While there are plenty of reasons to stay at BYU-Idaho, there are also plenty of academic reasons to transfer to another university. For example, I’m transferring to the University of Oregon (UO) because I want a bachelor of arts in economics with a minor in math. At BYU-Idaho, I could only get a bachelor of science in math with a minor in math, but the minor requirements are a little strict compared to the requirements at the UO.
The one issue that is one of the most commonly rumored about BYU-Idaho is that you can’t transfer from the university because the courses won’t go anywhere. This is only half true. In the spirit of my transfer, and of showing that it can be done, I decided to show those who have lost hope in transferring that there still is hope.
Before I get too far into how to effectively transfer, there are some things you should know first. One big misconception is that you must have that AA or AS degree. I’m going to tell you right now that you will just waste your time by doing that. Of course, it would look good on a resume to show that you picked something up along the way. But you should focus on making sure that your classes are going to transfer and help your degree elsewhere. In other words, most universities, including BYU-Idaho, won’t care about your degree because they will just transfer courses by credit.
If you want to get done quicker, look for a school that runs on a quarter system. This is because quarter credits are worth 1.5 times what the semester credits are worth. Yes, it will be intimidating that you’re expected to get 170 or 180 credits. But if you’ve earned 60 credits at BYU-Idaho and they all transfer, you’ve got 90 credits at the other school. This is something definitely worth considering. A good example is the UO. General education requirements say you need to have 15 credits in each group. Well, if you took four classes at BYU-Idaho that were three credits each, they would equate to a total of 18 credits.
Where to Start: General Education Requirements
First off, you should see if there are certain degree requirements for a bachelor of arts and a bachelor of science. Usually, the general education requirements will be the same; the only difference between the two really is one makes you demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language. Brush up on your mission language and you can test out! It’s up to the second year of the college level, so you shouldn’t have an issue.
I say to start with the general education requirements because you’re going to find that many of the foundations courses won’t transfer the way you want them to. To know what will and won’t transfer, look up the transfer course equivalencies page. If the class doesn’t show up, don’t worry! It may still transfer as a X00-level class.
As I said earlier, many of the foundations courses will not transfer the way you want them to. It would be good to skip over Family Foundations (FDREL 200) as it won’t transfer. In fact, if you’re looking to transfer to the UO, you shouldn’t take any religion classes other than New Testament, Old Testament, or World Religions. But beware that some of them will only transfer the second half of the course if it’s broken into two courses like Old Testament. These will transfer as arts and letters to the UO.
When it comes to your foundations English classes, they will usually transfer. Check to see if your desired school you’re transferring to requires two writing courses. The UO requires you take WR 121 and either WR 122 or WR 123. FDEN 101 will transfer over as WR 121. FDEN 201 will transfer as WR 200T English Composition. Take both to be safe.
American foundations transfers to the UO as PS (POLISCI) 110, giving you 4.5 credits toward your social science group. Since the general education groups require you to take at least two courses with the same course code and one with a different course code, you should look into take two other similar courses from the same subject if you don’t care for political science.
It’s similar with science foundations (FDSCI 101). It will transfer as a general science course that goes toward your science group. Always check before you start taking a bunch of other science classes at BYU-Idaho. If you’ve already taken science foundations, you’re going to want to find a couple other related classes. This means you might end up wanting to take environmental stewardship (FDSCI 203) and issues in global climate change (FDSCI 202). If this doesn’t equal 15 quarter credits (Quarter credits = Semester credits x 1.5), then you’re going to need to take one other course in science, physics, geology, chemistry, or biology. Make sure it qualifies as part of your science group.
Humanities, or cultural awareness, is a tough one because it transfers as part of your arts and letters group to the UO. You should look at what you already have if you’ve already taken courses at BYU-Idaho. If not, then you should ask yourself if you want to take religion courses or humanities. It’s completely up to you. If you want to just have a good GPA, take whatever is easiest for you. If you want my personal opinion, I’d take humanities and philosophy because it would make me look better than someone who is only doing something that was easy or typical at a church school.
Math is the most frustrating transfer because math 108 (FDMAT 108) is one class that doesn’t transfer as anything other than MATH 1AAT Math 100-level course and everybody has to take it. If your major requires a lot of math and you’re wanting to transfer to someplace like the UO, it may not be worth it to take anything past algebra (FDMAT 110). The UO doesn’t accept BYU-Idaho’s calculus course as a regular calculus course. Instead, it’s viewed as business and social science calculus (i.e. the easier one).
Associates Degree Warning
I know that I mentioned this earlier, but you really cannot get your associates degree and automatically have your general education taken care of. This is something BYU-Idaho’s catalog doesn’t really specify. Honestly, an associate’s degree from BYU-Idaho isn’t something that I would recommend you aspire to
Before you even begin to get excited about transferring out of BYU-Idaho, make sure you have the money to be able to go somewhere else. The UO’s out-of-state tuition is $30,000 per year if you take 15 credits per quarter. To gain residency usually takes a year in most places. And I mean 12 months, not three quarters. If you’re able to get in-state tuition at the UO, it’s $10,000 per year. If you’re planning on not using any loans and have a way to do it, great!
For those using loans to fund their education, you might want to know that you’re going to have to go the route I’m taking to gain residency at the school. If you’re not already aware, you need to understand that independent undergraduate students only get $57,500 in loans for college. This doesn’t include federal grants. But do know that it will drain quickly at other schools.