Transfer Credit Policies

Credits Earned within the Vermont State Colleges

All credits earned at a Vermont State College (VSC) starting with the fall 2002 semester are accepted by JSC without question, along with their corresponding grade/GPA, as institutional credit.

The VSC maintains a common (shared) course database. For example, taking PSY-1010 at one VSC institution equals taking PSY-1010 at any other VSC institution. In addition, completing a VSC graduation standard at one college within the system equals completion of that standard at any VSC in the event of transfer.

Transferring in a Previously Earned Degree

Students transferring a bachelor's degree from any regionally accredited institution will be waived of all general education requirements as well as from the VSC Graduation Standards.

Campus-based students transferring an associate's degree from any regionally accredited institution will be waived of all lower-level general education requirements plus the following graduation standards for a bachelor’s degree:

  • the Information Literacy standard
  • one of the two required Oral Communication evaluations
  • part 1 of the Quantitative Reasoning standard

Campus-based students transferring an associate's degree still must successfully complete the Writing Proficiency exam, one Oral Communication evaluation and at least one Quantitatively Enriched course in order to meet graduation standards for a bachelor's degree.

Students in the External Degree Program will be waived of associate-level graduation standards.

Transferring Credits from Other Colleges/Universities

Official transcripts are required in order for JSC evaluate credits earned elsewhere for possible transfer to JSC. In general, these policies apply:

  • Credit from regionally accredited institutions will be accepted if grades are C- or better.
  • In a sequence of inter-related courses, if the first course is passed with a grade below C- but the second grade is C- or higher, both courses will be accepted.
  • Credits applied to a previously earned degree will be accepted as transfer credit.
  • While credits may be accepted toward overall credit requirements, the extent to which transfer credits fulfill specific major or program requirements will depend on the courses taken and their applicability to JSC’s requirements.
  • Courses may be transferred in to a program at Johnson State College in one or more of these ways:

    1) as a course equal to a course at JSC (e.g., Introduction to Psychology = Introduction to Psychology)

    2) as a general-education requirement equivalent (not necessarily a course-to-course equivalent)

    3) as a major requirement equivalent or substitute (not necessarily a course-to-course equivalent)

    4) as an upper-level elective

    5) as a lower-level elective


How Transfer Credits May Meet Requirements

The standard for a true course-to-course "equate" is high, as the course being transferred in must meet the same requirements as the course at JSC. In some cases a course accepted for transfer credit may count toward a general-education requirement but not be specific enough, or delve deeply enough into the subject matter, to count as a course or prerequisite required for a certain major.

General Education

For campus-based programs, the Registrar's Office determines which courses being transferred meet the college's GEEC requirements (e.g., the development of fundamental skills and the attainment of the aesthetic, global, social and historial, and civic perspectives) -- not necessarily whether the course is equivalent to one offered at JSC.

A decision by JSC not to accept a course for general education credit can be appealed to one or more department chairs depending on the credit being sought (e.g., to the chair of the Mathematics Department for a course to meet the "fundamental skills in mathematics" requirement). Students will need to provide both a course description and a syllabus for the course. If the appeal is granted and the course is accepted for general education credit, a substitution/waiver form must be completed and submitted to the Registrar's Office.

Definitions of General Education Requirements

Fundamental Skills

Freshman-level college writing courses, or finite math courses, from any accredited institution generally count toward the general education requirement at JSC. Unless specifically identified on an official transcript as such, courses will not be transferred in as "writing intensive" without a review of a course syllabus.


Disciplinary Exploration

Disciplinary courses must emphasize the primary concepts, methods of inquiry and major achievements of the field.

Fields applicable to general education, such as world history, photography, sociology, biology, etc., are identified in course titles -- not in course-number prefixes such as HIS, ART, SOC or BIO -- as each college has its own course-numbering system.

Fields in addition to those listed in the general education core curriculum (GECC) may be accepted toward the appropriate GECC area provided they meet the above definition and fall within the predefined GECC areas of literature and philosophy, history and foreign languages, fine and performing arts, life science, physical science, anthropology/sociology/psychology, and political science/economics. 

In general, Disciplinary Exploration courses are lower level, without prerequisites, and should be broad enough in scope to be introductory.



Interdisciplinary courses use materials and resources from at least two and preferably three or more disciplines (not genres), devote no more than half of the course time to one discipline, and integrate these disciplines so that insights gained from one reflect on the other(s).

Students wishing to have a transfer course considered for interdisciplinary credit should submit a course syllabus with their transcript.  If a course is accepted as an equivalent of a JSC-offered interdisciplinary course, it will count toward the GECC requirement.


First-Year Seminar (FYS)

Students with fewer than 15 previously earned credits who have completed a first-year seminar at a previous college will be waived from the FYS requirement at JSC. A FYS must be a full semester, three-credit course, and not a credit designated “freshman orientation."  Students transferring in 15 or more credits will be waived from the FYS requirement altogether.

Major Requirements

Students may appeal a decision by JSC to not equate a transfer course to a JSC course or to a requirement for a major to the chair of the department offering the major. Students need to provide a course description and syllabus for the course they wish to substitute for the one at JSC. If the request is granted, a substitution/waiver form must be completed and submitted to the Registrar's Office.

Advanced-Placement Credit

JSC will grant both advanced placement and course credit to students who have passed the College Board’s AP exam with a grade of 3 or higher. Final recommendation for the number of credits will be determined in consultation with the student’s advisor and the department chair for the appropriate discipline.

CLEP Credit

JSC considers satisfactory scores received on the College Level Examination Program (CLEP) for credit. Six credits may be given for each area, and three for each subject, in which a student scores satisfactorily.

Military Credit

JSC recognizes transcripts issued by the American Council on Education (ACE) as official documentation of military experiences. For more information, click on these links:

Military Transfer Guide

Information on transferring military credit and ACE

Assessment of Prior Learning

Learning acquired through work or other non-college experiences may be assessed for college credit. The Assessment of Prior Learning (APL) course offered by the Community College of Vermont is designed for this purpose. Students are guided through the process of describing and documenting their experiential learning in a portfolio. This document is then reviewed for credit by an committee of appropriate faculty and professionals. Credit is awarded through the Office of External Programs and may be transferred to JSC and other Vermont State Colleges. The Registrar's Office, in consultation with faculty and staff of the appropriate departments, will evaluate these credits to determine their applicability toward graduation requirements.



Assessment of Prior Learning

3 credits

(Offered through Community College of Vermont)

An opportunity for students to earn college credit for prior learning acquired either on the job or in other settings. Students explore past learning experiences and identify future educational goals. Students develop an individual portfolio describing and documenting prior learning. Upon successful completion of the course, students may submit their portfolio to the Office of External Programs for review of credit requests. Recommended prior learning: ENG-1051 College Writing or equivalent. (Before enrolling, students should consult the Academic Support Services Office at Johnson State College at 802-635-1259.)

Foreign Academic Credentials

In order for JSC to consider accepting transfer credits from foreign institutions, students must have their post-secondary academic transcripts evaluated by an official foreign-credential evaluation service. Students are responsible for the credential evaluation and translation fees.  A list of credential-evaluation services can be found at

International Baccalaureate

JSC recognizes the international baccalaureate (IB) degree and awards placement and credit for higher-level IB courses on a case-by-case basis to students who pass exams with a score of 4 or higher. (The college does not award credit for standard level IB exams). It is not necessary to have completed the entire IB curriculum (the diploma) to qualify for transfer credit. Students must provide an official IB transcript along with their application in order for IB credits to be considered for transfer.