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Appendix XIX

Transfer - CSU/CTC Joint Statement (2.2.3)

The Board of Trustees approves the Connecticut State University system and Community College system joint statement on transfer and articulation, as provided below.

Connecticut State University System 
Connecticut Community Colleges 
Joint Statement on Transfer and Articulation

I. Introduction and Background

The presidents of the Connecticut Community Colleges (CCCs) and the Connecticut State University (CSU) system agree that sound public policy and good educational practice make it essential for them to establish effective policies and mechanisms of transfer between the two systems. Only in this way can students enrolled in the CCCs gain full access to the opportunities available in Connecticut public colleges and universities, an only in this way can these institutions fulfill their fundamental mission to be accessible to the citizens of the state.

The report of the advisory committee on transfer and articulation to Connecticut’s board of governors for higher education (June 1990, p.1) underscores the importance of this commitment:

The board of governors’ strategic plan for higher education identifies transfer and articulation as an important strategy for its expanding access to higher education. The purpose for strengthening transfer opportunities and improving articulation of two-year and four-year educational programs is to ensure that students attending two-year colleges have mobility and clear predictable paths to completion of baccalaureate education. The importance of enhancing transfer opportunities for graduates of two-year colleges also involves equity, effective use of state resources, and the coordination of two-year and four-year educational programs.

Many factors have combined in recent years to challenge some of the traditional assumptions which have shaped the structure of academic programs in public higher education. There has been a dramatic shift from full-time to part-time study and significant growth in the proportion of adults pursuing higher education. In addition, it is the clear responsibility of public colleges and universities to serve minority and economically disadvantaged students. These factors, plus the growing importance of lifelong learning, suggest that both associate and baccalaureate institutions should reassess the structure of academic programs and reconsider the value and limitations of traditional educational terminology.

It is common, for example, to distinguish some programs in both Community Colleges and the baccalaureate institutions as “career programs,” “professional programs,” or “transfer programs.” But all associate and baccalaureate degree programs are now considered in some way to be related to career education or professional preparation. It is all the more important, therefore, that for all associate degree programs to be regarded as having at least the potential to transfer, whether in whole or in part, to baccalaureate programs. The CCCs and the CSU system have agreed that issues of transfer and articulation must be assigned a position of high priority on their respective campuses. In April 1988, the president of the CSU system and the executive director of the regional Community College system established a joint task force to study transfer and articulation policies and procedures. Over a period of several months, the task force gathered information concerning existing agreements, policies, procedures and practices of transfer and articulation; studied successful models of transfer between Community Colleges and four-year institutions in other states; and explored several options for improving and expanding opportunities for students to transfer between the two systems with full academic credit.

In August 1990, a working group of presidents from the regional community and technical colleges and the CSU system met to review the issues raised by the joint task force. This presidential committee, consisting of Presidents DeVaughn, Menack, Daube, and Gonzalez-Sullivan form the regional Community Colleges and Presidents Shumaker, Adanti, Carter, and Feldman from the CSU system, has developed the following statements of principles and specific recommendations for review and approval by their respective boards of trustees.

II. Principles

The committee of presidents endorses the following principles and assumptions to guide the development of new articulation policies and procedures for the two systems:

  1. The focus of all efforts to clarify and improve the process of articulation and transfer must be upon the needs of the students. Campuses of the community and technical colleges and the CSU system are committed to expanding and optimizing opportunities for students to take full advantage of programs and opportunities which they offer. The needs of the students are of overarching importance in all discussions of these matters.
  2. Discussions concerning transfer and articulation should take place in an atmosphere of collegiality, good faith, and mutual respect. Faculty and administrators at both the CTC and campuses of the CSU system agree to work together as professional colleagues committed to the development of institutional policies and curricula that will best serve the students of Connecticut.
  3. Both systems agree to accept responsibility as public institutions to 1) establish policies and procedures that will expedite transfer for students; and 2) provide information necessary for students to take full advantage of educational opportunities available in both systems; and 3) help students identify transfer objectives and options as early as possible and to help them plan accordingly.
  4. Programs and curricula at the CTC and CSU have been developed and are taught by qualified instructional faculty. Since these programs have been approved by the respective boards of trustees and have received appropriate licensure and accreditation, they have prima facie academic integrity sufficient to justify close links between associate and baccalaureate degree programs.
  5. In both the CTC and CSU systems, members of the teaching faculty, working collaboratively with campus administrators, have primary responsibility for the formation of academic policy as well as for the quality, design, evaluation, and quality of the curriculum.
  6. Effective articulation of academic programs and expanded opportunities for the transfer of students between and among institutions depend upon policies and procedures which are flexible by design and consistent in application.
  7. Procedures established to expedite transfer should enhance the students’ completion of baccalaureate requirements with little or no need to repeat course work taken in the Community College. Both the CTC and the CSU system agree to make every effort to facilitate this process. In the words of the report of the advisory committee on transfer and articulation (page 21 BOT Manual),
    The primary mechanism for course transfer will be the establishment of procedures to determine comparability or equivalency of courses. In addition, institutions will provide for alternative mechanisms for assessment of individual courses that may not have been assessed for equivalencies. Such measures may include provisional approval of credit, challenge exams, validation based upon successful completion of higher level courses, and approval based on assessment of text, course content, and examinations. 
    Both systems agree to take steps to assure transfer of courses and credits taken as part of the associate degree. In addition, both systems agree to work towards adopting the broadest approach to determine course equivalence, comparability, and/or validation in all fields as part of formal transfer and articulation agreements.
  8. Information and analysis of issues related to transfer is an extremely important aspect of any successful agreement for transfer and articulation. Both the CTC and campuses of the CSU system agree to work closely together to improve the collection, publication, and analysis of data. The systems also agree to develop innovative joint admissions procedures and other forms of collaborative programming which will enhance students’ ability to complete programs and degrees.

III. Recommendations

The presidential committee endorses the following specific  recommendations:

A. Establishment of a Joint CTC/CSU Standing Committee on Transfer and Articulation

We recommend that the respective boards of trustees of the CTC/CSU systems establish a standing committee on transfer and articulation. The committee will be composed of members of the faculty and administration from each system. Its charge will be

  1. To serve as a repository for all formal articulation agreements between the campuses of the two systems and to monitor their implementation;
  2. To recommend to the respective boards policies and procedures that will improve the effectiveness of transfer and articulation;
  3. To identify and discuss problems in the articulation process and to recommend to each board, as appropriate, a solution to these problems;
  4. To sponsor activities which promote regular inter-system contact between faculty and administration in order to maintain an atmosphere of cooperation and collegiality among academic and administrative staff;
  5. To establish working subcommittees of faculty and staff from both systems to study specific problems and issues as they arise and make recommendations for their solution.

The standing committee on transfer and articulation should consist of four CSU faculty, four faculty from the CTC, three administrators from the CSU system, three administrators from the CTC — all nominated by campus presidents and appointed, as appropriate, by the president of the CSU system, or the chancellor of the CTC. The committee will be co-chaired by one representative from the CSU system and one representative from the CTC system, as appropriate, appointed by the president of the CSU system and the chancellor of the CTC.

B. Transfer Issues: Recommended Guidelines

  1. Transfer of degrees. The completion of an associate’s degree in a college transfer program shall normally give students junior standing upon admission to the baccalaureate institution.
  2. Transfer of credits.
    1. Credit for passing grades (as defined in specific transfer and articulation agreements) from the sending institution shall be accepted by the baccalaureate institution;
    2. While this agreement focuses upon students holding the associate’s degree, both systems expect that any student who transfers into the CSU system will normally receive the transfer credit on the same basis.
    3. The CSU/CTC standing committee on transfer and articulation will serve as an appeals body for students; it will establish appropriate procedures for receiving appeals from students after they are heard at the campus level. It will issue advisory opinions to each Board of Trustees and to individual campuses involved in specific appeals.
  3. Transfer of general education courses. In order to satisfy university general education distribution requirements, the baccalaureate institution shall accept for transfer comparable courses from the CTC. Collaborative efforts should be instituted to establish clear criteria for comparability of such courses.
  4. Course validation. In recognition of the fact that Community Colleges at times offer courses which may be considered by baccalaureate institutions to be upper division, a consistent policy and procedure shall be established for contingent acceptance of these courses for transfer into the baccalaureate program. Acceptance of these courses shall be dependent upon successful validation as defined in specific transfer and articulation agreements.
  5. Baccalaureate degree requirements.
    1. Baccalaureate degree institutions shall provide information to CTC concerning proposed program changes as far in advance as possible of planned implementation in order to provide for adequate consultation.
    2. Once baccalaureate degree requirements have been adopted and published, baccalaureate institutions shall, before such changes are implemented, allow a reasonable grace period (normally two years), to be negotiated by program, as part of each formal transfer and articulation agreement.
  6. Transfer admission.
    1. Policies and requirements for transfer admission shall be clearly stated and [e.g., in college catalogues and other literature] widely disseminated.
    2. Each Community College and each campus of the CSU system will identify and individual or office to facilitate the transfer process (including a preliminary and unofficial evaluation of transcripts) and to serve as liaison with the other system.
    3. The assessment of transfer credits at campuses of the CSU system shall be made following a review of the student’s official transcript, preferably at the time of application for admission.
    4. Community College students from institutions having an official transfer and articulation agreement with the receiving campus of the CSU system, and who will transfer with the associate’s degree, will upon entry and to the extent possible be afforded the same access to programs, housing, registration, and financial aid as native students.

Once these recommendations have been approved by the Board of Trustees of the CTC and the Board of Trustees of the CSU system, the CSU/CTC joint standing committee on transfer and articulation will be established. Then each campus of CSU, within the context of principles and actions presented in this document, will begin immediately to work with Community Colleges to create detailed articulation agreements to reflect the unique elements and requirements of programs at the CSU campus and the Community College. During this process campuses will also bring existing agreements into conformity with the principles and procedures outlined in this agreement. The objective of this effort is to design formal transfer and articulation agreements between each campus of the CSU and all CTC campuses. Agreements will be filed with the CTC/CSU steering committee on transfer and articulation.

(Adopted April 15, 1991)

NOTE: In addition, significant work is underway through the Transfer of Articulation Program (TAP) to align Connecticut community college and Connecticut state university programs across the system.

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