-Conference Teams for the winter sports, on April 2, 2001, 54 of our student-athletes were recognized, making the University of Illinois the highest represented University in the Conference. We remain committed to supporting the academic pursuits and encouraging the academic excellence of our student-athletes.


UPDATE ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE
OF STUDENT ATHLETES AT THE
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS

A program of the Academic Progress and Eligibility Committee
And Division of Intercollegiate Athletics
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

History of the Academic Review System (ARS)

In April 1992, the Athletic Board adopted the Academic Review System (ARS) to evaluate the "academic health" of the intercollegiate teams at the University of Illinois. The Academic Review System was initiated in the 1992-1993 academic year. This system sets out specific guidelines for academic performance and evaluations. An important component of this system is continual oversight of the academic performance of student-athletes. The following report is a summary of the grade point average analyses done for the spring 2000 and fall 2000 semesters, as well as graduation rates for 1999 and 2000.

Fall 1991, Spring 2000, Fall 2000 Academic Performance: A Comparison

Grade Point Averages

Before the implementation of the Academic Review System, the average grade point average for all student athletes was 2.79. In the spring semester of 2000, student-athletes had a combined GPA of 3.05 compared to a 3.09 for the general student body. In the fall 2000, student-athletes had a combined GPA of 2.95 compared to a 3.05 for the general student body. During the spring 2000 term, 11 of 19 teams achieved team GPAs of 3.0 or above. In the fall 2000 term, 8 of 19 teams achieved team GPAs at or above a 3.0 mark.

During the fall 1991 semester the cumulative GPA for male student-athletes was 2.72. In the spring 2000 semester, male student-athletes' achieved a GPA of 2.79. In the fall 2000 semester, male student-athletes' achieved a GPA of 2.73. A GPA of 2.89 was reported for the female student-athletes for fall 1991, Female student-athletes performed at a 3.29 GPA level in the spring of 2000 and at a 3.148 GPA level for the fall 2000.

During the fall 1991 semester, 43.22% of all student-athletes achieved a 3.0 or better GPA. In the spring 2000 semester, 49% of student-athletes achieved a GPA of 3.0 or better and during the fall 2000 semester 44.6% of student-athletes at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign earned a grade point average of 3.0 or higher. These athletes represented all 19 varsity sports on campus. In addition, twenty-two student-athletes, in the spring, and thirteen student-athletes in the fall, achieved perfect grade point averages of 4.0.

Although many factors influence grade point averages, credit may be attributed to the Academic Review System for its role in positively impacting the academic performance of student-athletes at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The value of the implementation of the Academic Review System is apparent in the increased academic performance of both men and women student-athletes in the period since its implementation in the fall 1992 semester. We however, must continue to monitor and evaluate the performance of our student-athletes to maintain the high academic standards expected at the University of Illinois.

Graduation Rates
1999, 2000

In the "Official NCAA Graduation Rates Report" for the years 1999 and 2000, information is reported on all undergraduates at the University of Illinois, as well as all student-athletes who received athletics aid upon initial enrollment.

The 1999 report contains information on students entering the university in 1992. The information in the 2000 report pertains to students entering in 1993.

For comparison, two different measures of graduations rates will be presented in this report: (1) freshman-cohort graduation rate, and 2) exhausted eligibility rate. Within the freshman-cohort graduation rate data are two separate measures. One measure consists of a 4-year class average, the other measures graduation rates of the freshman who enter in a specific year and graduate within 6 years of initial enrollment.

To effectively study the graduation trends, the 4-year class average will be reported for 1999, and for 2000, the graduation rates of those students entering in 1993-1994 will be reported.

The freshman-cohort graduation rate for student-athletes is calculated only for those student-athletes who entered the University of Illinois on athletic aid and graduated from the University of Illinois within six years of enrollment. The freshman-cohort graduation rate does not take into account any student-athlete who was not on athletic aid upon enrollment, or student-athletes who have transferred to another institution and graduated.

The exhausted eligibility graduation rate indicates the percentage of student-athletes who received athletics aid and used all of their athletics eligibility at the University of Illinois.

1999 NCAA Graduation Rates Report (4-year class average)

All Students
Men Women Total
Freshman cohort 76% 80% 78%
(4-year class average, students entering in 1989-90, 1990-91, 1991-92, 1992-93)
Exhausted Eligibility NA NA NA

Student-Athletes
Men Women Total
66% 70% 67%
Exhausted Eligibility 87%



2000 NCAA Graduation Rates Report (1993 cohort)
All Students
Men Women Total
Freshman cohort 75% 79% 77%
(students entering in 1993-1994)
Exhausted Eligibility NA NA NA
Student-Athletes
Men Women Total
56% 88% 65%
Exhausted Eligibility 88%

For those student-athletes who completed their athletics eligibility at the University of Illinois, the graduation rate for 1999 was 87% and the graduation rate for 2000 was 88%. Information regarding student-athletes who did not complete their eligibility at the University of Illinois, is not available in the NCAA Graduation Rate Report. If a student-athlete initially enrolls at the University of Illinois, and is on athletics aid, this student is included in the freshman cohort regardless of whether the student transfers to another institution.