General Catalog

Transfer student admission

A transfer student has attended a college or university after high school graduation (summer excluded) but has not yet earned a baccalaureate degree (Students who have already earned a baccalaureate degree should apply as a post-baccalaureate student).

Admission requirements

  1. Minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA in all attempted college transfer course work/ secondary-level course work
  2. Core Subject Requirements or College Academic Distribution Requirements (CADRs)
  3. Proof of English language proficiency (if required; see the section English Language Proficiency Requirement for more information)

Note: Students applying directly to majors must complete additional requirements to be considered for admission. Further details about undergraduate transfer students applications on the Admissions pages

Application checklist

  1. Completed application, including required writing  section(s)
  2. Non-refundable application fee ($60 domestic students, $75 international students)
  3. Official transcript(s) from all colleges/universities attended
  4. Official high school transcript(s) (if applicable)
  5. Official SAT or ACT scores (for students with fewer than 40 transferable credits)

CADRs & core subject requirements

Students with fewer than 40 transfer credits must complete a minimum level of preparation in six College Academic Distribution Requirements (CADRs) subject areas through high school or college course work prior to entering the University. 

Students with more than 40 transfer credits must complete minimum University core subject requirements. An academic associate degree does not automatically satisfy the core subject requirements.

In general, five quarter credits (or three semester credits) in a college-level course equal one year of high school study. If only a portion of the CADR or University core requirement was completed via high school course work, the balance of the requirement must be completed via college course work. A college course may be used to satisfy both an admission requirement and a UW Bothell graduation requirement

All transfer students must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 to be considered.

University core subject requirements 

(Required for students with more than 40 transfer credits)


If completed in high school

If completed in college


3 years including completion of
Algebra II

Completion of Intermediate Algebra with minimum GPA of 2.0

World Languages

2 years of the same language

10 credits of the same language or
completion of 102 level

College Academic Distribution Requirements (CADRs)

See the College Academic Distribution Requirements [CADRs] section in this catalog for more detailed information on these requirements.

Grading restrictions

In general, a student must earn a passing* grade as defined by the issuing school’s grading scale to satisfy a College Academic Distribution Requirement (CADR). A grade of 'Pass' in a course taken on a 'Pass/Not Pass' basis is acceptable; however, students completing CADR through college course work are strongly encouraged to choose a letter or numerical grade, because they may later want to apply the course(s) towards major and/or University graduation requirements, for which grading restrictions pertain.

*While a passing grade is the absolute minimum grade required for a CADR to be satisfied, this does not reflect the grades required of a competitive applicant to UW Bothell.

Applicability of transfer credit to degree requirements

The Office of Admissions has the authority to make decisions on transfer of credit to the University and the application of transfer credits to fulfill University core subject, general education and proficiency requirements. Academic program offices have the authority to determine application of transfer credits to fulfill major requirements. During the first quarter of enrollment, a student should meet with an academic advisor to plan a program of study and learn how their transfer credits will apply towards degree requirements.

Academic credit

In general, it is University policy to accept credits earned at regionally accredited institutions, provided that such credits have been earned through college-level courses (see notable resitrictions on transfer credits below). 

For courses taken at a Washington community college, UW Bothell follows the listing of transferable courses published in the University of Washington Equivalency Guide

A maximum of 90 credits from lower-division course work (100 and 200 level courses) may be applied toward the credits required for the baccalaureate degree. Students can petition their program to transfer additional credits beyond 90 lower-division credits to apply toward their major. No more than 135 transfer credits (lower or upper division) may be accepted to count toward a baccalaureate degree.

Notable guidelines on transfer credit

College in the high school

Additional credit restrictions may apply when students enrolled in high school have been awarded college-level credit by a college or university other than the University of Washington, and the course work was completed on the high school campus rather than the college campus.

Extension credit from other schools

No more than 45 credits earned as extension credit from other schools may be applied toward a UW Bothell degree. Military credit, discussed below, is included in the 45 extension credit limit.

Guidance/personal development

A maximum of 3 credits is awarded for courses in this area as part of the 15 credits allowed for vocational/technical courses (see below).

Military credit

Credits earned in Armed Forces Training Schools [AFTS] and through USAFI and DANTES may not exceed 30 credits and are included in the 45 extension credit limit. Official transcripts or DD-214 or DD-295 forms must be submitted, and credit will not be awarded until after the student has enrolled. Scores received in such course work are not included in the transfer GPA. No credit is awarded for Military Occupational Specialty [MOS] programs. Regionally accredited military schools are evaluated under the same guidelines as all other regionally accredited two- and four- year schools.

Native language

First-year (elementary) or second-year (intermediate) world language credit is not granted either by examination or by course completion in a student's native language. "Native language" is defined as the language spoken in the student's home during the first six years of his or her life and in which he or she received instruction through the seventh grade.

Parallel / overlapping content

If a department considers two of its courses to have overlapping content, credit will be awarded for only one. For example, credit is granted for either CHEM 120 or CHEM 142, not both. Other departments in which such overlapping courses occur include Astronomy, Computer Science, Economics, Genetics, Geological Sciences, Linguistics, Physics, Psychology, and Statistics.

Out-of-sequence courses

Credit is not awarded for prerequisite courses in mathematics or world languages completed after a more advanced-level course has been completed. For example, students will not be awarded credit for Spanish 102 if it was taken after Spanish 103.

Physical education

No more than 3 quarter credits will be allowed for physical education activity courses.

Repeated courses

The transfer GPA is calculated using the repeat policy of the home institution.  In the case that a student takes a course at one college, and then repeats it at another college, and then transfers to UW Bothell, the most recent grade will be included in the transfer GPA calculation.

ROTC credit

Credits earned in first- and second-year military training courses may not be counted in the basic 180 credits that are required for graduation. Some third- and fourth-year courses may count, depending on the institution the student attended previously.

Senior residency requirement

The University generally requires that at least the last 45 of final 60 credits of a baccalaureate degree be completed in residence at UW Bothell.

Vocational/technical credits

A maximum of 15 vocational/technical quarter credits (or 10 semester credits) may be awarded. Courses in this category are those which would ordinarily provide specialized training for an occupation (e.g., allied health, bookkeeping, electronics, or physical therapy assistant). When allowed, these credits will apply only toward the elective credit component of a baccalaureate degree at UW Bothell. Such courses are not included in the transfer GPA.

World language courses

Students who have completed two or more years of a world language in high school receive no college credit for an entry-level course (e.g., FRENCH 101) in the same language when that course is completed after matriculation at the University. Transfer students who complete such a course before matriculation at UW Bothell are eligible to receive transfer credit.

Courses receiving no credit

The University reserves the right to deny credit for courses that are not compatible with those offered in its baccalaureate degree programs. Some general categories of courses never receive transfer credit. Examples include:

  • Courses below college level (numbered below 100 or development classes, e.g. English 100) 
  • Repeated courses or courses with duplicate subject content will only receive credit once
  • Courses that provide instruction in a particular religious doctrine
  • Math courses below college level (e.g. basic math, elementary and intermediate algebra)
  • Courses offered for non-credit continuing education units
  • Remedial English (e.g., reading, vocabulary development, grammar, speed reading, or any courses that are preparatory to an institution's First Year Composition course)
  • Courses providing instruction in English as a Second Language (100-level or above) or English courses taken at an institution where English is not the primary language of instruction
  • Remedial courses in any academic discipline (100-level and above)
  • Lower division military science courses
  • Non-academic/vocational-technical courses beyond the 15 credit limit
  • Examinations offered by the College-Level Examination Program [CLEP]
  • Courses taken at unaccredited institutions or at any institution that did not hold at least candidacy status with its regional accrediting association when the course work was taken