UNC Charlotte Academic Policy and Procedure: Transfer Credit and Advanced Academic Standing

I. Executive Summary

This policy and procedure details the types of transfer credit that are accepted at UNC Charlotte. 

II. Policy and Procedure Statement

Evaluation of transfer credits, advanced standing, CLEP, AP,  Cambridge, and IB are coordinated through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions.  Prospective students who desire further information about policies and procedures for awarding credit should contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions or utilize the “Transfer Credit Advisor” tool online at admissions.uncc.edu.

UNC Charlotte will accept appropriate undergraduate credits earned through AP, IB, CLEP, Cambridge, armed forces service schools, and college level courses completed prior to graduation from high school. In addition, UNC Charlotte will accept or transfer appropriate undergraduate credits earned at a college or university accredited by an accepted accrediting body or through credit by examination. Credit toward a degree is not awarded for Continuing Education Units (CEUs) or for remedial level college courses.

Advanced Placement Course Credit (AP)

The University will accept appropriate undergraduate credits earned through Advanced Placement Program Tests completed prior to graduation from high school. Students must request that official Advanced Placement test results be sent directly to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions for evaluation (UNC Charlotte code 5105).  Prospective students who desire further information about policies and procedures for awarding credit should view score requirements and other related information at admissions.uncc.edu.  No more than 8 credit hours can be awarded for any single Advanced Placement exam. 

International Baccalaureate Program (IB)

The University will award credit for subjects in which students score appropriate scores on the IB examinations. View score requirements at admissions.uncc.edu.

Cambridge Exams

The University will award credit for subjects in which students score appropriate scores on Cambridge examinations. View score requirements at admissions.uncc.edu.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP) General Examination

An undergraduate student may receive up to 23 credit hours of elective credit.

Subject Matter Examinations

Credit may be awarded for subject matter examinations listed below at the levels recommended in the current edition of CLEP Scores: Interpretation and Use.


  • Information Systems and Computer Applications
  • Introductory Accounting
  • Introductory Business Law
  • Principles of Management
  • Principles of Marketing


  • Human Growth and Development
  • Introduction to Educational Psychology

Foreign Language

  • College French I & II
  • College German I & II
  • College Spanish I & II


  • American Literature
  • Analysis & Interpretation of Literature
  • College Composition (with Essay)
  • English Literature


  • Calculus w/Elementary Functions
  • College Algebra
  • College Algebra-Trigonometry
  • Trigonometry


  • General Biology
  • General Chemistry

Social Sciences

  • American Government
  • American History I & II
  • Introduction to Macroeconomics
  • Introduction to Microeconomics
  • Introduction to Psychology
  • Introduction to Sociology
  • Western Civilization I & II

CLEP credit will be awarded according to UNC Charlotte policy in place at the time of evaluation.  View score requirements at admissions.uncc.edu.

The amount of CLEP credit that is applicable to a specific degree program is determined by the department offering the program.

Transfer Credit from Other Institutions

Official transcripts are evaluated in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and the results are provided to the applicant and to the major department/college. Determining the applicability of transferred credits to major or program requirements is the responsibility of the department chairperson or program director. General rules governing transfer credit:

  1. Only courses taken at a college or university accredited by an accepted accrediting body will be considered for transfer credit.
  2. Provisional transfer credit may be granted for study at foreign institutions or a college or university accredited by an accepted accrediting body, but must be validated by 30 credit hours of successful performance in residence at UNC Charlotte.
  3. Courses for which credit is accepted must be appropriate for approved University programs and curricula in which the student is enrolled.
  4. No credit below C level will be accepted; grade points and averages do not transfer.
  5. Transfer credit is awarded only upon receipt in the UNC Charlotte Office of Undergraduate Admissions of an official transcript from the institution where the credit was earned.

Students who hold a baccalaureate degree from a college or university accredited by an accepted accrediting body will not be required to satisfy the UNC Charlotte General Education Requirements for a second degree.  Students will be issued a transfer credit report and will have their credit from their first degree evaluated.

Credit for Military Training

The University will approve academic credit for military training equivalent to UNC Charlotte courses required for the students' major, minor, or General Education requirements.  The credit must be approved by the student's major department chair, college dean, and the department that offers the course.

Documentation of the training, such as a license of completion, Joint Services Transcript, or notation on the student's DD Form 214, is required. The same requirements apply to transfer or military training credit approved by another institution.  Contact the Office of the Registrar for further information.

Credit from Two-Year Institutions

The University accepts a maximum of 64 credit hours from two year institutions for undergraduate students.  Remedial and technical courses will not transfer.

Transient Study

Courses undertaken by UNC Charlotte undergraduate degree students at a college or university accredited by an accepted accrediting body may be transferred to the University subject to the following regulations:

  1. The University is not obligated to accept any credit from another institution unless the student has obtained the prior approval of the dean of the college in which he/she is enrolled. A “Permit for Transient Study” form should be completed and filed in the UNC Charlotte Office of the Registrar prior to enrollment at another institution.
  2. No credit will be accepted for courses below C level for undergraduate students.
  3. The student must request that an official transcript be sent to the UNC Charlotte Office of the Registrar upon completion of the course. A form for this purpose is available in the Office of the Registrar at the institution where the course is taken.
  4. Students in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and students in the University College are not permitted to take courses at another educational institution in the Fall or Spring semester if they are enrolled full-time (12 credits or more) at UNC Charlotte in the same semester, unless it is a course not offered at UNC Charlotte (e.g., American Sign Language).
  5. Grades do not transfer.

Credit by Examination

A student currently enrolled at UNC Charlotte may pass a specially prepared challenge examination and receive credit for a University course without having to do the normal course work.  The student contacts the chair of the department in which credit is sought to request administration of an examination.  Since it may not be appropriate to award credit by examination for some courses, the decision to offer an examination is that of the department.  If the chair authorizes an examination, the student is instructed to pay the required fee for credit by examination and to bring the receipt of payment to the examination.  Hours earned through credit by examination will be indicated on the transcript, but no grade points will be awarded. Hours attempted will be assigned equal to the hours earned.  Failure on such an examination will incur no grade point penalty or hours attempted.  A department may allow a student to take examinations for courses not offered at UNC Charlotte, if it deems it appropriate to do so.  No student may challenge a course for which either a passing or failing grade has been received at UNC Charlotte.

Exemptions to General Education Requirements

First-Year Writing Requirements

Students will be deemed to have fulfilled the First-Year writing requirement (WRDS 1103 or WRDS 1104) if either of the following apply: a) exemption from first-year writing (without credit) at another college or university; or b) 64 or more transferred credit hours from U.S. institution(s) of higher education.  (Some exceptions may apply for students with transferred credit hours from institutions where English is not the language of instruction.)

Lower-Division Requirements

Some transfer students are exempt from the lower division General Education requirements* if they are admitted to the University in Fall 2003 or thereafter.  These include:

  • Students from North Carolina Community Colleges who receive an Associate of Arts (AA), Associate of Science (AS), Associate of Fine Arts (AFA), or Associate of Engineering (AE).
  • Students from North Carolina Community Colleges who have completed the 44 hour general education core. (Comprehensive Articulation Agreement, CAA)
  • Students who graduate from a North Carolina Community College with an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) and enroll at UNC Charlotte in an approved 2+2 degree completion program. (In this case, the exemption becomes invalid if the student changes programs.)

Transfer Students from out-of-state and private institutions of higher education who receive an Associate Degree from that institution will have the degree evaluated for the same General Education exemption on a case by case basis by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions.  The criteria used in the evaluation will be the amount of college-level English, math, natural science, social science, and humanities course work that is included in the degree’s curriculum. Curriculums that are more technical in nature or lack key features of the UNC Charlotte General Education core may not be approved for an exemption from lower division General Education requirements, but individual courses will be accepted towards the UNC Charlotte requirements.

*“Lower division General Education requirements” refers to courses in composition, mathematics and logic, sciences, social sciences, liberal studies (LBST), and three (3) credit hours designated as writing intensive and one to three (1 to 3) credit hours designated as oral communications.  Students MUST still complete three credit hours in the major designated as Writing Intensive (W) to satisfy all General Education requirements for graduation.

Critical Thinking and Communication (CTC) Requirement

See the General Education Program for details on transfer credit and the CTC requirement.

III. Definitions

  • Accepted Accrediting Body - the following are accepted accrediting bodies: Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Higher Learning Commission (HLC), Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), and WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).
  • Advanced Placement (AP) – Standardized courses administered by The College Board offered high school, the completion of which may result in credit for some of the courses normally required for an undergraduate degree.  Awarding of credit based on AP is granted to a student based on prior study or experience (usually indicated by the student's performance on the AP examination).
  • Bachelor's degree or baccalaureate – The degree of bachelor of arts (B.A.) or bachelor of science (B.S.), typically requiring a minimum of 120 hours of specified course work.  A bachelor’s degree is comprised of General Education courses, a major program(s), elective courses, and, in some cases, a minor program(s), and, in general, is completed in four years.
  • Credit hour – an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutionally established equivalency that reasonably approximates not less than:
    1. One hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours of out of class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks for one semester hour of credit, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time; or
    2. At least an equivalent amount of work as required in paragraph (1) of this definition for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.
  • Degree – Diploma or title awarded to a student who completed a prescribed course of study.
  • General Education Requirements - These courses provide undergraduate students, regardless of their majors, with the foundations of a liberal education.  For details, see the General Education Program section of the Undergraduate Catalog.
  • Registrar – The official at the University who is responsible for maintaining student records.  The Office of the Registrar plans and oversees registration, academic record maintenance, transcript preparation, graduation, a degree audit report system, and curricular records.

IV. Policy and Procedure Contact(s)

V. History

  • Revised:  February 23, 2012 [limit added to number of credits awarded for AP exams]
  • Revised:  Summer 2014 [required ENGL courses changed to UWRT prefix]
  • Revised:  April 11, 2017 [changes approved by Faculty Council to the General Education Program (see the Approval Memo) prompted additional Exemption to Gen Ed Requirements for CTC Course for Transfer Students]
  • Revised:  March 27, 2020 [added Cambridge Exams in compliance with UNC Policy 700.10.1]
  • Revised:  June 18, 2018 [updated language from "an accredited institution" to "a college or university accredited by an accepted accrediting body"]
  • Revised:  December 14, 2020 [required UWRT courses changed to WRDS prefix]

VI. Related Policies, Procedures, and Resources

VII. Frequently Asked Questions

  • Which students are covered under this policy and procedure? 
    This policy and procedure applies to all undergraduate students at UNC Charlotte.
  • If students attended a four-year institution prior to attending a two-year institution, are those credit hours also accepted? 
    Yes.  The University accepts a maximum of 64 credit hours from two-year institutions for undergraduate students, and an unlimited number of transferable credits from four-year institutions, regardless of when attended.