FAQs for Incoming Transfer Students

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If courses were taken at a foreign institution, the transcript must be translated by a CSM- accepted, professional, accredited transcript evaluation service before transfer credit will be reviewed. CSM requires the course-by-course evaluation from these services if transfer credit is sought. Transcript evaluation services recommended by CSM: World Education Services (WES); Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE); and Josef Silny & Associates (JSA).

CSM recommends that students meet with an academic advisor prior to submitting a transcript to a transcript evaluation service to determine potential applicability of credits before paying for the transcript evaluation service.

Please note that in addition to the international evaluation, we will also request syllabi for the courses you wish to transfer to CSM.

Advanced Placement credit can be used toward an associate’s degree. Credit is granted by submitting an official copy of the test score to the Advisement and Career Services Office. For many exams, a score of 3 or higher is required. If credit has been granted at another college, additional credit may not appear on the CSM transcript. To see how credits will transfer into CSM, please click here

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the College of Southern Maryland has seen an increase in the amount of time it takes to receive the AP Score Report from College Board.  Please contact an academic advisor if you need to have your evaluation of AP credits completed sooner for an alternative method.


Military credits are awarded according to the American Council of Education (ACE) Guide only if the discipline is offered at CSM. If a student's experience involved areas pertaining to the military such as hydraulics, aircrafts, etc., credits cannot be awarded. If a student feels as though credit should have been given for a certain course, he/she can contact the transcript evaluator, who may recommend that the student take a test to earn credit for prior learning.

If you are currently a student at another institution and want to take courses at CSM over the summer/winter break to transfer back to your institution but the course requires a prerequisite that you have completed at another institution, you can contact an academic advisor for guidance on how CSM can help you with your particular circumstances and academic goals.

Individuals who are visiting students and are not pursuing a degree from CSM do not need to submit an official transcript. 

CSM is regionally accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Higher Education (MSACHE).

CSM accepts coursework from other U.S. colleges and universities. However, the institution must be recognized by a regional accrediting agency and/or other accrediting agencies approved by CSM.

If a student wishes to transfer credits from a nationally accredited institution, they will be required to submit syllabi for all courses they wish to transfer and have apply to their desired program of study.

To see what type of accreditation your previous institution holds, please visit the Department of Education website

CSM may not accept credit from Straighter Line, Sophia, and/or Saylor.

It may be possible to earn credit for your work experience. Please contact an academic advisor.

CSM does possess special transfer agreements with the Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy, Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute, and Seafarers Harry Lundeberg School of Seamanship. To view these agreements, please click here

What do I need to do if I change my major and want to request a re-evaluation of my transcript?

You must contact an academic advisor to change your program of study. Once this has been completed, you will need to complete the Transcript Evaluation Request form and indicate you are seeking re-evaluation.

What is an "official" transcript"?

An official transcript is a transcript received by CSM in a sealed envelope from the institution. It may be mailed directly by the institution or hand-carried, as long as the envelop has not been opened. Faxed copies, copies printed from the Internet, forwarded emails or transcripts that arrive in an opened envelope are considered "unofficial" and can not be used to award transfer credit. Unofficial transcripts can be used if you are a visiting student at CSM.

How long does it take to evaluate a transcript for credit?

Typically, it takes two to four weeks to evaluate a transcript for credit. However, there are certain times of the year where it will take longer. During the weeks before and after a new term begins, the volume of transcripts received by CSM increases, and it may take slightly longer.

How should I submit my official transcripts and/or test scores?

You may request that your issuing institution submit your transcript electronically to transcripts@csmd.edu. You may hand-deliver official copies of your transcripts and test scores to an academic advising office at any campus. You may also mail or have the issuing institution mail your transcripts directly to CSM:

College of Southern Maryland Attn: Registrar's Office P.O. Box 910 La Plata, MD 20646

Please note that physical transcripts must be sealed by the issuing institution and unopened.

Will classes that I take at other institutions affect my GPA at CSM?

No, only courses taken at CSM will be calculated into your GPA.

How do I check to see what courses I still need to complete for my degree?

You can check your progress toward your degree in Student Planning, under Online Services, in your my.CSMD account or make an appointment with an academic advisor.

There is a course listed on my transfer credit summary, but there are no credits listed for that course. Does that mean I am not receiving credit for it?

Some courses may be transferred to CSM as developmental courses (preparatory for college-level courses) and have no associated credits. It is acknowledged that you have taken the course and may move on to the next course in the sequence, but no credits are awarded. Some of these courses may be used in place of CSM's placement exams. Talk to an academic advisor for more information. Some courses may require that a course description or syllabus be provided for further review. If a syllabus or course description is requested, please submit it electronically to transeval@csmd.edu.

I have received my transfer credit summary, but not all of the colleges I attended are listed on it.

Transcripts are evaluated in the order in which they are received; this may mean that we have not received all transcripts that you have requested.

Who do I contact if I notice an error on my transfer credit summary?

You should follow the Transcript Appeal Procedure that was mailed to you along with your Transfer Credit Summary. Send an email to transeval@csmd.edu or contact the transcript evaluator directly.

What are 1999 and 2999 courses? How can these courses be applied toward a degree?

Courses from other institutions may transfer in as 1999s and 2999s if CSM does not offer an equivalent course. These courses are normally used as electives. However, there are times when a 1999 or 2999 may be substituted for a required course.

Are there limitations on the credits accepted from other accredited institutions?

Yes. As a community college, CSM only accepts lower division credits and some upper level classes if we offer an equivalent course. In addition, although the college may accept credits from other institutions, transferred credits may not count toward all degree programs. Consult with an academic advisor for more information.

I took a course at another college that I also earned credit for at CSM. Will the credits still be transferred to CSM?

No. Transfer credit cannot be awarded for a course if credit has already been earned at CSM.

Some of my courses were accepted for transfer at another college, but not at CSM. Why?

Transfer credit policies vary by institution and by state. CSM evaluates transfer credit according to its own criteria.

How do my transfer credits apply toward my degree?

To view how your transfer credits apply to your degree at CSM:

  • Log in to your my.CSMD account
  • Click on “Current Students”
  • Click on "My Services"
  • Click on "Student Planning"
  • Select “View My Progress” to see exactly how your courses fit into your program of study. (You can also use this feature to see how your credits apply to a different program as well!)

Will a "D" grade transfer to CSM?

CSM may accept "D" grades if credit was earned for the course and if the program allows for “D” grades.

Can transferred developmental courses be used toward a degree?

No. Developmental courses that are transferred in are not degree applicable as stated in the college catalog. However, these courses may transfer in as equivalent to developmental courses offered/required by CSM.

What is the difference between the quarter and semester system?

The quarter system has four 10-12 week terms of instruction during an academic year (Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer). The semester system has two 15-18 week terms of instruction during the academic year (Fall and Spring). CSM operates on the semester system.

How are the quarter credits from the quarter system converted into semester credits for the semester system?

According to national guidelines, the following formula is used to transfer quarter credits into semester credits: Quarter credits X .667=Semester Credits. Example: 4.0 Quarter Credits X .997=2.7 Semester Credits. If a course taken on the quarter system is a general education course at the sending institution, it will also satisfy the general education course requirement at CSM. However, students who have transferred quarter hour courses may be required to take an additional 1-credit course in order to satisfy the overall number of semester hour credits required for graduation at CSM.


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