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.

Advanced Standing for Credit

Advanced standing is available only to students enrolled in the MDiv program. Eligibility is determined by those who have taken undergraduate coursework in excess of a standard bachelor’s degree (generally 126 semester hours) and have taken coursework that would be repeated in their master’s program. Advanced standing is available only for core courses (not electives). A maximum of 15 semester hours may be granted. 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.” Students accepted into the AP MDiv program are not eligible to receive advanced standing.

Requests for evaluation of advanced standing eligibility must be made to the Records Office subsequent to an accepted student indicating their intention to enroll by submission of the tuition deposit or during the first year of enrollment.

Advanced standing hours are credited after a written or oral assessment has been made by the department in which advanced standing is being considered. The assessment examination evaluates whether a student has the knowledge, competence, and skills provided by the specific course(s) for which advanced standing is being considered. The level of achievement on the examination that constitutes a Pass is determined by the department or department chair and is final. A student may be examined only once for each course. A Pass on the examination results in the posting of advanced standing hours; a Fail requires that the required course or a course substitute be completed. (Consult the “Finances” section of this catalog for the exam fee.)

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.