Reverse Degree Initiative

Friday, April 11th, UofL and JCTC unveiled their partnership to create a reverse degree process in which a student can potentially be eligible for an AA/AS degree. Students who have 15 hours transferred from JCTC to UofL, and 45 or more hours at UofL (at least 60 total between both institutions) were selected to participate in this pilot initiative. Institutional Research (IR) found over 1100 students that fit this criteria. One hundred students were randomly selected from the 1100 to participate in the pilot initiative.

The students selected were juniors and seniors at UofL in good academic standing, and their JCTC transfer hours ranged from the minimum 15  to as many as 75+. Students were notified via email of this opportunity, and of the 100 students selected, 30 responded to say they would like to participate in the program.

Many students were excited and appreciative of UofL And JCTC for the opportunity and time spent caring for transfer students. The transmission of transcripts to JCTC were done free of charge to the student.

As of December 18, 2013, JCTC has conferred 6 associates degrees, with the potential for more to follow. With increased success, and JCTCs continued assistance, UofL would hopes to notify the remaining 1000 students of this opportunity, and put the proper procedures in place to make this a regular business practice.

"This partnership addresses the educational needs of our community and state." President James Ramsey

The benefits of the program are few to UofL, as these students do not count in the UofL graduation rate, but instead, are helping to achieve the state’s goal of 55,000 Degrees by 2020 and honoring the spirit of the 2010 House Bill 160.

This initiative and partnership continues to strengthen the relationship between UofL and JCTC, while making a commitment to help students not only obtain a bachelor’s degree, but be recognized and applauded for earning an associate’s degree along the way. Research shows that students who obtain an associate’s degree are more likely to persist and earn a bachelor’s degree.

[The Kentucky Transfer Feedback Report for KCTCS students in 2007-08 indicated that students transferring to a four-year public school typically transferred in 60 or more credit hours (51.5%). However, while 60 or more credit hours could equal an associate’s degree, only 25.6% transferred in with that credential (KY CPE, 2010, “Transfer”). Transfer research shows that students transferring into the upper division are more successful than those who transfer into the lower (Best & Gehring, 1993; Townsend & Wilson, 2006). The Kentucky Transfer Feedback Report included graduation rates four years after transfer, indicating that 61.9% of students who had transferred with an associate’s degree had graduated, as compared to 52.7% of students with 60 or more credit hours but no degree, and 30.4% of students with fewer than 60 credit hours and no degree (KY CPE, 2010, “Transfer”).]