Transferring? Here’s what you should do right now

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Stressed about transferring? Here’s what you should be doing now.

Willow Ornellas, Staff Writer

By Willow Ornellas

Santa Rosa Junior College’s Transfer Center hosted its annual transfer workshop Nov. 4, where Daisy Cardenas, Candy Owens and Tony Vasquez offered two hour’s worth of information to help demystify the transfer process. Here’s what you need to know to meet the fast-approaching transfer application requirements, whether you’re applying to transfer now or next year

If you’re applying to a UC 

 The University of California System application window for the Fall 2021 semester opens Aug. 1 and closes Nov. 30 every year.  

The application window for transferring into another school for their winter quarter or spring semester opens on July 1 and closes on July 31 every year.

Prior to applying, make sure you set up a Transfer Admission Planner, or TAP, account to save you time during applications. Start a TAP account as soon as you know you are going to transfer from a JC to a UC, even if you are still enrolled in high-school. 

For more information on TAP accounts, including how to start one, click here.

It is crucial you report on your application all the college-level courses you’ve ever taken; this includes classes taken abroad and those courses that aren’t transferable. 

Excluding any courses you’ve taken can make your application appear dishonest.

Make sure you enter all the activities you have participated in while in college; this includes paid or unpaid work, volunteerism, clubs, hobbies, projects completed and awards earned. 

The UC application also requires you respond to four short personal insight questions with no more than 350 words per response. Your responses to these personal insight questions show the schools a bit more about yourself and prove your writing skill. One question is mandatory, the other three questions are on topics you get to choose based on a list of eight options. Advisers encourage applicants to be reflective in their responses. 

You can start reviewing your personal Insight questions and begin drafting responses months prior to your application deadlines so that when the time comes and you are in the midst of a busy semester, your personal insight response essays are already prepared. This ensures you don’t rush your work. 

If your planned major is especially selective, as in there are more people applying than there is  space and you know you don’t meet the requirements, don’t put your time or money into applying. 

To avoid not meeting the requirements, meet with a counselor at least once a semester during your time at the JC to ensure you are still on track to transfer and are meeting all the requirements. It is also important to meet with a counselor if you have taken two courses that may be considered too similar to one another for both classes to be applicable to transfer so that all the courses you’re taking are valid for transfer. 

If you are applying to UC Berkeley’s College of Letters and Science, make sure you complete your Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) by the end of spring before you transfer. This date is not flexible. 

To apply to a CSU

The application window for Fall 2021 enrollment at CSU schools opens Oct. 1 and closes Dec. 4, thanks to a four-day extension due to Covid-19.

The Spring 2021 transfer application window is open from Aug. 1 to Aug. 31. 

Apply to CSUs via this website: https://www2.calstate.edu/apply.

Prior to applying, check if your major is considered impacted. An impacted major is a major more eligible people apply for than the campus can accommodate. If your major is impacted, make sure you meet all the requirements necessary. 

When applying to CSUs, make sure you report all the courses you’ve ever taken and the grades you received so when schools cross reference your application with your official transcript, there won’t be any inconsistencies.

To apply to private or out-of-state schools

Guidelines and requirements for private and out-of-state schools vary by campus. Out-of-state schools may have later dates than the CSU or UC’s application deadlines, and several extend into January or later. Make sure you check the application deadlines of the school you are applying to well in advance to be prepared. 

Confirm with the school that you have met all of their admission requirements, such as having enough units and finishing the required General Education preparation.

Students can apply to some out-of-state and private institutions through the Common App.

The Common App is similar to other applications in that it collects in one place your transcript and the activities in which you participated, as well as an essay and short-answer responses, letters of recommendation, and your ACT and SAT scores. The Common Application requests your ACT and SAT scores even for transfer. It is important to verify each college or university’s application requirements because they vary from school to school.

It is also imperative you remember not to be deterred by price when applying to out-of-state schools. Price can sometimes be flexible and financial aid may be available. 

More information about the Common App can be found on the SRJC transfer website.

An easy way to stay on track while at the JC prior to transferring is by following the UC transfer requirements. The bar for UC transfer requirements has been set so high that they are accepted around the world.

Also, follow the IGETC requirements if you are ever in doubt of attending an out of state or private school. IGETC requirements are accepted universally, similar to the UC requirements, so you can get into schools other than the one you are applying to.

Additional Information 

Use assist.org to keep track of transfer requirements and whether you are meeting them.  assist.org will also keep you informed of the impacted major requirements.

Before you apply, make sure you have access to all college transcripts, including AP, IB, SAT and ACT scores.

Most UC and CSU schools accept up to 70 transferable units; however, UC Davis accepts up to 80. Each school has different rules on how many transfer units it accepts.

If there’s a course you need to complete in order to transfer, but the JC doesn’t offer it, you can likely take the course after transferring at your college. Due to COVID, most schools have been reasonable about not requiring students to go somewhere else to take courses, but you still need 60 units to transfer. Check with your counselor prior to doing this.

When applying to transfer to universities, enter all ‘W’s’ you received during your time at the JC. Entering a ‘W’ will not impact your chances of admission however the exclusion of it will make your application appear dishonest. 

If you repeated a class for which you previously had received a D or an F but later passed with a better grade — or took a similar class and passed with a better grade — then you can apply for Academic Renewal. After receiving an academic renewal, you can enter an AR on your transcript for your UC or CSU application instead of the D or F. 

Academic Renewal can only take place so long as two years have passed since the D or F was received, you are currently in good academic standing with the JC and you took or are taking a similar course you passed or are passing.

After applying for Academic Renewal, the turnaround time to see your improved GPA is one to five days.

Apply for academic renewal here.

After Applying:

Once your applications are complete, start organizing housing options as early as January for the fall semester. By February before transferring, apply for your Associate in Arts for Transfer (AA-T) or Associate in Science for Transfer (AS-T) through your SRJC student portal.

Submit your SRJC Foundation Scholarship by March 1 and the financial aid application by March 2.

By May, accept or deny your admission offers, pay your tuition deposit, secure your housing arrangements and sign up for your new school’s orientation.