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(Adapted from the rules of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board)

NOTE: Texas has six common core areas and state guidelines below for the core which must be followed at all public institutions. 

  • Majors, Degree Plans, and Core Courses. Degree plans may specify which core courses should be taken by the majors and departments may specify that a course taken for core credit is a prerequisite for a course that gives credit in the major.  A course taken for core credit in the department of the student's major cannot be counted in the hours applied to the major (no “double-dipping”).  If a course in a student's major field is also approved for core credit, the student must elect to take the course either for core credit or for credit toward the major, provided the department of the student's major approves.
  • No core “double-dipping.” A core class cannot be taken for more than one core area.  This includes courses that are cross-listed in two or more departments and are approved for two or more areas of the core.  A minimum of 42 hours are required for the core.
  • Science courses. Students must follow the requirements of their departments in selecting science courses and labs [details on 2007 General Catalog, p. 78].  The TWU core requires a minimum of 6 credit hours in natural sciences, and there is no stated requirement for a science lab.
  • Core competencies. Students who entered under the 2005 General Catalog or later ones must complete competencies in computer literacy and oral communication.

Core Transfer

Transfer of Credit--Completed Core Curriculum

If a student successfully completes the 42 semester credit hour core curriculum at a Texas public institution of higher education, that block of courses may be transferred to any other Texas public 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 Coordinating Board has approved a larger core curriculum at that institution.

Transfer of Credit--Core Curriculum Not Completed

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 within the core curriculum of 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 is required to satisfy the remaining course requirements in the core curriculum of the receiving institution. 

Satisfaction of Component Areas

Each student must meet the minimum number of semester credit hours in each component area; however, an institution receiving a student in transfer is not required to accept component core course semester credit hours beyond the maximum specified in a core component area. Departments may specify which core classes majors should take; however, transfer students cannot be required to repeat an area of the core which they have completed for core credit.  If the major has prerequisites, the student may have to take those in addition to the core.

  • Transfer of core courses. If a class counts at a core at another Texas public institution, TWU must accept that class for the area of the core for which it was taken.
  • Non- Texas or state institution core transfer. Courses from private or out-of-state institutions must be evaluated for core credit based on their teaching and testing of the approved core educational objectives. Requests for evaluation of potential core courses should be sent to the Office of Undergraduate Studies.

Concurrent Enrollment at Two Institutions

  1. A student concurrently enrolled at more than one institution of higher education shall follow the core curriculum requirements in effect for the institution at which the student is classified as a degree-seeking student.
  2. A student who is concurrently enrolled at more than one institution of higher education may be classified as a degree-seeking student at only one institution.
  3. If a student maintains continuous enrollment from a spring semester to the subsequent fall semester at an institution at which the student has declared to be seeking a degree, the student remains a degree-seeking student at that institution regardless of the student's enrollment during the intervening summer session(s) at another institution.

Only those courses the institution has accepted for transfer that can demonstrate fulfillment of the exemplary educational objectives for the appropriate component area or areas should be applied to the institution's core curriculum.  No institution or institutional representative may approve course substitutions or waivers of the institution's core curriculum requirements for any currently enrolled student, except as provided by state rules. For students who transfer to a public institution from a college or university that is not a Texas public institution of higher education, courses the student completed prior to admission should be evaluated to determine whether they apply to one of the institution's core curriculum component areas.


  1. An institution of higher education may, on a case-by-case basis, approve an accommodation of a specific core curriculum component area requirement for a student with a medically-documented learning disability, including but not limited to dyslexia, dysgraphia, or Asperger's Syndrome.
  2. Accommodation shall not include a waiver or exemption of any core curriculum requirement.
  3. An institution may approve for core curriculum applicability a course the institution offers but that is not approved as a part of the institution's core curriculum, if the institution demonstrates that the course has been approved to fulfill the same specific core curriculum component area requirement at five or more other Texas public colleges or universities. The Texas Common Course Numbering System course number may be used as evidence of the suitability of the course under this subsection.

TWU Process for Approval of Core Equivalencies

Advisors should submit to the Office of Undergraduate Studies a core evaluation form listing courses for which they recommend the student receive core credit, keeping in mind the guidelines above.   Additional information about the course is recommended as it facilitates decisions on equivalencies based on the required learning outcomes for the courses.

Detailed State Rules

page last updated 10/11/2016 12:25 PM