Posted on March 24th in News

Asking the Right Questions for Transfer Success

By Michael Rodriguez, Division II Vice President

Recently, 23 Phi Theta Kappa members participated in an interactive transfer success workshop at the Florida Regional Conference. While members were informed of PTK Transfer Edge, participants also had the opportunity to brainstorm enhanced questions to potentially ask four-year college admission counselors. Students were provided with a variety of prompts and challenged to collaborate within small groups to generate a list of transfer success questions related to their assigned topic.

It is imperative for students to know which type of questions to ask admission counselors. According to CCsmart, “49% of all bachelor’s degrees are from community college transfers.” This means there is plenty of opportunity to help students make the most out of their transfer journey. By facilitating interactive workshops, students get a chance to exchange ideas with like-minded individuals and experience the value of networking.

Another free benefit of membership is PTK Connect, which provides the tools for a successful transfer to a best-fit college. Reflecting on these transfer success questions while navigating PTK Connect and progressing through PTK Transfer Edge modules offers context. These are also excellent questions to ask any of the 100+ four-year college representatives at the PTK Catalyst Transfer Fairs and during the ongoing virtual transfer fairs (register HERE for the April 3rd session) hosted monthly by PTK Headquarters.

Identify which factors matter most in your transfer search. Focus on the questions that will help you discover answers you need to fully inform your decision. Apply and ultimately enroll at the college that is YOUR best fit. As always, PTK will be here to recognize you and celebrate your continued success.

Transfer Success Questions

How soon can I graduate?

  • As a transfer student, am I eligible to participate in accelerated programs for my degree choice? Are there options to pursue my bachelor’s and master’s degree simultaneously?
  • Could I reduce time to graduation through earning prior learning assessment (PLA) credit for work/volunteer/life experience, professional training, military service, or proficiency exams?
  • Can you tell me about any policies, resources, or support offered at your institution that could help me finish my degree in the most efficient way possible?
  • For graduation, are there limitations on the speed at which I can progress through my classes or the number of credits I must earn at your institution (i.e., residency requirement)? 

How welcoming is the environment for transfer students?

  • Is there anything that is “off-limits” to transfer students at your institution? E.g., Honors program, study abroad, housing, priority course scheduling, earning honors distinctions at graduation.
  • What resources and opportunities do you have available for transfer students?
  • Do transfers (from my college) feel that they can easily acclimate and make meaningful relationships on campus? What are some examples/stories?
  • Does your campus offer admission for spring-entry, fall-entry, and summer-entry transfer students?

Which majors and minors at your institution align best with my career interests?

  • What is unique or distinguishing about the way your university offers this course of study?
  • As a transfer student, can I incorporate a study abroad experience or research into my studies?
  • Are there any corporate partnerships or internship/co-op programs to help me gain experience in my field?
  • Where can I obtain/find success metrics to help me understand graduation rates, job placement, or graduate school admittances for students in this major at your institution?

How will my credits transfer?

  • What determines if my credits will transfer and how they will apply to a program of study?
  • Is there a resource available to help me compare degree programs at your institution that may be best suited for my transfer based on the credits I’ve earned?
  • Where can I find a transfer credit evaluation tool or resource to plan courses as I continue at my community college? Who may I contact if I cannot find details on the transferability of a particular course?
  • When is the earliest I can find out how my transfer credits will apply to my intended degree?

How affordable is your institution for transfer students?

  • What timeline should I follow for submitting a transfer, FAFSA, and scholarship applications to ensure I am fully considered for all funding opportunities?
  • Does your institution offer automatic or competitive scholarships exclusively for PTK members? Is the award larger than the general transfer scholarship?
  • What are the financial benefits of transferring in with an associate degree earned versus some credit?
  • To maximize scholarship opportunities, would I need to transfer in for the fall semester immediately following community college completion?
  • If I’m admitted and applied for financial aid, is it possible your institution will meet 100% of demonstrated need with a loan-free financial aid award?

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