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AA/PPS 02.02.11 - Transfer and Award of Academic Credit

Transfer and Award of Academic Credit

AA/PPS No. 02.02.11 (4.15)
Issue No. 1
Effective Date: 5/31/2016
Next Review Date: 5/01/2018 (E2Y)
Sr. Reviewer: Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management and Marketing; Dean of the University College

  1. PURPOSE

    1. Texas State’s Division of Academic Affairs and the Office of Undergraduate Admissions are committed to maintaining a well-designed, effective process for evaluating and awarding undergraduate transfer credit. This PPS defines the policies and procedures relating to the transfer and award of academic credit from other post-secondary institutions to Texas State University.

    2. Transfer of credit from another institution to Texas State involves consideration of accreditation, comparability of course work and applicability of that course work to a Texas State degree program. Every reasonable effort is made to reduce the gap between credits accepted for the purpose of transfer and the applicability of credit toward the degree.

    3. The Office of Undergraduate Admissions operates in accordance with Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) regulations regarding transfer credit policies and procedures.

  2. ACCREDITATION

    1. Regional Accreditation – Texas State considers for transfer credit (subject to other provisions outlined below) course work completed at degree granting institutions that have been granted membership or candidacy status by one of the Regional Institutional Accrediting Organizations at the time the course work was completed. The American Council on Education publication Accredited Institutions of Post-Secondary Education is used as a reference for determining an institution’s accreditation. Texas State accepts credit from institutions with the following accreditation:

      MSA Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools/Commission on Higher Education, NWCCU Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, NCA-HLC North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Higher Learning Commission, NCA-CASI North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement, Board of Trustees, NEASC-CIHE New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc., Commission on Institutions of Higher Education, NEASC-CTCI New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc., Commission on Technical and Career Institutions, SACS Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges, WASC-ACCJC Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, WASC-ACSCU Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities.

    2. Bible College Accreditation – Courses from institutions accredited solely by AABC (Accrediting Association of Bible Colleges) and ABHE (Association for Biblical Higher Education) are awarded transfer credit on a parallel course-by-course basis. Remedial courses are nontransferable. Religious courses of a doctrinal or denominational character (sacraments, Christian approaches to missions, etc.) are not transferable.

    3. No Regional Accreditation – Course work from an institution which is neither regionally accredited nor a candidate for such accreditation is not recognized for admission or transfer purposes. Texas State does not accept credit from institutions with accreditation solely from National Career-Related Accrediting Organizations, National Faith-Related Accrediting Organizations, or Professional and Specialized Accrediting Organizations.

    4. Credit from Abroad – Course work completed at foreign institutions is evaluated on an individual basis. Foreign institutions must be officially recognized by their Ministry of Education for transfer credit to be considered. Guidelines in publications such as the World Education Series and Projects for International Education Research are used to assist in the evaluation of these credentials. Credit for non-Texas State sponsored study abroad is granted in accordance with the guidelines outlined in the Study Abroad Transfer Agreement form.

  3. ROLES

    1. Role of the Office of Undergraduate Admissions in Determining Transfer Credit – The Office of Undergraduate Admissions reviews each course taken at another college or university using the Texas Common Course Numbering System recommended by THECB and makes the initial determination of whether or not a course is transferable. In the absence of a common course number the course is evaluated for transfer credit by comparing the nature, content and level of the course in consultation with appropriate academic units at Texas State. It is sometimes necessary for the transfer student to provide such materials as catalogs, course descriptions, syllabi, class assignments or textbooks to assure proper evaluation. The Office of Undergraduate Admissions creates an evaluated transcript for each applicant whose file is complete. The Office of Undergraduate Admissions sends evaluated transcripts to applicants by email after a decision has been made on their application.

    2. Role of the University College – The University College reviews student requests for review of elective courses for application to the general education core curriculum.

    3. Role of the College Dean, Academic Advisor and Department Chair/School Director – The applicability of transferred credit toward a degree at Texas State is the decision of the college dean. The applicability of the transferred credit is made on a course-by-course basis. The college dean, or designee, and/or department chair/school director reviews student appeals for re-evaluation of transferred credit and notifies the Office of Undergraduate Admissions to make approved changes.

  4. PROCEDURES FOR ACCEPTANCE OF TRANSFER CREDIT FROM ACCREDITED INSTITUTIONS

    1. Explanation of Evaluation Symbols – The Office of Undergraduate Admissions personnel assign evaluation symbols to all courses submitted. The evaluation of credit is made on a course-by-course basis. A comparison of the nature, content and level of transfer credit and the appropriateness and applicability of the credit earned is made to Texas State courses.

      1. Courses that have direct Texas State course equivalency are equated to the Texas State course number and assigned the four-digit number used by Texas State.

      2. Courses that hold transfer credit value but which do not have an exact Texas State course equivalency are accepted as elective courses. Elective courses are recorded as ELNA (elective non-advanced, for lower level freshman and sophomore courses) and ELADV (elective advanced, for upper level junior and senior courses). Courses transferred at the lower level cannot be equated as upper level courses. The college dean and the chair/director of the student’s major department/school/program ultimately determine how these elective courses apply toward the student’s degree.

      3. Physical fitness activity courses are evaluated as Activity (ACT). These courses are transferable for admission and degree seeking purposes.

      4. Courses evaluated as Technical and Vocational (VOCED) are not transferable and are not computed in the transfer grade point average (GPA). VOCED courses may not be used for admission purposes. In cases where VOCED courses support a student’s degree program, the student may request that the academic advisor or chair/director of his/her major department/school/program review the courses after enrollment at Texas State and declaration of a major. If the chair/director recommends acceptance of the credit, it must then be approved by the college dean or the dean’s designee. The approved VOCED credit is recorded on the student’s official Texas State transcript for application to that degree program only. Should the student change majors, the applicability of the Technical and Vocational (VOCED) credit toward the new major is subject to review by the chair/director and dean of the student’s new major department and college.

      5. Courses that hold no transfer value for either admission or degree purposes are evaluated as Non-Transferable (NOCRD). Generally, these are courses that are remedial, preparatory, or developmental in nature.

    2. Texas Common Course Numbering System – The Texas Common Course Numbering System was developed to facilitate transfer of general academic courses between Texas public institutions. Common courses are included in the ACGM Lower Division Academic Course Guide Manual published by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Common course numbers are used to determine which lower level courses transfer between Texas public institutions. Texas State has identified common course number equivalents for many of its lower division courses. These are identified in the Texas State catalog and updated annually.

    3. Workforce Education Courses – The Workforce Education Course Manual (WECM) is the state inventory of workforce education courses for Texas public junior/community colleges. WECM courses are evaluated as technical & vocational (VOCED) and do not transfer to Texas State for admission or GPA purposes. However, in cases where a specific WECM course has been reviewed and an articulation agreement exists, Texas State will accept the WECM course as a direct equivalent or for elective credit.

    4. Transfer Grade Point Average – In computing the GPA for transferable course work, all grades are computed with grade and hour value. The grade earned at the sending institution is the grade transferred to Texas State, except that a plus or a minus is disregarded. Number grades are converted to the A-F (four-point) grading scale. A grade of D or F transfers for admission purposes but may not be accepted by a student’s major department/school/program.

      Courses completed in units other than semester hours are converted to semester hours using information from the sending institution’s transcript or catalog. Quarter hours are converted at the rate of 1 to 2/3 (i.e., 5 quarter hours = 3.335 semester hours, 4 quarter hours = 2.668 semester hours and 3 quarter hours = 2.001 semester hours). The official Texas State transcript separates transfer course work and grades from Texas State course work and grades. The transfer grade point average is used to determine eligibility for admission purposes. Credits transferred are included in the total hours the student has earned, but the grades and quality points are not transferred and do not affect the student’s Texas State GPA.

    5. Maximum Hours Accepted – Texas State applies no more than 66 semester hours to a specific degree from an accredited junior/community college. At the approval of the individual dean, 6-8 hours may be added. At the time of the transfer, all transferable work completed at a junior/community college is recorded on the official transcript. If the number of hours transferred from a junior/community college exceeds 66 hours, it is the responsibility of the department chair/school director to recommend to the academic dean how the student will satisfy degree requirements.

    6. Associate’s Degree – The holding of an associate’s degree from another institution is recognized in designating the highest educational level of an entering student. The holding of an associate’s degree from another institution does not affect admission, transfer of credit, or transfer policies and practices at Texas State.

    7. Second Bachelor’s Degree – The Office of Undergraduate Admissions does not post transfer credit for students who have been awarded a baccalaureate degree. Coursework taken after the degree will be posted to the student’s Texas State transcript. Students should work directly with their major department/school/program to determine how course work from the first degree applies to their second degree.

  5. PROCEDURES FOR RESOLUTION OF TRANSFER DISPUTES FOR LOWER-DIVISION COURSES

    1. Texas State recognizes the Coordinating Board’s established procedures to be followed by public institutions of higher education in the resolution of transfer credit disputes involving lower-division courses.

      1. If an institution of higher education does not accept course credit earned by a student at another institution of higher education, the receiving institution shall give written notice to the student and to the sending institution that transfer of the course credit is denied.

      2. The two institutions and the student shall attempt to resolve the transfer of the course credit in accordance with Coordinating Board rules and/or guidelines. The Coordinating Board’s “Transfer Dispute Resolution” form must be completed to initiate resolution action.

      3. If the transfer dispute is not resolved to the satisfaction of the student or the sending institution within 45 days after the date the student received written notice of denial, the institution whose credit is denied for transfer shall notify the Commissioner of Higher Education of the denial.

      4. The Commissioner of Higher Education or the Commissioner’s designee shall make the final determination about the dispute concerning the transfer of course credit and give written notice of the determination to the involved student and institutions.

      5. All public institutions of higher education shall publish the procedures described in subsections (a) and (b) of this section in their undergraduate course catalogs.

      6. All public institutions of higher education shall furnish data to the Coordinating Board on transfer disputes as the Coordinating Board may require in accord with its statutory responsibilities under Section 61.078(e) of the Education Code.

      7. If a receiving institution has cause to believe that a course being presented by a student for transfer from another school is not of an acceptable level of quality, it should notify the Commissioner of Higher Education. The Commissioner may investigate the course. If its quality is found to be unacceptable, the Coordinating Board may discontinue funding for the course.

  6. PROCEDURES FOR EVALUATION OF NON-TRADITIONAL CREDIT

    1. Credit for Experiential Learning – The Department of Occupational, Workforce, and Leadership Studies program in the College of Applied Arts is the only academic unit at Texas State that awards academic credit for experiential learning. Such credit is validated after enrollment at Texas State according to established criteria and is forwarded to The Office of Undergraduate Admissions for posting to the student’s record. Should a student change majors, the validation of extra-institutional credit will be re-evaluated by the new department/school/program.

    2. Military Credit – The Office of Undergraduate Admissions reviews course work from educational experience obtained in the Armed Forces. Two hours of Physical Fitness and Wellness Activity (PFW) credit and 12 hours military elective credit will be awarded by The Office of Undergraduate Admissions upon receipt of Form DD214 that verifies 2 years of active military duty. Other military course work may be considered for transfer credit. The student must submit a Joint Services Transcript. The Office of Undergraduate Admissions uses the “Guide to Evaluation of Educational Experience in the Armed Services” for evaluating the course work. Texas State grants credit for the lower and upper division baccalaureate category but does not award credit for vocational or graduate level work. Transfer credit is subject to approval by the student’s major department.

    3. Credit-by-Examination – Credit earned through examination may be awarded Texas State transfer credit when listed as a specific course with the prefix and course number on an official transcript of the college or university where the student has been enrolled. Such credits are evaluated by transfer credit criteria and awarded the grade of credit (CR) only. The Testing, Research-Support and Evaluation Center reviews other credit by exams, such as College Level Examination Program (CLEP), Advanced Placement (AP), and International Baccalaureate (IB), which does not appear as transfer credit from another institution.

      The Office of Undergraduate Admissions does not review credit by exam reported on a Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES) transcript. The DANTES transcript is forwarded to the Testing, Research-Support and Evaluation Center for review.

  7. PROCEDURES FOR EVALUATION OF CREDIT FROM INSTITUTIONS WITH NO REGIONAL ACCREDITATION

    1. Typically, course work is not transferable to Texas State from institutions that do not have regional accreditation. Appeals from students will be reviewed on an individual basis. After enrollment at Texas State and declaration of a major, the student should request that the department chair/school director or academic advisor review the credit. If the chair/director or advisor recommends acceptance of the credit, s/he forwards the recommendation to the college dean. If the dean approves the credit, s/he then forwards a memo to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions to have the credit added to the student’s official transcript. The credit is recorded for application to that degree program only. Should the student change majors, the credit is subject to review by the chair/director/advisor and dean of the student’s new major department and college.
  8. REVIEWERS OF THIS PPS

    1. Reviewers of this PPS include the following:

      Position Date
      Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management and Marketing May 1 E2Y
      Dean, University College May 1 E2Y
  9. CERTIFICATION STATEMENT

    This PPS has been approved by the following individuals in their official capacities and represents Texas State Academic Affairs policy and procedure from the date of this document until superseded.

    Associate Vice President for Enrollment Management and Marketing; co-senior reviewer of this PPS

    Dean, University College; co-senior reviewer of this PPS

    Provost