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Degree Applicable Credit for NYS Aid Programs
The Office of the Registrar is responsible for calculating Degree Applicable Credit (DAC) for the purposes of awarding degrees and to evaluate students’ eligibility for certain New York State award programs, including the Excelsior Scholarship and the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP).
It is important to note that the following guidelines are provided for informational purposes only, and may not cover every student situation. Students should discuss the circumstances of their specific New York State awards with UB’s Financial Aid office. Please also note that the information below is subject to change based on updated regulations and guidance from New York State and the Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC).
What is Degree Applicable Credit?
Degree Applicable Credit (DAC) refers to the courses needed to obtain a degree in a designated plan of study. Courses count as DAC if they are listed as a required course in a given plan, or if they fulfill an open general education/UB Curriculum requirement. Eligible free electives may count as DAC.
DAC Requirements for the Initial Review of Excelsior Scholarship
To establish initial eligibility for Excelsior, students must meet minimum credit thresholds based on the number of semesters they have completed after they are a matriculated student.
|Semesters Completed||Required DAC||Required DAC for EOP Students|
DAC Requirements for the Regular Review of Excelsior Scholarship
Students must satisfy the following DAC requirements to maintain their Excelsior Scholarship eligibility. The Office of the Registrar evaluates students every fall and spring.
- Be enrolled in at least 12 DAC by the end of the beginning of the full tuition liability period each fall and spring term based on their program’s degree requirements.
- Meet the cumulative career thresholds of 30/60/90/120 DAC each year.
|Years of Study Completed||Required DAC||Required DAC for EOP Students|
- Students who reach 90 career DAC may take less than 12 DAC in their seventh semester and three DAC in their eighth semester.
- Students must be enrolled in 12 total credits each term to maintain Excelsior eligibility. EOP students who reach 96 career DAC may take less than 12 DAC in their ninth semester and three DAC in their 10th semester.
- Banked credits may be applied toward term/year DAC if a student is short on credits, but may not be reallocated to another year/term once it is applied.
DAC Requirements for the TAP
UB takes a snapshot of students’ DAC enrollment immediately after the add/drop period for the standard session of each fall and spring term. Students are evaluated every fall and spring based on the following requirement:
- Students must be enrolled in 12 DAC (for their primary major only) by the end of the drop/add period.
- Students in their final semester who have a closed academic requirements report and who have applied for graduation must be enrolled in at least one DAC credit (at least 12 credits total) for a duration of at least 15 weeks. This exception may only be used once within a student’s academic career.
How DAC is Calculated
DAC for New York State awards is calculated using the following formula:
|Start with number of credits used toward general education|
|+ (add)||Number of credits used toward major(s)/concentration(s)|
|+ (add)||Number of credits of eligible free electives|
|= (equals)||Number of degree applicable credits (DAC) for the term/year|
To calculate the free elective bucket:
|Start with 120 credits|
|- (subtract)||credits completed for general education/UBC|
|- (subtract)||credits completed for majors(s)|
|+ (add)||number of completed credits that satisfy more than one requirement|
|- (subtract)||credits remaining to complete general education/UBC|
|- (subtract)||credits remaining to complete for major(s)|
|= (equals)||allowable free elective bucket|
|- (subtract)||previously completed free electives *|
|= (equals)||eligible free electives|
* Note: Includes all previously completed electives, including transfer work completed in high school, transfer work, and test credit.
Repeated courses in which the first attempt resulted in a grade of R, F or W may be counted as DAC on the second attempt. If a major requirement has a minimum degree requirement for the major that is not met on the first attempt in the course, the grade from the second attempt may count as DAC.
It is important to note that students may lose Excelsior and/or TAP awards for a number of reasons, even if they satisfy their DAC requirements. Students with questions about maintaining Excelsior and/or TAP or those who have been notified that they have not met Excelsior and/or TAP requirements should contact Financial Aid for additional information.
- Questions about eligibility for NYS Awards should be directed to Financial Aid.
- Additional information on Excelsior eligibility and TAP eligibility is located on the Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC) website.
- Students in need of assistance with satisfying DAC requirements in their future enrollment should contact their academic advisor.
Last updated: October 16, 2020 2:00 pm EST