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Archive for Sunday, February 12, 2012

Regents work to give proper credit

In this 2010 file photo, students walk on Kansas University's campus. Universities in Kansas are now taking measures to make it easier to transfer from a community college.

In this 2010 file photo, students walk on Kansas University's campus. Universities in Kansas are now taking measures to make it easier to transfer from a community college.

February 12, 2012

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Meg Fowler said finding out how her class credits transfer from Johnson County Community College isn’t easy.

The Kansas Board of Regents has been leading an effort among Kansas’ 19 community colleges and six state universities to come up with a set of courses that will transfer as general education credit to any other state school.

“That would be awesome,” Fowler said.

The student from Bonner Springs has about 25 credit hours now, and she said it takes a visit to the counselor’s office each semester to ensure she’s still on track.

Because Fowler knows what she wants to do — occupational therapy — and where she wants to transfer when she’s done at JCCC — Kansas University — she’s able to make better decisions.

A counselor can point her to courses that will help her at KU, specifically, and ones that for certain will transfer.

But Jeff Anderson, a counselor at JCCC, knows it’s a little more difficult to help the majority of students who are still undecided.

He shows them a white piece of paper that helps get them on the path toward an associate’s degree. He can point out some classes that he knows will likely transfer better as a general education requirement, encouraging students to maybe consider biology with a lab, say, over a zoology course. But there are no guarantees.

“I’m just glad we’re talking about this,” Anderson said. “I’ve been here 23 years, and this issue has been off the radar screen for forever, it seems like.”

This isn’t exactly groundbreaking territory nationally, said Sara Rosen, KU’s senior vice provost for academic affairs.

“We’re not the first to do this,” she said.

Rosen is serving on a task force for the Board of Regents that’s looking at this issue.

The task force has identified 55 hours worth of courses that would transfer freely among the colleges and universities and will next focus on the outcomes associated with each course to ensure the quality of education.

Rosen said transfer students can encounter a wide variety of hurdles.

“When a student transfers, what we’re finding is that they have a tendency not to just bring in credit from one institution but from two or three or four,” she said.

Matt Melvin, KU’s associate vice provost for recruitment and enrollment, called that a student who’s “swirling.”

The push from the regents has helped get the issue in focus for four-year schools, but places like KU are already looking to attract more transfer students as high school enrollments dip, creating a smaller pool of freshmen from which to draw.

“Absolutely,” KU is taking a closer look at how to attract more transfer students, Melvin said, especially as community colleges churn out more and more students looking to obtain a four-year degree.

“Economically, students and their parents are having an increasingly difficult time paying for college,” Melvin said.

Comments

SWJayhawk13 2 years, 10 months ago

Unless I am completely misunderstanding this, it is INCREDIBLY easy to see how a course will transfer between KU and basically any other school. KU has a Transfer Equivalency tool on their website. It shows you how your class will transfer from another school into KU (or out of). That being said, maybe I'm completely missing the point (it's been a long day).

Still, it would be nice to have a set of gen ed classes that would transfer freely between some of the area schools, because I know some of them get very screwy when you try to transfer them, especially classes like Western Civ (they can either transfer as HWC or history, which is a real pain).

George_Braziller 2 years, 10 months ago

I transferred to KU from a Junior College and my adviser at KU was mediocre at best. I only met with him four times in three years. A month into my final semester he contacted me because I was 1/2 credit short of graduating so I did a three month internship to cover that.

On the flip side, he did miss that I had never taken a math class. I took a bone head algebra class at JuCo but dropped it. Never took another one to make it up and I wasn't going to point it out.

I'm probably the only KU grad without a single math credit.

Derek Broksieck 2 years, 10 months ago

There is a tool on KU's website that has a list of every CC in Kansas and the classes that transfer and what they transfer over as. Students are getting dumber and dumber.

trishlovesdolphins 2 years, 10 months ago

Easiest thing to do is to follow through with your Associate's at your junior college. Once you have that, KU accepts it at its value. That's how I transferred all of mine.

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