College Connection: SCC Courses Transfer to Four-Year Universities

Friday, June 17th, 2016

Anthony_ClarkeAt Southeastern Community College, we are working hard to serve the citizens of Columbus County.  I have heard people tell me that SCC’s courses don’t transfer to universities or that a university did not accept a course that was taken at SCC.  Old stories die hard, so I would like to address the transferability of our courses to four-year institutions.

Transfer issues have happened in the past, but things have changed dramatically in the world of college transfer that we hope will keep this from happening in the future.

In 2014, under direction from the legislature, the University of North Carolina System and the North Carolina Community College System signed the 2014 Comprehensive Articulation Agreement, known as the CAA.  The CAA established 61 credit hours in an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree that would transfer from any NC community college to any university in the UNC System.

The first 31 hours of coursework are known as the Universal General Education Transfer Component (UGETC).  These 31 credit hours are specifically defined on a list of 35 selected courses for the Associate in Arts program and a list of 40 selected courses for the Associate in Science program.

The second 30 hours of the associate’s degree are defined by each university in a designated pathway for each program major.  Once students complete the first 31 hours (the UGETC courses), they will take another 30 hours that are defined by the university, but can be taken at any North Carolina community college.  Each university is required to and has posted these pathways on its web site.

So, this is how it works.  Let’s say a student wants to earn a bachelor’s degree in business administration.  The student would take 31 hours at SCC from the UGETC courses list towards his/her associate’s degree.  As early as possible, the student would determine the university where he/she wants to transfer.  The student would then take 30 hours of courses at SCC that are defined on the business administration pathway by the transfer university.  Once completed, the student would graduate with an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science degree, and transfer all 61 credit hours to his/ her selected university.

It does not matter what community college a student attends.  Students do not need to leave the county to take advantage of the CAA.  SCC’s English, math and other classes transfer just like any other community college’s to any of the 16 UNC system institutions, such as East Carolina, Fayetteville State, NC State, UNC Chapel Hill, UNC Pembroke, and UNC Wilmington.  In addition, the North Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities signed a similar agreement in 2015.

The CAA is not perfect, but as universities improve their pathways, SCC is working with them to ensure our students have the right information to make informed decisions.  Most importantly, though, the CAA is a huge step forward in helping SCC meet the educational needs of Columbus County, and make those old stories a thing of the past.

Written By:
Dr. Anthony Clarke

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