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With the growing cost of a college education, many students are opting for community college as a more economical choice. Some community college credit can be transferred to larger universities. Whether a credit is transferable depends on the rules and governance process of the university. A student considering this option should review his community college class schedule before beginning class. This will ensure the class credit will transfer.
When taking classes at a community college, any specialized class should be considered carefully because the credit for that class may not transfer to an undergraduate university. Most large universities only accept community college credit for core classes. These include English, math, science, and history. Advanced classes are typically not accepted. These classes should be taken at the undergraduate university, which offers a more specialized curriculum.
Some universities also offer college credit for work experience. This form of course credit can be beneficial for adults looking to complete their undergraduate degrees. Most work experience college credit is only applicable for technical or specialized business courses. These typically include classes in programming, project management, and business management. Many universities will accept these classes as elective courses.
Typically, universities require all students to complete the minimum humanities courses in a classroom setting. These include art, religion, philosophy, and psychology classes. Some universities allow these classes to be taken at a community college. These entry level humanities courses can come in as a community college credit transfer.
Many universities offer college credit for military experience. This is based on the rules and processes defined by the American Council on Educations (ACE). Because of the extensive training that military personal receive, many college universities give credit for this training as a free elective course.
Community college courses are typically offered on either a quarterly or semester schedule. Each class is worth an assigned number of credits, which are awarded to the student after completion of the course. Typically, universities only accept classes from community colleges that are a minimum of three credit hours. Most remedial classes are not accepted as a community college credit transfer.
Most universities limit the total community college credit that can be transferred. This is because undergraduate schools generally require a student to attend the university for at least two years of education. This limitation is typically a maximum of 60 course credit hours. This number includes any work experience transfer.
The best path for community college students who are considering transfer (and not mentioned in the article) is the use of published articulation agreements between the CC and the destination senior institution. These agreements are formal and published. Thousands of them exist and can be found online. Students contemplating transfer should research the transfer agreements, which will afford them total acceptance of two years, giving them junior status.
When a student does not follow a transfer agreement, their academic history is evaluated course by course, risking loss of credit applicability - and the requirement to take more than 120 credits.