Once the transfer student has been admitted to Plymouth, the Admissions Office forwards the student’s transcript(s) to the Office of Undergraduate Studies to initiate the application of transfer credit process. All courses that the student has taken at the other institution(s) are listed on a Transfer Course Evaluation form. The form (sometimes after consultation with the appropriate department) indicates whether each course is acceptable. It is also indicated on the form whether a course satisfies one of Plymouth’s General Education requirements and whether the basic skills of english and mathematics have been met.
In making these judgments they rely heavily on the Transfer Course database maintained by the Undergraduate Studies Office. (As explained earlier, this database is a record of all courses that have in the past been reviewed for acceptance and applied to General Education or major requirements.) This database is also used to indicate that a particular course will be applied as a substitute for a required course in the student’s major.
Having made these initial assessments, the form is then sent to the student’s major department for further consideration. The chair of the department or designee decides whether any additional transfer courses can be applied to specific major requirements. (For undecided students this step in the process is deferred until a major is declared. When transfer students change to a new major, this step is repeated for the new major.)
At registration for their first semester at Plymouth, the transfer student receives an initial copy of the Transfer Course Evaluation form, and if the student has a declared major, a Curriculum Planning Guide on which all applications are indicated. This Planning Guide shows exactly what requirements are fulfilled and what remain. Thus, it is an important guide for students and advisors.
Often the process of evaluation is not complete at the time of registration, however, and around the middle of the first semester at Plymouth (in time for initial registration for the second semester) the students are sent final copies of the Transfer Course Evaluation form and Curriculum Planning Guide. Copies of these final forms also go to the student’s advisor and should be kept in the advising folder as they are of critical importance in schedule planning. Students may not receive credit for a Plymouth course equivalent to one which has been accepted for transfer credit, and hence it is just as important that transfer students and their advisors know what requirements have been fulfilled by transfer credit as that they know what requirements remain.
Many transfer students do not seem to realize that decisions about application of transfer credit can be appealed using a Student Request form. Appeals of application to General Education requirements are made to the Associate Vice President of Undergraduate Studies and appeals of application to major requirements to the chair of the major department and Undergraduate Studies. Transfer students are well advised to pursue this process, since quite often when a course was not applied, it was because the course description was insufficient to make clear that the course matches the Plymouth requirement. In such cases, if the student can provide more information about the transfer source (e.g., a syllabus) the appeal may be successful.