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Home > Research, Data & Reports > Student Enrollment Data > Student Demographics > Undergraduate Transfer Patterns


Undergraduate Transfer Patterns

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Each fall about 11 percent of undergraduates admitted in a Minnesota postsecondary institution are transferring credits from another institution.
Enrollment Statistics at a Glance - Undergraduate Transfers


In fall 2012, 33,856 undergraduates were admitted to Minnesota institutions with transfer credits from another institution. These students represented 11 percent of all Minnesota undergraduates. In addition, another 2,410 undergraduates were admitted to institutions having previously attended another postsecondary institution but their credits did not or could not transfer. With recent improvements in the transfer process within Minnesota public institutions and improved access to online courses, transferring credits has become more common.

71 Percent of Undergraduates Transfer as Freshmen or Sophomores, Fall 2012

71 Percent of Undergraduates Transfer as Freshmen or Sophomores, Fall 2012

Most Students Transfer Early

Most transfers occur early in students' college careers. Seventy-one percent of undergraduates at Minnesota institutions enrolling as transfer students in fall 2012 were first- or second-year students (freshmen or sophomores). Only seven percent of transfer students were categorized as seniors, or fourth-year students, when they transferred.

Undergraduates Admitted as Transfer Students, Fall 2012

Transferred From
Transferred To

Community and Technical College State University University of Minnesota Private College Private Career School Private Career Online School* Total
Community & Technical College5,5323,48193499111149,730
State University1,69143613833612,260
University of Minnesota65626417602531,025
Private 4-Year College55829056895935
Private Career School27899117422439
Private Career Online School*32611
Unspecified Minnesota institution239512211305
Out of State3,3551,560734901286406,246
Institution Not Reported4,566593,0901,9961,1402,05412,905

*Currently this category includes Capella University and Walden University. These institutions have corporate offices in Minnesota. Their nation-wide enrollment is reported. Most of their students are graduate students and students enrolled from out of state.

Source: Minnesota Office of Higher Education

Transfer Activity Increasing

The number of undergraduates admitted to Minnesota institutions with transfer credits in Minnesota increased by 60 percent from 21,238 in 2003 to 33,856 in 2012.

It is normally assumed that undergraduates who transfer do so from a two-year college to a four-year college or university, but this is not the case. Half of the transfer activity involves students transferring into a public two-year community and technical college from either a four-year institution or another two-year institution. Students tend to swirl around institutions to find the right academic or program fit.

Transfer-out rates at individual institutions who report this data can be found at College Navigator. Data are reported with the institution graduation rates to the National Center for Education Statistics for the IPEDS Graduation Rate Survey.


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