Students may take college courses at one school and then decide to transfer to another institution. This is a common practice and there’s certainly nothing wrong with changing colleges.
What many transfer students do not realize until late in the game is that not every course credit is eligible to transfer to another institution, or more specifically toward a particular degree.
For example, let’s assume a student is going to take a couple of courses during the final semester of their senior high school year and a few more courses during the summer. This student’s plan is to enter a different school in the fall as an incoming freshman.
Let’s also assume this particular student’s major is currently aimed toward obtaining a specific degree, such as nursing.
In order for these credits to transfer toward the nursing program at the final destination school, it is imperative that they meet the transfer articulation requirements. Laws vary among states, but the concept is basically the same.
The course titles and numbers offered at a local community college are going to vary from the titles and numbers offered at another school. The transfer articulation information helps a student decide which courses for a specific major will transfer, for example, from the community college to the state university.
After all, what’s the point of working hard to obtain college credit hours if they won’t apply toward your degree at your designation completion institution? Non-eligible credits are a loss of credit hours, money, and time.
Suppose one of the courses our example student enrolls in at the community college is PSY 200 “General Psychology.” The institution where the student plans to pursue their nursing major labels the course PSY 201 “Principles of Psychology.” The articulation guide shows the PSY 200 course to be eligible for transfer because both courses are one and the same, although numbered and titled differently.
Transfer articulation guides for many states can be obtained online. You simply provide a bit of information, such as both schools you plan to attend and the desired major. You can then print a list of the course requirements and their corresponding course titles and numbers that will successfully transfer.
This will prevent you from taking random courses that you might find out later do not transfer to your destination school, much less apply toward your sought after degree.
If you cannot find an articulation guide online for your particular state, contact both of the institutions involved and talk with the admissions offices directly regarding the articulation requirements that pertain specifically to your situation.
Rhonda Manns, Blogger