As an adult student (or prospective student), you’ve already learned a lot. In the past, you might have taken college courses or earned job-relevant certifications or developed professional skills during military service. These are all highly valuable learning experiences, and they should count for something. Now that you’re considering a postsecondary online degree program, you may be wondering whether you have to start back at square one in spite of your experience.
At UA Grantham, we have a solution: A transfer credit policy that gives credit where credit is due.
Our admissions team is here to help you get the credit you deserve for your hard-earned experience. They will work with you to determine your transfer credit eligibility for your prior learning experiences to your 100% online degree.
Interested? UA Grantham’s Director of Operations & Training Student Experience Heidi Mattingly and myself, answer the most frequently asked questions about our transfer credit process.
Q: What credit can I get for military training?
At UA Grantham, we’ll work with you to help you make the most of your military experience to maximize your college credit award! Active duty and veteran service members can transfer eligible credits reflected on their Joint Services Transcript (JST), including professional military education, training and experience.
And if you’re an active duty, Guard, or Reserve service member, you can take exams through the DANTES (Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support) program. With more than seventy different subjects available for testing, you can choose the ones that are relevant to your experience and your educational goals.
We’ll even help point you to where you can order your transcripts and score reports.
Q: What type of experiential learning credit can I transfer?
We recognize that adult students have learned a lot from their work experience, volunteerism, community activities, travel and hobbies. Through UA Grantham’s Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) program, you can get academic credit for the relevant skills, knowledge and competencies that you’ve acquired along the way.
During the PLA submission process, you’ll be asked to document your past experience in a particular field for evaluation by the dean or by faculty members. This assessment requires a cover letter, table of contents, resume and a detailed experience essay. You’ll also need to gather additional proof documentation, which could include a letter from your employer, licenses, certifications, resumes, or examples of work product.
Note that there are fees associated with PLA submissions: $125 for sponsored assessments and $250 for unsponsored assessments. These fees are waived for students participating in the Military Aid Program.
Q: Is there a limit to how much credit I can transfer?
Yes. Undergraduate students can use PLA credits for up to 25% of their degree program. Altogether, PLA and transfer credits cannot account for more than 75% of the program.
For graduate students, PLA credits can be applied for up to 25% of their degree program, and PLA and transfer credits together can account for up to 50% of the program.
There may be other limits as well, please refer to the PLA Handbook or University Catalog for details.
Q: What type of academic credit can I transfer?
Have you taken college courses at other schools but want to finish your degree at UA Grantham? Here’s what you need to know:
Academic credits must come from an accredited institution and must be relevant to your program of study at UA Grantham. All transfer credits are evaluated based on course descriptions, learning outcomes, syllabuses, final grades earned and credit hours earned at the prior institution. An official transcript must be submitted to verify the credits and grades received.
Institutional credit—or credit for courses taken at UA Grantham—can also be transferred to another program.
You may even be able to receive credit for studies abroad, as long as transcripts in English may be provided. Transcripts must be evaluated by a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services or the Association of International Credential Evaluators to determine eligibility.
Q: What type of credits are not eligible for transfer?
Any academic credit from institutions that are not accredited by agencies recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education (or the Council for Higher Education Accreditation) are not eligible for transfer. Courses in which the minimum scores were not received are also not transferable, nor are many developmental courses or remedial programs.
Courses that are outdated—whether in their practices, technologies, or teachings—are also ineligible. Because this can vary widely depending on the course and the field of study, each transfer request is reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
Q: Can I lose transferred credits?
This doesn’t happen often, but you can lose transferred credits. If your program isn’t completed in a timely manner, they can become invalid—even if they were approved initially. The best way to avoid this scenario (and keep all your eligible credits) is to finish your degree on schedule.
Q: How does the credit transfer process work?
The student is responsible for reporting all previous education and experience—and for submitting transcripts—to ensure credits are accounted for.
To make sure you receive all eligible credits, and that none are lost because too much time has passed, it’s best to begin this process as soon as possible. Transfer credit evaluations are typically completed within 48 hours, while the PLA evaluation process can take up to four weeks.
Contact the admissions team today to find out what credit may be eligible to count toward the next chapter in your educational journey!