Transfer of Graduate Credit

Students may petition to transfer credit from another university under the following conditions. It is recommended that students petition during their first semester in order to plan their academic program accurately. Transfer petitions for previous work will not be accepted in the student’s final term unless the transfer course is being taken in the final term. Upon matriculation at USD, students must receive approval prior to taking coursework outside USD if they plan to transfer it into a degree program. Students may petition the dean of the college or school in which the program resides for an exception to the following regulations, but should do so only after consulting with the advisor and director or coordinator of the graduate program, whose recommendations must appear on the Petition for Transfer of Graduate Credit.

  1. Credit must be from an accredited, USD-approved university.
  2. Credit must be at the graduate-level at the university of origin. The student is responsible for submitting acceptable supporting documentation.
  3. Credit must be relevant to the USD degree program and be approved by the program director or coordinator.
  4. Transfer courses cannot repeat essentially the same content of work taken at USD.
  5. Credit may not be used (or have been used) toward any other degree.
  6. Credit earned more than five years prior to matriculation at USD will not be accepted.
  7. A grade of “B” or higher must have been earned (grade of “pass” or “satisfactory” ordinarily is not acceptable).
  8. Students must supply satisfactory documentation regarding course content for independent study or self-directed courses.
  9. The number of credit hours transferred will be based on USD’s semester credit system (multiply the number of quarter hours by 2/3). For example, 4 quarter-hours x 2/3 = 2.67. It is the student’s responsibility to make up the difference if the total number of degree credits falls short of the requirement for the degree. The amount of USD credit awarded may not exceed the equivalent amount on the originating transcript.
    Quarter Hours Converted to Semester:
    1 quarter unit 0.67 semester units
    2 quarter unit 1.33 semester units
    3 quarter unit 2.00 semester units
    4 quarter unit 2.67 semester units
    5 quarter unit 3.33 semester units
    6 quarter unit 4.00 semester units
  10. Although transfer credit from other universities will be posted on the USD transcript, grades will not be posted or computed in the USD grade point average for probation or disqualification review.
  11. See table for the maximum number of non-USD credits allowed:
    Maximum Number of Program Semester Units Transferable:
    6 IMBA and MBA
    6 30-44 unit Master's
    9 45-53 unit Master's
    12 54-63 unit Doctorate

No exception to these limits will be made without the explicit written permission of the dean of the program’s college or school.

Procedure for Transfer of Credit

Courses Taken Prior to Enrollment at USD

The student should discuss the possibility of credit transfer with the advisor and program director or coordinator. Any exceptions to transfer credit policies must also have the approval of the dean of the program’s college or school. The student should secure the appropriate signatures on the Petition for Transfer of Graduate Credit and submit it to the One Stop Student Center. The student must also request that an official transcript of the course be sent to the Office of the Registrar if the transcript was not included among the admission documents. When both the petition and transcript are on file they will be reviewed for conformity to USD policies and posted appropriately.

Courses Taken After Enrollment at USD

USD students planning to take a degree requirement or elective at another university must process the transfer petition as described above prior to taking the course. Immediately upon completion of the course, the student must request that an official transcript be sent to the USD Office of the Registrar. A grade of “B” or better is required in order to receive credit (units only) when transferring a course from another institution. Grade(s) awarded by the issuing institution will not be calculated in the student’s overall grade point average. After the petition and transcript are on file they will be reviewed by the Registrar’s Office for conformity to USD policies.

Waiver of Requirements

Students who have taken an equivalent course prior to enrollment at USD may petition to waive a course requirement; however, the number of required credit hours remains the same. Consequently, students must enroll in approved coursework to make up the difference in the total number of units required. USD has discretion to approve or deny course waivers based on the content of the course and when or where it was taken.

There are two exceptions to this policy. The 45-48 unit Nurse Practitioner master’s programs allow students to waive up to 9 units and the other Nursing master’s programs (39-42 units) allow up to 6 units. In all of these cases students must earn at least 30 units through USD.