Are You Preparing to Transfer to the U of A and Want to Study Online?

March 9, 2023  |  by Casey Kraichoke, Global Campus

Photo by Stephen Ironside

Over one-third of students transfer colleges at some point before earning their degrees, and approximately 2.1 million students in the United States transferred between colleges during the 2020-2021 academic year, according to the National Student Clearinghouse. The University of Arkansas Global Campus employs online student liaisons to answer questions and provide other guidance to transfer students who want to study in online degree programs.

Students transfer for a variety of reasons, including cost, a change in academic program, family obligation or simply a desire to find a better fit. Others want to further their education after attending community college. Regardless of students' reasons to transfer, the University of Arkansas strives to make the transfer process as seamless and stress-free as possible to empower students to continue their education online.

Laura Sherer, a graduate of the BSE in Human Resource and Workforce Development Education, refused to let a few setbacks stop her from reaching her lifelong goal, a college degree. She had taken some classes from a local community college and hoped they would transfer to another institution, but that institution would not accept her credits and did not encourage her to further her education. That's when she began searching the internet for another option and found the U of A ONLINE.

"From the very first contact I had at the U of A, I felt welcomed there; I felt wanted," Sherer said. "They made me feel like a part of the family. That made it so special to me."

Finishing your college journey is important, and when your path toward graduation includes two or more colleges, the journey can be complicated. The process of returning to college can be full of questions. To help you achieve your goals, you need a community of people dedicated to helping you achieve your goals. As many of our transfer students can attest, the University of Arkansas ONLINE makes the transfer process easy and manageable.

One of the first things to consider as a transfer student is accreditation. The U of A can only transfer credit from regionally accredited institutions, so helping a student determine if their transferring institution is regionally or nationally accredited is the first step. Our online tool, the Transfer Planning Guide, is one of the resources transfer students find most helpful. Developed by the Office of the Registrar, it shows the college credits previously accepted by the U of A from other institutions. There is a tutorial on how to use the guide on our transfer credit page.

Laura Sherer


"The older I got, the more there was this burning desire to get my college degree."

Laura Sherer, North Carolina, Graduate: BSE in HRWD


Alexander Tibbitts, a BSBA in Supply Chain Management transfer student, found a variety of tools on the U of A website, such as the transfer guide and course equivalency database, to be helpful.

"It was very user-friendly, showing which courses fill which requirements," Tibbitts said.

Our online student liaisons are also available to personally guide you through the Transfer Planning Guide and throughout the entire transfer process, from start to finish. The Student Liaison Office is here to help you get enrolled, stay on track, and navigate life as an online student. They are available by phone, email, live chat, or virtual meetings.

LPN to BSN student Tressyn Gehl was able to transfer several classes from previous institutions and all her questions were either answered through a phone call or directly on our website.

"I transferred several classes from previous years," Gehl said. "It was not difficult at all. I was able to call the office and someone was always able to answer any questions. Most of the information needed to transfer classes is listed on the nursing pages of the school's website."

Tressyn Gehl


"I transferred several classes from previous years. It was not difficult at all. I was able to call the office and someone was always able to answer any questions."


Tressyn Gehl, Orleans, IN, LPN to BSN

Laura Wenger, who is also in the LPN to BSN program, felt the university took care of the entire transfer process.

"Honestly, the process was mostly handled by staff, with little effort on my part," Wenger said. "After turning in my transcript, the admission advisor met with me about which courses were credited to my degree plan."

While our students typically transfer credits from other institutions of higher education, another way to earn college credits is to transfer eligible credits from high school.

Julia Moura, a BSBA in General Business student, completed high school at Arkansas Virtual Academy, where she graduated with 30 hours of college credit. She was able to enroll at the university with a sophomore status. She used the Arkansas Course Transfer System to determine what classes to take that would transfer. Most of the classes were general education classes and they all transferred without any problem.



Transfer Students Ask Online Student Liaisons

Q: Can I speak with an academic advisor?
Unfortunately, no, not yet. Academic advisors are only available for students. However, at least for online students, our online student liaisons are available! They can't assist students in the same way advisors do, but there are a few things we can do to help them get an idea of what transferring would look like.

Q: What degree can I earn most quickly with the credits I already have?
Determining this can only be done with an academic advisor, which takes being admitted and scheduling an appointment. We can either a) walk the student through the Transfer Planning Guide, or b) if they're admitted, they can speak with an advisor and choose a path. You don't get "locked in" to a program without knowing exactly what will be required of you, which you can then tabulate to budget for. Besides the application fee paywall (which there are ways to waive), students don't have to go any farther than that, if they don't wish to. There's really not a way to tell what will transfer prior to the transfer happening. If students have more upper-level coursework in business, they will naturally be more prepared for a business program. Our suggestion for students is to look at the University Core requirements as the greatest likelihood for transfer, and then select a program that drives them, or will align with their career.



From Online Student Liaisons

"My advice for students is to not be afraid to reach out to us," said Karagin Miller, an online student liaison. "We have a lot of helpful resources to offer, and we're prepared to be with students every step of the way throughout the application process. I think some students might worry about asking 'too many questions' or reaching out 'too often,' but there's no such thing! Our office is staffed with an excellent team of people who aren't just good at helping students, but who take pride in it."

Ray Murphy, also an online student liaison, finds it rewarding helping students identify programs that pair well with their interests or future goals.

"The best experiences are when students call in, unsure of how to get to their goals, and I know exactly which program might suit them," Murphy said. "It helps for students to have a goal in mind from the outset — whether it's for personal development or career advancement. Having a reason for continuing your education helps everyone who is trying to help the student. We can otherwise refer them to the Career Development Center. If we don't have an online program that targets their areas, we can help students navigate somewhere close, and then can help them find what that next step might look like."

Photo of Casey Kraichoke

Casey Kraichoke

Blog writer

Casey Kraichoke was a graduate assistant for the Global Campus at the University of Arkansas and a Ph.D. student in the College of Education and Health Professions Curriculum and Instruction Department. She is a Fayetteville native, an avid Razorback fan, and has received two degrees from the U of A: a master’s in 2017 and bachelor’s in 2014.

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