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3.4.4 Policies for Academic Credit
The institution has a defined and published policy for evaluating, awarding, and accepting credit for transfer, experiential learning, advanced placement, and professional certificates that is consistent with its mission and ensures that course work and learning outcomes are at the collegiate level and comparable to the institution's own degree programs. The institution assumes responsibility for the academic quality of any course work or credit recorded on the institution's transcript.
Judgment of Compliance


Narrative/Justification for Judgment of Compliance

Hillsborough Community College has a defined policy for evaluating, awarding, and accepting credit for transfer, experiential learning, advance placement and professional certificates that is consistent with our mission and published in the HCC Catalog.   HCC ensures that such course work and learning outcomes are at the collegiate level and comparable to HCC’s degree programs by conducting transcript evaluations for all lower division credit course work of students transferring into the College.  HCC assumes responsibility for all course work recorded on its transcripts and has specific procedures for evaluating courses completed at both regionally accredited and non-accredited institutions.

Within HCC's District Office of Student Services Department, the Transcript Evaluation Department of the Office of Admissions, Registration and Records is responsible for evaluating transcripts received from students who have attended other postsecondary institutions. As a member of Florida’s higher education system, HCC is required to use the Statewide Course Numbering System to award credit for lower division coursework completed in the State. When course work is submitted for which no equivalency exists, general credit is awarded.  The Transcript Evaluation Department maintains a list of course equivalencies on the College's intranet. 

When students present course credit from non-regionally accredited institutions, the HCC Transcript Evaluation Department reviews the content and objectives of courses completed on a course-by-course basis, in accordance with HCC Operations Manual, Non-Regionally Accredited Institution Transfer Credit.  HCC's Transcript Evaluation Department notifies individual transfer students of the documentation that the department needs to complete its review.  The final decision of equivalency is determined by the Director of Associate in Arts Programs or the Director of Technical Programs.

Acceleration Mechanisms

The process for awarding academic credit through acceleration mechanisms is outlined in HCC Administrative Procedure 5.01.  The acceleration mechanisms that entail acceptance of non-credit course work include Advanced Placement, the International Baccalaureate program, the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES), the Proficiency Exam Program (PEP), Credit by Examination, the Certified Professional Secretary Examination (CPSE), and experiential credit for selected technical programs.

  • Advanced Placement (AP)- High school students may receive credit for courses completed in the National High School AP Program, on the basis of College Board AP scores of three, four, and five on any of the examinations in the program, with no letter grades or grade points assigned.  Students will not receive AP credit for courses taken as regular college courses.
  • International Baccalaureate (IB)- A student may receive college credit for courses completed in the IB Diploma Program based upon the grades (scores) earned on the IB examinations.  Students will not receive HCC credit for IB courses that duplicate regular college courses or credit that was awarded through other assessment programs.  (e.g. AP, CLEP, Credit-by-Examination, etc.)
  • Credit by Examination- Students admitted to HCC may elect to take an examination to receive credit in certain courses.  HCC Faculty Curriculum Clusters determine which courses will be given credit by examination and create exams for those courses.  A student who is currently enrolled in a course will not be eligible to receive Credit-by-Examination for that course, nor may a student receive Credit-by-Examination for a lower level course after earning credit for a higher level course.  A student who has completed a course will be eligible to repeat credit through the Credit-by-Examination assessment only for a course in which a grade of D or F was earned; a repeat will be treated in accordance with the College's repeat policy.
  • Certified Professional Secretary- HCC students who have passed the Certified Professional Secretary Examination and earned the designation CPS will receive 12 semester hours of credit.
  • Experiential Credit- HCC students may apply to receive experiential credit for work experience in any one of the following fields:
  • Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN);
  • Radiography;
  • Paramedic- Emergency Medical Services;
  • Tampa Electric Company Training (TECO) Controls Analyst Program;
  • TECO Field Engineering Program;
  • TECO Lineman Training Program;
  • TECO Plant Electrician;
  • TECO Substation Electrician Program

In order for an HCC student will obtain the Request for Experiential Credit from the appropriate campus academic dean, the following documentation is required:

  • LPN- A LPN admitted to the nursing program (accelerated option) must provide proof of employment for six consecutive months during the  last five years as an LPN in an acute or long-term care facility.
  • Radiography– A student admitted to the Radiography Program– American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) must provide a copy of certification as a radiographer in good standing from the ARRT.
  • Paramedic- Emergency Medical Services– A student who presents a valid paramedic license issued by the State of Florida will be awarded credit for the EMS-prefixed courses required for the College Credit Certificate in Paramedic, except for EMS 2551C Advanced Cardiac Life Support.  These credits are applicable to the Associate in Science Degree in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Technology.
  • TECO– A student who has completed a TECO training program must furnish a letter from TECO’s Human Resource Department certifying the successful completion of the training program.  The student must successfully matriculate a minimum of fifteen credit hours of the Industrial Management Technology courses at HCC.

Upon the determination of the academic dean, the form and supporting documentation will be forwarded to the Director of Technical Programs for approval.

Servicemembers Opportunity College (SOC)

The Servicemembers Opportunity College (SOC) is a group of more than 1,350 colleges and universities that provide voluntary post-secondary education to members of the United States Military.  Under the SOC agreement, HCC accepts applications from students who were awarded a standard high school diploma or equivalency certificate by any department of education or through the Armed Forces Test of General Education.  Applicable credits earned through the community college of the U.S. Air Force must be transferred.  HCC may grant credit for military education that has been evaluated and recommended as suitable for postsecondary credit by the American Council on Education’s Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services. 

Hillsborough County District Articulation agreements are established to provide for the smooth transfer of credits among member institutions, so that students can attain their educational objectives as efficiently and effectively as possible.  HCC has articulation agreements with 13 Florida universities, colleges, and institutes in addition to articulation agreements with Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida (ICUF) and the Servicemembers Opportunity College (SOC). HCC participates in the Hillsborough County District Articulation agreement and has established a number of technological preparatory articulation agreements with high school programs in Hillsborough County and in other Florida counties.   Articulation agreements are reviewed annually to capture changes and updates for inclusion in the HCC Catalog which is usually printed in the spring for the next academic year.

Supporting Documentation

Comprehensive Standards

3.1.1 Institutional Mission
3.2.1 Selection of CEO
3.2.2 Legal Authority & Operating Control
3.2.3 Gov. Board: Conflict of Interest
3.2.4 Gov. Board: Undue Influence
3.2.5 Gov. Board: Dimissal
3.2.6 Gov. Board: Distinction of Duties
3.2.7 Organizational Structure
3.2.8 Qualified Administration
3.2.9 Appointment & Employment
3.2.10 Evaluation of Administrators
3.2.11 CEO: Intercollegiate Athletics
3.2.12 CEO: Fund Raising
3.2.13 Foundation
3.2.14 Ownership of Materials
3.3.1 Institutional Effectiveness
3.4.1 Program Approval & Lrng. Outcomes
3.4.2 Continuing Education Programs
3.4.3 Admissions Policies
3.4.4 Policies for Academic Credit
3.4.5 Dissemination of Academic Policies
3.4.6 Practices for Awarding Acad. Credit
3.4.7 Consortial & Contractual Programs
3.4.8 Acad. Credit for Non-Credit Work
3.4.9 Support Services
3.4.10 Definition/ Gen. Ed. Requirements
3.4.11 Security of Student Acad. Records
3.4.12 Faculty Responsibility/ Curriculum
3.4.13 Program Coordination
3.4.14 Use of Academic Technology
3.5.1 Attainment / Gen. Ed. Competencies
3.5.2 Credit Earned at Institution
3.6.1 Advanced Academic Contents
3.6.2 Independent Learning
3.6.3 Credit Earned at Institution
3.7.1 Faculty: Qualifications
3.7.2 Faculty: Evaluation
3.7.3 Faculty: Professional Development
3.7.4 Faculty: Academic Freedom
3.7.5 Faculty: Policies on Responsibility
3.8.1 Library: Facilities and Services
3.8.2 Library: Access
3.8.3 Library: Staff
3.9.1 Student Rights & Responsibilities
3.9.2 Security of Student Affairs Records
3.9.3 Qualified Student Affairs Personnel
3.10.1 Financial Stability
3.10.2 Financial Statements
3.10.3 Financial Aid Audits
3.10.4 Control of Financial Resources
3.10.5 Control of Sponsored Research
3.10.6 Healthy, Safe, Secure Environment
3.10.7 Physical Facilities