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Transfer

Transfer Credits

Applicants who have earned college-level credit can be considered for transfer credits. These include courses taken at another regionally accredited college, participation in dual-enrollment, or having earned AP or IB credit. Taking the right classes before transferring is an important step for a smooth transition into the College's art and design programs. If your portfolio of artwork demonstrates necessary creative thinking skills, and you’ve taken an appropriate number of studio art courses, you may be admitted at the sophomore or junior level.

To enter as a sophomore, it is recommended that you have:

  • 17 semester units of studio art from a regionally accredited institution*
  • 6-12 semester units of general education are recommended:
  • English Composition (often the first college-level English course at most universities)
  • Elective English Course (such as an elective Literature or Speech course)
  • Social Science (such as an History, Anthropology or Psychology course)
  • Art History Survey course
  • A portfolio that demonstrates you are able to bypass the Foundation year

To enter as a junior, it is recommended that you have:

  • Between 36 semester units of studio art from a regionally accredited institution*
  • Approximately 18 units of general education, including the courses listed for sophomore-level entry and more depending on your intended major. Please note specialized coursework is required by major. 
  • A portfolio that demonstrates a high-level of technical and creative ability in your intended major

Please note a maximum of 63 transfer credits can be awarded to undergraduate applicants.

Students must have earned a grade of “C” or better in each class in order to receive credit. All units must be earned at a regionally accredited institution or at the equivalent of a regionally accredited institution abroad.*

*Regional accreditation is educational accreditation of schools, colleges, and universities in the United States by one of the six regional accreditors. Please visit the website of the U.S. Department of Education for more information. International institutions must be recognized by the country’s national ministry of education.

Capstone and Creative Action

All Otis College students take the College’s signature Creative Action and Capstone courses. These courses cannot be transferred in.

Credit by Examination

Advanced Placement: Admitted students may submit scores from Advanced Placement examinations for credit. Scores of 3-5 are accepted for History, Math, and Science. Scores of 4-5 are accepted for English and Art History. Due to the specialized nature of the studio programs at Otis College, AP credit for studio art is not accepted.

International Baccalaureate: You are eligible to receive credit if you have completed the IB Upper Level Exams with a score of 5 or higher in any of the following subject areas: Language (English); Individuals and Societies (Social Sciences); Experimental Sciences (Natural Sciences); Mathematics.

International Students

International transfer applicants should submit a course-by-course transcript evaluation from World Education Services (www.wes.org). International students are required to submit official translations for transcripts not in English. Please submit both the translation and the official transcript.

If you are changing schools within the U.S. and transferring your SEVIS record to Otis College, follow these guidelines.

Graduate Transfer Credits

Graduate applicants can transfer credits dependent on review of coursework completed at the graduate level and approval by the Department Chair. 

Additional Policies

Please refer to the Transfer Credits section of The Hoot for additional transfer credit policies regarding matriculated students.

When to Transfer

Students may transfer in the Fall and Spring semesters. The entry semester depends on how many studio and general education credits have been completed. The guidelines below can help you estimate how many credits you may need to enter in the term/level you are seeking. All placements are also contingent on having a portfolio that meets the class level of current Otis students and may require Department Chair approval. 

Fall Semester

Class Level Studio Credits General Education Credits
Foundation Less than 17 studio credits Any Amount
1st Semester Sophomore At least 17 studio credits At least 6 credits or more
Junior At least 36 studio credits At least 18 credits

Spring Semester

Class Level Studio Credits General Education Credits
Foundation Less than 17 studio credits Any Amount
2nd Semester Foundation At least 9 studio credits At least 6 credits or more
2nd Semester Sophomore At least 27 studio credits At least 18 credits

1st Semester Sophomore

(A/L/I Jump Start Program)

At least 17 studio credits 12 credits or more

Articulation Agreements

Otis College of Art and Design has collaborated with several community colleges in the United States to assist transfer students in selecting the right courses to place at an upper-level. Please click on the colleges below to view our current articulation agreements. If your college is not on this list and you have questions about your credits, please e-mail Rob Zarrella, our Transfer Admissions Counselor at rzarrella@otis.edu