Transferring Credits

The Bachelor's Degree

Associate of Arts and Associate of Science degrees are designed to prepare students to continue their education at the bachelor’s degree level.  General Education and pre-major courses offered by Tri-C for transfer purposes are designed to parallel those courses that comprise the equivalent of the first two years of study leading to the bachelor’s degree at a four-year college or university. Learn more about Associate of Arts and Associate of Science degrees.

An option in some Tri-C career/technical programs in the Associate of Applied Business and the Associate of Applied Science curriculum enables students to earn an associate degree in these programs at Tri-C and then transfer to a four-year institution to work toward a baccalaureate degree in the designated technical field or other programs.  Credits earned at Tri-C are transferable toward a four-year degree only at cooperating four-year colleges and universities or those where articulation agreements exist. Students should consult with a Tri-C counselor.

It is the responsibility of the student to become acquainted with and follow the requirements for the selected method of transferring courses.  Students are strongly encouraged to complete an associate degree prior to transfer as there are numerous benefits such as additional scholarship opportunities, upper class standing and an increased likelihood of completing a bachelor’s degree.  Counselors are available to assist with academic planning and Transfer Center specialists are able to discuss pre-transfer planning.

Transfer students take general education courses, usually from the Ohio Transfer Module (OTM), and lower division major-related courses, usually from Transfer Assurance Guides (TAGs), during their freshman and sophomore years at Tri-C.  OTM and TAG courses are part of the Ohio Transfer to Degree Guarantee and, as such, are guaranteed to transfer to any public college or university in the state of Ohio.  After transferring, students will specialize in a major at the receiving institution during their junior and senior years.  Learn more about the Ohio Transfer Module.  Learn more about Transfer Assurance Guides.  Learn more about the Ohio Transfer to Degree Guarantee.

Articulation Agreements and Transfer Pathways

University Partnerships have been established by Tri-C with many of Ohio's public colleges and universities, a number of Ohio’s private institutions, and as well as other institutions across the country.  Most of these Articulation Agreements provide seamless transfer pathways that have been approved by both institutions for the completion of the associate and bachelor’s degrees or provide an opportunity for Dual Admission.  Some of the agreements offer completion of a bachelor’s degree at a Tri-C location or online.  Students are encouraged to check Articulation Agreements periodically for newly added partnerships, agreements, and transfer pathways as they are updated throughout the year.

These program specific legal agreements offer transfer opportunities for students, enabling them to take advantage of benefits associated with the agreements such as significant financial savings, upper class standing, additional scholarship opportunities, and/or the ability to take classes at both institutions concurrently.  Additionally, students who complete an associate degree are more likely to also earn a bachelor’s degree.  Learn more about Articulation Agreements.  Learn more about Dual Admission.

For the most successful transfer experience, it is recommended students consult with a Tri-C Counselor for academic planning and assistance, a Tri-C Transfer Center Specialist for pre-transfer planning, and an advisor and/or admissions representative from the destination school for that institution’s requirements and procedures.  Students are encouraged to start their transfer planning early to save time and money.  Learn more about Tri-C Counseling.  Learn more about Tri-C Transfer Centers.

In cases where an Articulation Agreement has not been established, Tri-C Associate of Arts and Associate of Science “Area of Emphasis” course guides are available for some areas. These guides have been developed for a variety of intended majors for bachelor's degrees and are customizable for different student needs and transfer plans. Students should meet with an academic counselor at both Tri-C and the intended transfer institution for assistance in determining the appropriate courses for that institution.

Please note, if a legal Articulation Agreement and/or approved transfer pathway exists for the student's intended transfer school and program, these should be used rather than the “Area of Emphasis” course guides which are not specific to any institution.

Ohio Transfer To Degree Guarantees

Ohio Articulation and Transfer Policy:  The State of Ohio, through the leadership of the Ohio Department of Higher Education, has established a coherent statewide policy intended to facilitate a student’s ability to seamlessly complete their highest level of educational goal achievement within Ohio’s post-secondary educational system. To that end, the Ohio Articulation and Transfer Policy was developed to facilitate the transfer of students and credits from any state-assisted college or university to another. It encourages faculty recognition of comparable and compatible learning experiences and expectations across institutions. It also encourages students to complete “units” of educational experience as they progress (e.g. transfer assurance guides, transfer modules, associate and bachelor's degrees).  Learn more about the Ohio Articulation and Transfer Policy.

Ohio Articulation Number (OAN):  When a course at an Ohio public higher education institution is approved by a statewide faculty panel for a particular assurance guide, it is assigned an Ohio Articulation Number (OAN).  These discipline-specific courses or course sequences meet established learning outcome standards. This common statewide OAN is assigned to each approved course in addition to its unique institutional course number or designation.  This signifies, in part, that the course is guaranteed to apply as an equivalent course or courses bearing the same OAN offered at other Ohio public institutions of higher education. Students are assured of their equivalency at any Ohio public higher education institution that has OAN approval during the same time period.  Assurance applies not only to the equivalency of the courses, but to their application to the degree objective.  Examples of OANs include OSS (Ohio Social Sciences), OSC (Ohio Sciences), and OET (Ohio Engineering Technologies).  Courses within the Ohio Transfer Module (OTM) may also be part of an approved Transfer Assurance Guide (TAG).

Ohio Transfer Module (OTM):  OTM consists of general education course requirements guaranteed to transfer among all Ohio public institutions of higher education.  Students who intend to transfer after completing an associate degree should select their general education courses from the state approved Tri-C OTM courses.  For course selection assistance, schedule an appointment with a counselor.  An OTM course may also be a TAG course.  Learn more about Ohio Department of Higher Education's information on OTM courses. Learn more about Tri-C OTM courses.

Transfer Assurance Guides (TAGs):  TAGs are lower division courses that are part of an academic major.  Students who intend to transfer after completing an associate degree should schedule an appointment with a counselor to choose appropriate Tri-C TAG courses for their intended bachelor's major.  Learn more about Ohio Department of Higher Education's information on TAG courses. Learn more about Tri-C TAG courses.

Military Transfer Assurance Guides (MTAGs):  MTAGs guarantee that certain types of military training, experience and/or coursework align to existing college and university courses, thus granting students appropriate credit.  MTAGs work best for students who have either a Joint Services Transcript or a Community College of the Air Force transcript.  Schedule an appointment with a counselor to review your military transcript for potential MTAG credit.  Learn more about Ohio Department of Higher Education's information on MTAG courses.  Learn more about Tri-C MTAG courses.

Career Technical Assurance Guides (CTAGs):  CTAGs provide recognition of learning to students who have completed approved adult and secondary career-technical coursework or experiential learning.  CTAGs help these students enter college with articulated college level credit.  In order to receive credit, students must complete Verification Form 1 and may need to provide additional information. Time limits and conditions for awarding CTAG credit vary by technical area.  Schedule an appointment with a counselor to discuss details.  Learn more about Ohio Department of Higher Education's information on CTAG courses.  Learn more about Tri-C CTAG courses.

Advanced Placement (AP):  High school students who have taken an AP course and the associated AP exam may be eligible, based on their AP exam score, for guaranteed college credit upon entering an Ohio public college or university.  The awarded credit is usually applied toward general education curriculum.  Learn more about Ohio Department of Higher Education's information on AP and how your score may be applied.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP):   Students who are interested in earning college credit for subject knowledge and skills that they’ve acquired through prior learning should consider taking a CLEP exam.  Learn more about available exams.  Learn more about how your score applies at Tri-C.

One Year Option:  The One-Year Option builds upon Ohio’s existing articulation and transfer processes to help students achieve strong post-secondary foundations and futures. This option allows students at Ohio Technical Centers who earned identified certifications/licensures/industry recognized credentials in a 600+ clock-hour pathway approved by the Chancellor to receive up to 30 technical credit hours.  The 30 semester hours will be awarded as a block of credit rather than credit for specific courses.  This credit would be awarded toward an Associate of Technical Studies degree upon successfully enrolling at Tri-C or another public college or university in Ohio.  Learn more about One-Year Option.

Apprenticeship Pathway Programs:  The Apprenticeship Pathways initiative advocates for individuals completing apprenticeships by incorporating their learning into academic credit, thereby saving them time and money and encouraging them to advance their academic credentials to contribute to a strong workforce.

Ohio apprenticeship programs partner with public two-year institutions to provide technology-specific statewide articulation agreements that recognize non-traditional prior learning. College credit is awarded toward a technical associate degree. Each agreement simplifies student advising by outlining how apprenticeship training in a certain pathway applies to an applied associate degree and lists remaining courses required to complete the degree. The application of the credit toward a technical associate degree in these agreements is guaranteed at the participating receiving institutions.  Learn more about Apprenticeship Pathway Programs.

Conditions for Transfer Admission

  1. Graduates with associate degrees from Ohio’s public institutions of higher education and a completed, approved Ohio Transfer Module shall be admitted to a public institution of higher education in Ohio, provided their cumulative grade-point average is at least 2.0 for all previous college-level courses. Further, these students shall have admission priority over graduates with an out-of-state associate degree and other transfer students with transferable and/or articulated college credit.
  2. Associate degree holders who have not completed the Ohio Transfer Module from an Ohio public institution of higher education will be eligible for preferential consideration for admission as transfer students as long as the institution’s admission criteria, such as the minimum academic standards, space availability, adherence to deadlines, and payment of fees, are fairly and equally applied to all undergraduate students.
  3. In order to encourage completion of the baccalaureate degree, students who are not enrolled in or who have not earned an degree but have earned 60 semester/90 quarter hours or more of credit toward a baccalaureate degree with a cumulative grade-point average of at least a 2.0 for all previous college-level courses will be eligible for preferential consideration for admission as transfer students as long as the institution’s admission criteria, such as the minimum academic standards, space availability, adherence to deadlines, and payment of fees, are fairly and equally applied to all undergraduate students.
  4. Students who have not earned an associate degree or who have not earned 60 semester/90 quarter hours of credit with a grade-point average of at least a 2.0 for all previous college-level courses will be eligible for admission as transfer students on a competitive basis.
  5. Incoming transfer students admitted to a college or university shall compete for admission to selective programs, majors, and units on an equal basis with students native to the receiving institution.

The admission of transfer students by an institution, however, does not guarantee admission to any majors, minors, or fields of concentration at the institution. Some programs have additional academic and non-academic requirements beyond those for general admission to the institution (e.g., background check, a grade-point average higher than a 2.0, or a grade-point average higher than the average required for admission to the institution). Once admitted, transfer students shall be subject to the same regulations governing applicability of catalog requirements as native students. Furthermore, transfer students shall be accorded the same class standing and other privileges as native students on the basis of the number of credits earned. All residency requirements must be completed at the receiving institution.

Responsibilities of Students

To maximize transfer credit application, prospective transfer students must take responsibility for planning their course of study to meet both the academic and non-academic requirements of the institution to which they desire to articulate or transfer credit as early as possible. The student is responsible to investigate and use the information, advising, and other available resources to develop such a plan. Students should actively seek program, degree, and transfer information; meet with an advisor from both the current and receiving institutions to assist them in preparing a course of study that meets the academic requirements for the program/degree to which they plan to transfer; use the various electronic course/program transfer and applicability database systems, including Ohio Transfer to Degree Guarantee web resources; and select courses/programs at their current institution that satisfy requirements at the receiving institution to maximize the application of transfer credit. Specifically, students should identify early in their collegiate studies an institution and major to which they desire to transfer. Furthermore, students should determine if there are foreign language requirements or any special course requirements that can be met during the freshman or sophomore year. This will enable students to plan and pursue a course of study that will better articulate with the receiving institution's major.

Appeals Process

Following the evaluation of a student transcript from another institution, the receiving college institution will provide the student with a Statement of Transfer and Articulated Credit Applicability (Degree Audit Report). A student disagreeing with the application of transfer and/or articulated credit by the receiving institution must file his/her appeal in writing within ninety (90) days of receipt of the Statement of Transfer and Articulated Credit Applicability. The institution shall respond to the appeal within thirty (30) days of the receipt of the appeal at each appeal level.

Student Complaints Following Transfer Appeals at the Receiving Institution

After a student exhausts the appeals process at the receiving institution and chooses to pursue further action, the Ohio Department of Higher Education (ODHE) responds to formal written complaints related to Ohio Articulation and Transfer Policy against public, independent non-profit, and proprietary institutions of higher education in Ohio. While the ODHE has limited authority over colleges and universities and cannot offer legal advice or initiate civil court cases, staff will review written complaints submitted through its established process and work with student complainants and institutions.

Degree and Credit Transfer

Students who plan to transfer to a four-year college or university have several transfer options and should meet with a counselor to discuss which is best for them.

Associate Degree Preferred

Students are strongly encouraged to complete an associate degree prior to transfer as there are numerous benefits such as additional scholarship opportunities, upper class standing and an increased likelihood of completing a bachelor’s degree.  Additionally, many articulation agreements with four-year institutions are designed to benefit students who complete an associate degree.  If the student completes the degree requirements within the parameters of the Ohio Transfer Module (OTM) requirements, 36 to 40 semester credits will transfer automatically, and the remaining credits up to the 60 that make up the associate degree will be evaluated for transfer on a course-by-course basis unless an articulation agreement is in place.  Students who complete the OTM and an associate degree are guaranteed admission to any Ohio public university.

Course-by-Course Transfer

Students who do not complete the OTM or an associate degree can plan a transfer program with a Tri-C Counselor on a course-by-course basis. The receiving school evaluates the transferability and applicability of credit for each course taken, which requires the student to select a receiving school well in advance and enroll in appropriate courses with the assistance of a Tri-C Counselor and especially a representative from the receiving school.

Although this provides no advance assurance of transferability as provided in the OTM or associate degree completion, it does provide the flexibility to select course work tailored to meet specific program admission requirements, if this is important to the student. Successful transfer of courses using this method requires careful planning and course selection with the assistance of a Tri-C Counselor. This method gives the student the option of taking only those Tri-C courses that will be accepted at the program level at the receiving school, avoiding the problem of taking the same course twice (once at Tri-C to meet general transfer requirements and again at the receiving school to meet a program admission transfer requirement). The following guidelines are the recommended process students should follow to transfer the maximum number of credits using the individual course evaluation method:

  1. Identify the institution and the major to which credit will be transferred
  2. Refer to the receiving institution's current Catalog
  3. Review the program admission requirements for the intended major
  4. Schedule a consultation with a Tri-C Counselor to review the program requirements and identify their equivalents in the Tri-C curriculum
  5. Consult with the appropriate representative at the receiving school to resolve any questions about transferability and applicability at the admission, general education, and/or program level
  6. Complete all the specific courses and sequences that the Tri-C Counselor designates as meeting the program requirements for the school where credits will be transferred
  7. After completing college course work at Tri-C, complete a request for a transcript of grades and have it sent to the admission office at the receiving institution. Consult with the admission office about other details necessary to complete this step - learn more about requesting a transcript of grades

Associate Degree to Bachelor's Degree

In general, courses in the Associate of Arts and Associate of Science degrees are designed to parallel the freshman and sophomore level courses at four-year colleges and universities. An option in some Tri-C career/technical programs in the Associate of Applied Business and the Associate of Applied Science curriculum enables students to earn an associate degree in these programs at Tri-C and then transfer to a four-year institution to work toward a baccalaureate degree in the designated technical field.

Credits earned at Tri-C in the two-plus-two option are transferable toward a four-year degree only at cooperating four-year colleges and universities. Students should consult with a Tri-C Counselor if interested in the two-plus-two career/technical transfer option.

Transfer Course Selection

Counselors will help students plan individual transfer programs using the above options. Students who are undecided about a major will be assisted in planning a transfer program that meets general admission requirements at the receiving school.

Tri-C offers preparatory or refresher courses in English composition, reading comprehension, mathematics, and speech communication for students who need to upgrade these basic skills. These courses are not designed for transfer but are intended to provide students the opportunity to improve their skills. To avoid taking a course that does not transfer, it is the student’s responsibility to select courses with the assistance of a Tri-C Counselor.