The transfer of education credits from one university to the next can be an overwhelming experience. To help with these stresses, it is important to understand how the transfer process is conducted. It is important to note that with the growing popularity of online education, the number of students hoping to transfer credits earned from an online education program to a physical campus is growing as well.
The most important factor in transferring credit to almost every university programme is the accreditation of the online programme. Educational accreditation is a guarantee, by a third party organisation, that certain standards of education are met. The governing body in the UK is the Ministry of Education, whereas in the United States accreditation is guaranteed by a privatised sector. Should educational and instructional standards be met, the accredited status is granted by the agency.
Determining the accreditation of prior course work begins with the discussion of said prior coursework, and how that work fits into the context of the university to which you are applying. Often, it will also be required to submit the full official transcript of your previous study detailing the course module breakdown and achieved grades.
According to Middlesex University’s standards for transfer credit, the courses will be subject to review on the following criteria:
• Compatibility of the learning outcomes of your previous study with that of the Middlesex University programme/modules.
• Your academic achievement – the grades on the transcripts for your HE level credits will be particularly significant.
• The presence of an articulation and/or progression agreement between Middlesex University and your previous institution.
• All applicants must also meet the standard postgraduate entry criteria for Middlesex University.
Distance learning to obtain higher degrees such as a Bachelor’s degree, a Master’s degree, or Ph.D degree has become much more popular for adults. The average age of a distance learner is over 25 years. This is certainly the case for those who cannot afford to take time from work to return to school due to financial obligations. Students who are turning to an online programme in order to obtain higher degree status will need to transfer credits the same as students transferring to a physical campus. However, when transferring credits from a physical campus to an online institution, the guidelines tend to be more accepting. For example, according to Lamberhurst University, a university specialising in distance learning, “if you are a transfer student, you may expect to receive full credit for college-level courses completed at other collegiate institutions.” The acceptance of these credits will still be based on approved accreditation by the country’s Ministry of Education, or other government approved third-party.
Most importantly, when attempting to transfer credit, it is important to have an open dialogue with the centre for admissions. In this way, you can stay informed on what is required of you for the acceptance your transferred credits. Fulfilling these requirements will help to avoid any of your previously completed academic work being rejected by the new institution.
Lamberhurst University, http://www.uoflamberhurst.org.uk/index.html
Middlesex University, http://www.mdx.ac.uk/
Wikipedia, “The Free Encyclopedia,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Academic_accreditation