What Should I Know About Transferring My College Credits to a New School?

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Students who wish to transfer credits to a new school should be aware that every educational organization has their own credit transfer regulations. Therefore, any student who wishes to transfer their credits should read the following explanation of college credit transfers.

Why Do Students Transfer Credits?

A student may wish to transfer their credits for many reasons. Generally speaking, people in America are much more mobile and move more often. As a result, a younger student may find themselves forced to unexpectedly re-enroll in a new higher learning institution if their parents move out of state. On the other hand, students who are in the military will naturally be re-located to different locations. Finally, certain students may simply be unsatisfied with the degree or college of their choice.

Why is Credit Transferring Difficult?

Students should be forewarned that any college credit transfer can be a difficult and time consuming process. However, all of this depends on different variables, such as the academic policies, curriculum content and credential requirements of the old and new school. For example, the old school may have laxer academic standards with course content that does not match the new school’s higher standards. There are specific credit transfer scenarios which have been historically difficult for students. That is, transferring credits from a nationally accredited college to a regionally accredit college is troublesome. This is because nationally accredited schools are generally for-profit and offer career or technical programs. Conversely, regionally accredited schools are generally non-profit and offer advanced academic programs, such as STEM related degrees. Any student planning to transfer between a nationally and regionally accredited school should first verify that their credits will transfer.

Tips for a Smooth Transfer

Students who are unexpectedly forced to transfer schools should contact their target school’s registrar or admissions department to verify whether they will accept your previous coursework. If most credits will be not accepted, choose a different school. Similar to when you started applying for colleges after high school, you should make a list of your top schools and work your way down the list. On the other hand, you may be planning on transferring between schools. For example, after you finish your two-year community college degree, you plan on transferring to a regional or nationally accredited school. In this scenario, you could actually request a transfer agreement. A transfer articulation agreement is an excellent way to guarantee that your credits will transfer. Keep in mind that an oral promise is not a guarantee that your credit will transfer. In fact, certain unscrupulous admissions advisers sometimes promise all incoming students that their credits will transfer.

What is the Typical Process for Transferring College Credits?

The new school will require an official or sealed copy of your transcripts. The new school’s admissions department advisers will compare your previous college class descriptions to their corresponding class descriptions. This process may take some time because the new college will want to ensure that their high academic standards are being met. Keep in mind that students must generally have a passing grade, such as a C, in order to transfer a course.

Overall, transferring credits between schools is very possible, but very complex. Therefore, it is highly recommended that students properly plan if they know they will be transferring schools in the future. Regardless of how old the credit is, every student should try to transfer credits between schools to save time and money.