Transferring From Community College To University: What Is It?

Transferring From Community College To University: What Is It? ; More international and American students decide to spend two years at community college and then spend another two years at the university to acquire their Bachelor’s degree. These students have their reasons to take this model of education instead of spending the whole 4 years at a university. Not to mention the transfer procedure is simple.

Transferring From Community College To University

Transferring from a community college to a university is a procedure where you or other students will study or attend a community college to finish lower general teaching requirements and then move to a university to complete the rest of the education requirements. The objective is none other than the Bachelor’s degree. 

Transfer from Community College to University: The Procedure

So you have decided to try this model instead of enrolling directly at the university. The transfer procedure is simple, but you need to follow the right step to avoid confusion. It’s because some students might encounter difficulties due to a lack of information about the process.

The Application Submission

It’s good news that you live in a modern era, where everything becomes simpler due to the presence of the internet. It’s because you can fill out and send this transfer application online. To begin with, you need to create a profile that shows your personal details and the degree program you like. 

Once you create this account, you can use it to check your request status and other relevant information regarding the transfer process. The overall filling or submission usually takes less than 10 minutes. There is no need to deal with paperwork, certifications, and tests at this point. 

Depending on the college you belong to now and the university you choose, you need to pay the application fee. It costs around $50 and you need to include a digital signature either. 


The next step is related to the evaluation of documents and transcripts. That means you need to send these items for assessment. Here is the thing. You must provide official transcripts or documents because the university won’t evaluate other than these. The good news is most universities will accept up to 90 credits from college students.

A Bachelor’s degree is acquired by getting 120 credits at the university. That means you only need to get some more credits left to fulfill that degree’s requirements. 

Waiting Phase

Next, you only need to wait for the announcement. The admissions will give you the information within five business days after you complete the application and send your credentials along with transcripts. In some cases, you only need to wait for three business days. They will either send you an email or call you officially regarding the acceptance status. 

Reviewing Academic Evaluation

While you can be happy with the fact that you are accepted to the university, you must pay attention to your academic program. This will be customized and completed around one month after you send them your credentials and transcripts. Later, you need to review this evaluation to find out the courses you need to take to complete your Bachelor’s degree. 

Have no worries because they will send this academic evaluation to your email. You can also check it by logging into the student information system provided by the university to which you belong. Before that, all new students need to create an account to be able to access the system. 

Learning Your Options for Earning Credit

The next step is to get familiarized with the university’s course methods and options for earning credit. It will help you determine what courses to take that bring you closer to your bachelor’s degree. The good news is you are allowed to mix them to fit your preferences. 

The Creation of Your Degree Plan

After you learn about the options of courses, you need to create a degree plan right away. This will be based on credits you have already earned at community college and those that you apply to at this university. It’s also recommended to work with an academic advisor as he can help you create this degree plan wisely. 

At this point, you are ensuring to take courses for credits that you really need and avoiding taking courses that you have already completed in the past. Once again, you must work with an advisor for creating a degree plan that fits your needs before paying. 

Those are the six simple steps you can follow to transfer from a community college to a university. So, why do students enroll in college first and then transfer? Well, they have different reasons. 

Why Do Students Attend College First and Transfer Later? 

Students have a plethora of reasons to study at a community college for two years and then transfer to a university to spend another two years getting a bachelor’s degree. These include lower cost, smaller student enrollment, easier admission, a more supportive classroom environment, and easier adjustment, Here are the details:

Easy Fitting 

Attending two-year education at a community college helps international students to adapt or adjust easier to the United States culture and education system. It also helps them prepare well before entering a higher education like a university. This explains why most transfer students are international students. 

More Supportive Class Situation

Competing with native students is quite burdensome for international students due to the language barrier. This competition even becomes fiercer in the universities of the U.S. educational system. Attending the community college and then transferring to the university helps you enjoy more comfortable classes. 

Lesser Registrants 

The next reason why students enroll in a community college before attending the university is related to the number of students. That means advisors and teachers can provide more attention to all the students intensively. This helps enrollees to learn and develop better before continuing their education at a larger school for the next two years. 

It’s Cheaper

The fact is that community college costs less than the university. In the first two years, you can get some credits with less money before completing the bachelor’s degree at the university which costs you more money. 

Well, those are reasons why students would spend two years at a community college before they transfer to the university for the final two years for their bachelor’s degree. So, what are the requirements for transferring? 

Who Can Transfer from Community College to University?

Each university has a distinct policy regarding those who are allowed to transfer from a community college to this larger school with a higher education system. These include students who met the scholarship requirement, but not the subject requirement; students who met the scholarship requirement, but not the exam requirement; and students who didn’t meet the scholarship requirement.

Those Who Met the Scholarship Minus the Subject

To be eligible to transfer, students who belong to this category should take courses in the missing subjects and get a minimum average of 2.0 GPA. 

Those Who Met the Scholarship Minus the Examination

Students who belong to this category should complete at least 12 semester units of assignable credits and get at least a 2.0 GPA in order to be eligible to transfer to a university. 

Those Who Didn’t Meet the Scholarship Requirement

Students in this category should talk to their counselor regarding the requirements to be eligible for transfer to a university. It’s because each campus might require more than regulars or minimums. 

You need to consult with your campus or university advisor before applying for a student transfer. It helps you avoid unnecessary procedures and get the right path to move to a larger school.

Are There Tips to Make the Transfer Smoother?

Never failing to make a plan is the best warranty for anything including transferring from a community college to a university. There are several tips to make this process smoother like checking the price, investigating potential universities, taking the placement tests, developing a plan, and not delaying selecting a Major. 

Checking the Price

Students indeed tend to take 2-years education at a community college first before taking the final 2 years at the university due to its cheaper overall costs. However, you should not rush everything because some universities might offer fair costs for their four-year enrolment. Also, you should take advantage of any available scholarship opportunities or financial aid before transferring. 

Investigating Potential Universities

You should be more attentive to what kind of classes are required to transfer to a university. Don’t be surprised that you might lose some credits during this transfer. It’s better to inspect the university’s policy to which you want to transfer regarding the requirements. 

Studying for Arrangement Tests

Don’t waste your time taking remedial courses. Thus, you need to be prepared for any placement tests required for a transfer. The most common ones are English and Math tests. There are study aids that you can use to boost your success rate in these tests. Make sure that you take advantage of them. 


You must develop a plan to get transferred to a university smoothly. For example, you need to find out your most efficient academic path and potential classes to take. This helps you efficiently achieve that goal. 

Picking a Major Right Away

Another thing that you can do is to pick a Major early. Understandably, students might get confused in their first semester due to the many Majors to choose from. If you aren’t sure about one, you need to consult with the advisor or career center. The best time to change a Major is during your first semester. 

Those are some tips that help you to transfer to a university without much difficulty. Another tip is that you must network with advisors. They will guide you through the entire transfer process. 


Transferring from a community college to a university is a common phenomenon in the U.S. educational system, especially among international students. There are many benefits of taking this model as mentioned earlier. Still, you need to follow the procedure correctly and know what the requirements are.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can All Students Transfer from Community College to University?

It’s safe to say that the procedure is simple as long as you have learned all the requirements and steps to follow. Some students find this task difficult because they don’t plan in advance and don’t research anything. The key is to get the thorough information that you need for this transfer. 

How Long is the Process?

In general, this procedure might take around a year depending on the university’s transfer policy where you want to transfer to. It also depends on what level of education you are in right now. Some students decide to transfer during their first year in a community college, while others decide to do it in their second year. 

Do I Need SAT Scores?

One thing that you can be sure of is that each university requires different paperwork. Any applicants should learn these requirements first before applying for anything. Some colleges might ask you to prepare high school transcripts and SAT scores, but others don’t. 

Who Can Help Me with the Procedure?

Usually, you need to take care of everything alone. These include making a plan, researching, preparing documents, sending applications, etc. The good news is the internet can be your savior. There are many services that help you book your registration easily. Some transfer counselors are also available for you to consult with. 

How Long Can I Graduate from the University after Transferring?

The time you spent studying at your community college has brought you to the halfway point in acquiring your bachelor’s degree. However, no one can predict the exact amount of time you need to spend at the university to get that degree. It depends on many factors including courses, classes, and units each term you need to take to complete your education.