Application Process

Preparation

Top 5 things to consider when applying to grad school:
  1. Check your eligibility and program requirements first.
  2. Are you a competitive applicant? Do you have professional and scholarly experience relevant to the program you'd like to apply to?
  3. Most materials, including unofficial transcripts, your statement of purpose, and writing samples (if required), must be uploaded at the time that you submit your application. Preparing them in advance will expedite your process.
  4. These resources: 

Eligibility

Baccalaureate Degree

Applicants must have already completed a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited US college or university, or an equivalent degree from a foreign university, before the term in which they intend to begin their WWU graduate program.

The degree should be relevant to the intended graduate program. Read more about eiligibility for international students

English Language Proficiency

You must obtain at least the minimum TOEFL (86 iBT) or IELTS (7.0) scores to be eligible for admission.

Exceptions:

  • English is your native language, or
  • You have earned, or are in the process of earning, a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited US institution, or from Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand or English-speaking provinces of Canada.

Official TOEFL or IELTS scores must be on file in the Graduate School office when the application is received. Test scores must be no older than one year at the time of application.

Grade Point Average

In order to be eligible for full admission, applicants must have a 3.0 cumulative GPA (on 4.0 scale) calculated over all post-secondary coursework.

Applicants with advanced degrees from accredited institutions are considered to have met GPA requirements.

How to Apply

New Applicants

First-time users must create an applicant profile. If you decide to apply to more than one program, your applicant profile will be used for each program. You can only have one application in progress at a time, so once you finish and submit your first application, you can contact the Graduate School to ask for a fee waiver for the next application. 

Create Profile

Returning Applicants

If you already have a profile, you can log in to your account to

  • Update your applicant profile
  • Create a new application, if your previous application has been completed. You cannot have two applications in progress at one time. 
  • Edit or submit an existing application(s)

Sign in

Application Fees

There is a $100 application fee when you submit your application. If you are admitted, there is also a $100 confirmation fee. Both fees are non-refundable.

Documentation

Most materials, including unofficial transcripts, your statement of purpose, and writing samples (if required), must be uploaded when you submit your application. Preparing them in advance will expedite your process.

If you have questions as you proceed through the application, contact the Graduate School for assistance. Our office is open Monday-Friday, 9 am to noon and 1 pm to 4 pm (Pacific Time) at gradschool@wwu.edu or (360) 650-3170.

Application Requirements and Deadlines

Find your program's page and view available admission terms, deadlines, application requirements, and prerequisites for the program of your choice.

For programs that ask you to identify a potential thesis advisor (Anthropology, Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Environmental Science, Environmental Studies, History, and Experimental Psychology), be sure to look into the research interests of faculty within the department and contact potential advisors prior to submitting an application.

Test Scores

Most graduate programs have gotten rid of the GRE and other admissions test requirements. But check the requirements for your program, and see our Graduate Admissions Testing page for complete information.

Transcripts

The admissions application requires you to upload unofficial transcripts for each institution you have attended. See details and instructions at Uploading Unofficial Transcripts to the Graduate School.

Mailing Address

WWU Graduate School

516 High Street

OM 530, MS 9037

Bellingham, WA 98225-9037

Admissions Tests

Test scores aren't required for most graduate programs. A few programs still require admission test scores, or they may waive scores for holders of advanced degrees (ie. MEd, MA, MS, PhD, JD). To check application requirements, please visit the relevant program page. If admission test scores are requires, please see our testing page.

WWU's ETS institution code is 4947. It is unnecessary to specify a department code.

Transcripts

Unofficial transcripts from every higher education institution you have attended for academic credit are required at the time you submit your application. Please be sure to include unofficial transcripts for any institution where you took transfer credits or study abroad credits—even if the courses, credits, and grades are listed on your degree institution unofficial transcript. The only exception is for higher education coursework you completed while still attending high school. These transcripts will be used for GPA calculation and evaluation purposes. Please review detailed instructions on uploading transcripts and what document types fulfill requirements.

If you are a current or former Western Washington University student, please generate an unofficial WWU transcript through Web4U to upload.

Official transcripts will be required of candidates upon acceptance of an offer of admission.

Reference Letters

The application includes a built-in reference letter request system that automatically sends emails to the recommenders you specify. It will provide them with a form to make their recommendations.

Please note: All documents submitted in support of your application become the property of the University and will not be returned, copied for the applicant or a third party, or forwarded (except to the department for admission and Graduate Assistantship selection purposes).

When Your Application Is Complete

The Graduate School Office at Western Washington University operates as the graduate admissions center for all academic departments offering graduate degree and graduate certification programs.

Your file is eligible for review by the academic department for admissions consideration once all required materials are received.

Some departments review applications as a group. In these cases, complete applications are held until the deadline passes, and then evaluated. All applications completed by the deadline will be given full consideration.

Most programs that admit all terms (Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer) review applications as soon as they are complete on a rolling basis.

Confirming Admission

If you are offered admission, you will be notified via email that a Decision Letter is available to be viewed on your Application Activity page. In order to accept or decline the offer, please use the "Complete Your Decision Form" link provided there.

Please note: Accepting admission and confirming your intent to enroll requires a nonrefundable fee of $100. The confirmation fee is used to fund orientation activities, graduate student community development opportunities, and travel for graduate student presentations at conferences, among many other efforts.

Equal Opportunity Statment

Western Washington University (WWU), in compliance with applicable laws and in furtherance of its commitment to fostering an environment that welcomes and embraces diversity, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex (including pregnancy and parenting status), disability, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status or genetic information in its programs or activities, including employment, admissions, and educational programs. Inquiries may be directed to the


Vice Provost for Equal Opportunity & Employment Diversity, Title IX and ADA Coordinator, Civil Rights and Title IX Compliance
Western Washington University
Old Main 345, MS 9021
516 High Street
Bellingham, WA 98225

360.650.3307 (voice) or 711 (Washington Relay)
crtc@wwu.edu.

WWU is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities upon request. To request an accommodation, please contact the Disability Access Center, Wilson Library 170, 360.650.3083 (voice) or 360.650.7175 (VP), drs@wwu.edu. One week advance notice appreciated. To request this document in an alternate format, please contact the Disability Access Center, Wilson Library 170, 360.650.3083 (voice) or 360.650.7175 (VP), drs@wwu.edu.

Annual Security & Fire Safety Report

As part of Western's commitment to maintaining a healthy and safe living, learning, and working environment, we want to make you aware of our Annual Security & Fire Safety Report. This report is developed in compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act) and provides reported crime statistics for the previous three calendar years. The report also includes institutional policies concerning campus security, such as those concerning alcohol and drug use, crime prevention, the reporting of crimes, sexual assault, and other matters. The security and fire safety report is available for download.

To request a paper copy of this report:

Please contact the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services Office.

Phone: (360) 650-3839

Email: vpsa.office@wwu.edu.