This is the preliminary (or launch) version of the 2021-2022 VCU Bulletin. This edition includes all programs and courses approved by the publication deadline; however we may receive notification of additional program approvals after the launch. The final edition and full PDF version will include these updates and will be available in August prior to the beginning of the fall semester.
Transfer applicants are considered for admission to the university provided they present evidence of good standing at all previous institutions of higher learning; to be competitive for admission consideration into VCU, they should present a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 from all accredited institutions. Priority application review will be given to applicants who have completed a minimum of 30 credits at their former institution(s) and submit all required documentation by the recommended application deadline. Applicants with a minimum of 30 semester (45 quarter) credits are not required to submit high school transcripts or SAT or ACT scores (unless required by the applicant’s intended degree program).
Transfer applicants who have earned fewer than 30 semester (45 quarter) credits will be reviewed on the basis of their high school performance; they must submit their high school transcripts in addition to their credentials from all accredited institutions of higher learning. Transfer applicants who have earned fewer than 30 semester (45 quarter) credits and who are 21 years of age or younger must submit SAT or ACT test results and also must meet specific guidelines listed in the Freshman undergraduate admission guidelines section of this chapter.
The undeclared major is not open to students with 60 or more college credits. Transfer applicants will be notified of an admissions decision on a rolling basis until the class is filled.
Some programs have additional requirements for admission as a transfer student. Transfer applicants should consult the appropriate area of this Bulletin or the departmental website for admission requirements.
Transfer applicants who are not admitted with degree status may be eligible to enroll as nondegree-seeking students as determined by the Office of Admissions.
Transfer applicants ineligible to return to a former institution because of an academic suspension may not enroll at VCU for a period of one year for the first suspension and five years for the second suspension.
Transfer applicants who have been suspended from another institution for nonacademic or disciplinary reasons are referred to the Office of the Senior Vice Provost for Student Affairs for preadmission clearance.
University undergraduate transfer credit policy
An official evaluation of transferable credits for applicants to both Monroe Park Campus and MCV Campus programs is made by the VCU Transfer Center after the applicant has accepted an offer of admission to the university. The Transfer Center will provide an unofficial evaluation of transferable credits to prospective transfer applicants upon request. The acceptance of transfer credits is based on the following guidelines.
- Collegiate work will be considered for transfer credit from postsecondary institutions that are accredited by one of the six institutional accrediting associations.
- Middle States Commission on Higher Education
- Higher Learning Commission
- New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education
- Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
- Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
- Western Association of Schools and Colleges
- VCU may accept for transfer college-level credits earned at institutions accredited by other accreditation agencies recognized by the U.S. Department of Education that have developed formal articulation agreements with VCU. Articulation agreements are posted on the Transfer Center website.
- Collegiate work will be considered for transfer credit for courses completed at colleges and universities outside of the U.S. which are accredited by one of the six institutional accrediting associations listed previously or approved by the Ministry of Education (or other appropriate governmental agency) of the country in which they are located. Students seeking transfer credit from international institutions are required to submit an official transcript and a course-by-course evaluation completed by a member of one of the following organizations:
- National Association of Credential Evaluation Services. A list of current member organizations can be found on the NACES website.
- Association of International Evaluators, Inc. A list of current members can be found on the AICE website.
- The evaluation and award of transfer credit will be based on official transcripts. Students are required to submit official transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended. To be eligible for evaluation, course work must appear on an official transcript from the institution that offered the course work and initially conferred the credit in question. Students do not retain the right to pick or choose certain courses for transfer. All transferable work will be posted to the VCU transcript. Once awarded, transfer credit will not be removed from a student’s VCU record for any reason, unless requested by the Office of Records and Registration.
- Only courses with grades of C- or higher will be transferable. This includes courses taken on the pass/fail or pass/no pass systems and courses taken for grades of satisfactory or unsatisfactory that receive earned credits and a satisfactory grade (or comparable passing grade) from the transfer institution as long as the comparable passing or satisfactory grade is equivalent to a grade of C- or better. Transfer credits graded as pass/fail will not be included in the computation for determination of academic honors at VCU.
- VCU follows a semester calendar and posts credits to the VCU transcript in semester hours. Course work completed at institutions that follow a semester-based academic calendar will be posted to the VCU transcript with the semester hour total attempted for each course. Course work completed at institutions on non-semester-based academic calendars will be converted and posted to the VCU transcript with the semester hour equivalent attempted for each course. For example, the conversion rate for quarter-hour credits is one quarter-hour credit to two-thirds of a semester-hour credit
- Whenever possible, courses accepted for transfer are evaluated and posted on the VCU transcript as VCU course equivalents to ensure those credits apply to VCU degree requirements. Transferable courses that do not have equivalents at VCU are posted as either lower-level (1XX or 2XX) or upper-level (3XX or 4XX) electives. A full list of equivalency decisions on transferable courses is maintained on the course equivalency tables located on the Transfer Center’s website.
- Courses completed at institutions outside of the U.S. will be evaluated based on a course-by-course evaluation completed by a member of either the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services or the Association of International Evaluators, Inc. In addition to a course-by-course evaluation, students with international credit may be required to provide course information such as a syllabus (translated into English, if necessary) to the VCU Transfer Center for the purposes of determining VCU course equivalents. VCU does not accept international credit for English writing composition courses unless the school holds regional accreditation from a U.S. accrediting agency or the syllabus is reviewed and approved by the Department of Focused Inquiry. VCU does not accept English language courses for transfer.
- No distinction will be made by VCU regarding credit received for college courses that are taken through dual enrollment arrangements with high schools. Students who earn dual enrollment college credit must submit official transcripts to VCU from the college awarding the credit.
- Credit granted by another institution for prior learning will not be accepted based on that institution’s transcript. To receive credit for prior learning (e.g. College Level Examination Program, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, Cambridge International Examinations, military training, etc.), the student must present official documentation from the original provider of the nontraditional experience. More information about the type and amount of credit accepted is located in the bulletin section on “Additional sources of academic credit.”
- The following types of credit are not transferable and will not count toward a degree:
- Credits earned at other institutions carrying a grade of D or passing/satisfactory grade equivalent to a D (unless the D grade is earned at a European institution and converted to a C grade through the European Credit Transfer System)
- Placement credit granted by another institution
- Remedial or developmental courses
- Technical, occupational, vocational and some workforce courses from two-year institutions (unless approved for transfer within an approved articulation agreement of transfer pathway of study)
- VCU will accept credits for transfer regardless of when they were completed. However, time limits exist in some academic programs, such as in information systems or accounting, to ensure that transfer credits meet present-day academic standards. Students should consult with the Transfer Center regarding these time limits. Credits earned in those program areas with time limits will transfer as electives rather than VCU course equivalents.
- VCU will accept credits for transfer regardless of the modality of the course delivery, such as online courses. However, due to certain programmatic accreditation requirements, students in the natural sciences may be required to complete in-person labs for major-specific science course requirements after transfer.
- Accepted transfer credit contributes to hours earned and toward fulfillment of degree requirements at VCU. The grades of accepted transfer courses are recorded as TR on the student’s VCU transcript. Hours attempted and quality points earned are not recorded.
- Accepted transfer credits are not included in the transfer student’s overall GPA at VCU. The GPA for fulfillment of VCU degree requirements is computed only from courses taken at VCU. However, the grades and quality points of transferred courses are evaluated in the computation determining graduation honors.
- A maximum of 90 total undergraduate transfer credits will be accepted. Regardless of how many transfer credits are accepted, students must satisfy all VCU graduation requirements noted in the graduation checklist, including the following:
- Completion of at least 25 percent of the semester-hour credits required for their bachelor’s degree program at VCU
- Completion of at least 30 of the last 45 semester-hour credits required for their bachelor’s degree program at VCU
- Completion of at least 45 upper-level credits (courses numbered 300 or higher)
No more than half (50 percent) of the courses applied to the major requirements can be transferred from another college. In other words, students may need to complete at least 50 percent of their major degree requirements at VCU.
General education requirements for transfer students
- Transfer students who earn a Uniform Certificate of General Studies, a transfer-oriented associate degree (A.A., A.S., or A.A.& S.), an Associate of Fine Arts (A.F.A.) or a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution prior to enrollment at VCU will be considered to have met all lower-division general education requirements with the exception of certain lower-level and upper-level degree program requirements that also apply to native students.
- Transfer students from Virginia community colleges and Richard Bland College who have completed approved courses through the Virginia-based Passport or Uniform Certificate of General Studies, with a minimum grade of C, will be considered to have met the comparable general education requirements at VCU. This includes students who complete Passport or UCGS courses through dual enrollment at high school.
- VCU provides students the option of reverse transfer of credit earned at VCU back to their former college. Virginia Community College System or Richard Bland College transfer students who are eligible for the awarding of an associate degree through reverse transfer of credits within one semester of enrollment at VCU will be considered to have met all lower-division general education requirements. Students must complete all other lower-level and upper-level degree program requirements that also apply to native students.
- Since some transfer students may have followed VCU course or pathway recommendations based on prior general education requirements, all transfer students have the option of selecting the VCU general education requirements in effect at the date of the student’s admission to their prior institution. This option will remain in effect for students matriculating at VCU through fall 2025.
Transfer students from Virginia community colleges who earn an Associate of Applied Science degree as part of an established transfer pathway (e.g., A.A.S. in Nursing to Bachelor of Science in Nursing or A.A.S. in Early Childhood Development to Bachelor of Science in Education) will be considered to have met all lower-division general education requirements with the exception of certain lower-level and upper-level degree program requirements that also apply to native students. A full list of established pathways with A.A.S. degrees, as well as pathways with other associate degrees, can be found online. VCU academic units developing pathways with A.A.S. degrees will ensure that community college students complete a broad range of general education courses, including, but not limited to, two semesters of English composition (e.g., ENG 111-112).
State policy on transfer agreement
VCU welcomes applications from Virginia community colleges and Richard Bland students who have earned the Associate in Arts, Associate in Science, Associate of Fine Arts, or Associate in Arts and Science degrees, or A.A.&S. or A.S. programs in general studies . In compliance with VCU’s guaranteed admission agreements with the Virginia Community College System and Richard Bland College, students holding these degrees with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 and a minimum grade of C in all transferable courses will be guaranteed general admission to the university. GAA students will have junior standing at VCU as long as they have earned a minimum grade of C in all the transferable courses and will be considered to have met all lower-division general education requirements with the exception of certain lower-level and upper-level degree program requirements that also apply to native students. (See below for more information about requirements for all students.) Students should closely follow the detailed course suggestions offered on the Transfer Center website for Virginia community colleges and Richard Bland College. By following the course recommendations of VCU’s transfer maps or guaranteed admission agreements, additional lower-division courses needed after transfer to VCU can be held to a minimum.
- Students must make proper application for admission to VCU.
- Only courses with minimum grades of C are transferable.
- Credits needed to meet major prerequisites will be based on the course equivalency tables or agreements resulting from program-to-program articulation agreements. (See the list of agreements.)
- Students will not be required to repeat courses that have been satisfactorily completed at a Virginia community college except in cases where special restrictions apply to all students.
- Applicants to degree programs that are competitive are not guaranteed admission but will be evaluated on the same basis as native students.
For students with any of the associate degrees from a VCCS institution or Richard Bland College, VCU degree requirements in effect at the date of the student’s admission to the VCCS or RBC associate degree program will be used in certifying the student for graduation if the student has not interrupted his or her associate degree more than two consecutive semesters (excluding summer sessions).
Students from VCCS institutions, Richard Bland College or other two-year institutions who have not completed the college parallel A.A., A.F.A., A.S. or A.A.&S. degree will have the exact designation of their status determined after an official evaluation of acceptable credits. This evaluation is determined by the equivalencies shown in the VCU course equivalency tables for Virginia community colleges and Richard Bland College that may be accepted, including not more than 50 percent in the major field of study. However, the applicant should realize that more than two additional years may be necessary to complete the degree requirements in certain curricula.
Requirements of native students which would apply to associate-degree holders after transfer to VCU are:
- All bachelor’s degree programs in the College of Humanities and Sciences, L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs, School of Social Work and VCU Life Sciences require competency through the elementary level of a foreign language (or American Sign Language); some majors require competency through the intermediate level.
- The School of Social Work requires a 2.5 GPA for admission to upper-level courses. The School of Business requires a minimum GPA for admission to upper-level course work. Please contact the Office of Undergraduate Studies in the School of Business for the current minimum GPA required. The School of Mass Communications requires a 2.5 GPA for admission to upper-level work. The School of Education requires a minimum GPA of 2.8 for admission to the teacher preparation program. For students applying to majors in the School of the Arts, a portfolio evaluation for visual arts applicants and an audition for performance applicants are required.
- The professional baccalaureate programs within the schools of Dentistry and Nursing and the College of Health Professions, and the doctoral programs in physical therapy and pharmacy have specific program-related lower-level requirements that must be completed to apply to and enter health sciences programs and to achieve success in the programs, if admitted.
- The health, physical education and exercise science program has specific lower-level requirements related to state-approved program status, professional certification and entry into the practicum sequence. Specified science courses are prerequisite for entry into upper-level kinesiology and exercise science courses.
Transfer work from some occupational or technical programs is reviewed under specific conditions for the completion programs in clinical laboratory science and nursing for community college A.A.S. degree holders.
Students wishing to transfer to the College of Engineering must have a 3.0 GPA with no grades below a C. Also, minimum grades of B must be attained in mathematics, science or engineering courses to be considered for transfer. Transfer students from the VCCS will follow the admission agreement for engineering.
The A.A.&S. and A.S. programs in general studies are considered transfer degrees by VCU.
Detailed information about the Virginia Community College/VCU and Richard Bland College/VCU transfer-equivalent courses is available on the Transfer Center website.