If you’re thinking about heading back to school, don’t let your previous credit or work experience gather dust on the proverbial shelf.
One of our primary goals here at Northeastern’s College of Professional Studies is helping students complete their education. You worked hard for what you’ve already earned – and there’s no reason it has to go to waste!
You might be surprised to know there are several options for getting your previous credit transferred to help you finish your degree.
Here’s four ways to get the most out of your transfer credit:
1. Prior College-Level Credit
If you have any college-level credit from an accredited university, make sure you send over all of your transcripts. Request a transcript be sent to your new college and understand it can take up to a month for the process to be completed. If you studied at a foreign university, you should include an English translation.
If you’re unsure if the credit will transfer over or not, you should still send it – even if you have attended multiple colleges or universities. It may not all transfer, but you won’t know until you try.
2. Placement Exams
Are you just a few credits short in order to qualify for a specific program? You may be able to earn credits through college-level placement exams, or CLEPs. These are independent, self-study exams run by CollegeBoard. You’ll need to prove your prior learning by passing the exam, but it’s an opportunity you don’t want to miss if it will save you time and money in the long run. Other tests include:
- College Board Advanced Placement Examinations
- DANTES Subject Standardized Tests (DSSTs)
- Excelsior College Examination
3. Prior Work Experience
Do you have extensive work experience in a specialized field? You could earn college credit through an Assessment of Prior Learning. This is a formal portfolio review of a student’s work and life experiences for conversion into academic credit. This type of credit isn’t offered all all colleges, so if you fall into this category, you should determine which colleges will work with you on this type of credit. It never hurts to ask questions; you don’t want to miss out on an opportunity to get ahead!
4. Military Credit
Did you spend any time serving our country? Many schools, including Northeastern, accept college-level coursework that has been evaluated by the American Council on Education.
Don’t be nervous that your credits won’t transfer – work with your prospective school to learn their transfer policies and which ones will work best for you.