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Transfer Credit

This policy statement adheres to the guidelines set forth in the Joint Statement on the Transfer and Award of Credit developed by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO), American Council on Education (ACE) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). 

The University of Alabama transfer credit policy is designed to facilitate the transfer of students and their coursework from one college or university to another, assure the maximum utilization of work accomplished at another institution, and encourage students to advance toward graduation in four years.

General Transfer Credit Policy 

The University of Alabama accepts transfer work from post secondary institutions that are fully accredited by regional accrediting agencies. Incoming transfer coursework will be evaluated against The University of Alabama catalog in effect for the semester and year in which the student enrolls at the University. A University of Alabama equivalent course, disciplinary elective or general elective will be assigned based on comparability of the course content.   

Accreditation 

  1. Collegiate work will be considered for transfer credit from post-secondary institutions that are fully accredited by one of the six regional accrediting associations below that offer the baccalaureate degree or associate's degree leading to the baccalaureate degree. Institutions that have been granted official candidacy status by a regional accrediting association will be accorded conditional acceptance for the coursework until full accreditation is granted.
    • Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools
    • Higher Learning Commission (North Central Association of Colleges and Schools)
    • New England Association of Schools and Colleges
    • Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges
    • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
    • Western Association of Schools and Colleges  
  2. Collegiate work from post-secondary institutions not fully accredited by regional accrediting associations will be considered for transfer credit only when approval is recommended by the dean of the student’s college of enrollment. Approval must be sought by the student via written petition to the dean.
    • If the work is approved for transfer, the credit will be accepted on a provisional basis. 
    • Provisional credit will be applied as appropriate to the student's degree if an average of C or higher is earned for a year of academic work as a full-time student.
    • In the case of the part-time student, a C average or higher must be earned for work completed from the time of initial enrollment through the semester (summer included) in which a total of at least 24 semester hours of work is completed at The University of Alabama.
    • A student who transfers within The University of Alabama will have provisional credit applied as appropriate to the curriculum of the college into which the student transfers. 
  3. Collegiate work will be considered for transfer credit for courses completed at colleges and universities outside of the United States that are accredited or approved by the Ministry of Education (or other appropriate governmental agency) of the country in which they are located. Credit and placement decisions are based on recommendations of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, National Association of Foreign Student Advisors, and selected other professional organizations and agencies that evaluate foreign educational institutions, i.e., World Education Services (WES), New York, NY.

Transferability, Equivalency and Applicability

  1. Transferability refers to the conditions under which the University accepts credit from other post-secondary institutions for inclusion in the student's record. The Office of the University Registrar (OUR) is responsible for determining transferability.
  2. Equivalency entails equating transfer credit, both in hours and content, to University of Alabama coursework. Lower level equivalencies will be determined by staff of the OUR, upper level equivalencies will be determined by the college/school which houses the discipline.
  3. Applicability of credit toward a degree refers to the prerogative of the academic divisions to count specific credit toward the fulfillment of a student's degree requirements. The student’s college of enrollment is responsible for determining applicability.

Governing Policies 

  1. Transfer credit is generally awarded for academic credit earned at regionally accredited institutions or from institutions that are candidates for regional accreditation if the course credit was earned during the candidacy period.
  2. The evaluation and award of University of Alabama transfer credit for coursework will be based on official transcripts. To be eligible for evaluation, coursework must appear on an official transcript from the institution that offered the coursework and initially conferred the credit in question.
  3. The University of Alabama follows a semester calendar and awards credits earned in semester hours. Earned hours assigned to coursework completed at institutions on non-semester based academic calendars will be converted and reported on The University of Alabama transcript as semester hours. The most common non-semester based academic calendar is the quarter system. Quarter credits are converted to semester credits by multiplying the number of quarter credits by two-thirds. For example, 30 quarter credits equal 20 semester credits.
  4. Credit granted by another institution for non-traditional experiences will not be accepted based on that institution’s transcript. To receive credit for non-traditional experiences [e.g. College Level Examination Program (CLEP), Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE), military training, etc.], the student must present official documentation from the original provider of the non-traditional experience. 
  5. The following types of credit are not transferable and will not count towards a degree:
    • placement credit granted by another institution
    • remedial or developmental courses
    • technical courses
    • occupational, vocational and some workforce courses from two-year institutions
    • courses classified as below freshman level by the originating institution
    • courses in religion that are doctrinal, confessional or sectarian in nature
    • courses applying to a previously earned baccalaureate degree
  6. Courses from two-year institutions transfer as lower-division (100- and 200-level courses) credit only. Undergraduate courses from four-year baccalaureate degree-granting institutions transfer at the same level, lower- or upper-division, as they were taken. Graduate level coursework may be transferred as undergraduate credit at the written request of the student and upon approval by the appropriate academic department.
  7. Credit is granted based on coursework earned, not degrees. Students transferring to The University of Alabama with an Associate’s degree will not be automatically granted junior standing.
  8. In those instances when a student has repeated a course, all occurrences of the course, including grade, will be posted to The University of Alabama transcript. All grades count in the higher education grade point average, but earned hours will be awarded based on The University of Alabama repeat policy for the equivalent course.
  9. Credit in which a grade of F was earned is not applicable and will not count toward a degree. However, the course, hours and grade are placed on The University of Alabama transcript and calculated in the higher education grade point average.
  10. Courses for which a student has been awarded academic clemency, bankruptcy, forgiveness, etc., by the institution at which the courses were completed will not be posted to The University of Alabama transcript.
  11. Students are required to submit official transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended.  All transferable work will be posted to The University of Alabama transcript. Students do not retain the right to pick or choose certain courses for transfer.

Evaluation and Application of Transfer Credit

Core Curriculum/General Education

The University of Alabama is a member of the Alabama Articulation and General Studies Committee (AGSC) and welcomes transfer students who have completed all or part of their Core Curriculum/General Education requirements at other participating AGSC institutions. In order to simplify the transferability of coursework between all Alabama public colleges and universities, the AGSC has developed and implemented the Statewide Transfer and Articulation Reporting System (STARS). For details regarding the STARS program, please consult the STARS website at stars.troy.edu/stars/stars.htm. Courses that have been approved for Core Curriculum/General Education designation and do not have a direct University of Alabama equivalent will be noted on the student’s transcript as follows:

  • AGS FC - Ala Gen Stdy Core Fresh Comp
  • AGS HU - Ala Gen Stdy Core Humanities
  • AGS L - Ala Gen Stdy Core Literature
  • AGS HI - Ala Gen Stdy Core History
  • AGS SB - Ala Gen Stdy Core Social/Behav
  • AGS FA - Ala Gen Stdy Core Fine Arts
  • AGS N - Ala Gen Stdy Core Naturl Scien
  • AGS MA - Ala Gen Stdy Core Mathematics

Courses transferred from non-AGSC member institutions that are determined to not have a direct University of Alabama equivalent but deemed worthy of core credit will be noted on the student’s transcript as follows:

  • TRGS FC - Transfer Gen Stdy Fresh Comp
  • TRGS FL - Transfer Gen Stdy Foreign Lang
  • TRGS HU - Transfer Gen Stdy Humanities
  • TRGS L - Transfer Gen Stdy Literature
  • TRGS HI - Transfer Gen Stdy History
  • TRGS SB - Transfer Gen Stdy Soc Behv Sci
  • TRGS FA - Transfer Gen Stdy Fine Arts
  • TRGS N - Transfer Gen Stdy Nat Sci
  • TRGS MA - Transfer Gen Stdy Math
  • TRGS C - Transfer Gen Stdy Comp Sci 

The student’s college of enrollment will have to grant an exception or substitution if the course should be applied to the major and/or minor.

Elective Credit

Course numbers 197 and 397 indicate lower-level and upper-level elective credit, respectively. If, upon evaluation, a course is determined to have no direct University of Alabama equivalent but does fall under a subject area taught at The University of Alabama, the course will be awarded 197 or 397 credit in conjunction with the appropriate subject area prefix. The discipline prefix with the 197 or 397 course number indicates that the course is suitable for elective credit in that discipline.

If, upon evaluation, a course is determined to have no direct University of Alabama equivalent and does not fall under a subject area taught at The University of Alabama, the course will be awarded 197 or 397 credit in conjunction with a general elective credit (GEC) prefix.

Some colleges or degree programs may not allow 197 or 397 elective credit to complete degree requirements. Students should contact their college of enrollment for details.

Applicability of Credit

Transfer credit will be applied as appropriate to a student's degree program. The authority to apply transferred credit toward degree requirements rests with the student’s college of enrollment.

Transferring between colleges within The University of Alabama will not affect the equivalencies established for a student’s transfer work, but may affect the applicability of the credit towards the new degree program. 

Transferable courses with a grade of D- or above may apply to degree requirements unless a grade of C- is specifically required.  

A minimum of a C- must be earned in English composition and introductory math courses to be applicable towards completion of degree requirements. Courses requiring a C- or better are: EN 101 English Composition, EN 102 English Composition, MATH 100 Intermediate Algebra, MATH 110 Finite Mathematics, MATH 112 Precalculus Algebra, MATH 113 Precalculus Trigonometry and MATH 115 Precalc Algebra & Trig. If a grade below a C- was earned in one of the aforementioned English composition or introductory math courses, the course will be included on the student’s transcript and included in the calculation of the student’s higher education grade point average. 

A minimum of 50 percent of the coursework required to earn a baccalaureate degree at The University of Alabama must be earned at a baccalaureate degree granting institution, and a minimum of 25 percent of the coursework required for the degree must be earned at The University of Alabama. Students should contact their college of enrollment for the specific number of hours required for their degree.  

The policies and procedures for determining grade point average and applying transferred credit are discussed in each college’s section of The University of Alabama Undergraduate Catalog.

Evaluation of Credit from Non-Traditional Sources

Credit by Examination

Credit by examination and credit for several types of out-of-class experiences are recognized by The University of Alabama. Credits can be earned through satisfactory completion of one of the standardized national exams including, but not limited to, Advanced Placement (AP) program, the International Baccalaureate (IB) program, Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE), Defense Activity for Nontraditional Education Support (DANTES) and the College Level Examination Program (CLEP).

Credit hours earned by examination and/ or out-of-class experiences are not considered University of Alabama institutional coursework, and therefore, may not be applied towards fulfillment of:

  • The minimum of 50% of the coursework required to earn a bachelor’s degree at The University of Alabama must be earned at a bachelor’s degree granting institution (four-year college or university), and
  • The minimum of 25% of the coursework required for the degree must be earned at The University of Alabama.

Study Abroad 

All University of Alabama students doing research, internships or academic credit programs abroad will work through the Capstone International Academic Programs office. Each college will evaluate the course(s) (appropriate to the division) taken through study abroad. International programs must equate to accredited college or university level work and not simply a travel experience. 

The college that is responsible for the discipline will evaluate the course(s) taken overseas.  When a transcript is received with work from a University of Alabama affiliated study abroad program on an international transcript, the classes will be posted as institutional coursework with pass/fail grades. When a transcript is received with study abroad work that appears on a domestic transcript from an accredited and affiliated U.S. institution, it will be treated as standard transfer credit. The grade received on the domestic institution’s transcript will be posted to the student’s transcript and calculated into the higher education grade point average.  

University of Alabama course equivalencies will be based primarily on the content to be covered in the international course and the consistent, direct, pedagogical correlation (discipline, course content, course level and course credit) between the international course requirements and how they equate to University of Alabama coursework and credit hours. The University of Alabama does not use the U.S. Department of Education National Council on the Evaluation of Foreign Academic Credential, formula of 2 ECTS credits = 1 US undergraduate semester credit hour.   

Capstone International Academic Programs requires that a student who will receive credit from an international institution have all of the primary and alternate courses he/she plans to take overseas evaluated by the appropriate academic division prior to studying abroad and documented on the Course Equivalency Form.   

Some circumstances may prevent the course equivalencies from being determined prior to the student’s departure. In this case, the course(s) taken will be evaluated when the student returns from studying abroad. At the end of the study abroad program, the student must bring back all course documents, syllabi and textbooks from the courses taken overseas to aid in this process. Additionally, in the event that the courses that were approved prior to departure are not the courses actually taken abroad, the student must bring back all course documents, syllabi and textbooks in order to facilitate the equivalency process and receive credit for work abroad.

Military Service

Military Science elective credit is given for Basic Training documented on a Community College of the Air Force (CCAF) transcript, Army/American Council on Education Registry Transcript (AART) or the Sailor/Marine American Council on Education Registry Transcript (SMART). Students who do not have any of the transcripts listed above should file copies of their service record (Form DD-214) with University Veteran’s Affairs representative in the Office of Student Financial Aid. 

If deemed appropriate by the Dean of the student’s college of enrollment, further evaluation of the student’s military transcript may be completed. Upon evaluation and in consultation with ACE guidelines, a determination may be made to award additional credit. The course content covered in the military course must equal the material covered in the equivalent course at the University. The amount and level of credit awarded is determined by the appropriate University of Alabama office. Credit is not awarded for vocational-technical recommendations or Service Occupational Specialty Codes. 

The Defense Language Institute (DLI) in Presidio of Monterey, Calif., is regionally accredited at the higher education level. Courses completed at this institution are evaluated in the same way as transfer credits from other colleges or universities. An official DLI transcript should be sent to the Office of the University Registrar at the time a prospective student applies for admission.

Other Non-Traditional Sources

Credit from other non-traditional sources including, but not limited to, independent study, workshops, field experiences or internships will be considered for credit if documented on an official transcript from a regionally accredited institution.

Appeal Process

If a student disagrees with a transfer credit evaluation, the student must submit further information about the course in question in order to initiate an appeal of the evaluation. Supporting documentation can include, but is not limited to, a course outline, syllabus or textbook. If a student disagrees with an evaluation of credit from a non-traditional source, the student must submit further written information about the training including number of hours of the training, information about the training source, accreditation, etc., in order to initiate an appeal of the evaluation.

The Office of the University Registrar, in coordination with the academic discipline, will consider amending the original evaluation if, after review of supporting documentation, a change is warranted. If the student disagrees with the second evaluation, the student may file an appeal with dean of their college of enrollment. If the appeal is denied, the student will be given a reason for denial in writing.