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Academics - Transfer of Academic Credit

Procedures for Transfer of Academic Credit

Board of Trustees policy provides the maximum opportunity for transfer within the University of Maine System. To effect successful transfer experiences for UMS students, the following transfer practices are endorsed and followed by University of Maine System institutions.

  • Generally, course grades do not transfer from institution to institution. Semester and cumulative grade point averages reflect only those courses taken at the home institution. Exceptions to this policy are approved by the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. Students in external degree programs and/or taking courses at distant sites and centers should inquire about any exceptions which may apply.
  • Grades of C- or better in courses taken within the University of Maine System and accepted for transfer credit will be recorded on the student’s transcript although not computed into the cumulative grade point average.
  • All undergraduate courses successfully completed with a C- or better at one University of Maine System institution will transfer to another.
  • Each student must meet the established requirements of the academic program or college into which s/he is transferring. Transfer credits do not necessarily count toward such requirements.
  • Transfer students must consult the individual institution catalog to determine requirements regarding the number of degree credits that must be taken through the degree-granting institution.
  • Transferring students will be expected to provide official transcripts reflecting all previous postsecondary coursework.
  • Each accepted transfer student will receive a written evaluation of transfer credit. The transfer student should then meet with program faculty/advisors at the receiving institution to review how the transfer credit will be applied.
  • Course credit will be transferred only for coursework delivered by regionally accredited institutions through AP or CLEP, or through life experience (i.e. prior learning or other learning such as military training, etc.) when validated through the approved campus processes.
  • Course credit from international institutions will be accepted for transfer consistent with established institutional policies.
  • If a student disagrees with a decision made in regard to the transfer of his/her credits from one institution to another, the student may appeal through the regular academic appeals process at the receiving institution.

Transfer Policy

The University of Maine is committed to accepting as much transfer credit as possible and endorses the University of Maine System Transfer Principles.  Transfer students normally must complete the equivalent of the senior year at the University of Maine to be eligible for a UMaine degree.  This normally means that the final 30 credits needed to complete the degree must be in University of Maine courses.  An academic department may require that some minimum number of courses be completed within that department to earn a University of Maine degree in that discipline.  These departmental residency requirements are noted in the description of each academic program elsewhere in this catalog.

Applicants must arrange for official college transcripts to be forwarded from previously attended colleges and universities to Application Processing, University of Maine System, P.O. Box 412, Bangor, ME 04402-0412. This applies to students transferring within the University of Maine System as well as to students transferring from outside the system. Student copies of academic transcripts are not accepted as official documents. Veterans must submit a transcript of Military Studies for possible transfer credit, Form DD295.

Current UMaine students should send transcripts of courses completed elsewhere to the Office of Student Records, 5781 Wingate Hall, Orono, ME 04469.

The University of Maine accepts academic work completed with grades of  “C-” or better at regionally accredited institutions of higher education towards meeting the requirements of a UMaine baccalaureate degree. The Office of Student Records completes the official evaluation of transfer credit after admission to the university. Approved candidates will receive an evaluation shortly after their acceptance. This evaluation will show course equivalencies, free electives and if a course meets a general education requirement.  How this information fits into the degree program the student has been accepted to is solely up to the discretion of the department that houses the major.

Courses taken as a pass/fail must be proven to be equivalent to a C- or higher.  Pass/fail courses can only be used as a general elective.

Students that do not agree with an evaluation of their courses may submit a syllabus used for the course to the Office of Student Records.  The syllabus should be attached to a statement in writing defining which course or courses they feel were evaluated inaccurately.  The Office of Student Records will review the appeal with a representative from the appropriate college.

All students are also required to pass English 101 or an approved equivalent with a grade of C or better, and to complete UMaine’s general education requirements. Transferred courses that have direct UMaine equivalents fulfill the same general education categories as their UMaine counterparts, except for “writing intensive” courses. Students may request approval of transferred courses for meeting the writing intensive requirement by submitting course materials (usually a syllabus) documenting the portion of the grade based on writing, and the opportunity to rewrite assignments. Transferred courses that do not have exact UMaine equivalents, but are accepted for elective credit, may meet general education requirements. The determination will be made by the Office of Student Records. If the course title and description are insufficient to make the determination, the Office of Student Records will request further materials from the student. Writing intensive syllabi must offer the opportunity for re-writes to be considered to meet the requirement.

Exceptions to equivalencies (different equivalents, waivers of curricular requirements based on transfer credit, or limitations on transfer credit applied to degree requirements) may be allowed and recorded at the college or department level, but will not appear on the official evaluation or University of Maine transcript.  The Office of Student Records maintains a transfer equivalency database of courses that are offered at some institutions that are transferable to the University of Maine.

Courses taken at another institution may transfer to meet a requirement but will not replace the low grade of a course taken at the University of Maine.  To replace a grade for such a course, the course must be repeated at the University of Maine.  Transfer credit evaluations are usually not performed for non-degree students.

The College of Education and Human Development requires students who transfer into a teacher certification program to successfully pass PRAXIS I, based on the state of Maine requirements, after 1 semester of attendance at UMAINE.  Transfer students with 45+ credits not passing PRAXIS I after one semester will not be allowed to continue in a teacher certification program.  All transfer students for any College of Education and Human Development program must have a minimum grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale to be considered for admission.  Transfer admission is competitive and will be based on achievement in appropriate academic coursework and available test scores.

Credit From Within the University of Maine System:

Normally all credit earned with C- grades at any University of Maine System institution, including through distance education, is accepted by the University of Maine. A few exceptions do exist, usually because a particular course is not applicable to any UMaine program of study. Grades and grade point averages do not transfer. Semester and cumulative grade point averages reflect only those courses taken at the home institution. Credit earned with lower than “C” grades may need to be repeated (as with ENG 101) or counted as elective courses.

Effective Summer 2010, students who are matriculated in an undergraduate degree program at any institution in the University of Maine System and who take courses from any other University of Maine System institution will have any credit earned with a grade of C- or better automatically applied as transfer credit to their academic record at the institution where they are matriculated. [One exception is ENG 101-College Composition which requires an equivalent with a minimum grade of C.]  For financial aid purposes, students who do not earn a grade of C- or better will still have their transfer credit processed and recorded in the system, but the credit will not display on the transcript of the institution where they are matriculated. Students will not need to request transcripts in order for their transfer credit to be processed, however, all students should complete a Domestic Study Away form (PDF) to insure that the transfer credit will apply toward completion of their degree.

Students enrolled at other UMS institutions will be identified 35 days after the last day of finals. It will be the responsibility of the student to notify the Office of Student Records if subsequent grade changes require the original credit to be reevaluated.

Students matriculated at the University of Maine who are not receiving federal financial aid or VA benefits may opt out of this automated transfer credit processing by completing the Internal Transfer Credit Opt Out (PDF)form and filing it with the Office of Student Records before the last day of classes.

Credit from Regionally Accredited Institutions:

Credit from regionally accredited institutions with a letter grade of “C-” or above is usually accepted by all UMaine colleges. A few exceptions do exist, usually because a particular course is not applicable to any UMaine program of study or is not normally associated with a bachelors degree, i.e. automotive courses. Correspondence and distance education courses are treated equally with traditional classroom courses. Credit earned with a “C-” grade (as with ENG 101) may need to be repeated or used as an elective. Grades and grade point averages do not transfer. Official transcripts are required from each institution attended. Credit will not be awarded for other institutionally based exams.

Credit from International Institutions:

The University of Maine accepts credit from international institutions, both for international students and for domestic students participating in study abroad programs. The University of Maine awards credit to students who have earned the International Baccalaureate diploma and scored 5, 6, or 7 on the higher level examinations. Credit is granted through each dean’s office. Grades and GPA do not transfer. Official transcripts and World Education Services (WES) translations of non-English originals are required. Contact International Programs office for information on International Baccalaureate courses.

Prior Learning Credit:

Matriculated University of Maine students may be awarded credit for prior learning for subjects that are comparable or equivalent to UMaine courses. Academic departments decide individually whether or not to accept requests for prior learning credit. Students wishing to request credit for prior learning should consult their dean’s office. Prior learning credit is evaluated through either an exam or portfolio review. The available exams are offered through the Office of Student Academic Services, reached at (207) 581-2320. There is a $125 fee for each exam. Portfolio review is initiated through the student’s dean’s office. There is a $50 fee for an initial review of a portfolio plus an additional $75 fee for each credit hour awarded from an analysis of the portfolio. No more than 15 credit hours can be earned through portfolio review.

Credit by Examination:

Credit by national examination: CLEP and AP tests are most widely recognized (for UMaine policy regarding these tests, see the Admission section of this catalog). Other tests may also be recognized (DANTES, PEP, etc.). If you have already taken the test, submit an official score report and as much information about the test as possible. If you are contemplating testing, please contact the Division of Student Academic Services. Such exams may not be allowed to substitute for certain courses in the academic major.

Military Credit:

Credit allowed will be based on recommendations of the American Council on Education (ACE) and National College Credit Recommendation Service (National CCRS, formerly National PONSI) and will correspond to subject areas offered at the University of Maine. Only courses recommended at the upper or lower baccalaureate level will be considered for transfer credit. A maximum of 15 credits will be allowed as military transfer credit (not including prior experiential learning and credit for standardized tests) and the courses will count as elective credit only unless an exception is made. The process for an exception is as follows: the student should contact his or her college or school Associate Dean who will forward the material to the appropriate department chair, unit director, or faculty member who will make the appropriate decision.
Credit for military experience: credit for learning due to duties or a position in the military is considered prior learning and will be considered in the same way as other prior experiential learning. See subsection “Prior Learning Credit” in this section.

Physical Education and Emergency Medical Technician Courses and First Year Seminars:

Physical Education skills classes will be limited to a total of 8 credit hours.  Participation in varsity athletics will not transfer. Emergency Medical Technician courses will be limited to 9 total transfer credit hours.  First year seminar type courses will be limited to 3 credit hours. Although credit hours transfer to the university, it is up to the discretion of your Academic Unit to determine how many course hours are utilized in your degree program.

Time Limitations of Course Work:

Some subject areas have changed dramatically over time.  Any course over 10 years old may not transfer into the university.


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