Transfer Students FAQs

Learn more about the transfer process from these commonly asked questions.

If  you have additional questions, just reach out to MICA's Transfer Team at
–we're here to help!

If you have graduated from high school (or earned your GED) and earned 12 or more credits in post-high school college courses at a regionally accredited college or university, you will apply to MICA as  a college transfer student.

Your academic level (freshman, sophomore, junior) is based on the number of transferable credits you have earned. For example, if you have earned a total of 15 transferrable credits when you apply to MICA, you would start at MICA in the range of a first-semester freshman, 30 credits for a second semester freshman, 45 credits for a first semester sophomore and 57 credits for a second semester sophomore. At 60 credits, a student is considered a first semester junior. This is the highest academic level a transfer student can be when transferring to MICA because 60 is the maximum number of previously earned credits eligible for transfer.
We are also looking at the type of credits you have earned. MICA has a required First Year Experience foundation of eight studio classes that our First Year Students take when they start at MICA.  If you have not taken these classes at your previous college, you will spend your first semesters at MICA completing these classes

First year students and college transfers have not yet completed their Bachelor of Fine Arts at MICA. Both are undergraduate students.

 If you have earned a previous bachelor’s degree and wish to transfer up to 60 previously earned college credits from that degree towards a Bachelor of Fine Arts at MICA you would apply as a college transfer applicant.

College transfer applicants are expected to have a certain amount of college-level art instruction before they apply to MICA.

If your previous degree is in visual arts/design/media, we will review your transcript and catalog course descriptions, supported by the work in your portfolio to assess what credits are eligible for transfer credit 

If your previous degree is not in visual arts/design/media, we may not be able to accept all of your academic credits, however, we will attempt to place as many of them –up to 60 credits– as possible

 MICA does not award credit for audited courses. 

MICA awards the Bachelor of Fine Art degree (BFA).  The BFA requires 120 semester credits.  If a student pursues a  minor, additional credits may be required.  Up to 60 credits earned at a regionally accredited secondary institution after graduation from high school are eligible for transfer. 

As an art college that awards the BFA, our curriculum is 2/3 studio classes to 1/3 academic classes. In comparison, an art major at a liberal arts college or university that typically awards the Bachelor of Arts (BA) will take 2/3 academic classes to 1/3 studio classes. 

MICA uses the semester system. Most classes are three semester-credits each. A typical full-time semester consists of fifteen credits (5 three-credit classes). 

MICA is on the semester system. To be eligible for transfer, each course must be equivalent to at least three-credits in the semester system. 

5 quarter credits  = 3 semester credits 
2 trimester credits = 3 semester credits 

To be eligible for transfer credit each course must:

be taken after graduating from high school at a regionally accredited community college, college or university

be at least three semester credits (or equivalent to three-credits in the semester system)

must not be remedial 

must be passed with a final grade of C or higher 

must fit into the MICA degree plan for the intended major 

120 semester credits. 

Up to 60 semester credits earned at regionally accredited institutions are eligible for transfer credit.  60 credits is halfway to the 120 credits required for the Bachelor of Fine Arts. 

MICA's foundation program is called the First Year Experience (FYE). It consists of eight studio classes (24 credits), which our first-year students take during their first two semesters at MICA. 

We recommend that transfer applicants take as many of these first year requirements (listed below) at their current school before applying to MICA.

Drawing 1 (3 credits)
Drawing 2 (3 credits)
2D Design (3 credits)
3D Design (or any class that focuses on three dimensional skills such as sculpture, ceramics, or fiber) (3 credits)
4D Design (or any class that focuses on time-based art such as animation, film, video, interactive art/media) (3 credits)
Color Theory (3 credits)
Painting 1 (3 credits)
Art/Design/Media elective of your choice (3 credits)

Yes, MICA has academic requirements. Even though our curriculum is 1/3 academic classes to 2/3 studio classes, our commitment to academic study is evident in the variety and depth of our academic course offerings.  


While some academic courses are eligible for transfer credit, you will be required to take other academic courses at MICA alongside your studio courses.

Academics will be a part of every semester you spend at MICA. A typical full-time semester schedule might consist of 15 credits (5 courses): 1 academic course and 4 studio courses or 2 academic courses and 3 studio courses.

Typical academic classes eligible for transfer credit include:

Math/Science (1 class): Algebra, Geometry, Physics, Biology, Astronomy, Chemistry

Academic Electives: (3 classes/9 credits): English Composition 1, English Composition 2, Psychology, Sociology, Creative Writing, Literature

Art History Electives (3 classes/9 credits): Art History 1 (Ancient through Gothic, Art History 2 (Renaissance through 1855, Modern Art History, Asian Art History, Latin American Art History, History of Photography

History Electives (2 classes/6 credits): one Ancient History elective, one Modern History elective

Each major has a specific number of studio electives (between two electives and six electives) eligible for transfer credit.

While an Associate of Arts (AA) or Associate of Fine Arts (AFA) in Visual Arts or Fine Arts usually provides the best way for a student to earn the maximum number of 60 credits eligible for transfer to MICA, an AA or AFA is not required to apply to MICA.

However, if you are following the requirements for an AA or AFA, contact the MICA Transfer Team before you start your program or early in your program to determine if all of the classes required for your Associate Degree are eligible for transfer to MICA.

We recommend that students have at least one full-time semester of college classes completed or in progress before applying to MICA.


Check out our Portfolio Prep for Transfer Students for tips on putting together a cohesive body of work.

Yes. To be official, your transcript must be emailed or mailed from your college registrar directly to MICA's Undergraduate Admission Records Department.


Mail: Records Coordinator
MICA Undergraduate Admission
1300 W. Mount Royal Avenue
Baltimore MD 21217


You can have multiple transcripts evaluated for credit. If you are seeking transfer credit for classes taken at a college, we will need an official transcript from that college.  To be considered official, a transcript must be sent to MICA directly from your registrar at that school. 

Yes. The transcripts will be matched with your application when it is received.  In the Common App Academic History section, request official transcripts for the last three full years of academic work you have completed. Include your college transcript/s and if needed, your secondary school transcript. Official Transcripts must be requested through the Common Application, or requested directly from your current college through Parchment to

Ask your current college registrar to email your final college transcript directly to MICA as soon as grades are ready. This happens after the end of the semester, and is only necessary if you have decided to attend MICA.

Catalog Course Descriptions are required for a complete application. They help the Admission Committee assess your earned credits.

Check out instructions on how to put this document together at

Proof of high school graduation is required only if you are applying for Financial Aid. Scan as a PDF your high school diploma or a copy of your final senior transcript (an unofficial high school transcript is okay for this purpose) with your final grades marked and your graduation date clearly visible. Upload the the PDF to the Documents section of Common App for Transfer or email the PDF to If you took the GED or a similar high school equivalency test, upload your official score report to the Documents sectionin Common App or request that your official score report be emailed to

Yes. Go to MICA’s CommonApp page, click the Add to My Colleges button and select Transfer Students at the sign in prompt. The transfer application is completely separate from the freshman application. 


Recommendation letters are not mandatory, but they can offer support for your application. Recommendations can be submitted by professors, college counselors, work supervisors and colleagues. Your recommenders should submit their letters directly to or use the link generated for recommendations in CommonApp. A letter of recommendation from a college English instructor is recommended for students whose second language is English.

All transfer applicants (including international students) are eligible to apply for scholarship. However, there is no separate application to complete for transfer scholarship. Simply answer YES to the CommonApp questions about your intention to apply for scholarship. The strength of your portfolio and academic record will help determine your merit scholarship award.

As soon as you know that you will be attending a community college for two years before applying to MICA get in touch with our Transfer Team at We can help you choose community college that award Associate of Arts/Associate of Fine Arts degrees that are compatible with our Bachelor of Fine Arts requirements so you have the chance to transfer up to 60 semester credits and start at MICA as first semester junior, eligible to complete your BFA in two years (four semesters).

Transfer students are not required to live on campus, but they may choose to live on campus. 

Thirty on-campus spaces are reserved for admitted transfer students each fall semester. Students are assigned first-come/first-serve based on date of tuition + housing deposit and submission of the housing application.

After the thirty spaces are filled, fall transfer students are placed on a housing waitlist and are also referred to resources for off-campus housing.

The amount of on-campus housing available for transfer students during the spring semester is variable. Please contact for more information. 

Learn more about MICA's credit transfer policy.

When the Admission Committee evaluates transfer credit, your prior college experience will be compared to MICA's BFA requirements. Only credits earned at an accredited post-secondary institution will be considered for transfer. Of the 120 credits required to earn a BFA, up to 60-semester credits (or equivalent) may be transferred and applied toward your degree. Transfer credit for studio courses is determined by portfolio review. Liberal Arts courses in which course content parallels that of the courses offered at MICA will also be considered for transfer credit. Only courses carrying a grade of "C" or better will qualify. If your prior institution does not give letter grades, "pass" grades will be accepted. A MICA Degree Plan Worksheet showing where previously earned credits fit into the curriculum for their intended major is included in the admission decision for accepted students. Prospective students may request a Sample Degree Plan from the Transfer Team to see what credits are eligible for transfer by emailing with the following information: the name of their intended major and a PDF of their unofficial college transcript/s attached to the email.

MICA does not require SAT or ACT scores for transfer applicants. If English is not your first language you must submit a valid TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo score with your application. MICA requires a minimum TOEFL score of 75 (MyBest scores are accepted), an IELTS score of 6.0, a PTE score of 58, or a Duolingo score of 105. MICA’s institution code is 5399 for TOEFL and IELTS. MICA may waive the required TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo scores if you have official transcripts that demonstrate at least two full years of academic success at a high school or college/university in which English is the language of instruction. Writing samples such as college essays and recommendation letters from college English instructors are encouraged to support your record of English proficiency. MICA may also waive the required TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo scores if you receive a minimum SAT score of 470 or ACT score of 18 in the English section. MICA's institution code for SAT is 5399. Our ACT code is 1710.

Transfer Admission Process

Next Step: Apply

Considering MICA? It doesn’t hurt to plan. Take a look at our admissions process for first-year, transfer or international admissions.