Admission and Advanced Program Placement

Upon acceptance applicants may find they are eligible for one of three types of advanced placement in their program: transfer credit, advanced standing, or course substitution.

Transfer Credit

Accepted students may be eligible for transfer credit for graduate study completed at a regionally accredited institution or accredited by the Association of Theological Schools when such course work parallels courses in the TEDS Catalog and has been completed at a “C-” or better grade level. Graduate transfer credit is not granted for undergraduate course work, graduate-level course work applied to an undergraduate degree, or generally for course work taken at unaccredited graduate schools. Online Distance Education credit is limited to Association of Theological School and Higher Learning Commission guidelines. Transfer credit is limited to a maximum of 50 percent of a degree, and rarely does it approach that amount. Coursework older than ten years is not considered current and must be retaken.

Transfer credit is not automatic and is considered upon petition by the student generally at the time of admission. Transfer Credit Request forms are available online from the Records Office who evaluates the request at the direction of the Dean. All Trinity residency requirements must be met.

Students in a TEDS program wishing to substitute a required TEDS course with one from another institution should obtain approval from the Academic Exceptions Committee prior to enrolling in the course.

TEDS students desiring to complete a semester or year abroad should carefully arrange the application of this transfer credit prior to their departure. Such coursework is generally applied to electives and may not be equivalent to required TEDS program courses.


27 hours, including the final 9 program hours, must be completed through Trinity coursework, of which a minimum of 3 hours must be taken at the Bannockburn Campus. A maximum of 9 hours may be considered for transfer credit.

Advanced Standing for Credit

Advanced standing is available to students enrolled in the MDiv and certain MA programs at TEDS. Eligibility is determined by those who have taken undergraduate coursework that is equivalent to that required by the graduate program or when a student has engaged in formal learning that did not result in a graduate transcript or when a student can demonstrate that they have already achieved the learning outcomes of a particular course. Advanced standing may not exceed one-third of the degree being sought. These hours are credited on the transcript toward the required number of hours in the program to which the student is admitted as “Advanced Standing.” Advanced standing is not applicable to the ThM program.

Requests for evaluation of advanced standing eligibility must be made to the Admissions Office subsequent to an accepted student indicating their intention to enroll by submission of the tuition deposit or during the first year of enrollment. Additional documentation and assessment may be required by certain programs or departments.

Course Substitution and Program Modifications

Students who have taken coursework as part of their bachelor’s degree that would be repeated in their master’s program are encouraged to build on their previous studies by requesting permission to substitute advanced courses in the same department. Such substitutions are granted, without examination, in consultation with faculty. See the TEDS Academic Handbook for details.