Is my writing courses transferable? Advice on courses planning for transfer needed!

Hi everyone,
I’m an international student currently enrolling in a 4 years private university in the US in California. I’m a freshman majoring in CS. I’m planning to transfer to some schools which include UCs, CSUs, and private universities. I see that all the schools I’m applying to have a requirement on 2 writing courses. My university do have 2 mandatory writing courses but I can’t found any articulation agreement with the schools I’m applying to. Is there any way for me to know if the writing courses from my universities are transferable? If they are not, would my application be disqualified? My counselor doesn’t want to help me so I’m planning out my transfer by myself. Any advice is greatly appreciated!

A lot of schools have transfer equivalency databases up on their websites that show how courses from other schools have previously transferred in. For instance, UC-Berkeley has this on their site: Transfer Courses (by Institution) | UC Berkeley | University of California, Berkeley

Also, advisors at your current school won’t know how things will transfer over or be familiar with what you need to do for your application. You should talk with admissions at the schools you are looking at attending. They should be able to connect you with someone who can answer questions like this.

Good luck!


Thank you for replying. If you don’t mind me asking, do you know if my application would be disqualified if my writing courses are not transferable or I can just take it at the schools I’m applying to if I get in?

For the UC’s and CSU’s, you have to meet the writing requirements by time of transfer so if they are not transferable, then you are out of luck. The best thing you can do is read the course descriptions of the needed writing requirements and match them to your private university courses.

You can use to see which CC courses transfer to the UC’s and CSU’s and find comparable courses at your current university.

I would find another counselor/advisor if they are unwilling to help since you are paying college tuition for their expertise.

Which Private University are you currently attending?

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I’m currently attending University of the Pacific. If the 2 mandatory writing courses are not transferable, then I don’t think there is a course here that is equivalent to the writing courses at UCs and CSUs. I have tried and UOP’s articulation agreement but the writing courses are only transferable to UOP as “Basic Writing Skills”, and don’t have equivalent courses. My advisor told me it’s not his job to help me transfer so I’m trying to figure it all out by myself. I would love to hear any of your advice!

This is what the UC website states:

Although UC does not have preapproved formal agreements on transferable coursework outside of the California community college system, general units or credits from a regionally accredited college or university are transferable if a course is comparable to one offered at a UC campus. If a course in not equivalent to a particular UC course, it must be appropriate for a UC degree in terms of its purpose, scope and depth. However, some courses are not transferable to UC. The following types of courses, for example, will not garner UC transfer credit:

  • Remedial English (composition courses below the first-term college level)

So I would look up some UC English composition course descriptions and then try to match them to UOP’s offerings. Based on the requirements listed below, the UOP writing courses would appear to be acceptable.

Here are the requirements:
The admissions office will facilitate review of prospective courses once an admissions application is submitted. Courses that are eligible for consideration of an R&C review must:

  • have at least 3 semester units or 4 to 5 quarter units in value.
  • satisfy the writing requirement at its home institution.
  • focus on instruction on English composition.

One of my friend advised me to take the two writing courses at a CC in addition to UOP’s 2 mandatory writing courses. I prefer to take lower division courses required for my major or GEs instead, and I’m also concerned that UOP won’t let me do the courses since they already have it here. What is your opinion on this?

If you are planning to transfer, I cannot see how UOP will restrict you from taking the classes at a CC.

I registered for a summer course at Berkeley and it was rejected by the registar office because it is a repeat of a course I’ve already taken so I’m afraid the same thing will happen to the writing courses as well. However, I’ll try to see if it works out. Thank you so much for your advice!

On the requirements listed for the writing courses, this statement satisfy the writing requirement at its home institution. appears to fulfill your transfer requirements.

Take the classes at the CC instead of UOP to ensure they are transferable unless you plan to use UOP as a backup if you are not accepted into your transfer target schools.

I do intend to use UOP as a backup if I’m not accepted but I really want to transfer out so I think I will take the writing classes at CC. Also, I have a question, does the classes for Summer 2023 count toward my application? Because I planning to take the first writing class in Summer 2022 and the next one in Summer 2023.

All transfer courses have to be completed the Spring prior to transfer. The summer 2023 course will be too late if you are targeting Fall 2023 admissions.

Okay, I have to do concurrent enrollment then. Thank you so much for helping me out! I really appreciate it!

all of the UCs and CSUs have detailed transfer agreements with all of the CCCs. If you want to graduate from a CSU or UC, IMHO you are wasting time and money at UOP. I’d look into transferring to a CC as soon as you can.

That said, UOP has a fine CS program, a pretty campus and a 4 year grad guarantee but, for most people, the full rate tuition is tough to manage.

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To add onto what @NCalRent has indicated, the UCs and CSUs will charge you nonresident tuition. Are you prepared for those fees?

Can you afford the costs at UOP?

Can you afford to pay the full cost of attendance at california public universities…because you won’t be getting any financial aid to attend them.

You need a better grasp of written English. I know this is the Internet and folks aren’t necessarily as careful in their writing, but yours has many many grammatical errors.

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I agree with @Thumper that your subject-verb agreement is very, very weak.
Even though you may think that CS shouldn’t require basic English skills, the US universities demand a basic knowledge of subject-verb agreement for a diploma.

I hate to deviate from the topic but, you need remedial English help.
Maybe some of the CC courses can cover these basic English structure areas.
I am also a second language speaker, so I know it’s tough to distinguish the differences in grammatical rules, so let me help you a little if the site allows this.

“Is my writing courses transferable?” in your title, is an incorrect use of subject/verb agreement.

The way to check your grammar is to change your question to a statement:
“My writing courses is transferable.”

My writing courses (plural subject because “courses” is a plural word)

Is (this “verb” should be used with a single subject)

The subject “writing courses” in this sentence, is a plural subject (or, more than one), so the verb to use, in the case of a “plural subject”, would be “are”:

My writing courses are transferable.
Or, “Are my writing courses transferable?”

Yes English is difficult.

If you had asked, “Is my writing course transferable?, then this subject and verb are correct because the word, “course” is a single subject.

If you add an “s” or “es” to a word, it usually becomes a plural (more than one thing): books, phones, computers, courses, classes, etc.

Some English plurals are made by changing the ending of words to “en” but the rules change:
Child to children
Man to men
Woman to women

I have to reIterate that English is difficult and confusing. You need to take those courses to get a better grasp of speaking and writing and thinking in English.

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Hi all, I understand the cost of attending public universities as an international student and am able to afford them. I love UOP but I can’t stand living in Stockton at all. I feel unsafe and scared whenever I’m outside of the school. I don’t want to spend my 4 years of college just staying inside the dorm so I decided to transfer. I’m still thinking about transfer to a CC but my parents are against it. Also, I’ll take the writing courses to improve my skills. It’s just that I don’t really want to take the course concurrently or do an overload in my sophomore year. Thank you for all the advice and concerns!