ACC Implements New Processes to Support Reverse Transfers

Austin Community College is working to ensure students understand how they may obtain an associate degree through reverse transfer, and has taken the first step in making the process as simple and streamlined as possible.

With reverse transfer, students who begin their education at ACC but transfer — or plan to transfer — to a four-year college or university can have applicable credit earned elsewhere transferred back to ACC and applied toward an associate degree.

“The associate degree is an increasingly marketable credential,” says ACC Interim Provost Dr. Enrique Solis. “Reverse transfer offers students the advantage of having one degree on their résumé while they complete their bachelor’s degree. This can open up job opportunities they otherwise wouldn’t have.”

To participate in the growing reverse transfer trend, ACC is exploring agreements with several universities to automate free transcript exchanges. Currently, former ACC students must seek reverse transfer individually from their four-year institutions and pay any transcript processing fees.

To further assist the process, ACC has developed an online consent form that will allow students to grant permission for their transcripts to be transferred back automatically by partner institutions. Starting in August, new students will approve or deny permission as part of their ACC admissions application. Current and former students will encounter the reverse transfer question the first time they attempt to register for classes in the future.

“This is an important strategy to assist students in completing an associate degree through reverse transfer,” says Dr. Kathleen Christensen, vice president of student services. “This is a new concept for students, and they may be asking staff about the process.”

Students who are uncertain whether they are eligible should review their courses and earned credit with their ACC advisor or counselor, who will be briefed on reverse transfer processes, Christensen says.

Dr. Solis notes that students should understand that allowing ACC to obtain their university transcript does not guarantee they will be granted an associate degree. Not all Texas colleges and universities have reverse transfer agreements, and students may still need to fulfill specific course requirements, even if they have sufficient credit hours. Those earning a degree through reverse transfer must complete the same requirements of all ACC graduates, including but not limited to:

• Students must complete all courses for their degree plan, including core curriculum and general education coursework;

• Students must have a minimum 2.0 grade point average on ACC coursework and transfer coursework; and

• Students must have 75 combined credit hours, of which 25 percent must be earned at ACC.

Students seeking a degree through reverse transfer also must submit a graduation application, and the college will conduct a degree audit — as it does for all degree applicants — to determine whether requirements have been met.

For more information about reverse transfers, visit ACC’s Transfer Services webpage.

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