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F1.4 Transfers of Unit Credit toward the Master’s Degree

Updated: August 30th, 2011

Unit credit from Non-UC institutions. A master’s student may transfer up to 4 semester units or 6 quarter units of course work completed as a graduate student at another institution. The units must be equivalent to courses in the student’s graduate program at Berkeley, and the student must have received at least a B in the course(s) and have a grade-point average of at least 3.3 at both Berkeley and the other institution.  However, students cannot use units from another institution to satisfy the minimum unit requirement in 200 series courses or the minimum academic residence requirement. In addition, they may not present course work previously used to satisfy requirements for another degree program at Berkeley or at another in another institution.

Unit credit from another UC campus. The Graduate Division may approve credit for more than 4 semester or 6 quarter units of 200-level courses completed on another UC campus, and will review requests on an individual basis. (For more information, see Academic Senate Regulation 726,

Unit credit from Summer Session course work at UC Berkeley and other institutions. An entering student admitted for fall semester might receive unit/course credit toward the degree for UC Berkeley Summer Session courses taken in the immediately preceding summer if the offer of admission was issued by Graduate Admissions before the end of that Summer Session. Transfer of summer session course work completed at another institution is generally not permitted.

Unit credit from Backdated Graduate Standing. Berkeley undergraduates who take graduate course work during their last undergraduate semester may petition to backdate graduate standing in order to receive graduate credit for that course work. Graduate standing may be backdated for only one semester, and students may petition for credit only for the course work that was not required for the undergraduate degree. The Head Graduate Adviser should petition to backdate graduate standing in a memo addressed to the Associate Dean, in care of the Graduate Services: Degrees Office (318 Sproul Hall, #5900).

Unit credit from Concurrent Enrollment with University Extension. Extension courses generally cannot be applied to a Berkeley degree.  Concurrent enrollment gives University Extension students the opportunity to take courses that would not ordinarily be available to these students. It is not intended as a substitute for normal registration by Berkeley graduate students or as a means of accumulating credit toward a Berkeley degree. Exceptions are made to this rule only when there is clear evidence that the student took the courses while a graduate student at another institution and intended to apply those units toward a graduate degree at that institution. However, Berkeley Division Regulation A208 allows UC Berkeley Extension courses carrying the “XB” designation on University Extension transcripts to be accepted for unit requirement and grade-point credit on the Berkeley campus under specific conditions

How to request transfer of units from other institutions, University Extension, or backdating for degree credit. Either before or when a student applies for advancement to candidacy, the Head Graduate Adviser must support and explain the basis for the student’s request and specify the units and courses to be credited in a memo sent to the cognizant Associate Dean, in care of the Graduate Services: Degrees Office (318 Sproul Hall, #5900). Additional information is needed for the following:

  1. If the request is for backdating, the Head Graduate Adviser’s memo must also be accompanied by a written statement from the student’s undergraduate college (e.g., Letters & Sciences, Engineering, etc.) that the course work was not in fulfillment of an undergraduate degree requirement.
  2. For  transfer of summer session course work completed at another institution, the Head Graduate Adviser’s memo must be accompanied by (a) an official transcript from the other school showing that the student was in graduate standing at the other institution and (b) a statement from the other institution that the courses are acceptable toward a master’s degree but were not used at that university.

See All Topics in the Category: F. Degrees, Guide to Graduate Policy