Transfer a Non-Northwestern Credit

Non-Northwestern University Credit Transfer Policy

General guidelines

Guidelines for credits earned after matriculation to Northwestern University

The following procedures and policies apply only to courses taken at other U.S. institutions after a student matriculates at Northwestern. Separate policies apply to courses taken prior to matriculation at Northwestern and to courses taken outside the U.S. See your school advisers and website for details.


  1. Complete Part I of the Petition for Credit for a Non-Northwestern Course and obtain appropriate supporting documents such as course descriptions for the course(s) you propose to take.
  2. Secure reviews of the course you propose to take by the department or program offering similar courses at Northwestern; the department or program toward whose requirements you wish to apply the course; and your home school.
  3. Submit the form with all appropriate signatures to the Office of the Registrar before you take the course.
  4. Upon completion of the course, have a final, official transcript sent to:
    Northwestern University
    Office of the Registrar
    Attn: Transfer Credit
    633 Clark St.
    Evanston, IL 60208-1118
  5. Once the transcript is received and matched to the approval form, the credit will be articulated to your record. You may then view the entry on CAESAR.


IMPORTANT: See the next section of this document for school-specific policies.
  1. The student's school at Northwestern must grant prior approval for the course.
  2. The institution at which the course is taken must be accredited by an acceptable national accrediting body.
  3. Work must be in a curricular area generally recognized for credit at Northwestern.
  4. Only courses in which the student earns a grade of C or better will be accepted (see exception for SESP). Grades earned elsewhere will not be factored into the student’s Northwestern GPA.
  5. No transfer of credit is allowed for courses with a grade of P or S.
  6. One unit of Northwestern credit will be granted for a course that carries two or three semester hours or three or four quarter hours of credit at the sponsoring institution.
  7. The maximum number of Northwestern units that can be earned in a summer session is two units for any four-week session, three units for any six-week session, and four units for any eight- or ten-week session.
  8. Limits on credit earned elsewhere after matriculation at Northwestern University. The Undergraduate Registration Requirement (URR) specifies the minimum number of units of credit a student must earn at Northwestern; it thus limits the amount of non-Northwestern credit that may be counted toward a Northwestern degree. For example, a student entering as a freshman in a four-year degree program must be registered at Northwestern for at least 9 quarters and complete courses worth at least 32 units of credit at the University. (For purposes of the URR, being “registered at Northwestern” for a quarter means that the student is registered for and completes Northwestern course work worth at least two units of credit during that quarter and that the course work is under the supervision of the Northwestern faculty. More details on the URR can be found on the Registrar’s website.)


Two-year or community college credit. Northwestern University's colleges and schools have specific policies on granting credit for courses taken at a two-year or community college after matriculation at Northwestern:

Bienen, Communication, and McCormick - Credit accepted with approval
Medill - No credit accepted after sophomore year
SESP - Credit accepted with approval and B-grade or higher
Weinberg - No credit accepted toward a Weinberg degree. In addition, students in other schools may not count such courses toward a Weinberg major or minor.

Weinberg College requirements: Credit earned at other domestic institutions after matriculation at Northwestern may not be applied towards the Weinberg College distribution requirements or the foreign language requirement. Courses that are to be applied toward a Weinberg College major or minor must have the prior approval of the Director of Undergraduate Studies or designated adviser in that department or program.

School of Communication requirements: Credits earned at other domestic institutions after matriculation at Northwestern may not be counted toward any major or minor in the School of Communication.

Petition for Credit for a Non-Northwestern Course