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Transferring Credits

Transferring Credits

Procedure for transferring economics credits for work completed away from Swarthmore

Students must receive pre-approval from the department chair for any economics or business course they plan to take for Swarthmore credit outside of the Tri-Co system.  Transfer credit can be awarded only for courses whose content does not reproduce the content of courses the student has taken for credit in the Tri-Co system.  For foreign-study and other off-campus semester programs, students submit requests for pre-approval via the Off-Campus Study office’s online portal.  For term-time and summer courses, students can obtain pre-approval by emailing a full course description to the department chair, including the institution, course content, and number of credit hours.  For economics majors, the theory and statistics requirements can only be satisfied by taking off-campus courses if those courses deliver a full Swarthmore credit. The department does not top off credits earned off campus.

Once the off-campus course has been completed, students must formally request the chair’s approval of transfer credit unless the course was designated for auto-credit at the pre-approval stage.  For off-campus programs, the student requests this approval via the Off-Campus Study office’s online portal.  For term-time and summer courses, the student should complete an economics department Validation of Transfer Credit form [pdf].  In both cases, the student must submit extensive evidence – a syllabus, exams, papers – concerning the content of the course. 

Problems transferring credit may arise in connection with off-campus courses that are labeled as economics though they are in fact courses in law, history, or political science; the department does not accept such courses for economics credit. It is usually sufficient for partial credit transfer that the course be taught by a qualified economist and be largely analytical in content, as are nearly all courses in economics departments in American colleges and universities.

Procedure for transferring credits for business courses

Students are advised to consult the department chair before taking a course in business outside of the Tri-Co system.  Such courses require pre-approval and, unless designated for auto-credit at the pre-approval stage, final transfer credit approval as well.  One course in financial accounting may be transferred for credit towards the economics major, if the student has not taken Financial Accounting in the Tri-Co system.  All other business courses are designated as business electives.  Business-elective credits may be counted towards the 32 credits required for graduation, but they do not count towards an economics major.  A student can receive no more than two business-elective credits in total.   No credit is given for night school classes at Wharton.

Subject to the above restrictions, Swarthmore students can receive business-elective credit, but not economics credit, for courses in finance taken outside of the Tri-Co system.  No credit will be granted for courses whose content substantially reproduces that of finance courses the student has taken in the Tri-Co system.

Procedure for transferring credit for Introductory Economics taken away from Swarthmore

Subject to the department chair’s approval, students may transfer credit for introductory economics taken at other colleges or universities, whether taken as a one- or a two-semester introductory course. A student may be granted credit for taking a one-semester course in either introductory microeconomics or introductory macroeconomics, but will be advised in such cases to audit the other part of the introductory material at Swarthmore, before taking higher level economics courses. To transfer credit for introductory economics, students should bring all relevant course materials as well as a completed copy of the economics department’s Validation of Transfer Credit form [pdf] when seeking credit for Introductory Economics completed away from Swarthmore.