Do Transfer Credits Affect My GPA?

Do My Transferred Credits Effect My GPA

Do Transfer Credits Affect My GPA?
No. Transfer credits at the other university won’t be counted at the new school GPA.

We’ve all been there. The time finally comes for our years at one university or college to end and allow for a big step up to a newer and different university or college to begin. Our hopes and prospects of a better and higher learning institution allow us to start on the pathway towards that bachelor’s degree are in full sight. But then, it hits us like a ton of bricks. Those credits we took at our local community college or the other university across town won’t be joining us at this new school. And it feels as though we have been punched in the proverbial gun. All of those hours studying at the library, sleepless nights for exams we were so worried we were going to fail, and who knows how many sharpies, highlighters, and note cards we purchased to make sure that we remembered that test for the final.

The Credits We Take for Granted

Many university and college students are changing schools. Unfortunately, the prospect of transferring over their previous university or college courses doesn’t change over to their new school, leaving many students to essentially “start over” at their new school with specific courses.

Every year, tens of thousands of university and college students will take on multiple classes in hopes of securing their major and minor degrees at a much quicker pace so that way they can attempt to finish school in the “normal” four-year period. And while many university and college students will start at a smaller college or university to be able to alleviate the cost of going to a bigger school; at times; the credits that they may have gained at one institution, unfortunately, do not transfer over to some of the bigger schools.

This is undoubtedly a massive blow to many students, who otherwise would have thought that transferring university credits would be as easiest as the snap of a finger. It’s simply not the case. And many times, the entire process ends up becoming more of a massive undertaking, which many are unwilling to admit.

What are transfer credits?

For those that might be unaware, transfer credits are the points you accumulate through the classes you take through the institution you are attending, which adds to your overall score per semester. And with many students, these types of classes are taken at smaller community colleges or even smaller divisional schools (such as an NAIA or Division 3 school) where classes might only be a few hundred dollars, as opposed to classes at a much larger divisional institution (such as a Texas Tech or Ohio State University) where classes can easily range into the thousands of dollars.

But what many university students find out far too late is that there are courses that are not transferred to the newer school due to various requirements across each university curricular policies. Starting on a good note, what many consider the “basic” or “general” education courses (such as math, English, science, history, etc.) will most likely transfer without having any issues, as these are essential core classes that every college and university offer at some degree or level. And therefore, they are much easier to transfer since these are the types of classes you are required to take towards your selected degree plan. But there is one caveat that has to be taken into consideration, and that is that while some courses do appear to fall within a required class, they are not counted as being the actual credit which was needing to be taken for the degree, on account of them being more specific toward a certification or degree.

You may have thought that you could take a course study on the Napoleonic Wars for your history credit in one such case. Albeit, while this is a “history course” on the surface, the university that you are transferring to might require you to have taken a more general history class such as world history and not something as specific as the Napoleonic Wars. Although for something such as this, it can easily be taken up with the school counselor, as some universities will understand the fact that your school or institution may not have been able to provide a specific course on the grounds of the school’s lack of funding for that course which you needed to take.

Another bonus is that for many students who may only be transferring universities or colleges within their state, is that they do not have to be subjected in many cases to changing school curriculum policies, as each state also has its own set of general requirements laid down by the respective states education department. This, though, can change as per the school policies on different degrees, because; just like the history course example, some schools may require more hours for a program or a more specific program to be taken to count towards your credits. But again, this would be easy to clear up with a school counselor. 

On the other hand, however, for those that are transferring out of state and going to a different university (either next door to their own or even clear across the country), that university can have a far different admission level than the one that you just got out of. This essentially means that you would, unfortunately, have to either retake one or more courses depending on the curriculum in many cases. And when it comes to elective courses (such as theater, art, and more), it can become an even more complicated mess, as various universities and colleges may or may not have the types of extracurricular courses from the university that you just came from would have had.

So while you may have taken those classes on medieval history to try and fill in the required 60 hours for your degree, they might not even be able to be applied to your overall GPA at the new school you will be transferred to, making you regret memorizing the names of all those random kings from 769 AD. There is a bit of a silver lining, though, when it comes to certain situations regarding moving to a newer school. For those that may have been struggling in a specific course, the chances are that there is the possibility to “start fresh” or “start anew” as those classes where you did poorly do not transfer over to the newer university, thereby saving you the headache of worrying that your GPA could drop even more in the move to your new school. 

How can I keep credits for classes that would easily transfer over to my new school?

The biggest factor within all of this would be your grades. 

To keep specific course credits, many universities require at least a C average or better. Although in certain cases, there are very specific times in which a student will be able to transfer a lower grade over from that class. For this to occur, the student would need to have approval from the school board and have a valid reason for keeping the student’s grade (such as having a life-altering event that would have prevented the student from attending classes.)

Another key factor to keep in mind is that your grades do have a time limit on them. This means that for those who may have taken a college course some time ago (even five or ten years in the past), your grades do not, unfortunately, transfer to the new school. In cases where too much time has gone by, the reason for needing to either retake or substitute a course for an alternative subject is because the ever-changing environment within a university system has to be able to meet demands for the market.

So for those that might be a bit older, while you might have taken an introductory class to Windows 95 at the start of your university training some 20 years ago, the technology and software used in the modern-day now far surpass the “ye old technology’’ in which you started with. And speaking of transcripts, make sure that you have yours on hand and up-to-date so that way when you do transfer schools, it will be much easier for the admissions office to be able to see what your latest grades were and assist you in being able to select the right courses and classes for your next semester.

This drastically reduces any confusion or problems on both ends (yours and the schools) so that you can skip having to retake a specific course since you would have the documents proving that you had a specific grade in a specific course in a specific semester.

So where does this leave students transferring to a new school for a new semester?

For starters, one of the best things you can do is talk to the school’s counselor to see what sort of courses you will be able to transfer to your new school with the new semester. In certain cases, depending upon your grade within a specific course, those credits would be able to transfer. But as stated previously, it will vary depending upon what courses that you take as well as what school you are transferring to. Also, performing more in-depth research into the university or college of your choice that you are looking to transfer to is another vital part that you can take to create a much easier transition when the time comes. While your school counselor will have an abundance of information available to you, it is always a great thing to be able to do some insight into want you want to transfer into your new college or university.

Because with as much information as your counselor has at their disposal, there is bound to be something that they might forget, have outdated information on, or don’t simply have a direct and straight answer to. So again, researching the school you are looking at attending is something that will greatly help you in transferring a whole lot easier when the time comes. Having the chance to arm yourself with more knowledge is always a great way to be able to prepare yourself in the long run, versus “winging it” and forgetting documents along the way or maybe even forgetting to schedule a specific course on a due date that the university may have already set.

And we all know how frustrating it can be when you miss a due date, especially for a college or university where class space is limited in many cases to only a handful of students. The worst thing that you want to happen is not being able to take a specific course because you were too late to sign up, or even if you do get to sign up, you don’t want to sign up too late and thereby give yourself the choice of either the super early morning or super late class.

And if there is maybe a friend or family member that had previously gone to the university or college you are looking into, ask them as well about what they experience personally as it may give you some insight into being able to know more in-depth from a personal standpoint what types of things that you would need to do to achieve the specific requirement to transfer your credit from one school to the other.

Above all, try to stay calm and remain focused. There are various ways that you can help yourself in being able to organize dates and times by using such applications like Google Calendar or maybe other applications that you have on your smart device. These types of things will help you to be able to stay on top of your game and let you know when and where to go at the right appointments.

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Do Transfer Credits Affect My GPA?

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