RICHMOND, Va. – VCU Athletics’ 16 intercollegiate teams continue to reach new heights, setting a record high in the latest Academic Progress Rate statistics, which were released on Wednesday by the NCAA.

The 16 programs combined for an average of 970, a record high at VCU since the NCAA adopted the multi-year rate.

In the NCAA APR report, which is based on scores from 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 academic years, 10 of 16 programs earned 970 or better, another school record for the Black & Gold.

In 2012-13, VCU had four programs earn a perfect 1000 (men’s basketball, men’s soccer, field hockey and women’s tennis).

“Our continued growth in APR is a credit to the academic commitment made by our student-athletes, coaches and academic services support staff,” Director of Athletics Ed McLaughlin said. “We’re extremely proud of the drive to excel and dedication demonstrated by our student-athletes.”

 The Academic Progress Rate, a multi-year rate based on the most recent four years of data, is a real-time measure of eligibility and retention of student-athletes competing on every Division I sports team. The most recent APR scores are based on scores from the 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 academic years. This year marks the 10th year of APR data for most teams.

In the fall of 2011, the Division I Board of Directors approved tougher academic standards, including setting a new standard that teams must meet to participate in postseason competition. The goal of the NCAA’s academic performance program is improvement, not punishment. Not only does the program ensure accountability for student-athletes, teams and institutions, but also it provides fairness by considering individual circumstances per team and school. Under the revised penalty structure, the Division I Board of Directors has set a cut score of 930 (out of 1,000) as a threshold for teams to meet or face possible sanctions.