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Frequent Transfer Questions

Common Questions about the Transfer Application Process

Q. What test scores do I need to submit to complete a transfer application?

A. Scores from standardized tests are required as part of the transfer admissions process. We require official scores from either the SAT I (Reasoning Test) or the ACT exam from ALL transfer applicants, regardless of the number of credits transferring or length of time since high school. We will accept either the old or new version of these tests (with or without writing components). International applicants who have studied in the United States (or in a setting where the language of instruction was not English) for fewer than five years are also required to submit an official TOEFL or IELTS exam score.

Q. Why do I need to submit copies of course descriptions?

A. If you are offered admission to the College, we will provide you with a tentative evaluation of transfer credit at the time we notify you of our decision. In order to evaluate any course work that you completed, or that is currently in progress, we will need to review official course descriptions from the college or university catalog. Therefore, we request official course descriptions for all college coursework at the time of application. Final credit evaluations and determination of General Education or Major Requirement exemptions will be completed once the final transcript is received and course descriptions may be reviewed by appropriate faculty members and the Office of the Registrar.

Q. Does Barnard consider financial need in the evaluation of transfer applicants?

A. When considering transfer students who are US Citizens or Permanent Residents, Barnard has limited funding available and we consider financial need when reviewing admissions applications. Fall transfers are reviewed with an awareness that need may be a factor in a student’s ability to attend and are eligible for both Barnard College grant aid and for federal and state aid. Barnard does not offer institutional financial aid to spring transfer students. Federal student loans and state aid are still available to students who qualify for them, but students who require additional aid to attend Barnard are encouraged to apply for admission for the fall term instead. Barnard is unable to assist international transfer students. Barnard's transfer application process is need-aware, which means that a student's level of financial need will be a factor in her admissions decision. 

For all students, Barnard remains committed to meeting full demonstrated need in our financial aid packaging.

Q. I applied to Barnard as a first-year applicant and I am applying again as a transfer applicant. Do I need to submit an entirely new application? 

A. If you decide to seek application again to the College, you will need to submit an entirely new application. However, we will have access to your prior application materials. Therefore, if you submitted official standardized test scores when you first applied, and you have not taken the exam since, we would still have this information on file. Letters of recommendation and supplemental materials would still be on file. We would not have your final high school transcript if you applied during your senior year, so this must be requested from your high school.  Current and past college transcripts must be requested. And, remember, we also have your old essays, so this is a chance to inspire us with the new perspective you have gained as a wise transfer student.

Q. I will be applying to Barnard more than once as a transfer applicant. Do I need to submit an entirely new application?
Yes. As with the first-year application, we will have access to your previous application(s). However, all dated material (transcript, Registrar Report, Academic Evaluator Report, etc.) must be re-submitted to reflect the most up-to-date information. We will use previously submitted standardized testing and final high school transcripts that have been sent to us for previous applications.

Q. I will be applying to Barnard twice within the same year (for spring entrance and fall entrance). How do I submit a second application within the same academic year?

Please contact transfer@barnard.edu at the time of your second application with your full name and inquiry. Since students are unable to submit more than one application through Common Application within the same academic year, you must notify us of your decision to reapply. Please take note of the aforementioned information regarding reapplication as a transfer student and updating all dated material.

Q. I have been out of school for a number of years. Do I still need to submit a Registrar Report or Academic Evaluator Report? 

A. Yes. Individuals applying to Barnard as transfer students are required to submit two letters of recommendation: 1) a college-level faculty recommendation* from a faculty member who has taught you in an academic setting and 2) a registrar report or current/most recent academic dean or adviser. It is not uncommon for the Registrar to submit this information without a detailed evaluation letter. This is acceptable and will fulfill this application requirement. The purpose of this form is to obtain information about your overall academic record/standing at the time of enrollment.

Unfortunately, letters of recommendation from employers and high school teachers cannot be submitted in lieu of these requirements. If you feel these recommendations would be helpful as an additional reference for you, we will accept employer or teacher recommendation as a supplement to those required.

*We recognize that transfer students come to Barnard College from a wide range of colleges and universities. Therefore, students who have the most personal contact with Teaching Assistants may find it more appropriate to ask a TA for a letter of recommendation.

Q. Can I schedule an interview?

A. Interviews are not part of the transfer application process. We invite you to convey to us within the context of the short answer questions or the lengthier application essay any information that you feel we should be aware of in evaluating your candidacy. If you have further questions contact the Office of Admissions at transfer@barnard.edu.

Residency Requirement and Study Abroad

To receive the Bachelor of Arts degree at Barnard, a transfer student must attend Barnard for at least four regular academic terms at Barnard (Morningside Heights, Reid Hall, Kyoto, Beijing, or the Berlin Consortium) during which she must complete at least 60 points, including at least six courses in the major field (and three in the minor field, if a minor is declared). Typically, students who transfer in with sophomore (24-51 points) class status can consider studying abroad. In careful consultation with one's academic adviser, a student can explore the implications for studying abroad while keeping in mind the residency and point requirements at the College.

Transferable Course Credit

Courses completed at other accredited colleges and universities which are similar in content and depth to Barnard courses may be submitted for transfer credit. Credit for approved work at another institution is applied to Barnard's 122-point graduation requirement with a maximum of 16 points per term. Credit cannot be granted for courses with grades lower than C minus. Acceptable transfer work does not usually include applied or professional courses or more than the equivalent of two Barnard studio courses. The first term of an elementary language course is not normally credited unless or until the second term or a more advanced course has been satisfactorily completed, but a student may request a single exemption to this ruling.

Pre-evaluations of transfer credit are not conducted by the College.  However, admitted transfer students will receive a transfer credit evaluation with their letter of admission indicating transferable credits and satisfied 9 Ways of Knowing requirements. At this time, we do not grant transfer credit for distance learning courses. Students are advised to compare and contrast the course descriptions at their institution(s) against Barnard's online course catalogue to gain a sense of possible credit transfer outcomes. Generally, if courses taken at another institution are in alignment with courses offered at Barnard, credit is likely to be awarded but not guaranteed. Barnard College reserves the right to accept or decline transfer of credits based on its specific academic expectations.

AP or IB credits will not be considered as part of the minimum 24-credit requirement. Students may request credit for qualifying scores upon enrollment at the College.