Evaluation of Credit and Testing Policy For Graduate Students


Columbia College recognizes the importance of providing students with information to facilitate transfer of credit, testing, as well as maintaining academic quality and integrity with respect to awarding credit for testing, military service, prior learning, and course work completed at another institution. The purpose of this policy is to outline the evaluation of transfer credit and testing policy for graduate students at Columbia College.


This policy applies to all graduate students at Columbia College.


Transfer of Credits from another Institution or Columbia College Degree Program

Applicants must inform the College of all institutions of higher learning attended and whether or not academic credit was earned at these institutions. Falsification of application information, including failure to identify all post-secondary institutions attended, may result in denial of admission or dismissal if discovered after enrollment. 

Upon petition by the student to the appropriate graduate program coordinator, credit may be given for graduate hours taken at another institution or another Columbia College degree program within the last seven years. Petitions must include an official course description from the transferring college catalog and course syllabus to be considered. Credit may be transferred from institutions of post-secondary education that carry Columbia College approved accreditation (all regional and some national bodies). International institutions that do not have regional accreditation will be evaluated per the Office of the Registrar International credentialing process. Petitions for consideration of transfer credit must be made prior to the successful completion of 12 hours of graduate course work at Columbia College. A maximum of 9 semester hours of transfer credit, with the grade of B or higher, may be allowed for graduate students. In all instances, the culminating experience must be taken at Columbia College.

Students who are admitted to a Columbia College graduate program and who wish to take courses at another college or university while pursuing a graduate degree at Columbia College must first obtain written permission for the transfer of these courses from the appropriate graduate program coordinator.

The Graduate Transfer Credit Request Form is located on Columbia College's secure website.

Full admission to a graduate program must be secured before graduate transfer credit will be considered. Submit official transcripts from the institution that awarded the graduate-level course work to be evaluated for possible transfer credit. An official transcript is marked as such and sent directly from the institution attended to the Office of the Registrar. A transcript marked official and hand delivered in a sealed envelope of the institution by the applicant will be accepted as official. Transcripts marked unofficial or student copy will not be considered official even if delivered in a sealed institution envelope. Faxed transcripts are not considered official. Credit will not be evaluated for one institution from another institution’s transcript.

Appeals may be made for an exception to submitting official transcripts/credit documents. An appeal must include a statement of why the transcript/credit document is unavailable.

Appeals will not be approved or exceptions made for the following reasons: applicant owes money at another institution and is therefore unable to procure an official transcript; poor grades at the previous institution and therefore courses may not be transferable to Columbia College; applicant does not believe that previous coursework is applicable to Columbia College; applicant does not want to pay transcript fees.

Applicants who are unable to obtain transcripts because the previous institution has closed, had a fire or some other records catastrophe may include a letter from the institution or the Department of Education for the state where the school is located indicating that the transcript is not available. If the letter is provided along with the application and other transfer documents, then an appeal is not necessary and there will be no delay in the evaluation process.

Applicants may also submit a letter of appeal if a previous institution attended is not currently nor has ever been accredited by one of the accrediting bodies recognized by Columbia College. Once a document has been submitted it becomes the property of Columbia College. Neither the original nor a copy will be given to the applicant.

CLEP - College Level Examination Program

Columbia College awards semester hours of credit for CLEP exams. Credit for CLEP may be applied to the undergraduate prerequisite courses required for the Master of Business Administration degree. These exams require a “B” level score to qualify for MBA prerequisite waiver.

CLEP Exam Title CC Course “B”- Level Score
Financial Accounting ACCT 280 65
Principles of Management MGMT 330 UL[1] 63
Principles of Marketing MKTG 310 LL[1] 65

1 UL = Upper Level credit equivalency; LL = Lower Level credit equivalency


DANTES - Subject Standardized Tests (DSST)

Columbia College awards semester hours of credit for DANTES exams. Credit for DANTES may be applied to the undergraduate prerequisite courses required for the Master of Business Administration degree and the Master of Science in Criminal Justice degree. These exams require a “B”- level score to qualify for MBA or MSCJ prerequisite waiver.

DANTES Test Number DANTES Exam Title CC Course “B”- Level Score
DSST 524 (1/1990 - 9/30/2012 Principles of Finance FINC 350 & FINC 396 53 or 434[2]
DSST 524 (10//2012 - present) Principles of Finance FINC 350 53 or 434[2]
DSST 525 Principles of Financial Accounting ACCT 280 55
DSST 497 (1/1990 - 9/30/2012 Introduction to Law Enforcement CJAD 101 52 or 434[2]
DSST 498 (10//2012 - present) Criminal Justice CJAD 101 54 or 434[2]

2 DANTES is currently transitioning between exam versions. Score reports may reflect either of the noted scores above.

Military Training Credit

Training that may carry a graduate level equivalency must be submitted via AARTS transcript, SMARTS transcript, official CCAF transcript, Coast Guard transcript from CG Institute or Army - Form 2- 1; Navy - Page 4’s; Coast Guard - Page 3’s; Marine Corps - NAVMC 118 8a. Graduate Level credit is reviewed for acceptance by the academic department chair.

Transfer of Columbia College Credits

Columbia College courses are normally accepted by other regionally-accredited institutions of higher learning. However, all colleges and universities reserve the right to determine those credits they will accept in transfer.

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