Degree Planning and Academic Review


Transcripted Credit

Students may transfer credit earned at other regionally accredited colleges and universities (and certain foreign institutions as described below) that are appropriate to their degree program. In these cases only, the official transcript alone serves as acceptable evaluation for placement under Transcript Credit on the Degree Program (for study completed during the time of accreditation or candidacy).

In addition, credits earned through institutions recognized by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) are accepted.

Credit earned at foreign colleges and universities (with the exceptions of the foreign institutions described below) must be evaluated by one of the following approved foreign credential evaluation services:

Many institutions which are not regionally accredited in the United States and which are not approved foreign institutions, and some standardized testing programs, do not require special evaluation for transcript credits to be included in an Empire State College degree program. These include:

  • independent and proprietary sector institutions in New York State which are authorized by the State Education Department to award degrees;
  • nursing schools with NLN accreditation;
  • art schools with NASAD approval; and
  • approved standardized testing programs.
  • approved colleges in Canada and Israel

Credit earned at institutions that do not have regional accreditation requires further evaluation before a decision can be made to include it in a degree program. Check with your mentor to determine the status of your prior institutions.

Official Transcripts

Official transcripts are essential to support all claims for credit verified by transcripts. These include such things as college transcripts; score reports from CLEP, TECEP, ACE, Excelsior College, etc.; and reports from nursing schools and other proprietary/training schools. Transcripts are official only when they come directly to Empire State College from the issuing institution and have an official seal and signature. Please note that transcripts and documents issued to students must remain sealed in original envelope to be considered official. However, such documents may help in preliminary discussions with a mentor or an advisor.

Students request that an institution send an official transcript (with official seal and signature) to the Empire State College Admissions Office. Transcripts received by other means may not be considered official at Empire State College.

Office of Admissions 
SUNY Empire State College 
2 Union Avenue 
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Statute of Limitations on Age of Transcript Credit 

Empire State College accepts credits no matter how long ago you earned them, except when the learning is in an area that has changed significantly over time, such as computer technology. In such cases, credits should be reviewed for currency. Talk to your mentor about the appropriateness of your credits. Credits for learning that lacks currency shouldn't be in your degree program.


Empire State College awards credit for learning only once; learning from all sources will be scrutinized to ensure that the degree program contains no significant redundant or duplicate credit. Similar courses in the same subject at the same level taken at different institutions are considered potentially redundant unless the faculty has determined that significant overlap does not exist.

For example: College Biology 101 at Rochester Institute of Technology can be considered to overlap General Biology 110 at SUNY Geneseo, unless the portfolio contains evidence that course content was examined by a qualified, unbiased judge who clarified the differences between the two courses.

When the student has transcript credit in an area in which credit is also granted by evaluation, the evaluation must scrutinize both the subject matter and the level of learning in order to permit the center Academic Review (Assessment) Committee to determine whether or not redundancy exists.

If transcript credit includes a "life-learning" component such as is sometimes found in associate degree programs in police science or "field work" or as is found in some human services programs, these should be examined to clear up questions of redundancy with other Empire State College advanced standing credit if present.

Transferring in Completed Associate Degrees