Student transfer policy

Student transfer arrangements

In-coming students

The University’s priority for admissions is to match prospective students with the course of study that best meets their academic and vocational needs and individual circumstances and recognises that there may be occasions where a student wishes to transfer from one HE provider to another.

The University of Sussex will consider applications for entry to the second year of most of its undergraduate courses from prospective students who may wish to transfer from another institution. These arrangements are subject to any specific requirements of an accrediting or regulatory body. Such applications may be based on the Recognition of Prior Certificated Learning or RPCL. The University will also exceptionally consider applications for exemption from modules on a limited number of postgraduate taught courses on the basis of either RPCL from another institution or on the basis of experience, known as the Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning or RPEL which may include professional development or employment based awards.

RPCL can be considered only when the prior certificated learning meets one of the following criteria:

  • the prior certificate was awarded by another UK HEI (University of Sussex students who wish to return after withdrawal to complete their course can apply for readmission to the same course or a different course)
  • the prior certificate falls within a UK regulated credit framework (e.g. the Qualifications and Credit Framework)
  • the prior certificate is from an international institution and has been reviewed by NARIC to determine its credit value and equivalence to one of the UK national credit frameworks.


At undergraduate level an application may be made for exemption from year/stage 1 of an undergraduate degree, based on 120 credits (or equivalent) including 90 credits at FHEQ level 4. Application are also considered for exemption from year/stage 0 of a Foundation Year, based on 120 credits (or equivalent) at FHEQ level 3.


At postgraduate level an application may be made for exemption for entry to defined courses on the basis of a maximum of 50% of the credits required for the new course where those credits have not been used for a previous award. The University will also consider admission to postgraduate provision with up to a maximum of 50% of the credit previously used for an award, subject to a maximum of 50% of the credits required for the award being imported. Credit achieved on a dissertation or major project may not be imported.


Application is via the normal routes and the University’s usual processes for assessing the application apply. It is the responsibility of the applicant to make clear in their application their wish to be exempted from modules on the new course. Undergraduate students may apply to enter directly to the start of the second year. Students who have completed a foundation year at another University may apply to enter at the start of year one, where they have not met the standard course entry requirements. Postgraduate students may apply for exemption from modules where these have been completed elsewhere or where exemption is on the basis of existing professional development qualifications or experience. As a minimum for RPCL the applicant will be asked to provide a transcript as evidence of completion and an outline of the course and module content, sufficiently detailed to permit curriculum matching.

All applications are referred to the relevant academic School which undertakes the academic exercise of ensuring that the course entry requirements are met and mapping the prior learning against the curriculum from which exemption is sought. The process will also seek to guarantee that the learning is current. That is, not only does the past learning match into the University course, but that the knowledge and/or understanding and/or skills reflected in the prior learning can be presently applied by the applicant. The University will normally only consider credit achieved within the past 5 years. The School will:

  • determine whether credit can be given; and
  • identify which modules can be credited (if relevant).

If the evidence is sufficient to grant credit, the applicant is informed of the decision and made an offer. The applicant enrols and the credit given through this process is recorded in the University’s student record system and on the student’s transcript as ‘Advanced Standing’.

Where an application for exemption has been approved, marks achieved on credit from another institution will not be imported and will not contribute to the determination of final classification of an award.

The arrangements for students to transfer to the University utilising RPCL are described on the University’s website. The quality assurance arrangements underpinning admission by RPCL are described in the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning Policy, which is available on the University’s website.

Outgoing students

All students who exit the University either upon completion of their intended award or part way through a course are issued with a transcript which details the modules taken, their credit value and the marks for each module, and the award gained (including intermediate awards achieved).

The decision to accept credit from the University of Sussex is at the discretion of the receiving institution.

The University publishes its transfer arrangements for current students on its website.