AP 303-21: Undergraduate Students

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Academic Policy 303-21 Authority: University President
Effective: September 1, 2023 Proponent: Academic Senate

Summary: This policy establishes minimum requirements for undergraduate students of Eastern Washington University. It also describes academic standards related to program requirements and satisfactory progress.

History: This policy was amended and approved by the Academic Senate on April 10, 2023, and April 24, 2023, and approved by the University President on June 1, 2023.  Additional changes were approved by the Academic Senate on May 22, 2023, and approved by the University President on September 1, 2023.


Eastern Washington University has established minimum standards for undergraduate admission or enrollment. These standards include, but are not limited to, the requirements of this chapter.

1-1. Education / Preparation

On the date of admission to the university and/or attendance at any university course, applicants/students must:

a. be a high school graduate or equivalent; or,

b. be attending university courses under the provisions of a student enrollment option program such as Running Start or a successor program, or,

c. be attending University courses that are specifically designed for children or are part of a program or event that is meant for children (i.e. Summer Camps).

EWU may deny admission, enrollment, and/or attendance to any current or prospective student, if, in the judgment of the university, and based on the student’s past or current behavior or conduct, the student could create a disruption to normal educational processes or pose a health or safety risk.


2-1. Admission

The Office of Admissions assists prospective undergraduate students and their families with the application process.

Application Information: Undergraduate applicants are reviewed individually. Each category of undergraduate applicant—freshmen, transfer, post-baccalaureate, former student, and adult learner, has specific admission requirements. Descriptions of each student category are provided below. Specific admission requirements for each category are published annually in the Graduate and Undergraduate Catalog (Annual Catalog).

2-2. Undergraduate Student Categories

a. Freshman: A freshman applicant for the purposes of admission is defined as a student who meets at least one of the following criteria:

• is currently in high school;

• is a high school graduate or equivalent without post-high school transferable college credit;

• is a current high school student with Running Start credits, or,

• has earned less than 40 transferable credits.

b. Transfer: A transfer student for the purposes of admission is defined as a student who has earned 40 or more transferable credits.

c. Post-Baccalaureate: A post-baccalaureate student is defined for purposes of admission as any applicant with an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution who is seeking course work toward a second bachelor’s degree, teacher certification or other course work that is not part of any Eastern graduate program.

d. Former Student: A former student is defined for purposes of admission as any applicant who was previously admitted and enrolled at Eastern and has been absent from the University for more than four quarters.

e. Adult Learner: An adult student for purposes of admission is defined as an applicant 25 years of age or older who does not otherwise fit into one of the above categories.

2-3. Non-matriculated Students

Students who are attending or seeking to attend courses who are not admitted are not subject to most admission and registration requirements.

a. Non-matriculated students may register for classes for two quarters without being admitted to the University. Enrollment will open for these students two weeks before the first day of classes. Additional enrollment (excluding summer session) requires admission to the university. Summer session enrollment is open to matriculated and non-matriculated students. Non-matriculated students are not eligible to apply for financial aid. Any specific requirements for non-matriculated students will be identified during registration.

b. Running Start Program: Eastern is recognized as a Running Start institution by the Washington Department of Education. Eligible high school students may enroll in EWU courses on a full- or part-time basis to meet high school requirements and earn college-level credit. Students must meet the minimum admission criteria, which may include SAT or ACT scores. Further information is available through the Running Start Coordinator at EWU.

2-4. Exceptions to Admission Criteria

Eastern can admit up to 15% of all incoming freshmen who have not met College Academic Distribution Requirements (CADRs) or fall below a 3.3 GPA. Students who are admitted without completing the high school core courses may be required to complete specific courses for college preparation or to satisfy Eastern graduation requirements.

2-5. General Education Diploma

Eastern will accept the General Education Diploma (GED) in lieu of high school graduation. Applicants who have completed the General Education Diploma must have achieved a minimum score of 50 with no score lower than 45 in any subject area.

2-6. Home School Students

Home school applicants must present evidence of the completion of the CADRs or their equivalents or a GED as proof of high school completion.

2-7. Student Athletes

Student athletes must meet the NCAA Clearinghouse requirements to be athletically eligible.

2-8. Applicants with Running Start Credits

Applicants with Running Start credits who are still in high school must meet all freshmen admission criteria and have a cumulative college GPA of 2.0 or better. Applicants to Eastern who have enrolled in another college or university after high school graduation must meet all transfer admission criteria.

2-9. International Student Admission

An international student is defined as a student who is in the U.S. or planning to enter the U.S. for academic purposes. These students will be in F-1, J-1, or other eligible immigration status. Eastern Washington University will determine the appropriate entry level (freshman or transfer) based on the applicant’s academic records.

2-10. English Language Requirements

a. International Students who have English as their second language and who have not completed a transferable English Composition course (with a minimum 2.0 grade) must submit one of the following official test results:

(1) Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of at least 525 (paper based), 195 (computer based), or 71 (IBT), or

(2) International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of at least 6.

b. Applicants who do not meet these English language admissions requirements may be admitted to the University with the condition that they successfully complete a program of study with Eastern’s English Language Institute (ELI).

c. Students who complete secondary education in schools where English is the primary language of instruction meet the English language admissions requirement.

2-11. Transfer Agreements

Eastern participates in direct transfer agreements with community colleges in the state of Washington, Oregon, and select colleges in other states. Graduates of these colleges who complete a direct-transfer associate degree are admitted to Eastern with junior standing and have satisfied the lower division general education requirements.

2-12. Transfer of General Education Requirements

Students transferring to Eastern Washington University from a Washington public baccalaureate institution who have official documentation certifying completion of all the lower division general education requirements from the sending institution have satisfied Eastern’s general education core requirements and university competencies and proficiencies.

2-13. Registration

Requirements for class registration may vary between classes and between students.


3-1. General

Transfer credit is generally awarded for courses completed at regionally accredited two-year or four-year institutions. When determining transferable credit, Eastern adheres to the standards and practices of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers.

3-2. Policy and Transfer Credit Limits

No more than 135 credits (lower- or upper-division) may be accepted in transfer for a bachelor’s degree. Transfer credit shall be accepted for upper- division credit only when earned at a regionally accredited four-year, degree-granting institution as upper-division credit.

3-3. Advanced Placement

Credit for minimum scores on Advanced Placement examinations given by the College Board will be awarded upon receipt of official score reports. Acceptability of credits toward major requirements or general education requirements is determined by the appropriate department.

3-4. College in the High School Credits

Applicants with credits earned through College in the High School programs in Washington State must meet freshmen admission criteria. College in the High School courses will be accepted as transferable college credit if they are from a regionally accredited college or university and are consistent with Eastern’s general transfer policy.

3-5. Running Start

In general, college credits earned by students through Running Start in the State of Washington are treated as transfer credits, as they are recorded on the official transcript of the college where the work was completed.

3-6. College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Eastern Washington University will award credit for CLEP tests. Acceptability of credits toward major requirements or general education requirements is determined by the appropriate department.

3-7. Experiential Credit

EWU will award credit for experiential learning limited to the standards established by Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).

3-8. International Baccalaureate

Eastern Washington University will award credit for Higher Level International Baccalaureate exam results of “5” or better. Acceptability of credits toward major requirements, or Breadth Area Core Requirements (BACRs) is determined by the appropriate department.

3-9. Foreign Educational Credentials

EWU will accept credit evaluations from any evaluation service that is a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES). Students must request evaluation through the evaluation service, who will forward the completed evaluation to EWU. EWU will accept such credit consistent with guidelines of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO).

3-10. Military Credits

Students may earn up to 45 quarter hours of credit for military educational experiences. This includes credits awarded for CLEP/DANTES tests. Note: Any student pursuing a bachelor of arts in Interdisciplinary Studies (Prior Learning Option) will not be awarded more than 90 quarter hours in credit from a combination of military experience and prior learning block credit.

3-11. Veterans

College credit may be awarded for military service time. Veterans must submit a copy of their DD Form 214 or equivalent documents.


4-1. General Education Requirements

To earn a baccalaureate degree, all students must demonstrate competency and proficiency in Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning, English composition, and Breadth Area Core Requirement (BACR) courses which include analytical and critical thinking skills, information literacy, writing, communication, and quantitative reasoning skills.

a. Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning Requirement

(1) Placement Assessment: Students who have not fulfilled the Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning requirement must complete a Mathematics placement survey to determine course level.

Transfer students must take the Mathematics placement survey unless they have an approved direct-transfer associate degree or they have earned placement through completion of a transferable course to a mathematics course from the EWU catalog with a grade of C or higher.

Students may choose to take the math placement test in addition to completing the survey and the highest score between the two assessments will be used for placement.

Note: the most current Mathematics placement information is found on the EWU Mathematics website.

(2) Degree Requirement: Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning is demonstrated by successfully completing one 5 credit course defined by the General Education Council as satisfying the requirement. This information is located in the Catalog of the year the student begins attending classes.

b. Writing Competency and Writing Proficiency Requirement

(1) Placement Exam: English composition placement is based on a student’s SAT or ACT test scores if the student has not completed at least one composition course at a college or university. If a student does not have an SAT or ACT score, they can be placed into the university-level writing course, ENGL 101, if they have achieved one or more of the following:

• Earned a 3 or 4 on the Smarter Balanced English test

• Earned a cumulative high school GPA of 3.0 or higher

• Earned a “B” or higher in a Bridge to College English course

(2) Degree Requirement: Writing Competency will be satisfied by completing one 5 credit 100 level course approved by the General Education Council. Writing Proficiency is satisfied upon successful completion of one 5 credit 200 level course approved by the General Education Council.

(3) Students with an approved direct-transfer associate degree have satisfied the Writing Competency and Writing Proficiency requirement.

4-2. Pre-University Skills Courses

Students who are required to complete Pre-University level courses must do so prior to earning 45 credits.

Each term the student must enroll in at least one Pre-University level course until all Pre-University requirements are complete. The student may not drop a Pre-University level course once enrolled unless permitted by an academic advisor. If a student has not yet fulfilled Pre-University requirements, the university may proactively register the student into Pre-University courses.

Students who do not establish placement either by taking a placement exam or through coursework completed prior to attending EWU will be considered under the requirements and restrictions of the policy.

Courses to which this policy applies are: MTHD 103, MTHD 104, and MTHD 106.

4-3. Core Requirements

EWU has designed the General Education BACR Curriculum for the purpose of preparing students with the skills, habits of mind and breadth of subject matter that characterize an educated person.

All students without an approved Direct Transfer Agreement (DTA) degree must complete six BACRs totaling at least 26 credits. A requirement can be completed by a single approved course of no fewer than 3 credits.

The three core disciplines are:

• Humanities and Fine Arts

• Social Sciences

• Natural Sciences.

Students must complete two BACR courses from each of the three Breadth areas.

4-4. Additional Graduation Requirements

These requirements apply to all undergraduate students who do not have baccalaureate degrees. The requirements may be satisfied through appropriate courses at Eastern or transferable equivalents.

a. Diversity: Students must complete at a minimum of 4 credits in coursework related to diversity. Courses must be selected from a list of courses that are identified as satisfying this requirement. The list of courses is published in the Annual Graduate and Undergraduate Catalog.

b. Global Studies: Students must complete at a minimum 4 credits in coursework related to Global Studies. Courses must be selected from a list of courses that are identified as satisfying this requirement. The list of courses is published in the Annual Graduate and Undergraduate Catalog.

c. Senior Capstone: All students must complete ITGS 400: Interdisciplinary Senior Capstone. For some majors, students may fulfill this requirement by completing a departmental capstone or thesis course.

d. World Language: Students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) must complete two years of a single language in high school or one year of a single language in college. American Sign Language (ASL) courses can be used to satisfy the World Language requirement.

4-5. Degree Program Requirements

Each academic program at the University has specific requirements related to curriculum, course levels, credits, exams, thesis and similar items. However, all undergraduate students must complete the following basic degree requirements:

• 2.0 minimum EWU GPA

• 180 minimum credits

• 60 upper-division credits

• 45 credits in residence

• 15 upper-division credits in major

Existing articulation agreements may supersede these basic requirements.

Exceptions to these basic requirements may be granted (section 4-8).

More detailed program requirements are outlined in the annual catalog.

Some programs may allow simultaneous undergraduate and graduate enrollment; see policy AP 303-22, 2-4 for details.

4-6. Majors and Minors

a. Major/Minor Requirements:

Minors are a distinct set of undergraduate courses that have been approved and designated in the catalog. A minor or certificate is required for graduation with any major program of less than 60 credits. Minors or certificates that are required for graduation must contain at least 15 credits that are not part of the major requirements. (The minor or certificate cannot be fully embedded in the major requirements.) Minors that are an option for graduation may be embedded in the major requirements and recorded on official university transcripts. Minors may be recorded on a transcript only when completed as part of a degree program.

b. Declaring a Major and Minor:

All undergraduates must declare a major by the time they have completed 60 quarter/40 semester credits. Students who transfer with 60 quarter/40 semester credits or more must declare a major before registration.

c. Second Major Policy:

Students may be awarded more than one major of the same degree type (BA, BS, BAB, BAE, BM, and BFA). At least 30 credits in any major must be different from those in any other major.

4-7. Second Degrees

a. Students may be awarded more than one undergraduate degree at Eastern Washington University.

(1) In all cases at least 225 credits are required to earn a second degree. Each subsequent degree requires an additional 45 credits.

(2) At least 45 credits that are different from those that are included in the first degree and are part of an approved program are required to earn two degrees.

(3) If fewer than 225 credits are completed, a second major rather than a second degree will be recorded on the university transcript, provided that the credits earned comply with program requirements for that major.

(4) The student must have the approval of each department chair or program director confirming that all degree requirements have been satisfied.

(5) If students complete more than one undergraduate degree concurrently, a minor is not required to accompany a major of less than 60 credits.

b. Transfer post-baccalaureate students can receive a bachelor’s degree from EWU that is of the same type (BA, BS, BAE, etc.) as awarded at the transfer institution, provided EWU’s major requirements are completed. The major/minor area of emphasis must be different from that awarded at the transfer institution. General education and graduation requirements are waived for a student possessing a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution who wishes to obtain an additional undergraduate degree from Eastern.

4-8. Active Catalog Rule

a. The catalog in effect at the time first term of enrollment will be used to determine the general education requirements.

A former EWU student returning (FSR) will use the general education requirements of the academic year they are returning.

b. The catalog in effect at the time the student declares a major or minor will be sued to determine the program requirements. This catalog may only be changed to a newer catalog with the approval of the department chair or program director by resubmitting the major declaration form. In no case can the catalog used for the major or the minor be more than six years old. A student whose major or minor catalog has expired will be required to submit a new major declaration form; the major and minor will be updated to the catalog in effect at the time of the resubmission.

4-9. Exceptions and Appeals

Exceptions to academic regulations are considered by an Academic Appeals Board that consists of faculty and student representatives. The Academic Appeals Board will consider petitions of the following undergraduate requirements:

• general education (chapters 2 & 4)

• university graduation (§4-4)

• 60 upper-division credits (§4-5)

• 60 upper-division credits (§4-5)

• 45 credits in residence (§4-5)

• 15 upper division residence credits in major (§4-5)

• foreign language (§4-4)

Appeal actions shall be coordinated through the Records and Registration Office. Appeals must be made sufficiently in advance of graduation so that program planning can be done according to the decision of the board to approve, deny or reconsider the petition.

The Academic Appeals Board does not consider cases that apply to majors or minors or professional certification. The appropriate department chair or program director should be contacted regarding these matters.

Grade appeals shall be handled in accordance with Academic Policy 303-24, Grades and Grade Appeals.


5-1. Advising

a. All undergraduate students will be assigned a non-faculty academic advisor.

b. Academic advising and a registration authorization are required for all students until sophomore status (earned 45 quarter/30 semester credits).

b. All undergraduates are required to declare a major by the time they have completed 60 quarter/40 semester credits.


All students must achieve and maintain required standards for grades, GPA, and cumulative GPA. Minimum standards are dependent on the student’s status and academic program.

6-1. Academic Standards

All undergraduate students are held to the following academic standards and policies:

a. all Eastern Washington University undergraduate students in their first term who do not attain a minimum GPA >2.0 will be placed on academic warning;

b. at the end of each term, continuing undergraduate students who do not attain a cumulative GPA of >2.0 are placed on academic probation for the next term of enrollment;

c. undergraduate students on academic probation who attain a cumulative GPA of >2.0 are automatically removed from probation;

d. undergraduate students on academic probation who attain a term GPA of >2.0 GPA but whose cumulative GPA is still <2.0 will remain on academic probation;

e. undergraduate students on academic warning who attain a term GPA of >2.0 but whose cumulative GPA is still <2.0 will be moved to Academic Probation;

f. undergraduate students on Academic Probation whose cumulative GPA remains <2.0 and whose term GPA is <2.0 will be dismissed from the University;

g. to re-enroll after being academically dismissed, officially declared and undeclared students must petition for academic reinstatement through the Center for Academic Advising and Retention.

(1) students who were officially declared at the time of dismissal and are out for more than one year are dropped from the major;

(2) students in this situation will need to re-apply to EWU, as a former student returning (FSR).

h. a dismissed undergraduate student is not eligible to enroll for the following academic term (fall, winter or spring);

(1) first-time dismissed undergraduate students will be eligible to petition for reinstatement after one term;

(2) Undergraduate students dismissed a second time will be eligible to petition for reinstatement after one year;

(3) students who are dismissed at the end of spring term will not be eligible to enroll in summer or fall term but may petition for reinstatement for the next winter or spring term;

i. to be eligible for reinstatement, dismissed undergraduate students must demonstrate an improved academic performance or readiness for academic success;

j. the academic reinstatement process is coordinated through the Center for Academic Advising and Retention (CAAR). Visit CAAR’s website for additional information or call 509-359-2345.

6-2. Pass/No Credit Courses

Students may choose the pass/no credit grading option in certain courses during the registration process. Regulations for pass/no credit grading are as follows:

a. At the time of registration, students must designate the courses for which they wish to receive a pass/no credit grade. They may change this designation by the regular change of registration procedure through the seventh week of the quarter.

b. Courses required for the following categories may not be taken pass/no credit:

(1) Major and minor requirements (except as approved by the Undergraduate Affairs Council), including courses substituted for major courses

(2) Required supporting courses (courses required for the major or minor but not taught by the major or minor department)

(3) Professional education requirements

(4) Writing, Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning, and computer competency and proficiency requirements

(5) General, education core requirements

(6) University Graduation requirements

c. The minimum level of performance required to receive a grade of “P” is a 2.0. Students should be aware that performance equal to a grade between 0.7 and 1.9 will not result in a passing mark.

d. The “P” or “NC” grade will be entered on the transcript. Students receiving the “P” grade will receive credits toward graduation. Neither the “P” nor the “NC” grade will be included in computing GPAs.

6-3. Fresh Start Academic Forgiveness

a. Undergraduate students may make a one-time petition to have up to two consecutive terms removed from the calculation of their credits and GPA. The coursework must have been completed at least five calendar years prior to this petition.

b. Forgiven courses cannot be used to satisfy any academic requirements.

c. To be eligible, a student must have completed 24 consecutive credits post-return to EWU, maintained a GPA of 2.5 or higher and have indicated a pre-major or be declared in a major.

d. Fresh Start Academic Forgiveness may not be revoked.


7-1. Deans’ Honor List

Undergraduate and post-baccalaureate students who complete at least 12 graded credits in a given quarter with a 3.50 GPA or higher will be placed on the quarterly Deans’ Honor List for academic excellence. The honor is also recorded on their University transcript.

7-2. Honors at Graduation

Graduating seniors who achieve academic honors will be formally recognized during commencement, on their University transcript, and on their diploma. Those honors are earned by students who have completed the general requirements for the baccalaureate degree at Eastern Washington University (EWU). Honors are calculated only on college-level credits earned at this institution. The following designations apply:

Graduating seniors with a GPA between

Graduating seniors with a GPA between
3.9 – 4.0
Summa cum laude
3.7 – 3.89
Magna cum laude
3.5 – 3.69
Cum laude
(red and white)

Students entering and completing a second baccalaureate program following completion of the initial degree are eligible to receive the honors designation. The grade point average for graduation with honors on second baccalaureates will be computed on all post-baccalaureate-level work completed at this institution (excludes credits completed for their first degree) and excludes credits earned with a passing grade (P). Students must meet the minimum credits in residence, including upper-division in residence, to receive honors.

General Requirements for the baccalaureate degree at EWU: From academic programs on the quarter system:

• Minimum Credits – 180 cumulative credit hours

• 60 upper-division credits (300 level or above)

• 45 credits in residence (attendance) at EWU, with at least 15 upper-division credits in major in residence at EWU

From academic programs on the semester system:

• Minimum Credits – 120 cumulative credit hours

• 40 upper-division credits (300 level or above)

• 30 credits in residence (attendance) at EWU, with at least 10 upper-division credits in major in residence at EWU

Graduates receiving honors are eligible to wear an honor cord during the commencement ceremony. Honors cords are available for purchase through the University Bookstore.


8-1. Policy on Participation in Commencement

Undergraduate students who are seniors, having earned at least 135 credits, and who have submitted a program approved major/minor form to graduate during the current academic year, or the summer term immediately following June commencement, will be included in the June commencement announcement and invited to be recognized in the ceremony.


a. Final examinations are scheduled for specific dates and times at the end of each quarter. The examination schedule is published in the University’s Quarterly Announcement. Comprehensive final examinations should not be given during the regular 10-week schedule.

b. Students shall not be granted special examinations for any reason other than a family emergency or other bona fide hardship. Course instructors are the final authority in such circumstances.

c. Students that have two final examinations scheduled concurrently by the university must contact one or all instructors involved and ask them to resolve the situation and find a suitable solution.