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Procedure: Regionally Accredited U. S. Institutions

The Director of Admissions is responsible for evaluation of records from other colleges and universities and for recording the evaluation on the academic record of degree candidates admitted with advanced standing from other colleges and universities and of degree candidates at this University who study at other colleges and universities and seek degree credit at this University for such study. Questions relating to advanced standing evaluations should be directed to the Undergraduate Admissions Office.

OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPT REQUIRED. For an evaluation, an official transcript sent directly from the registrar or other appropriate official at the other college or university to the Undergraduate Admissions Office is required. If courses carry quarter hours of credit, they are multiplied by two-thirds to convert them to semester hours of credit. Information on the conversion of units and course units to semester hours of credit usually is provided by the college or university using these systems. (Ref: Senate Policy 42-82)

Transfer credit(s) will be posted to the student's record but will not appear on the student's official transcript until the student has completed a credit-bearing course at Penn State.

Accredited Institutions Outside U.S.

Credit for course work completed at an accredited college or university outside of the United States may be obtained by one of the following methods:

  1. Evaluation for Transfer Credit. If possible, course work should be evaluated for transfer credit according to Senate Policy 42-82; otherwise, the validation by examination or credit by examination methods are followed.
  2. Validation by Examination. Some foreign institutions provide special programs or a record of the student's work in a form which necessitates the use of the validation by examination method. The Director of Admissions determines from the official transcript the credits to be validated and lists these credits on the Validation by Examination form available in the Admissions Office. This form is forwarded to the department head in which the course is taught. The department head then conducts an examination, the form and extent of which the department head determines, and reports the results of the examination to the Director of Admissions via the Validation by Examination form. To be acceptable, the Validation by Examination form must be signed by the department head and a letter grade must be indicated for each course validated by examination. The Director of Admissions then records the appropriate entries on the candidate's record. Credit is awarded only for courses with a validation grade of A, B, or C. Course numbers in the 400 series are usually not listed in a candidate's record. However, the department head validating the examination may specify a course number in the 400 series when the examination covers topics which are substantially equivalent to a specific 400-level course.
  3. Credit by Examination. If no evidence of attendance at an accredited foreign institution is presented, the credit by examination method as stated in Senate Policy 42-50 is followed.
  4. Credit(s) will be posted to the student's record but will not appear on the student's official transcript until the student has completed a credit-bearing course at Penn State.

NOTE: A degree candidate at this University should proceed as follows before taking courses at a college or university outside of the United States. The candidate should consult with the Undergraduate Admissions Office for advice on whether credit may be obtained by (a) evaluation for transfer credit; (b) validation by examination; or (c) credit by examination. If the candidate seeks credit by (a) or (b) above, a file is established for the candidate by the Undergraduate Admissions Office. Upon completion of the foreign study, the candidate should request that necessary official transcripts be forwarded to the Undergraduate Admissions Office. (Ref: Senate Policy 42-84)

U.S. Institutions That Are Not Regionally Accredited

Refer to Senate Policy 42-86.

Approved: ACUI (4-29-76)
Revised: ACUI (4-8-82) Revised: ACUE (3-14-13)

Procedure: Introduction

The University is the reporting institution in Pennsylvania for Transfer Credit Practices (TCP). The University's practice on acceptance of credit from other degree granting institutions within Pennsylvania is reported in column three of the Pennsylvania listing. This listing is in accordance with Senate Policy 42-80. An institution which disagrees with its listing, especially column three, of TCP may make an appeal.

Appeal Process

Institutions that disagree with their listing in the TCP may file a written appeal with the Director of Admissions. This appeal is reviewed by the Director of Admissions and the senior staff of the Undergraduate Admissions Office. The review will include evaluation of all information and documentation deemed appropriate. After due consideration of the appeal, the Director of Admissions will provide a written response to the appealing institution.

If the appealing institution is not satisfied with the response, it can request the matter be reviewed by the Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid Committee of the University Faculty Senate which has final authority in the appeal procedure.

Senate Policy:  42-82, Accredited U.S. Institutions

Senate Policy:  42-84, Accredited Institutions Outside the United States

Approved: ACAS (10-14-88)
Revised: ACUE (3-14-13)