Transfers from Regionally Accredited Colleges and Universities

Students who have attended regionally accredited community colleges may transfer up to 90 semester hours of credit. There is no limit on the number of credits transferred from regionally accredited baccalaureate-granting colleges and universities. For admission purposes, NMU calculates the grade point average of transfer students on college-level courses only, using credits attempted and honor points earned. All acceptable courses completed with a grade of C- or better are entered on the student’s permanent record and may be applied toward graduation requirements. Transfer courses where a grade lower than a C- is earned will not be entered on the student’s NMU transcript, but will still fall under the course repeat policy and may result in loss of NMU credit. An academic department may require a specific grade for a particular course or a specific grade point average for a group of courses, which may include grades earned in transfer courses. These requirements supersede university requirements for transfer grades.

If a transfer course is equivalent to a Northern Michigan University course, a direct course equivalency will be granted even if the number of credits is different. If a transfer course has no direct equivalent, but could be taught by an NMU department, the course will be assigned departmental credit. The course may, at the department’s discretion, be used as a program elective. Transfer courses must be at least one half of the credit hours of their equivalent NMU course. If a course has no equivalent and no home department can be established, the course will be assigned general elective credit. The course can be used to meet the free or general electives available for most degrees. An attempt is made to designate courses with no NMU equivalents that can be used to meet the General Education program requirements.

Students who have taken CLEP, APP-CEEB, or International Baccalaureate exams should submit their scores. See the “Advance Placement Policy” in this section of the bulletin for additional information.

No transfer credit is granted for remedial courses or for courses from religious-affiliated colleges or universities that are doctrinal in nature. Transfer credit is not granted for departmental advance placement unless a grade is awarded and the course is included in semester earned hours.

If a student believes that his or her transfer credit evaluation does not accurately reflect the course work he or she has completed, a syllabus for the courses in question should be provided to the Registrar's Office for review.

Transfers from Non-Regionally Accredited Colleges

A student who has credit from a college or university not accredited by a regional accrediting body may, under certain circumstances, receive credit for all or a portion of his or her work. Departmental advance placement credit may be a possibility.

Transfers from International Institutions

All students who have taken college/university level coursework outside of the United States, with the exception of those educated in Canada, must submit their credentials to an acceptable external credit evaluator and have a course by course evaluation sent to NMU. External credit evaluators will be considered acceptable if they are recognized members of NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services). The university follows the recommendation of these agencies. NMU may request an evaluation of credentials of Canadian students from an outside agency on an individual basis.

Transfers from Military Service Schools

Northern Michigan University generally follows the guidelines of the American Council of Education in evaluating military credit. NMU does not grant HP activity credit for basic (recruit) training or for credit at the upper division level. Credits for military schools and courses from the Community College of the Air Force are assigned general elective credit. They can be used as general electives, but may meet major or minor requirements upon the recommendation of a departmental adviser.

Students who have completed basic training and have a recommendation on their military transcripts for physical well being, physical ­ fitness or other descriptions of material covered in NMU’s HP 200 Physical Well Being will receive transfer credit for that course.

Transfers Under the Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA)

Students who transfer to Northern Michigan University from a Michigan community college who have Michigan Transfer Agreement Satisfied posted on their transcript will be considered to have met the requirements of NMU’s General Education program. Students will still be expected to complete all other degree requirements, including graduation requirements (world cultures, mathematics competency, written competency and lab) and any courses listed as “Other Required Courses” that may also be General Education courses. Transfer students who do not complete the entire block of courses required by the MTA will receive credit for the courses they do complete on the basis of individual evaluation and established transfer equivalencies. 

Transfers Under the MACRAO Agreement

Students who transfer to Northern Michigan University from a Michigan community college who have the MACRAO stamp on their transcript have usually completed the first four divisions (or equivalent) of our liberal studies requirements which include foundations of communication (composition I and II), foundations of humanities, foundations of natural science and math, and foundations of social sciences. NMU employs a best fit approach to applying transfer credit which may, to the benefit of the student, apply credit to a requirement other than the four listed above.

NMU applies courses transferred under the MACRAO Agreement in accordance with guidelines established by its faculty. Courses used to satisfy the MACRAO Transfer Agreement will not apply toward NMU’s liberal studies programs if:

  • The grade earned in the course was less than a C-.
  • The course is not accepted for transfer credit by NMU. For example, mathematics courses below the level of college algebra are not accepted.

In the event that a student cannot transfer individual course(s) included in the MACRAO Agreement due to one of the reasons listed above, the student must complete a course at NMU that meets the specific divisional requirement.

The MACRAO Agreement is designed for freshman and sophomore requirements. It does not cover upper division requirements or graduation requirements not a part of the liberal studies requirements, although with careful selection of courses students may complete these requirements at the community college. NMU does not recognize the MACRAO Agreement if a student has attended a community college outside the state of Michigan, has attended a baccalaureate institution before or while attending a community college, or was originally matriculated at NMU and subsequently took courses at a community college. An exception to this policy is granted to transfer students from Bay De Noc Community College and Gogebic Community College who were dually enrolled at their community college and at NMU in approved consortium degree programs.

Articulation Agreements

Northern Michigan University is supportive of the establishment of articulation agreements with local and regional community and technical colleges. An articulation agreement is an officially approved agreement that designates coursework between two schools to meet degree requirements. They are intended to help provide a smooth transition for students transferring from a community college to Northern Michigan University. We currently have articulation agreements with Bay de Noc Community College, Fox Valley Technical College, Gogebic Community College, North Central Technical College, Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, Oakton Community College, with other agreements in the process of being developed.

Transfer Student Graduation Requirements

Transfer students must earn a minimum of eight credits in each major and a minimum of four credits in each minor. They need a minimum NMU cumulative GPA of 2.00 to be eligible for a degree. Additionally they must meet the minimum degree credit requirements and GPA established by their academic departments.

Students seeking a bachelor’s degree must earn 30 credits at Northern Michigan University. Associate degree, certificate and vocational diploma candidates must earn 16 credits at NMU.

Guest Student Applications and Transfer Credit Policies for NMU Students

NMU students who take classes at other institutions as guests must complete a guest student application, available in the Registrar's Office. For Michigan colleges and universities, this application is the only one necessary and the student does not need to submit a transcript to the guest college. Out-of-state colleges may have additional requirements. The Registrar’s Office assists students in completing the application and will review courses to ensure that they are transferable.

Note: Students who attend other institutions without completing a Guest Student Application assume the responsibility for course transfer. All students must request an official transcript of their courses from guest colleges and universities to be sent to the Registrar’s Office at NMU.