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Washington & Jefferson recognizes that it is common practice for students to bring prior academic work into the institution or supplement their academic experience by studying abroad or away from campus.

Students transferring to W&J may bring in up to 16 course units completed at accredited institutions or awarded through test scores. These are evaluated at the time of admission. Transfer students must complete a minimum of 16 course units at W&J, and only grades attained at W&J will be used to compute a student's grade point average.

Current W&J students, with the approval of their faculty advisors and the Office of the Registrar, may take courses at colleges or universities accredited through a CHEA-recognized organization. Courses must be approved in advance: the Course Approval Form: Domestic Transfer Credit guides students through the steps.

All students desiring transfer credit must arrange transmission of official transcripts and test scores to W&J’s Office of the Registrar. Credit will not be awarded without official documents.

Courses approved for transfer from accredited institutions appear on the W&J transcript as course units. A full course of 3, 4, or 5 credit hours transfers as one W&J course unit, assuming its content, required learning activities, outcomes, and the assessment of those outcomes are consistent with the kind of liberal arts courses offered at W&J. Courses are evaluated not only on what students learn but also on how students learn. Such outcomes and processes include:

  • critical thinking, analysis, and synthesis,
  • writing, oral communication, technology,
  • quantitative, logical, and scientific reasoning,
  • interaction between faculty member and student,
  • interaction among students,
  • faculty comments on writing assignments and/or exams.

A department chair or program director assesses each transfer-course syllabus or description and, sometimes, student work to determine if course content, pedagogy, student-learning outcomes, the amount of reading, and the types and quantity of assignments are consistent with courses taught at W&J, support the College’s liberal arts mission, and when relevant, are in accordance with established articulation agreements and policies.

Coursework completed elsewhere may be able to fulfill W&J requirements. Students will need to provide a course description and/or a course syllabus to the relevant party for evaluation:

  • Major or minor requirement: Department Chair or Program Director,
  • Foundation, Breadth of Study requirement: Associate Dean of Academic Affairs,
  • Diversity requirement: Diversity Coordinator.

Courses accepted for transfer that do not align with specific departments or program requirements are designated as elective (ELE) courses. The registrar makes the final determination of credit.

Courses in which students earn grades of C- or better may be transferred to W&J, subject to limitations given below. Courses not using traditional letter grades are considered for transfer only if additional documentation detailing successful completion is provided. Grades for transferred courses do not appear on the W&J transcript, nor are they used to calculate a student's grade point average or to determine graduation honors. Exception: some course grades from Lewis & Clark College’s Year in Munich program appear on W&J transcripts.

Limitations

  • No more than 3 transferred courses may count toward fulfilling requirements in a student’s major or minor.
  • No more than 5 courses or 20 credit hours taken during a single semester may be transferred.
  • No more than 16 courses or 64 credit hours completed at other institutions or awarded through test scores may be transferred.
  • Students seeking Pennsylvania teacher certification are expected to take all required education courses at W&J. Exceptions may be granted only with the approval of the Education Department.
  • Students seeking recommendations from the College's Pre-Health Professions Committee should understand that courses transferred to W&J may not necessarily meet the guidelines for recommendations. Students should read "Committee Policy for Courses Transferred from Other Colleges" in the W&J Pre-Health Handbook and direct specific questions to the chair of the Pre-Health Professions Committee.
  • The College evaluates, for transfer purposes, military/military science and physical education/activity/wellness courses on a course-by-course basis.

W&J does not accept for transfer any course:

  • from an unaccredited institution,
  • of a remedial, vocational or technical nature,
  • taken online while a student was studying abroad
  • in which the student has received a grade of D+ or lower, or
  • taken P/F or S/U from an institution where a P or S is D+ or lower.

The College normally awards transfer credit to courses taken within ten years of entering W&J. Courses completed more than ten years prior will be evaluated on a course-by-course basis.

The College reserves the right to accept or deny the awarding of transfer credit.

Procedures

Transfer Students

  1. Inform the Assistant Director for Transfer Students in the Office of Admissions that you have completed college- or university-level courses and submit your request for courses for transfer; arrange to have your official transcript sent to him or her.
  2. The Assistant Director for Transfer Students coordinates the process and sends relevant materials to the Office of the Registrar.
  3. If your course is already on the list of approved courses and if you earned a grade of C- or higher, the registrar approves it for transfer.
  4. If the course is not on the list, the relevant department chair or program director will review it to determine if it is transferable. A syllabus may be required for this evaluation. The chair or director responds to the assistant registrar with one of the following determinations:
    • Course is acceptable for W&J course equivalent
    • Course is acceptable for general elective (ELE) or department/program elective credit
    • Course is not acceptable for transfer to W&J
  5. If the course is accepted as a general elective, the associate dean will also examine the course. If approved, the course will appear on your transcript. If not approved, there will be a code indicating why it was not approved (e.g., grade not high enough or remedial course).
  6. The entire process should not take longer than ten working days.
  7. An email to the student, with a copy to the faculty advisor, will be sent by the Office of the Registrar to report results of the transfer-credit evaluation.

Incoming First-Year Students

  1. During the early summer advising period, inform the Gateway team and indicate on your registration worksheet that you have completed college-level courses, International Baccalaureate courses, or advanced-placement tests.
  2. No later than August 1, arrange for the college/university, IB, or College Board to send an official academic transcript or test results directly to W&J’s Office of the Registrar; no transcripts or test scores should be delivered to a third party. Also send the registrar a catalog description for each course completed and, if possible, a syllabus. Coursework will be posted to a W&J record only after official documentation has been received. Direct electronic transcripts to wjregistrar@washjeff.edu; direct paper transcripts to Office of the Registrar, Washington & Jefferson College, 60 South Lincoln Street, Washington, PA 15301.
  3. An email to the student, with a copy to the faculty advisor, will be sent by the Office of the Registrar to report results of the transfer-credit evaluation.

Current Students

Before Enrolling in a Course at Another Institution

  1. Obtain a course description from the website or catalog of the institution and, if possible, a syllabus.
  2. If studying for a semester away (abroad or on the Washington Semester), complete the relevant sections of the Transfer of Credit Form for Off-Campus Study form (from the Office of Study Abroad).
  3. If taking a course or courses at a US college or university, complete the relevant sections the Course Approval Form: Domestic Transfer Credit (from the Office of the Registrar).
  4. Get approval for each course from the relevant department chair or program director.
  5. If you are hoping to satisfy a general-education requirement with a transferred course, discuss your plans with the appropriate academic dean. You will need a syllabus.
  6. Obtain all faculty signatures required on the form.
  7. Return the completed form to the listed office by any specified deadline.

After Completing the Course

  1. Arrange for the institution to send an official academic transcript directly to W&J’s Office of the Registrar; no transcripts should be delivered to a third party. Coursework will be posted to a W&J record only after this has been received. Direct electronic transcripts to wjregistrar@washjeff.edu; direct paper transcripts to Office of the Registrar, Washington & Jefferson College, 60 South Lincoln Street, Washington, PA 15301.
  2. If financial aid was received by the other institution through W&J, a financial-aid transcript must be forwarded as well. Failing to do so may jeopardize eligibility for aid in the future. Direct financial-aid transcripts to: Office of Financial Aid, Washington & Jefferson College, 60 South Lincoln Street, Washington, PA 15301.