Don’t Be Surprised if You Discover You May Want to Transfer
It is actually fairly common for students to transfer colleges. In fact, almost a third of all college students wind up transferring for various reasons. Bottom line is where you start your higher education is not where you have to stay. But we do have some recommendations for you if changing schools is in the cards.
Things to Keep in Mind About Transferring Colleges
- Do Not Transfer at Midterm
- Use the Same Search and Selection Process
- Be Prepared to Fight for Your Transfer Credits
Do Not Transfer at Midterm
Most colleges allow for later admissions applications for transfer students but the financial aid is still distributed primarily on the standard admissions schedule. Keep your transfer applications as close to the freshman application calendar as possible. That means try to get your admission applications to the colleges the fall before you want to start.
Use the Same Search and Selection Process
If considering a transfer, treat this transition the same as if you were just starting your college search. All the same recommendations apply: choose and apply to 6 to 10 schools; target generous schools; negotiate the financial offers; don’t commit until you have all the facts. Simply because you have a year or two of college under your belt doesn’t mean the process is any different.
Be Prepared to Fight for Your Transfer Credits
While some schools are more willing to give credit for the classes you’ve taken at your current university, overall, transferring college credits from one school to another is notoriously difficult. Just like with a financial aid offer, you shouldn’t take the first answer as the last. Be prepared to make your case for why those credits should count, but expect some will be lost.