Skip to main content
Northwestern University

Transferring to Another Northwestern School

Sometimes students enrolled in one school at Northwestern wish to transfer to another school. For example, a student in the Bienen School of Music may wish to transfer to Weinberg College, or a student in Weinberg College may wish to transfer to the School of Education and Social Policy. The process of making such a change is referred to as an Interschool Transfer, or IST. If you are thinking of transferring out of, or into, Weinberg College, you are encouraged to discuss your possibilities with a Weinberg College Adviser.

To initiate the official IST process, follow the directions on the Registrar’s Interschool Transfer webpage. There you will find important information, including the first day on which you may apply to transfer to another school for each quarter, as well as the last day on which the application may be submitted to the new school. You will also find a link to the online application. You will need to meet with an adviser in your new school as part of the application process.

If your IST request is approved, then your enrollment in the new school will become effective at the beginning of the following quarter. You therefore need to apply for a transfer during the quarter preceding the one in which you wish to be a student in the new school. Each undergraduate school maintains its own admission standards; IST requests are not always approved by the proposed new school.

Interschool transfer out of Weinberg

If you wish to transfer out of Weinberg College, complete the Registrar's interschool transfer application, and follow the steps for transfer into your intended new school. You may wish to discuss your decision with your Weinberg College Adviser.

Interschool transfer into Weinberg

If you wish to transfer into Weinberg College, complete the Registrar's interschool transfer application, and follow the steps for transfer into Weinberg. You will need to meet with a College Adviser as part of that process.

Meeting with a College Adviser

After you submit your application, you will meet with a College Adviser. At this meeting, the adviser will talk with you about your academic plans and about the ways in which the courses you have taken thus far might apply to Weinberg College requirements. Note that there are two sets of requirements described, one that applies to students who matriculated (started taking Northwestern classes) after Spring 2023 and one applies to students who began their studies prior to that. Which degree plan you follow depends on matriculation to Northwestern, not date of IST.

Generally no more than eleven units of credit earned through courses offered by other schools of the university may be counted toward your graduation requirements, and no more than three of these units may be from applied music courses. (Approved School of Professional Studies courses in Weinberg disciplines do not count toward this limit.) Read more about counting non-Weinberg courses toward a Weinberg degree.

Please be aware that, depending on the timing of the interschool transfer, there are some special rules regarding certain degree requirements:

If you transfer out of Weinberg College during your first year before completing your two seminars or both a College seminar and first-year writing seminar, and you then transfer back, you will need to complete an appropriate substitution for the courses before you graduate.

Students transferring into Weinberg College may be able to count some courses taken in their former schools toward the Weinberg College distribution requirements or foundational discipline requirements. See a College Adviser or our information on distribution requirement exceptions for interschool transfer students, or foundational discipline exceptions for interschool transfer students.

An important rule to keep in mind: To receive a Weinberg College degree, students must be in Weinberg College for the final three quarters before completing their requirements. For more details, see our information on number of courses and quarters required for the degree.

Back to top