New Transfer Student Orientation
Welcome to Point Loma Nazarene University!
Transferring to another institution can be intimidating, but at PLNU, we want to make the process as straight-forward as possible. This site is specifically designed to walk incoming transfer students through the process of registration and to help explain what has transferred toward your degree at PLNU.
Once you have been "confirmed" by Admissions, your transcripts will be sent to the Records Office for evaluation. If you have been accepted to PLNU, but you are not sure if your status has been updated to confirmed, please contact an Admissions Counselor. Be sure you have sent all your transcripts to PLNU. You must send official transcripts from each individual transfer institution you attended. If you are taking courses currently and have not yet received grades, please also email an unofficial copy of your "in progress" coursework to the Articulation Coordinator in the Records Office to aide in the registration process. Also, if you have taken AP exams, you will need to contact the College Board and request that your official scores be sent to the PLNU Records Office (www.collegeboard.com).
Since it is your first semester at PLNU, you will automatically be registered by the Records Office. Your schedule is created based on the courses you will need to complete a degree at PLNU. After you are registered, a faculty or staff member from PLNU will be contacting you via email to let you know that you may now view your schedule in the PLNU portal. The Records Office opens the registration portal to you so you may make minor adjustments to your schedule, such as switching class sections or dropping units. Also, if you are entering PLNU in the fall semester, the Math Placement Exam will be offered through your student portal. For spring admits, the math placement exam will be given during New Student Orientation (the day before classes begin). The test allows you to waive the pre-requisite math courses (MTH099,113,133/153) upon receiving passing scores. Additional information will be sent to you via email. Your schedule will be updated if you waive a math course through the placement exam, so please check your score and notify the Records Office if you are still registered for a class you appear to have waived.
Go to my.pointloma.edu to set-up your student portal. Please double-check that your intended major is correctly listed in your portal. If it is not, contact the Records Office immediately at 619-849-2941. Once you have logged into your portal and have also received email confirmation about your registration, you will be able to view your schedule by clicking on "Records" and then choosing "Session Schedule". The average course load for a PLNU student is 16 units per semester. To view course descriptions, please visit the Undergraduate Catalog and click on "Course Information", which is located on the right side bar.
Another important tool in the transfer process is the Advising Guide. This can also be found on your PLNU portal under the Records section. Please take a few minutes to view our Advising Guide Tutorial. It will explain the format and function of the advising guide in more detail. Your advising guide lists all the GE (General Education) and major courses that are required to obtain a degree at PLNU. Next to each requirement on the left, there is a slot where your transfer course will appear if it is equivalent to the PLNU course. Any courses that are not fulfilling GE or major requirements will appear at the bottom of the advising guide under the section labeled "Electives". Electives are courses that have transferred to PLNU and will count toward the units you need to graduate, but are not fulfilling or equivalent to any specific requirement. Any transfer courses that are remedial or not transferable to PLNU will not appear on the advising guide. Please remember, all students should refer to their academic catalog for fulfillment of graduation requirements. The Advising Guide is an unofficial representation of degree requirements and should only be used as a tool to aide in your progress. We recommend comparing your advising guide to your catalog as you complete coursework at PLNU. If you have reason to believe that your advising guide is incorrect, please contact the Records Office to report it - 619-849-2941. But first, check out our Advising Guide FAQ to see if your question is listed there.
To view your unofficial transcript, a chronological list of all the courses that PLNU has transferred, please go to the Records section in your portal and click on "Unofficial Transcript". This is also the place where you can view your total earned units and your cumulative GPA.
The Records Office generally determines equivalent courses based on an individual comparison of catalog course descriptions. Some transfer courses may not match the exact unit requirement or content of a PLNU course. If you think the content in your transfer course was not accurately represented through the title or course description your transfer institution provided, you may be able to petition PLNU's original decision, provided you obtain a syllabus detailing the course's actual learning objectives and reading material. Also, if the Records Office needs more information to determine transferability of a specific course, there will be a highlighted "Courses Pending" comment (directly following the major requirements section) on your Advising Guide with further instructions. As soon as you are currently attending courses at PLNU, you may stop by the Records Office to start the petition process. First, you will meet with an Academic Records Specialist who will ask you questions about your course and then provide the appropriate petition form. He/she will direct you to the corresponding faculty department chair who will review your petition and mark favorable, neutral, or unfavorable on the form. Please bring the completed form back to the Records Office, and we will submit it to the Vice Provost of Academic Administration. He will make the final decision to approve or deny a petition. You will be notified of the final decision via email and also receive a copy of the petition in the mail.
Now that you have begun your first semester at PLNU, you have the chance to get to know your professors better. In particular, your assigned faculty advisor is here to help you. Your advisor can help you map out an academic plan, so that you will finish your coursework at PLNU in an efficient manner. Some courses in your major may only be offered alternate years or during a specific semester. In this case, you would need to plan ahead so that you can be sure to take the courses you need when they are available. If you are transferring to PLNU as a junior or senior with at least 57 units, you may apply for a "Progress Toward Degree" check with the Records Office. All students with 70 units or above are required to complete progress toward degree checks. Also, graduating seniors must complete a "Graduation Application" the semester before they intend to graduate. Both applications are available in the PLNU Student Portal under the Records forms section. Once submitted, the application will notify the Records Office to begin the process of scheduling your appointment (to secure an appointment for a Progress Toward Degree check, you will also be asked to fill out and return a template similar to your advising guide).
You've completed the Records Office Transfer Orientation! We hope to see all of you at New Student Orientation the weekend before classes begin. During the Transfer Orientation Luncheon at NSO, the Records Office will be explaining some of PLNU's commonly misunderstood policies and guidelines. You can view the information ahead of time by reading our Transfer Exceptions & Academic Policies handout online.
If you have any unanswered questions,
please don't hesitate to ask; we're here to help.
You may contact the Records Office at 619-849-2941 or reach someone specific
by utilizing the Records Office Staff page.
The Records Office