Undergraduate Course Placement and Transfer Credits

Course Placement

Mandatory Placement

Students who do not meet basic skills standards in reading, writing and mathematics must complete appropriate Developmental Education courses. Such students may not enroll in 100-level or above courses that depend on these skills until they have satisfactorily met the exit criteria of the appropriate Developmental Education course(s).

Students without appropriate standardized test scores (such as ACT, SAT, ASSET or ACCUPLACER), advanced placement credits, transfer credits or prerequisite coursework must have UAF-approved placement test scores prior to registering for classes their first semester at UAF. Students may not enroll in classes unless they meet the placement requirements. Placement into appropriate developmental or core classes must be done with the help of an academic advisor. Placement tests are available at every UAF rural campus as well as Testing Services, Academic Advising Center, Rural Student Services, Center for Distance Education and Northern Military Programs at Fort Wainwright, Eielson Air Force Base and Delta Career Advancement Center.

Students who enroll in a course without meeting the requirements will be withdrawn from the course through the faculty-initiated withdrawal process. Prerequisite courses and/or placement exams must be taken within one calendar year prior to the commencement of the course. Students may not enroll in Perspectives on the Human Condition courses unless they meet the placement requirements for English F111X (including reading). Students may not enroll in Core science classes unless they have placement at DEVM F105 or above and placement into English F111X.

English and Mathematics

On the basis of test scores, you may be required to take developmental English and/or mathematics. These courses are designed to help you achieve competencies necessary to succeed in college-level courses. You will be placed in English F111X if your ACT English score is 18 or above (or your SAT verbal score is 430 or above, or your score on another university-approved placement test is equivalent). However, if your standardized test scores are below these minimums and if your high school cumulative GPA is 3.0 or higher, you may enroll in English F111X with permission of the director of composition or rural campus English/humanities faculty. Students enrolling in developmental English or English courses at rural campuses are required to complete a UAF-approved writing sample for placement as well as the ACT, SAT, ACCUPLACER or ASSET.

Mathematics course placement will vary according to the type of degree you are planning to pursue and the corresponding math course(s) needed (see the requirements for your degree program for more detail). ACT, SAT, ASSET or ACCUPLACER test scores are used to determine your math placement.

Minimum test scores for placement into math courses are listed in this table and English courses in this table.

It is best to consult with your academic advisor or faculty in the English or math department(s) if you have questions regarding appropriate course placement.

Foreign Language

You may enroll in the level of a language at which you are competent, based on your prior experience. You may not register for a class higher than 101 unless you have received credit through CLEP, AP, transfer or another UAF-approved language test for the prior levels.

Course Prerequisites

Course prerequisites tell you what previous preparation you need 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. UAF is a member of the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) network. For additional information about the SOC program, contact the Office of Admissions.

UAF's transfer credit resource website at http://uaonline.alaska.edu is an unofficial reference for undergraduate students considering transferring to UAF. An official evaluation of transfer credits can only be obtained after you have formally applied and been admitted to degree-seeking status with UAF. In the meantime, however, the transfer credit resource website is a useful tool to help you anticipate how the course credits you bring with you may equate with specific course offerings at UAF.

The following regulations apply to transfer of credit:

  1. You are eligible for transfer of credit if you are a degree or certificate candidate.
  2. The applicability of transfer credit to your major and/or minor requirements must be approved by your major and/or minor department. As a transfer student, you must fulfill the UAF graduation and residency requirements, including those required for a particular program.
  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 normally isn't granted for courses with doctrinal religious content or for graduate courses (for undergraduate programs).
  4. Transfer credit is awarded to students who have achieved a grade of C- or better. However, if you have not met the prerequisites or have not received a grade of C (2.0) or better, you may need instructor permission to register for courses requesting prerequisite credits.
  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. Transfer credit is not included in computing your UAF GPA.
  7. Your class standing (e.g., freshman, sophomore, etc.) is based on the number of previous college credits accepted by UAF.
  8. 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.
  9. You 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.
  10. 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 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.

Category Credit Hours

Written communication skills


Oral communication skills


Humanities/social sciences/fine arts


Quantitative skills/natural sciences




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

If you are a transfer student from either UAA or UAS who has completed all general education requirements in the baccalaureate program prior to transferring to UAF, you will have completed all requirements for the UAF baccalaureate core. If you haven't completed all general education requirements, courses taken to complete those requirements at UAA or UAS will meet UAF baccalaureate core requirements according to the current table of substitutions for intra-UA transfers. When you apply, notify the Office of Admissions that you have completed the general education requirements at UAA or UAS.

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

Find more information online at www.uaf.edu/admissions/undergrad/transfer/.

For information about transferring credit from non-University of Alaska institutions, please view the table of substitutions for non-University of Alaska institutions.

Alternate Ways to Earn Credit

UAF Advanced Placement Credit

Credit by Exam

There are several ways that you can 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 your GPA. Credit by exam is not considered UAF residence credit and is not considered as part of the semester course load for classification as a full-time student. You will only be awarded credit by exam if you're currently enrolled or if you were previously enrolled at UAF as a degree student. The credit by exam options are briefly outlined here. For more information contact the UAF Office of Testing Services, 211 Gruening, 907-474-5277, e-mail fytest@uaf.edu, or www.uaf.edu/testing/.

  1. If you've already earned (from any source) as many as 6 semester credits in the area of humanities, social sciences/history, natural sciences or college mathematics, no credit will be awarded for successfully completing the general exam in those subject areas in the CLEP exam list.
  2. You may not duplicate a course for which you've already been given credit or in which you're currently enrolled.
  3. If you have audited a course, you must wait at least one year after the end of that course before taking the CLEP exam for that course.
  4. The minimum passing score for approved CLEP exams is 50 with the exception of the following listed foreign languages scores: French semester I and II, minimum 50, semesters III and IV, minimum 59; German semester I minimum 39, semester II minimum 50, semester III minimum 55, semester IV minimum 60; Spanish semester I minimum 39, semester II minimum 50, semester III minimum 57, semester IV minimum 63.

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 advising@uaf.edu. To access the credit for prior learning student handbook online, go to www.uaf.edu/advising/cpl/.

Independent Learning

The Independent Learning Program, administered by the Center for Distance Education and Independent Learning, offers an alternative for people who seek a college education but cannot attend classes. The unique advantage of independent learning is its flexibility. You select your own hours of study and work at your own pace in surroundings you choose. Independent 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, UAF independent learning courses count as residence credit. When you enroll in an independent learning course during the regular semester enrollment period and complete 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 you enroll in an independent learning course at other times of the year, the credit and grade will not impact the credit load or semester GPA for any other semester enrollments but will be counted in your cumulative totals. It's important to realize that enrollment in these year-based courses does not count toward your current semester credit load, and therefore, is not included in determining your full-time or part-time student status. Your student status (full- or part-time) can affect things like financial aid or athletics eligibility.

The Center for Distance Education and Independent Learning maintains a comprehensive website where policies regarding enrollment, transfer, withdrawal, extension, fees, materials and course descriptions may be found. You may also request a printed listing of courses and CDE policies. Please contact the Center for Distance Education and Independent Learning at 2175 University Avenue South (Fairbanks), phone: 800-277-8060 or 907-479-3444, fax: 907-479-3443, e-mail: distance@uaf.edu or online at http://distance.uaf.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.