Undergraduate Course Placement and Transfer Credits

Course Placement

Placement by Test

Students need to have UAF-approved placement test scores prior to registering for their first-semester classes. Students place into classes in the following ways: standardized test scores (ACT Plus Writing, SAT, ASSET, or ACCUPLACER), advanced placement credits, transfer credits or prerequisite coursework. Placement tests are available at every UAF community campus as well as Testing Services, the Academic Advising Center, Community and Technical College, Rural Student Services, eLearning and Distance Education, and Northern Military Programs at Fort Wainwright, Eielson Air Force Base and Delta Career Advancement Center.

Students who meet basic skills standards in reading, writing and mathematics may enroll in the appropriate 100-level or above courses. Those whose scores place below these standards are required to enroll in the appropriate developmental education courses. Once these students have satisfactorily met the criteria for these courses, they may register for 100-level courses.

Students need English placement at ENGL F111X or above (including reading) in order to enroll in Perspectives on the Human Condition core courses. Students need mathematics placement at DEVM F105 or above, and ENGL F111X placement (including reading), to register for science courses.

Placement exams must be taken within two calendar years prior to the start of a course; mathematics placement exams must be taken within one calendar year prior. Students enrolling in developmental or lower division core courses must have completed any prerequisite courses within two calendar years of their enrollment. Academic advisors will assist with proper course placement for incoming and continuing students.

Students who enroll in a developmental or core course without meeting placement or prerequisite requirements may be withdrawn from the course through the faculty-initiated withdrawal process.


Placement into English or developmental English courses requires a scored writing sample: SAT, ACT Writing, ASSET, COMPASS, ACCUPLACER, or a UAF-generated writing sample. Minimum scores for placement into English and developmental English courses are listed in this table (ACT/SAT) and this table (ACCUPLACER/ASSET/COMPASS). A student will be placed in English F111X if the student's ACT writing test score is 7 or above, the ACT English score is 18 or above, or the ACT reading score is 22 or above (or the student's SAT writing score is 430 or above, the SAT critical reading score is 510 or above, or the score on another university-approved placement test is equivalent). However, if the student's standardized test scores are below these minimums and the high school cumulative GPA is 3.0 or higher, the student may enroll in English F111X with permission of the director of composition or community campus English/humanities faculty.

On the basis of test scores, students may be required to take developmental English and/or developmental studies courses. These courses help students gain competencies necessary for success in college-level courses. Students who earn a C or higher in DEVE F070, DEVE F109 or DEVS F104 place into English F111X automatically and do not have to re-test.


Mathematics course placement varies according to the type of degree the student is planning to pursue and the corresponding math course(s) needed. (See the degree program requirements for more detail.) ACT Plus Writing, SAT, ACCUPLACER, ASSET, or COMPASS test scores are used to determine math placement. Minimum test scores for placement into math and developmental math courses are listed in this table.

Foreign Language

Students may not register for foreign language classes higher than F101 unless they have received credit through CLEP, AP, transfer or another UAF-approved test for the prior levels. Students may enroll in the level of a language at which they are competent, based on prior experience.

Course Prerequisites

Course prerequisites indicate what previous preparation is needed to enroll in a course. An instructor has the right to drop any student from the course if he or she does not meet the prerequisite or has not received a grade of C (2.0) or better in all prerequisite courses.

Transferring Credits

Credit accepted at UAF that has been earned from other regionally accredited institutions, through military educational experiences or credit accepted by special approval is considered transfer credit. Where possible, transfer credit is equated with UAF courses. See a list of substitutions within the University of Alaska System and for substitutions from non-UA institutions. UAF is a member of the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges network. For additional information about the SOC program, contact the Office of Admissions and the Registrar.

UAF's transfer credit resource website at http://uaonline.alaska.edu shows most courses previously evaluated by UAF and is an unofficial reference for undergraduate students who are considering transferring to UAF. An official evaluation of transfer credits will be provided after formal application and admission to a degree program at UAF.

The following regulations apply to transfer of credit:

  1. Students are eligible for transfer of credit if they have been admitted to an undergraduate degree or certificate program.
  2. The applicability of transfer credit to a student's major and/or minor requirements is subject to approval by the major and/or minor department. Transfer students must fulfill the UAF graduation and residency requirements, including those specific to their programs.
  3. Undergraduate credits earned at the 100-level or above with a C- grade or higher at institutions accredited by one of the six regional accrediting agencies will be considered for transfer. Transfer credit is not granted for courses with doctrinal religious content or for graduate courses (for undergraduate programs).
  4. Transfer credit is awarded for courses in which the student received grades of C- or better. Instructor permission may be required for purposes of registration if the transfer credit courses have not satisfied the prerequisite requirements, or if the transferable grade is not equal to a C (2.0) or better (the minimum grade required for prerequisite courses).
  5. Any student who has completed a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution will be considered to have completed the equivalent of the baccalaureate core and the associate of arts core when officially accepted to a baccalaureate degree program or associate of arts program at UAF. These students will also be considered to have completed the equivalent of the communication, computation and human relations requirements for the associate of applied science and the certificate.
  6. Any student who has completed an associate of arts or an associate of science degree from a regionally accredited school satisfying one of the criteria below will be considered as having satisfied the 100- and 200-level UAF general education (core) requirements:
    1. The AA or AS degree is from the University of Alaska, or
    2. The public universities in the state in which the community college is located also waive their core requirements in recognition of completing an AA or AS degree, that is, have established a 2+2 program, or
    3. The community college and/or community college district is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (the agency that accredits UAF), or
    4. The associate program has been approved by the UAF Core Review Committee as satisfying the 100- and 200-level general education (core) requirements.
  7. Students who satisfy UAF core degree requirements by meeting criteria described in 5 or 6 above may still need prerequisite classes or instructor permission in order to register.
  8. Transfer credit is not included in computation of the UAF GPA, except to determine eligibility for graduation with honors.
  9. Class standing (e.g., freshman, sophomore, etc.) is based on the number of college credits accepted in transfer by UAF, combined with any courses completed in residence at UAF.
  10. Credits may be awarded for formal service schooling and military occupational specialties (MOS) based on recommendations in the "Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experience in the Armed Services," published by the American Council on Education. Credit completed through the Community College of the Air Force or Department of Defense courses is included in the category of military experience.
  11. A student will be awarded credit for currently valid government and professional certifications that have been reviewed and approved for designated course equivalencies at UAF. A list of these programs is available in the Office of Admissions and the Registrar.
  12. Credit may also be awarded for satisfactory completion of training programs, based on recommendations of the American Council on Education and the National Program on non-Collegiate Sponsored Instruction. The award of credit is subject to review and approval of appropriate UAF faculty.

Transferring Credits within the UA System

In general, undergraduate credits earned at the 100-level or above at a University of Alaska institution will transfer to UAF. In addition, in order to serve students who transfer among the three institutions that make up the University of Alaska system, UAF, UAA and UAS have identified fully transferable general education requirements for baccalaureate degrees.

Credit for course work successfully completed at one UA institution which applies to general education requirements will fulfill the same categories at all other UA institutions. This applies even if there is no directly matching course work at the institution to which the student transfers.

Transfer students from UAA or UAS who have completed all general education requirements in the baccalaureate program prior to transferring to UAF will have completed all requirements for the UAF baccalaureate core. Courses taken to complete the general education requirements at UAA or UAS will meet UAF baccalaureate core requirements according to the current UA table of substitutions. Students should notify the UAF Office of Admissions and the Registrar if they completed the general education requirements at UAA or UAS prior to enrollment in a major program of study at UAF.

Completion of the 35-credit lower-division requirements (100- and 200-level courses) of the UAF baccalaureate core meets the general education requirements at UAA and UAS.

For more information about transfer credit visit www.uaf.edu/admissions/undergrad/transfer/.

Alternate Ways to Earn Credit

UAF Advanced Placement Credit

Credit by Exam

There are several ways to earn college credit by receiving a passing score on an exam. For any of the following credit by exam options, grades are not computed in the UAF GPA. Credit by exam is not considered UAF residence credit and is not considered to be part of the semester course load for classification as a full-time student. Credit by exam is awarded to current or previously enrolled degree-seeking students at UAF. The credit by exam options are briefly outlined here. For more information contact the UAF Office of Testing Services, 211 Gruening, 907-474-5277, email uaf-testing-dept@alaska.edu, or www.uaf.edu/testing/.

Credit for Prior Learning

The Academic Advising Center administers the credit for prior learning program, wherein students may earn credit based on learning they have obtained outside the classroom. Students can document the university-level learning they have gained through employment, volunteer service or other life experiences with a portfolio or copies of licenses and certificates earned. Certificate, associate or bachelor's degree students may earn up to 25 percent of total program requirements through the credit for prior learning program.

Credentials for admitted degree students who are currently enrolled are reviewed by faculty from participating departments who determine if this process is appropriate and make recommendations for awarding prior learning credit. Review is based on equivalency to courses listed in this catalog. Credit received for prior learning does not affect your GPA and is not considered residence credit. The university will award transfer credit for specified national and state authorizations, certificates, credentials and/or examinations (see Transferring Credits) that do not need credit for prior learning review. For further information or assistance, contact the Academic Advising Center, 509 Gruening Building, 907-474-6396 or uaf.advising@alaska.edu. To access the credit for prior learning student handbook online, go to www.uaf.edu/advising/cpl/.


Students with appropriate background experience may address two components of the UAF Core Curriculum via competency testing. Credit by exam is not available.


E-Learning, administered by UAF eLearning and Distance Education, offers an alternative for people who seek a college education but cannot attend classes. The unique advantage of e-learning, also known as online learning, is its flexibility. Students select their own hours of study and work in surroundings they choose. E-learning offers the freedom to structure a personal academic schedule and continue educational progress, even when personal circumstances make it impossible to attend scheduled classes.

For UAF students, eLearning courses count as residence credit. When a student enrolls in an EDE course during the regular semester enrollment period and completes the course during the same semester, the course may be used to determine full-time/part-time status and eligibility for financial aid and scholastic action. The grade will average in your semester and cumulative GPAs.

When students enroll in an eLearning course at other times of the year, the credit and grade will not affect the credit load or semester GPA for any other semester enrollments but will be counted in cumulative totals. It's important to realize that enrollment in these year-based courses does not count toward the current semester's credit load, and therefore is not included in determining full-time or part-time student status. The student's status (full- or part-time) can affect things like financial aid or athletics eligibility.

eLearning and Distance Education maintains a comprehensive website at http://distance.alaska.edu where policies regarding enrollment, transfer, withdrawal, fees, materials and course descriptions may be found. A printed listing of courses and EDE policies may also be requested. For more information contact eLearning and Distance Education at 2175 University Avenue South in Fairbanks, phone: 800-277-8060 or 907-479-3444, fax: 907-479-3443, email: distance@uaf.edu or online at http://distance.alaska.edu.

The University of Alaska provides many possibilities for students to take distance-delivered courses. The campuses at Anchorage, Fairbanks and Juneau, along with their community college networks, offer hundreds of courses using a variety of delivery modes. Opportunities for students who prefer distance-delivered courses can be found at the University of Alaska Distance Learning website at http://distance.alaska.edu.

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Last modified August 8, 2017 by University Relations web developer.