How long do college credits last?

So, you decided to take some years off (for whatever reasons). And, now, you’re planning to continue your degree course from where you left off! Fortunately, the credit hour system helps you to resume1 your degree course as opposed to starting from scratch.

However, the big question is: how long do college credits last? Technically, never!2 College credits do not have any specific expiration1 dates.

However, their value may diminish3 over time. There are several factors that determine the (true) validity of your college credits.   

What are the factors that determine the college credits life-shelf?

  • Core classes

Core classes are the main deciding factors of your college credits’ life-shelf. For instance, science, engineering, and maths courses usually have 10- year3 validity.

On the other hand, general education courses tend to have significantly longer1 life-shelf.  

  • Overall GPA

Some colleges may consider your overall GPA2 to determine if your credit score is transferrable.

  • Practical experience

Your college credits life-shelf may also increase if you have relevant experience1 in your particular field of study.

How long do college credits last without a degree?

Technically, college credits have no expiry date. However, some institutions impose validity restrictions (based on factors above).

If you’re asking yourself: how long do college credits last without a degree, it is safe to assume a time window between 5- 103 years.

On the other hand, professional degree courses have shorter credit hour life-shelf. This is mainly because their methodology changes frequently. 

How many credits to graduate college?

It is quite common to wonder how many credits1 you need to graduate from college.

The standard number of credits you need to graduate college with an associate degree is 604.

However, if you want to graduate college with a complete bachelor’s degree, you will need a credit of 1204.

How to find old college credits?

Finding your old college credits is rather simple. You can either go to your previous school website or contact them directly to find your old college credits1.

However, many schools have strict policies3 against making such information public. As such, you will have to know your student ID number1 and your social security number2 to access your old college credits.

How to know what credits you have?

The best (and also the easiest way) to know what credits you have is to go to your school or school district website1. Usually, you can find information like your current grades, past credits, and personal information on the website.

All the related information can be found under the transcript tab3. If the online service is not available, you can directly contact your school and verify the standard procedure3.

To calculate your total credits, you can simply add all the credits starting from your first high school course and so on.


On papers, the concept of college credits may appear easy and straightforward. However, making use of it can be quite a tricky task. Luckily, if you know how college credits’ life-shelf works, you can easily get your way around it.



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Hi, I'm John. And you’re in, a website that aggregates information on how food, things, or various products last in different storages or conditions.

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