ND Academic or Career & Technical Education Scholarship

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Frequently Asked Questions and Information
  1.  Who is eligible for scholarship application?
  • Students earning a GED are not eligible for scholarship application.
  • Home educated students are eligible for scholarship application with verified documentation by completing the Home Education Transcript for the North Dakota Academic or Career and Technical Education Scholarship Program (SFN 60374) along with copies of the “Statement of Intent – Home Education Statutory Requirements” (SFN 16909) form that was filed with their school district for the past four years that their child was home-educated.
  • Students receiving a diploma from the ND Center for Distance Education are eligible for scholarship application with verified documentation of all eligibility requirements.
  1. In what courses does the student have to earn a “C” or above?
  • The student must earn a “C” or above in all courses required by each respective scholarship.
  • The grade must be no lower than a “C” REGARDLESS of the grading system used in the school.
  • Weighted grading systems assign a different point value to letter grades in the calculation of GPA, but the weighted systems do not change the grade.
  • A “B” is a “B” and a “D” is a “D” regardless of whether the school is using a weighted or non-weighted grading system.  If a student has a grade lower than a “C” in any course required for the scholarship, regardless of the weighting system used in calculating GPA, the student is ineligible for the scholarship.
  1. If a student earns a C- in a class, is the student eligible?
  • If a C- has a point value of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale, this would satisfy the scholarship criteria.
  • If a C- has a point value below 2.0 on a 4.0 scale, this would NOT satisfy the scholarship criteria.
  • If a C- is given as a semester grade in which a school averages the two semester grades and gives one overall year-end grade, it is acceptable. (i.e., semester 1 is a C- and semester 2 is a B+ and a year-end grade of a C is given). The transcript must show the final grade of a C or above. NOTE: NDDPI does not average grades for a school. NDDPI reviews the grades as they are provided to us.
  1. May a school use a weighted grading system?
  • Yes, a school may use a weighted grading system (assigning a point value higher than 4.0 to specific course work).  However, for scholarship eligibility, the GPA must be recalculated using a non-weighted, 4.0 grading scale.
  1. How is the GPA calculated for scholarship eligibility in schools with non-weighted or weighted grading systems?
When calculating GPA for scholarship eligibility, grades must be converted to point values based on a
non-weighted 4.0 scale.
  • For schools using non-weighted grading, the point conversions would be:
A = 4 points
B = 3 points
C = 2 points
D = 1 point
F = 0 points
  • For schools using a weighted 5.0 grading scale for example, the point conversions would be:
A = 4 points
B = 3 points
C = 2 points
D = 1 point
F = 0 points
  1. May a school use +’s and –‘s when reporting grades?  How are these considered when calculating GPA?
A school may use +’s and –‘s when reporting grades.  A grade point value must be assigned to every gradient of grade with the maximum point value of 4.0 assigned to an A or A+.
  1. What are the procedures for verifying GPA eligibility for the scholarship program?
  • Students with an 8th semester cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher with no grades lower than a C in any course, regardless of the number of credits earned, satisfy the grade and GPA requirements.
  • A student with an 8th semester cumulative GPA lower than 3.0 or with some grades lower than a C, may file a scholarship request for reconsideration showing that 22 credits of high school work qualify the student. Considering only the 22 credits required by the State, which include specific course scholarship required courses, the student has no grades lower than a C and a recalculated GPA of 3.0 or higher.
    • If a student earns a grade lower than a “C” in any course required for the scholarship, the student may retake the course for a higher grade. If the student earns a “C” or above after retaking the course, and the transcript reflects the higher replacement grade, the student would be eligible for the scholarship under this criteria. The school will need to recalculate the GPA using the higher grade.
    • A “Pass/Fail” grade does not meet application requirements. Any “Pass” grade must be converted to a letter grade and this grade must be documented on the official transcript.
    • GPAs must be calculated on a 4.00 scale. Weighted grading is not permitted for application purposes.
    • A cumulative GPA of at least a “B” requires a calculated cumulative GPA to be 3.00 or higher based on a 4.00 grading scale. GPA must be rounded to the nearest hundredth for eligibility purposes. For example, a grade point average of 3.56825 is rounded to 3.57. However, an average of 3.599875 is rounded to 3.6. 
  1. Does the student taking an AP course have to score a “3” or higher on the AP exam?
Students must take an AP exam but they do NOT have to score a “3” or higher on the exam.
  1. If a school does not offer AP classes, where may a student get these classes?
Advanced Placement courses are available through the North Dakota Center for Distance Education (NDCDE). NDCDE has an extensive offering of AP courses available for all North Dakota students. With the ability to enroll in these courses year round, NDCDE can provide an option for these students and schools at any time. If you have any questions about NDCDE’s AP course offerings, please contact: NDCDE – 701-298-4830 or 701-298-4840 – www.ndcde.org.
  1. What is considered a “dual credit” course?
  • A “dual credit” course is defined as a one-semester college course taken through a two or four-year institution of higher education for which the student earns ½ unit of high school credit.
  • The course must be documented on the student’s official high school transcript and the earned grade calculated into the student’s cumulative GPA.
  • A student must be earning both high school and college credit for the course.
Note: For purposes of determining credit, a three-semester-hour course offered by a postsecondary institution is equivalent to a full semester high school course (NDCC 15.1-25-02).
  1. How will a dual credit course be recorded?    
  • The course must be listed on the high school transcript and will be designated as a dual credit course.
  • This designation must include either printing “DC” prior to the course name or writing the name of the college/university before or after the course name.
  • Principals will verify completion of a dual credit course when they verify eligibility.
  1. Can a student use an early entrance college course to qualify for the ND Academic scholarship instead of a dual credit or advanced placement course?
Yes. The 2015 ND Legislature passed NDCC 15.1-21-02.5 (10.b.). Students eligible for the ND Academic Scholarship may enter an early entrance program, of a nonremedial postsecondary course offered for credit at an accredited institution of higher education which has a physical presence in this state. Students must send a college transcript for the early entrance class to the ND Department of Public Instruction.
  1. A student takes a dual credit class at their high school and chooses not to pay the course fee in order to receive college credit for the course. Does this count as a dual credit course for the ND Academic scholarship?
No. The student must receive both high school and college credit for the course.
  1. If a district permits 8th grade students to take Physical Science, Algebra I or the first year of a foreign language, may these classes count toward scholarship eligibility?
This is a local district decision. If a district elects to award credit for Physical Science, Algebra I or a foreign language taken in the 8th grade, the 8th grade courses must be identical in content to the same course taught in the high school and be taught by a highly qualified teacher. If this is so, the course must be posted on the high school transcript with the grade earned and credit awarded. This ensures satisfaction of scholarship eligibility.
  1. What test scores may be used for scholarship eligibility?
  • A composite score of 24 or higher on the ACT for either scholarship.
  • A WorkKeys assessment score of a 5 or higher on three test areas: Locating Information, Reading for Information, and Applied Mathematics for the ND CTE scholarship.
  1. How does a student apply for a scholarship?
  • Students may apply online from January through the first Friday in June.
  • On the right side of the page, the student clicks on “Register Now” and fills out all of the requested information.
  • Once submitted, the student will receive an email at which time they will activate the login and password by clicking on the link provided.
  • The student will then go back to the website address listed above, enter his or her login and password which takes the student to the application.
  • The student completes and submits the application.
  • Students must print and retain the application prior to submitting the application. This is very important!
  1. Who does the student contact if he/she has a question about their scholarship after he/she has accepted or deferred the scholarship? (i.e. change of status – college changes – ready to activate after deferment, etc.)
After August 1, all scholarship data is sent to the North Dakota University System (NDUS). Any questions or changes regarding the scholarship should be directed to the NDUS at 701-328-2906.
College Student’s Responsibility for Maintaining Scholarship Eligibility
  1. Students must be enrolled full-time, defined as at least 12 credits the first two terms and 15 credits thereafter. Exceptions to the fifteen-credit requirement are:
  • If a student requires fewer than fifteen credits to graduate, the student may retain scholarship eligibility by enrolling in fewer than fifteen but at least twelve credits during the final semester or quarter.
  • Students who graduated from high school during the 2009-10 or the 2010-11 school year and who have completed six semesters may retain scholarship eligibility by enrolling in only twelve credits during each of the student's final two semesters or quarters.
  • The requirement that a student be enrolled in at least fifteen credits after the first two terms does not apply in the case of a student participating in a clinical, practicum, internship, cooperative program, or similar external experience, provided:
    • The external experience is equivalent to at least six credits, and
    • The credits for the external experience, together with any other credits in which the student is enrolled, total at least twelve
  1. Students must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.75. If the NDUS determines that a student’s cumulative grade point average at the conclusion of a term is below 2.75, a one-time exception shall be granted and the student is entitled to the scholarship for the next semester or quarter in which the student is enrolled full time. This exception is applicable to a student only once.
If the NDUS determines that the student’s cumulative grade point average at the conclusion of a term is below 2.75 for a second time, the student is no longer eligible to receive scholarship payments under this program.
  1. A student is not entitled to receive more than six thousand dollars under the academic and career and technical education scholarships. Eligible students meeting the cumulative grade point average and full time enrollment requirements will receive $750 per semester or $500 per quarter.
  2. The scholarship is valid for six academic years, as defined for federal Title IV student aid programs, after the student’s graduation from high school for enrollment at eligible institutions within North Dakota. Eligible institutions include accredited public, private and tribal colleges, provided programs of at least 2 years in length are offered at the institution.
  3. The scholarship may be applied to graduate programs if all other eligibility criteria are met.
 Revised: 10/4/2016