Emails, Dustin Meador, director of government relations, Texas Association of Community Colleges, Dec. 12, 2017

From: Selby, Gardner (CMG-Austin)

Sent: Tuesday, December 12, 2017 15:48

Subject: RE: Urgent inquiry for a PolitiFact Texas update about progress on a Greg Abbott campaign promise


In the 2015 legislation, I don’t see mention of transferability.


Your provided summary says the general studies degree plan “would emphasize the student’s transfer to a particular four-year college or university of the student’s choosing.”


Is that language specific enough to ensure that credits earned at a community or junior college transfer to a four-year institution?


I ask as much because the legislation itself doesn’t specify that credits be transferable—or do I misread it or miss that detail?


I’d be happy to hear back soon by phone or email.



4:43 p.m.

You are correct that the bill did not create new requirement that credits be accepted.  However, the bill does create the multidisciplinary degree, which would require a student to complete the core curriculum:

(b)A multidisciplinary studies associate degree program established at a junior college under this section must require a student to successfully complete:

(1) the junior college’s core curriculum adopted under Section 61.822(b);  


The core curriculum under TX Education Code Sec. 61.822(b) is guaranteed to transfer if the student completes the entire core of 42 hours.  The code states:

(c)  If a student successfully completes the 42-hour core curriculum at an institution of higher education, that block of courses may be transferred to any other institution of higher education and must be substituted for the receiving institution's core curriculum.  A student shall receive academic credit for each of the courses transferred and may not be required to take additional core curriculum courses at the receiving institution unless the board has approved a larger core curriculum at the institution.


However, if student only partially completes the core, the receiving institution can pick and choose which courses count towards the degree:

(d)  A student who transfers from one institution of higher education to another without completing the core curriculum of the sending institution shall receive academic credit from the receiving institution for each of the courses that the student has successfully completed in the core curriculum of the sending institution.  Following receipt of credit for these courses, the student may be required to satisfy further course requirements in the core curriculum of the receiving institution.


So, while the core curriculum already existed – as did the requirement that it transfer as a block if completed – proponents of the bill might argue that the bill created a clear path for a student to complete the core with the expectation that the courses will transfer.  Very few students transfer core complete and while their credits may be accepted they do not always count towards the degree.


I’ve included the HRO report on the bill, which is where I pulled the description.  It’s an even handed assessment.


I hope this helps,



Dustin Meador

Director of Government Relations


From: Selby, Gardner (CMG-Austin)

Sent: Tuesday, December 12, 2017 16:47

Subject: RE: Urgent inquiry for a PolitiFact Texas update about progress on a Greg Abbott campaign promise


I will review; thanks.


Are you indicating that the requirement that credits transfer applies only if the student takes all 42 hours?


When did this requirement take effect (or which Texas Legislature did this)?


If there was action in 2015 or 2017 to create this wrinkle, please specify.



6:05 p.m.

The answer is it depends.  Credits can and do transfer regularly, and apply, without a student being “core complete"; however, being core complete guarantees that all 42 hours will transfer and be applied.  The multidisciplinary degree requires core completion, so it would transfer.    


The core was created by the 70th Legislature back in 1987 but has undergone some changes.  The Coordinating Board as information and a history here: 

There were no changes made to the core in the 84th or 85th legislatures.