MnSCU University Awards 96 AA Degrees Through Credit When It’s Due Project

Minnesota State University, Mankato describes Credit When It’s Due as a “student-centric approach which seeks to help students understand the importance of the often-overlooked associate degree milestone.” It’s this philosophy that has resulted in the institution awarding 96 Associate in Arts degrees to students.

According to University Registrar, Marcius Brock 71 of these degrees were awarded to currently enrolled students in hopes that when achieved “en route to the baccalaureate it will encourage further degree acquisition.” University officials say Credit When It’s Due efforts demonstrate a commitment to student success as well as institutional partnerships and collaboration. They have also noted that the degree:

  • Gives students an edge in the workforce over native university students by having earned a recognized credential, especially in cases where students are unable to complete the baccalaureate
  • Allows for the freedom of early transfer, especially in academic disciplines that encourage expedient pathways to the university (e.g. engineering, music, studio arts)
  • Can save students time and money by expediting paths to Baccalaureate degree completion
  • Is particularly beneficial for minority and economically disadvantaged students
  • Allows for a more accurate depiction of degree completion than is currently accounted for by IPEDS data
  • Can contribute significantly to state-level completion efforts

Universities within CWID participating states across the country have developed similar philosophies regarding reverse transfer and are reporting the benefits. Oregon State University has increased student retention by 10% since beginning reverse transfer efforts, an early indicator of the impact of reverse transfer programs.

In Minnesota, the Credit When It’s Due project has awarded 1,136 Associate in Arts degrees to date. Work on the project is scheduled to conclude in July.

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