Applying as a Transfer Student

Below you’ll find complete application instructions for a domestic (non-international) student who has attended an institution of higher education after completing high school or a GED.

Application DeadlineFebruary 1March 31
Decision NotificationMid-FebruaryEarly April
Deposit DueMay 1May 1

1. Apply for Free Online

Complete the Berea College Application for Admission. There is no application fee.

2. Submit an Essay

Submit your essay response via the online submission form as a PDF. Essay prompt: “Why do you wish to attend Berea College? How can Berea help to achieve your academic and personal goals? Please be sure to describe what you plan to study and how certain you are of your academic plans.”

3. High School Transcript 

Request an official copy of your final transcript or GED results. Home school students who don’t have a transcript should complete the Home School Supplement form.

4. Recommendation Form

There are 3 ways to submit a Teacher Recommendation.

  1. Ask a recent professor or college instructor to complete the Transfer Student Recommendation Form.
  2. Give a professor or college instructor this PDF form and ask them to complete and return to the Office of Admissions by email:
  3. You may submit a recommendation letter written on your behalf by a professor or college instructor by emailing it to

 Students who have not been enrolled within the past calendar year may submit a Recommendation Form from a current employer in lieu of a professor.  

5. Official Test Scores (optional)

There are two ways to submit official test scores:

  1. Visit (ACT scores) or (SAT scores) to send your official scores to us. Our ACT school code is 1492 and SAT school code is 1060.
  2. Ask your school counselor to email a copy of your full score report to

Berea College’s application process for Fall 2023 will be test score optional. Students who believe their scores are an accurate representation of their ability should submit them. Learn more about test score optional at Berea.


Submit the 2023-2024 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at It is available October 1. Berea’s FAFSA code is 001955.

7. College Transcript 

Submit your official transcripts from all institutions attended (even for credit earned while in high school) at If an applicant is currently enrolled, they should submit official transcripts once grades for the term are posted and before the February 1 Priority Deadline.

*For eligible non-citizens, depending on your USCIS status, a copy of your permanent resident card or employment authorization card will be required. Learn More.

Transfer Applicant FAQs

Applicants are ineligible for admission to Berea if they are in default of federal student loans, or if they owe a balance with any other institutions at the time they apply to Berea.

Applicants with less than a 2.5 cumulative college GPA or less than a 2.5 college GPA in the last 24 hours of transferrable college credit are ineligible for admission to Berea College.

An applicant will be considered a transfer student if they have attended a college course after graduation of high school. If an applicant is still a high school student, then they will need to apply as a first year student. If an applicant has attended Berea previously and is reapplying to Berea after taking some college courses at another institution, they will need to apply as a readmit student.

Only courses completed within 10 years of the initial enrollment at Berea, which are above 100 level (They are not developmental courses or other courses not at the college level as defined by that institution), in which the grade received is above a “C”, and awarded from a regionally accredited institution are transferable to Berea College.

Berea will accept credit from 4-year or 2-year institutions (i.e. community colleges) as long as it adheres to the earlier specified guidelines.

Transfer applicants may choose to apply for the Priority Deadline (February 1) or the Final Deadline (March 31).  Due to the competitive nature of admissions, those students who have strong interest in Berea should complete their application prior to the Priority Deadline.

Members of the Transfer Admissions Committee will read and review all eligible applications using a holistic approach, which considers all aspects of a student’s file.

After other forms of financial aid from federal, state, and student achievement scholarships are awarded, tuition is covered by Berea’s No-Tuition Promise, which is valued at more than $176,000.  Depending on the need of the student, Berea may provide funding to help with costs stemming from housing and meals as well.  55% of Berea College students graduate debt free, and those graduating with debt generally graduate with approximately 5,500 dollars, which is less than a quarter of the national average.

No. New transfer students may enroll only in the fall term of each academic year.

No. Berea College offers only undergraduate work leading to a Baccalaureate degree.

Students who have already earned a Baccalaureate Degree are not eligible for admission as a transfer student.

No. You must apply as a transfer student. However, for students finding themselves in this situation, it is suggested they attend either a community or a four-year college for at least 2 semesters or 24 credit hours in good standing to apply as a transfer student.

Although Berea does accept applications for international students, we typically reserve our very limited space for students who have had no opportunity to study higher education, whether in their home country or abroad. All students wishing to apply as an international transfer student must complete the international application process. If an international student has earned any university credit after completing secondary school, they must follow the international application guidelines and include all transcript from universities previously attended.

Admission to Berea College is extremely competitive. We receive hundreds of applications each year from very well qualified applicants from all over the United States, and can enroll only about 50 new transfer students each year.

No. Applicants are ineligible for admission to Berea if they are in default of their federal student loans, or if they owe a balance to any other institutions at the point of application to Berea. It is advised for applicants that are in default with their student loans to contact the Federal Student Aid office to resolve their default.

Yes, and many do. However, doing so does not improve the chance of being accepted. More often, strengthening application components (taking more college credit, more letters of recommendation, etc.) will give an applicant a stronger chance of admission.

All traditional transfer students must live on campus for at least one year. Non-traditional students (students who begin attending Berea College when they are at least 23 years old, are married, and/or have children) may live off campus if the Residential Life Office approves their application. Non-Traditional students may also live on campus in a residence hall, or if the Non-traditional student is married or a parent, they may apply to live in one of the 50 apartments in the Ecovillage with their spouse and/or children.

Any student who would have above a first year standing (more than eight BC Credits), or is a non-traditional student may apply for a parking permit to keep their vehicle on campus. Parking permits are assigned on a first come first serve basis, and admitted students may contact Public Safety regarding questions pertaining to the issuing of parking permits.

Yes. Berea does accept non-traditional transfer students. You can find out more about the Berea non-traditional community by going to

It is essential that applicants submit all application materials needed by the deadline. Applicants are welcome to submit both a resume and extra letters of recommendation, and are encouraged to do so.

No. Although Berea is known for serving students from Appalachia, the College prides itself in accepting qualified applicants spanning the US. Berea’s student body represents 45 different states and the District of Columbia.

No. Students generally declare their major to Berea College during the 2nd term of the sophomore year. Transfer students who are credited with 2 or more transfer terms are expected to declare their major in the spring of their first year. Transfer students who are credited with less than two (2) transfer terms are expected to declare their major in the spring of their second year. However, it’s important to let the school know an intended major so we can better serve students during the transition period from their college to Berea.

Applicants who have been offered admission will be notified of the number of credits accepted to Berea after their acceptance letter has been released. Only courses and earned credits completed with a grade of C or higher at a regionally accredited institution within 10 years of initial enrollment at Berea are transferable to Berea College. The amount of credit granted by the original institution will be honored by Berea and transposed into comparable course credits or fractions of course credits. If not accepted to meet a specific requirement, such credit can be accepted as an elective credit. One course credit at Berea represents four semesters hours or six quarter hours elsewhere. No credit is granted for developmental courses or other courses not at the college level, as defined by that institution (typically courses numbered below 100, such as 080 or 36B). Credit for a course in which a P,S, or credit grade has been earned will be granted only upon verification from the institution that work in the course was completed at a C level or above. Credits earned as part of a certificate program are not transferable. It’s also important to remember that only credit is transferred to Berea, not grades or quality points.

Transfer credit is not used in computing the GPA at Berea College and higher grades will not replace lower grades on the Berea transcript.

All colleges are required to list their accreditation status on their website.  The agencies listed below are regionally recognized and a student should feel confident that their credit will transfer to other regionally accredited institutions.