Transfer Students FAQs

Learn more about the transfer process from these commonly asked questions.

If you have additional questions, you can always reach out to one of our Admissions Counselors, or contact us at or 410-225-2222. We're here to help!

If you have graduated from high school (or earned your GED) and earned 12 or more credits (one semester’s worth of credits) in post-high school college courses at a regionally accredited college or university, you will apply to MICA as a college transfer student.

Your academic level (freshman, sophomore, junior) is based on the number of transferable credits you have earned. For example, if you have earned a total of 15 transferrable credits when you apply to MICA, you would start at MICA in the range of a first-semester freshman, 30 credits for a second semester freshman, 45 credits for a first semester sophomore and 57 credits for a second semester sophomore. At 60 credits, a student is considered a first semester junior, which is the highest academic level a transfer student can be when transferring.

First year students and college transfers have not yet completed their Bachelor of Fine Arts at MICA. Both are undergraduate students. If you have earned a previous bachelor’s degree and wish to transfer up to 60 previously earned college credits from that degree towards a Bachelor of Fine Arts at MICA you would apply as a college transfer applicant.

MICA awards the Bachelor of Fine Art degree (BFA). The BFA requires 120 semester credits. If a student pursues a minor, additional credits may be required. Up to 60 credits earned at a regionally accredited secondary institution after graduation from high school are eligible for transfer. 

MICA is on the semester system. To be eligible for transfer, each course must be equivalent to at least three-credits in the semester system. A typical full-time semester consists of fifteen credits (5 three-credit classes). MICA does not award credit for audited courses.

5 quarter credits = 3 semester credits
2 trimester credits = 3 semester credits 

To be eligible for transfer credit each course must: 

  • be taken after graduating from high school at a regionally accredited community college, college or university

  • be at least three semester credits (or equivalent to three-credits in the semester system)

  • must not be remedial 

  • must be passed with a final grade of C or higher 

  • must fit into the MICA degree plan for the intended major 

MICA's foundation program is called the First Year Experience (FYE). It consists of eight studio classes (24 credits), which our first-year students take during their first two semesters at MICA. We recommend that transfer applicants take as many of these first year requirements (listed below) at their current school as possible before applying to MICA

MICA FYE Courses

Example transfer course

Drawing: Fundamentals

Drawing I, Basic Drawing

Color Design (2D)

Studio art/design/media class that involves color such as Painting 1, Color Drawing

Fabrication (3D)

3D Design, Introductory Sculpture

New Media (4D)

4D Design, Time-Based Art, Film, Video, Interactive Art, Animation

Forum I

2-D Design, Design I

Forum II

Design II, Color Theory

Program Elective(s)

Studio art/design/media class of your choice (two are required in the first year)


While an Associate of Arts (AA) or Associate of Fine Arts (AFA) in Visual Arts or Fine Arts usually provides the best way for a student to earn the maximum number of 60 credits eligible for transfer to MICA, an AA or AFA is not required to apply to MICA. However, if you are following the requirements for an AA or AFA, contact the MICA Transfer Team before you start your program or early in your program to determine if all of the classes required for your Associate Degree are eligible for transfer to MICA.

You can have multiple transcripts evaluated for credit. If you are seeking transfer credit for classes taken at a college, we will need a transcript from that college.

Ask your current college registrar to email your final college transcript directly to MICA as soon as grades are ready. This happens after the end of the semester, and is only necessary if you have decided to attend MICA.

Recommendation letters are not required, but they can offer support for your application. Recommendations can be submitted by professors, college counselors, work supervisors and colleagues. A letter of recommendation from a college English instructor is recommended for students whose second language is English.

All transfer applicants (including international students) are eligible for scholarship; there is no separate application needed. The strength of your portfolio and academic record will help determine your merit scholarship award.

Transfer students are not required to live on campus, but they may choose to live on campus. Students are assigned first-come/first-serve based on the date of tuition and housing deposit payment and submission of the housing application.

Learn more about MICA's credit transfer policy.

When the Admission Committee evaluates transfer credit, your prior college experience will be compared to MICA's BFA requirements. Only credits earned at an accredited post-secondary institution will be considered for transfer. Of the 120 credits required to earn a BFA, up to 60-semester credits (or equivalent) may be transferred and applied toward your degree. Transfer credit for studio courses is determined by portfolio review. Liberal Arts courses in which course content parallels that of the courses offered at MICA will also be considered for transfer credit. Only courses carrying a grade of "C" or better will qualify. If your prior institution does not give letter grades, "pass" grades will be accepted. A MICA Degree Plan Worksheet showing where previously earned credits fit into the curriculum for their intended major is included in the admission decision for accepted students.

MICA does not require SAT or ACT scores for transfer applicants. If English is not your first language you must submit a valid TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo score with your application. MICA requires a minimum TOEFL score of 75 (MyBest scores are accepted), an IELTS score of 6.0, a PTE score of 58, or a Duolingo score of 105. MICA’s institution code is 5399 for TOEFL and IELTS. MICA may waive the required TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo scores if you have official transcripts that demonstrate at least two full years of academic success at a high school or college/university in which English is the language of instruction. Writing samples such as college essays and recommendation letters from college English instructors are encouraged to support your record of English proficiency. MICA may also waive the required TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo scores if you receive a minimum SAT score of 470 or ACT score of 18 in the English section. MICA's institution code for SAT is 5399. Our ACT code is 1710.

Transfer Admission Process

Next Step: Apply

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