All articles

Transferring from Community College to a Four-Year School

a student walks through a modern building courtyard

There are multiple ways to earn a bachelor's degree and one of these options is to enroll in a community college following high school graduation. Once you’ve completed your general courses, you have the option to transfer to a four-year college or university. Former community college students make up 37% of all transfers. But before you join those numbers, there are some things you must first consider.

If you are considering attending an in-state, four-year institution, it is important to familiarize yourself with your state’s guaranteed acceptance programs. Your community college may have an agreement with certain institutions within your state. This means as long as your grades are up-to-par with the institution’s standards, you will be guaranteed admission into that school.  

As you begin this process, there are a few resources to check out. Your home state’s website may be a good place to start, but the best place to begin is your own school’s website. There, you should find information such as transfer workshops, a timeline for transfer students and general tips on the whole process.

Once you choose a school to transfer to, it’s time to see what credits will carry over. This is one of the key components in the transfer process. If you’re lucky, your school be a part of an articulation agreement. This means that participating community colleges and four-year institutions have already specified which classes completed at the two-year school will be credited toward a bachelor’s degree. But don’t count on this! Not all articulation agreements apply to every major.

One final thing to remember is that federal aid does not transfer directly, and scholarships may not either. You will need to re-apply for federal aid at your new school or contact scholarship administrators to inquire about how your transfer will affect your gift aid. Your federal aid may be lowered, depending on how much you already used at your previous school. As long as you keep these points in mind, your transfer process should be smooth!

Create a free Appily account to find, finance, and attend the college that's right for you Get Started Now