Students allowed to transfer credits

DUBAI - The Commission for Academic Accreditation (CAA) at the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research clarified recently that students seeking transfer to higher education institutions from a licensed institution in the UAE should be accepted, even though the degree programme in which they have been enrolled does not yet have a programme accreditation.

By Meraj Rizvi

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Published: Wed 21 Apr 2004, 11:08 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 1:08 PM

Dr Michael Smith, CAA Director, issued a letter dated April 11, to some 11 licensed and accredited higher education institutions, including the American University of Sharjah, American University in Dubai, Dubai University College for Applied Studies, University of Sharjah, Etisalat University, Al Ghurair University, Abu Dhabi University, Ajman University of Science and Technology, Skyline College, Gulf Cooperative University College, and University of Wollongong, stating that the letter aims to clarify the phasing in the 'Standards for Licensure and Accreditation (2003)' regarding the acceptance of transfer students.

The letter stated that admissions are entirely the institutions' decision, consistent with the 'Standards' and its own admission policies, and there is no obligation for one institution to accept transfer students from another institution.

But, at the same time, the Standards do not prevent an institution from accepting students from an institution such as the Sharjah College that is recognised by the ministry and whose programmes are undergoing review for accreditation-eligible status.

The letter referred to the plight of Sharjah College students seeking transfer to other institutions that are licenced and that have accredited programmes.

The issue came to light following Dr Smith's recent meeting with the students of Sharjah College that left over 350 students stranded, following a delay in completing its accreditation procedures due to financial implications.

Dr Smith was urged to look into the issue and help at least those students seeking educational opportunities elsewhere to transfer credits to local institutions.` The students were, however informed that the ministry would be unable to attest their degrees since the accreditation process was incomplete, but will request recognised institutions to accept their credits and allow them to complete their degree programmes without losing further credits.

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