Credit from Regionally Accredited Institutions

Seattle Pacific University endorses the rights and responsibilities regarding transfer students as established by the Washington Student Achievement Council. Your credits earned in academic areas offered by Seattle Pacific University from a recognized, regionally accredited institution will usually be accepted without discount. Information about acceptance of credit from regionally unaccredited institutions or international institutions is found elsewhere in this catalog.

Your college courses will be evaluated for transfer on a course-by-course basis to determine the transferability of the courses and to ensure that courses transfer appropriately toward general education requirements and requirements in your intended program of study. 

With rare exception, students who enter with a Washington state DTA (Direct Transfer Agreement) associate degree, or approved comparable degree from Oregon or California, are awarded 90 credits and junior class standing at entrance. These students enter SPU with all general education requirements complete except 10 credits of University Foundations (UFDN) coursework.

SPU’s Transfer Course Equivalency Guide may be helpful to you as you plan courses prior to transfer or if you would like to see how courses you have already taken will transfer. If a class is not listed in the transfer equivalency guide for your institution, this does not necessarily mean that the course will not transfer. It may indicate that we have never had a student present the particular course for transfer before.

For more information about a class not listed in the equivalency guide, contact your undergraduate admissions counselor if you have not yet been admitted to SPU. If you have been admitted, you may contact your undergraduate academic counselor for more information.

As a transfer student or first-year student applying for admission to Seattle Pacific University, you must meet the following conditions, regardless of your previous institution, and be aware of the following policies:

  • You must present a separate, official transcript from each institution of higher learning at which you completed college-level coursework.
    • Failure to disclose previous coursework taken at a regionally accredited institution is a serious offense.
  • You must be in good standing at all prior institutions attended.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure that your final, official transcripts reflecting all coursework and degrees completed after your admission to SPU are received by Undergraduate Admissions by the 10th day of your first quarter at SPU.
    • The absence of final coursework will affect your class standing, eligibility for financial aid, and progress toward degree completion.
  • If you are a transfer student who has successfully completed 45 college-level quarter credits or 30 college-level semester credits from an accredited institution at the time of your application, you are not required to take the American College Test (ACT) or the College Board Scholastic Achievement Test (SAT-I).
  • The grade point average for your combined courses transferred from each school must be “C” (2.0) or higher. This means that for every grade of “D” (1.0) accepted from an institution, there must be another grade of at least “B” (3.0) or its equivalent for an equal number of credits from that school.
  • No grade below “D” (1.0) will be accepted from any regionally-accredited institution.
  • No grade below “C” (2.0) will be accepted from schools outside the U.S., ABHE-accredited institutions that are not regionally accredited, nor any other institution that does not hold regional accreditation.
  • Only courses taken for a regular grade (not “pass/fail” or “credit/no credit,” etc.) will be applied toward requirements in General Education, the Common Curriculum and Exploratory Curriculum, and toward your major and minor. 
  • The minimum grade that can be applied toward a major or minor is C- (1.7).  Some majors may require a higher grade in some or all classes.
  • Transfer associate degrees earned after matriculation at SPU will not be recognized toward fulfillment of the Exploratory Curriculum, University Core requirements, General Education, or the foreign language proficiency requirement, unless you are participating in the Reverse Transfer Agreement.
  • A combined total of not more than 90 quarter credits will be accepted from all two-year colleges, approved test programs (such as AP, Cambridge International Program, CLEP, and IB), and unaccredited schools.
    • Existing Washington, Oregon, and California community college associate degree transfer agreements will be honored as they apply to General Education requirements.
  • In transfer, a course retains the same level assigned by the school that awarded credit.
    • This means that a lower-division (LD) course, typically numbered 100–299 or 1000–2999, will transfer as a lower-division course, even if the course, in content, is considered equivalent to an upper-division (UD) course at SPU, numbered 3000–4999.
  • No more than 45 quarter credits will be accepted from approved testing programs (such as AP, Cambridge International, CLEP, and IB).
  • Usually credit will be awarded without regard to the date at which the course was completed.
    • In some degree programs, especially in scientific and professional subjects, you may be required to repeat a course in order to acquire current knowledge or to refresh your knowledge.
    • You will not be awarded credit twice for the same course material.
    • Credits in excess of 20 quarter credits in any one term will not be transferred. This includes courses taken concurrently by media, correspondence, or extension at more than one institution, as well as non-credit courses. 
    • To be eligible for a degree, you are required to earn a minimum of 45 credits in residence at SPU, including no fewer than 15 upper-division credits in your major (more, if specified by the major), and at least 5 credits that fulfill SPU Foundations requirements. See individual majors for additional degree requirements. 
    • Independent study, internship, field experience, and practicum courses generally do not transfer unless an SPU faculty member, upon reviewing a course, requests that it transfer toward a specific program.
    • Credits will not be transferred for experiential learning or work experience.
    • Questions about how courses have transferred to SPU (or not transferred) should be directed to your undergraduate academic counselor.
    • See also Transfer Student and SPU Rights and Responsibilities.

Undergraduate admissions, students talking on campus

Undergraduate Admissions

Do you have questions about admission to SPU? Do you want to visit campus? Contact Undergraduate Admissions at 800-366-3344 or