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Transfer of Credit

Advanced Standing Credit for Previous Master’s Degree

In general, doctoral candidates who have received a master’s degree or its equivalent may receive 32 semester hours of credit toward the minimum 96 semester (some programs require more) hour requirement for the doctoral degree. For consideration, the degree must be posted as completed on a transcript from an accredited institution, and, if international, equivalent to a U.S. master’s degree (as determined by the Graduate Admissions Office and the Graduate College).  The admitting doctoral program makes the academic determination on whether to recognize the degree.

The admitting doctoral program checks the box ‘Request Advanced Standing Credit for Previous Master’s Degree’ on the Program Review form in Slate, along with the appropriate admit decision, when processing the admission. A petition for transfer credit should not be used. Recognition of a previous master’s degree does not mean that the program cannot require students to make up specific course deficiencies. In such cases students ultimately may take more than the required minimum 96 semester hours (including the 32 hours for the previous degree).

Alternatively, if the master’s degree was awarded after the admission cycle, or if the decision to accept the degree was made late, the Request for Doctoral Advanced Standing Credit for a Previously Earned Master’s Degree form (linked below) must be submitted, along with a transcript showing the degree posted. For requests involving international degrees, the Graduate College will review the evaluation done by the Admissions Office in Slate or Banner.

If the program so designates, the student’s record will be adjusted to show 32 semester hours of general transfer credit. The student will be classified as a Grad II student, and will only be expected to earn an additional 64 semester hours (unless the program requires more) to complete the PhD, unless s/he has been provided with specific course deficiencies.


Transfer of Course Credit

*Please see the Graduate Catalog linked below for additional information.

Consideration is given to the transfer of graduate work completed in accredited institutions approved by one of the regional accreditation associations or by the agencies recognized by the Council on Post-Secondary Education provided that it was not used in any other degree program (i.e., for credit towards any degree). Consideration is given to the transfer of credit in four categories:

  • Graduate work from another institution for which a degree was not, or will not, be awarded.
  • Graduate work completed in the senior year, or in another college, at UIC.
  • Graduate work completed as a nondegree student at UIC.
  • Graduate work completed while in a Graduate College degree program, but not used for any earned degree. This includes extra work taken, for example, while in a master’s program, but that is to be used for the doctoral degree.

NOTE: Only transfer credit from another institution is shown as “Transfer Credit” in Banner. Approved credit from within UIC will appear in Banner under “Degree GPA” data for the relevant degree. For probation and graduation purposes, approved transfer credit is not computed in the degree GPA unless such credit was earned in courses taken at UIC.

Limits to Transfer of Credit

*Please see the Graduate Catalog linked below for additional information.

The number of credit hours that may be transferred is determined on an individual basis. The following limitations apply:

  • No more than 40 percent of hours required for a master’s degree can be transferred from another institution or another college at UIC. Doctoral students may transfer in no more than 25 percent of the hours required for the degree. This limit is for courses taken as a student in another college at UIC or another institution, but not course work taken in a different program within the Graduate College at UIC.
  •  Only graduate work that meets the quality and content of graduate courses offered at UIC is considered for transfer
  •  Only credits in which the student earned a grade of A, B, or S may be transferred. Credit/No-Credit or Pass/Fail grades are not eligible for transfer.  Thesis research hours from another institution or other department are usually not eligible for transfer.
  • Students may transfer a maximum of 12 semester hours of credit earned as a nondegree student to a degree program. This includes programs whose degree requirements are less than 48 hours. (See next item.)
    • All regulations governing transfer of credit earned at other institutions (see above) apply equally to the transfer of nondegree credit earned at UIC. However, credit earned as a nondegree student while in the Graduate College at UIC and transferred to a degree program is not included in the transfer credit limits when computing the 25 percent and 40 percent maximum allowed.
  • Credit earned more than six calendar years before admission to the Graduate College is ordinarily not transferred.
  • Credit earned through the CIC Traveling Scholar Program is not considered transfer credit. If a student is approved as a CIC Traveling Scholar, graduate credit earned is automatically counted as degree credit in the student’s program.

Transfer of Credit Procedures

*Please see the Graduate Catalog linked below for additional information.

A Graduate Petition for Transfer of Credit Toward an Advanced Degree form is required for all requests for transfer of course credit, including the transfer of credit earned as a nondegree student at UIC, or other UIC courses. (However, a petition should not be used for granting 32 hours Advanced Standing Credit for a previous master’s degree – see above for procedure). The graduate program evaluates the student’s petition and makes transfer recommendations to the Graduate College. The petition must include the following:

  • The courses recommended for transfer by the graduate program and the number of hours of credit and grades earned.
  • The UIC equivalent course (transfer of non-UIC courses only) for purposes of graduation evaluation.
  • Departmental action (accept or deny) indicated for every course listed on the petition.
  • Petition endorsed by student, advisor, and DGS.

The following must be attached to the petition:

  • An official (original) transcript showing grades for transfer work outside of UIC (not necessary for UIC transfer credit).
  • A certification from the registrar or college dean of the applicable institution stating that the courses are graduate-level and were not used toward fulfillment of the requirements for a degree. This is required even for attempted transfer courses from institutions outside of the United States. If the course is from UIC, and a degree was earned, certification should come from the undergraduate college or graduate program office.

NOTE: Petitions for transfer of credit should be submitted no earlier than the student’s first term in the program, but as soon as possible, and well before the term of graduation.

See also Nondegree Students and Change of Status.

Transfer of UIC Extramural/Continuing Education Course Credit

Since 1988 the Office of Continuing Education and Public Service has been routing course review through the Graduate College for approval. The review includes verification that the course has been approved through the regular procedures, that the course requirements and contact hours meet the approved course outline, and that the instructor meets criteria for teaching of graduate-level courses.

In light of these safeguards the Graduate College will no longer require that students petition to transfer these courses to their graduate programs, if the courses were taken while in a the degree program as a level 2G graduate student. The credit and grades will be included in the student’s Graduate Degree GPA.

Students who take these courses while classified as nondegree, or in a college besides the Graduate College, will need to transfer the course(s) into their degree program using the Graduate Petition for Transfer of Credit Toward an Advanced Degree.