Preparing for WWU

New Student Checklist

The following checklist will help you focus on completing required tasks as well as offering critical links to campus resources to support a successful transition to the Western community.

Prior to Your Advising & Registration Session

All students are required to have two valid measles vaccinations or proof of measles (rubeola) immunity prior to registering for classes. Without proof of immunization on file with the Student Health Center, new students will not be allowed to register for classes! Please refer to the Measles Requirement on the Student Health Center website for how to submit documentation or complete this requirement prior to registration. Contact the Student Health Center at (360) 650-3400 or Student.Health@wwu.edu.

In order to register for classes, you must set your new Universal Account Password in advance. Please visit the Set Your Universal Account Password instructions for more information. Please keep track of your username and password, and have this information with you for your Advising & Registration session. If you need assistance, are unsure how to navigate the set-up process, or if you have forgotten your password, contact Academic Technology User Services Help Desk (ATUS) at (360)650-3333.

Recognizing the expanding reliance on electronic communication, WWU has determined that email will be one of the University’s official means of communication. Email correspondence will be sent to students’ WWU email addresses, so be sure to review your WWU email account for future important announcements.

Students can access their WWU email by navigating to myWestern, selecting Email, and logging in with their Universal login. 

See University Academic Policies on E-Mail as Official Means of Communication.

Complete the Virtual Advisor online Canvas course: This course will introduce you to key advising and registration resources and tools. You are expected to spend time reviewing the videos and modules before attending your Advising & Registration session. Plan to spend 1-2 hours going through the modules and plan 2 possible schedules in advance of your Advising & Registration session.

The ALEKS Math Placement Assessment (MPA) is an online, adaptive assessment and learning system to determine math placement. Most students who plan to register for a Math course at Western must first take the MPA, and the MPA also serves as a prerequisite for some courses in other departments. As such, you may need to complete the MPA as a proctored exam prior to attending an Advising & Registration session.

General information and updates about the ALEKS Math Placement Assessment can be found on the Testing Center's website, including exceptions and FAQs. You can also review the Academic Advising Center's Do I need to take the Math Placement Assessment? tool. To learn how the ALEKS MPA works, watch this 2-minute video.

For questions about whether or not you need to take the assessment, please contact the Math Department at (360) 650-3785 or the Academic Advising Center at (360) 650-3850.

For technical questions or to report navigational issues with the online ALEKS program, please contact the Testing Center at (360) 650-3080.

Transfer students: Please visit the Admissions website - Transfer Credit Policies to learn more about transferable credits, Transfer Credit policies, using the Transfer Course Equivalency Guide, and information about AP, IB and Cambridge International credit.

First-Year (Freshmen), Running Start, and College in the High School students: All students who enter Western directly after graduating from high school are considered first-year students for admission purposes even if they earned college credit while in high school. First-Year/Running Start students should visit the College Credit page for more information about submitting transcripts, Transfer Credit policies, and information about AP, IB and Cambridge International credit.

The Admissions Office is your contact for questions regarding the status of transfer credits. You can contact Admissions at admit@wwu.edu or call (360)650-3440 and connect to a counselor.

Western Washington University (WWU) policy “Requiring Proof of COVID Vaccination Status” (POL-U1300.02) requires all Western students, faculty, and staff to show proof of immunization with an FDA- or WHO-authorized COVID-19 vaccine before returning to campus for fall quarter 2021.  This mandate is based on guidance and recommendations of local and state public health officials, the Governor’s Office, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We believe a fully vaccinated campus is the best way to protect the health and safety of our individual and collective communities. For more information, please visit the COVID Vaccines page

To submit proof of COVID vaccination, follow these simple steps. It's easy and secure!

  • Login to your MyWesternHealth patient portal.
  • Upload a legible picture of your fully completed COVID-19 Immunization Card.
  • Enter the date(s) of your vaccination(s). 

Information about COVID-19 Vaccine Exemptions can be found on the Student Health Center's COVID Vaccines page.

For more information about Advising & Registration sessions, please return to the Welcome New Students page.

Prior to Your First Quarter

The Western Card is the I.D., access, and transaction card for Western Washington University, providing students with access to a wide variety of services, including dining, library, the Rec. Center, Student Bus Pass, and ATUS Equipment Check-out services. Watch the Obtaining Your First Western Card video to learn more, and fill out the First Time Card form to get your Western Card. You will need to login to your WWU Universal Account to complete this form. 

Please email western.card@wwu.edu if you have any questions regarding obtaining a Western Card. 

  • Off Campus: Students who live off campus instead of a residence hall are introduced to plenty of new choices and, along with those choices, new responsibilities. For more information, visit the Off Campus Living website.
  • On Campus: For more information about Western’s On-Campus Housing, visit the On-Campus Housing website.

Transportation Services provides resources to help you get around Bellingham and beyond. Watch this informational video for an overview of transportation and parking at WWU. As a student, your Western Card also serves as a WTA bus pass and provides unlimited rides on all WTA bus routes. You can also explore Regional Transportation Options on the Transportation Services website for more information about getting to and from Bellingham.

Financial Aid

The Financial Aid Office provides information about grants, loans, Work Study, scholarships, employment opportunities, and personal finance.

Student Business Office

The Student Business Office is responsible for the financial administration of all student billing related to tuition and fees, room and board, and for the processing of refunds as well as providing support and advice to students to aid in understanding their student account with the university.

Registrar's Office

The Registrar’s Office lists Important Dates & Deadlines each quarter that note due dates for Tuition & Fees, Housing & Meal Plans, adding/dropping classes, due dates, late payment deadlines, etc.

During Your First Quarter

During your first week of classes, you will receive an invitation to an online Sexual Assault Prevention Training. Western policy requires all new matriculated first-year undergraduates, transfer, and graduate students to complete this training during their first quarter at Western.

This training addresses the creation of healthy relationships, emphasizes the importance of obtaining consent in sexual situations, and describes ways students can help strengthen the safe, positive university community they want to be part of. The training also provides information on Western’s policies, resources and reporting options regarding sexual violence.

For more information about the training, please visit the Prevention and Wellness Services website.

During your first quarter at Western, you will receive an invitation to an online Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Training. Western policy requires all new matriculated first-year undergraduates, transfer, and graduate students to complete this training during their first quarter at Western.

This training provides information on identity, bias, power, privilege, and oppression; the benefits of being part of a diverse community; how to be a better ally, perform self-care, and create inclusive spaces; and Western’s policies, resources, and reporting options regarding diversity and discrimination. By participating in this training, you will be part of a community of peers and classmates engaging together to build a more welcoming and equitable Western

For more information about the DEI training, please visit the Prevention and Wellness Services website.

Additional Resources

Student Portal

Students can log into the Student Portal to keep track of the status of measles clearance, the receipt of final transcripts, and Advising & Registration session reservations. Visit the Welcome New Students page for more information about making a reservation for an Advising & Registration session.

MyWesternHealth

Students must log into the MyWesternHealth patient portal to upload proof of COVID-19 vaccination. Please note that you will need to set your Universal Account Password prior to accessing MyWesternHealth. For more information about MyWesternHealth, please review Frequently Asked Questions

Orientation Events

Don't forget to explore Live Events on the New Student and Family Orientation website for opportunities to connect with incoming students, Orientation Student Advisors, and campus departments such as Housing, the Student Business Office, and more to prepare for your first quarter.