Some students have personal or academic reasons that warrant them to want to transfer schools in the middle of a semester. Whether the reason is due to a family relocation or because a college-aged student wants to go from a community college to a university, a mid-semester transfer may be the only way for the student to continue his education without disrupting his anticipated graduation date or being held back a grade. Since not all schools are keen on accepting mid-semester transfer students, it is important to speak directly with your prospective transfer school to find out the transfer policy.

College Transfers

Contact the college to which you want to transfer. Ask to speak to a counselor in the admissions department. An admissions counselor is someone who is available to answer questions about getting accepted into the college program. Prospective transfer students can get specific questions answered by an admissions counselor.

Find out the school's policy on mid-semester transfers. Some schools do not allow mid-semester transfers, and require prospective transfer students to wait until the new semester to transfer successfully into a program. If the school in which you are interested does accept mid-semester transfers, you need to know further specifics.

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Ask about which of your academic credits will transfer successfully. Even if you are able to transfer into another college during the semester, it doesn't mean that all of your course credits will transfer along with you. Some credits are non-transferable, and students are then required to repeat courses at the new college to satisfy degree program requirements. Keep in mind that if not a lot of your credits transfer over to the new college, this can drop your college level. For instance, you might be a sophomore at your community college, but if not enough of your credits transfer over to a university, this can set you back to freshman status.

Review any financial aid restrictions on transfers. If you took out financial aid, the company providing you the assistance may have special rules about transferring academic institutions or keeping your academic credits up to a certain level. Disruption to your financial aid terms can lead to your financial aid being stopped, which is why it is important to check with your financial aid program before transferring mid-semester, or any semester.

K-12 Transfers

Contact the prospective elementary, middle or high school's admission faculty. An academic advisor may be available to answer your questions about transferring to the new school in the middle of the semester.

Fill out the transfer application. The application asks questions about the student's circumstance for changing schools, the grade level of the student, whether the student is coming from a school with an academic or year-round school year and questions about the student's performance and behavior in school. It may even be necessary to include a copy of the student's report cards.

Request a meeting with the admissions faculty at the prospective school. Discuss some of the potential challenges that starting the student at the new school in the middle of the year can pose. It can be stressful on a young student to start someplace new where classmates already know one another. It can also be difficult on the teacher to have to catch a new student up to the rest of the class mid-year.

Take the student on a tour of the school to see how the student feels at the new campus. If the student appears to be comfortable meeting new people, teachers and being in a new environment, the school may not have strong concerns about the student's ability to have a smooth transition.


Some colleges may reserve a limited number of slots for accepting transfer students during the semester. Ask the admissions advisor or counselor how many spots are open at your prospective transfer university.

About the Author

Kyra Sheahan has been a writer for various publications since 2008. Her work has been featured in "The Desert Leaf" and "Kentucky Doc Magazine," covering health and wellness, environmental conservatism and DIY crafts. Sheahan holds an M.B.A. with an emphasis in finance.