Half of Massachusetts students who transfer from a community college to a state university or UMass campus have not completed their associate degree— even though many have earned it.
Completing an associate degree before you transfer to a four-year institution is a smart choice. In addition to saving money, research shows that students who transfer with an associate degree are more likely to succeed in completing a bachelor's degree. But it's not a one-size-fits-all approach; we know there are many factors influencing students’ decisions on whether or when to transfer. Through Reverse Transfer, students who made progress toward an associate degree prior to transferring may apply credit earned at a four-year institution back to their community college to complete the associate degree requirements.
Why Reverse Transfer?
Gain credentials. Completion of your associate degree provides you with an additional credential to include on your résumé. The degree enhances your opportunities for employment, certifications, promotions and pay increases.
Get credit for your work. Completion of your associate degree ensures that you receive a college degree documenting the work you have completed thus far, especially if your pursuit of your bachelor’s degree is interrupted.
Increase your earning power. Students who earn an associate degree in Massachusetts earn an estimated net income of over $250,000 more (averaging more than $6,000 a year) from 40 years of employment compared with students who earn only a high school diploma.
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State universities and UMass campuses waive transcript fees and community colleges waive graduation fees for Reverse Transfer students, so you can receive your associate degree without any additional time or expense
- You must have matriculated into an associate degree program at a Massachusetts community college.
- You must have earned at least 30 college-level credits at your former community college before matriculating at your current Massachusetts state university or UMass campus.
- You must have earned a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.00 at your former community college.
- You must not have earned your associate degree before matriculating at your current state university or UMass campus.
- You must be in good financial standing at both your former community college and your current state university or UMass campus.
- You must earn grades on courses taken at your current state university or UMass campus sufficient to meet your former community college’s transfer credit minimum grade requirement.
- You must complete the associate degree requirements of the program in progress at the time you transferred to your current state university or UMass campus or a Liberal Arts/General Studies program.