Feb 22, 2020  
Undergraduate Catalog 2019-20 
    
Undergraduate Catalog 2019-20

Admissions



Admission Policies

Western Michigan University admits students whose educational backgrounds indicate a high probability for success in college work. Applications received after the below deadlines may be changed to a subsequent term.

Fall: First-year students (main campus): 

  • Early Action*: November 15
  • Rolling Admission: June 1
  • All other student types and campuses: August 15

*Students who complete their application file by the Early Action deadline will be considered for admission scholarships and receive priority consideration for the Lee Honors College.

Spring: All student types and campuses: January 1
Summer I: All student types and campuses: May 1
Summer II:  All student types and campuses: June 15

First-Year Applicants

A first-year applicant is a student who is applying for admission and who has not attempted or earned any college credit after graduating from high school (or earned equivalent).

Whether students apply online or have a one-on-one onsite admission, the major factors considered in the admission decision are grade point average, ACT/SAT scores, rigor of curriculum, and trend of grades. Other variables, such as letters of recommendation, extra-curricular activities, and essay/personal statement are reviewed and may be used in the admission decision and/or the scholarship or Lee Honors College invitation processes.

WMU strongly recommends that applicants complete a rigorous college preparatory curriculum that would include minimally: four years of English; three years of mathematics, including Algebra II and higher (fourth year preferred); three years of social sciences; three years of science (at least two from biology, chemistry or physics); and two years of foreign language.

Offers of admission made to students still in high school are conditional pending graduation from high school and the University’s review of final senior year grades. Poor performance may result in a change of admission status or withdrawal of the admission offer.

Transfer Applicants

A transfer applicant is someone who has graduated from high school (or earned equivalent) and who enrolled in at least one college-level course after high school (or earned equivalent).

In reviewing applications from prospective transfer students, the University bases decisions on previous college coursework completed at each institution attended, as well as the trend of the most recent grades. If fewer than 24 hours have been completed at the college level, a high school transcript and SAT/ACT scores are also required for review.

Offers of admission made to students currently enrolled at another college or university are provisional, pending successful completion of work in progress. Poor performance may result in a change in admission status or withdrawal of the admission offer.

Readmission

Students who make an initial enrollment at Western but do not return the following semester/term will have three semesters of valid admission status in which to re-enroll, providing they left in good standing and do not enroll at another higher education institution. After three semesters, students in good standing and with no college work since leaving WMU may reactivate their admission status by reapplying as a returning student.

Students who leave the University in good standing, are gone for more than one year and/or subsequently take additional college work must reapply as a transfer student and have official transcripts sent from each institution attended after leaving the University. The readmission decision will be made under existing transfer admission standards.

Dismissed students applying for readmission must reapply as a returning student and have official transcripts sent from each institution attended after leaving the University. The University will require evidence that the causes of past academic problems have been removed before approving readmission. An authorized college advisor will provide approval based on receipt of application, transcripts, and demonstrated evidence of removal of past academic problems. University students who have been dismissed will normally not be readmitted for at least one fifteen week semester.

Admission Procedures for Domestic Students

First-Year Applicants

Students with no previous college work since receiving a high school diploma or equivalent should complete the first-year application. This includes currently enrolled high school students participating in Early/Middle College or dual enrollment courses. To be considered for first-year admission, applicants should follow the steps below:

  1. Complete the WMU online application at wmich.edu/apply or The Common Application and pay the $40 non-refundable application fee;
  2. Request an official high school transcript to be sent to WMU. If you are using Parchment Exchange to electronically send your transcript to the Office of Admissions, your school may wish to use the eSSR (Electronic Safety Report) available through Parchment Exchange. If your school prefers, they may ask that you print our High School Verification Form to send with a printed copy of your transcript. Either form is optional; and,
  3. Make arrangements to take the examinations of the ACT or the SAT, with results sent directly to Western Michigan University (ACT College Code 2066; SAT College Code 1902) from the respective testing agency. Please see the Test Score Policy section below for more information. Students who have completed high school longer than two years before intended enrollment semester with no college work are not required to submit test scores for consideration.
  4. For those who have completed a General Educational Development (GED) Test, submit official GED scores instead of a high school transcript. ACT or SAT scores are not required for applicants who have not been enrolled at a traditional high school for two or more years before intended enrollment.
  5. Students enrolled in Early/Middle College must also send official college transcripts for review as part of the admission application.

When to Apply

Fall entry: Students should submit applications for fall semester during the fall preceding their enrollment. High school students may apply for first-year admission after completion of the junior year. Applications that are complete (application, official transcript, official test scores, application fee) and received by November 15 will receive priority consideration for scholarships and invitation to the Lee Honors College. Applications must be complete (application, official transcript, official test scores, and application fee) by June 1 to be considered for fall entry.

Spring or Summer Entry: Applicants are strongly advised to submit all materials (application, fee, transcripts, test scores) at least two months prior to their desired entry term. Applications and materials received after the below deadlines may be changed to a subsequent term:

Spring (January): January 1
Summer I (May): May 1
Summer II(June): June 15

Test Score Policy

Western Michigan University uses the ACT or SAT test for both admission and scholarship considerations. Applicants who must provide ACT or SAT scores include:

  • First-year applicants who plan to enroll fewer than two years after graduating from high school
  • Transfer applicants who have earned fewer Thant 24 credits after high school and who plan to enroll fewer than two years after graduating from high school

In the interest of promoting college access and providing admission decisions in a timely fashion, WMU uses self-reported test scores for the initial admission decision and scholarship awarding process. All first-year students as well as transfer students with fewer than 24 transferable credit hours, will be required to self-report their test scores(s) on the admissions application.

Once admitted, students who decide to enroll at WMU must provide official test scores prior to new student orientation. Students who do not provide official test scores will have a hold placed on their account that will prevent future semester course registration.

Superscoring

When considering applicants who take either the ACT or SAT test more than once, Western Michigan University will use the highest subscores from any test date to superscore the total (SAT) or composite (ACT) score. That score is what will be used for admission and scholarship consideration. Only scores from the same test type will be used - subscores cannot be mixed between the ACT and SAT. Superscoring will be calculated by:

  • ACT: Average of the highest section score on English, Math, Reading, and Science
  • SAT: Sum of the highest section score on Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

WMU does not have a preference between the two tests and does not use the writing portion of the tests.

Official Test Scores:

All admitted applicants who choose to enroll at Western Michigan University must provide official scores before beginning classes. Scores can be sent directly from the testing agency or included on an official high school transcript.

Students may request official test scores from the appropriate testing agency:

  • ACT: Use WMU school code 1902
  • SAT (College Board): Use WMU school code 1902

WMU will not accept emailed or faxed test score reports, or any score report from a student or family. Discrepancies between self-reported and official scores may result in admission to WMU being revoked.

Admission Interviews

In order to make the best possible decision for an individual student, an admissions counselor may require a personal interview to clarify or explain parts of the application materials.

Advanced Placement

The Advanced Placement Program (AP) of the College Board provides the opportunity for students to earn college credit while still in high school. WMU awards credit for all AP areas. To learn what AP exam score is required for credit in a subject, visit wmich.edu/registrar/students/advising/students-advising-ap for detailed information. For those wishing to participate, have AP send a score report to WMU, College Code 1902.

International Baccalaureate

Western Michigan University awards credit for IB higher level (HL) exam scores of 5 or better. Visit wmich.edu/registrar/students/advising/students-advising-ib to obtain information about the IB higher level subjects granted credit.

Early/Middle College

Students enrolled in an Early/Middle College program are considered first-year students with advanced standing and should follow the first-year application process. Official college transcript(s) are required prior to notification of an admission decision if college courses and associated grades are not included on the official high school transcript. Applicants are subject to first-year enrollment policies including scholarship eligibility, housing consideration, and orientation requirements.

A final transcript showing acceptable grades must be received within the first term of enrollment at Western Michigan University. See “credit evaluation” portion in “transfer applicants” section for transfer credit policies.

Dual Enrollment

Students dual enrolled in high school, but not part of an early/middle college are not required to submit college transcripts at the time of application provided the courses and associated grades are included on the high school transcript. However, an official college transcript must be received to receive credit for any college coursework. See “credit evaluation” portion in “transfer applicants” section for transfer credit policies.

Notification of Status

The University notifies first-year applicants of their admission status on a rolling basis. When all materials are on file and the Admissions Committee acts, students will receive written notice. The decision may be to admit; to request additional grades, test scores, or an interview; defer the decision to a later date; or to ask the applicant to begin at another school and transfer to the University after establishing a successful college record.

Admission of students to first-year status while they are still in high school is conditional upon their graduation from high school and the University’s review of their final grades. Poor performance in the senior year may cause a change in admission status or withdrawal of the admission offer.

Alpha Program

The Alpha Program is a conditional admission academic support program for first-year students. The program provides developmental academic advising, alerts students to University resources, and requires attendance at skill-building workshops.

Consideration is given to those students who do not meet WMU’s regular admissions criteria but who have demonstrated the potential for college-level work. The Office of Admissions determines eligibility of applicants for admission as Alpha students. Selected students and their parents or guardians are required to sign a program contract accepting conditions of admissions.

Western Success Prep Preparation

The Alpha Western Success Preparation (WSP) bridge week includes an intensive five-day class designed to give some Alpha Program students a head start on a great first year at Western Michigan University. WSP is held the week before Fall Welcome. When WSP concludes, students will transition seamlessly into the Alpha Program Welcome and Fall Welcome with all of the first-year students. Students will receive one credit upon completion of the program. Selected Alpha students are recommended to WSP and will be notified by the Alpha Program separately from an offer of university admission.

Orientation

The mission of the Western Michigan University Orientation program is to provide a comprehensive experience which will aid new students in their transition to the institution, expose new students to the educational opportunities within WMU, integrate new students into the academic and campus life of the institution, increase the retention rate of new students, assist parents and families of new students to understand the University environment and services, and enhance parental awareness of issues facing college students.

Orientation is required for all incoming first-year students, regardless of entry term. All first-time students will meet with an academic advisor and register for courses at orientation. With the exception of Medallion students who participate in “Honors First” and early/middle college students, incoming first-year students are not allowed to register for classes prior to attending Orientation.

Transfer Applicants

Students who have started or completed college coursework in a fall or spring term after high school graduation are considered transfer applicants. To be considered for admission, transfer students should:

  1. Complete the online application at wmich.edu/apply and pay the $40 non-refundable application fee;
  2. Request that each college attended send an official transcript directly to the Office of Admissions at WMU. Transcripts delivered by the student in a college-issued, sealed envelope may also be accepted as official provided they are received within 90 days of the print date. Transcripts sent by the student cannot be accepted as official. Failure to report all colleges attended is considered a fraudulent application and may subject an admitted applicant to dismissal, in addition to disqualifying the applicant from receiving transfer credit for work at schools not reported. Applicants currently enrolled at another institution should have a partial transcript sent to WMU. A final transcript showing acceptable grades must be received within the first term of enrollment at WMU; and,
  3. If less than 24 credit hours (39 quarter/term hours) have been completed at the time of application, applicants must also submit an official high school transcript, and ACT or SAT scores unless two years have elapsed between high school graduation and the requested WMU entry date. Please see the Test Score Policy section below for more information. GED diploma students are required to submit GED scores, not ACT or SAT scores.

When to Apply

Applicants are strongly advised to submit all materials (application, fee, transcripts) at least six months prior to their desired entry term.  Applications and materials received after the below deadlines may be changed to a subsequent term.

Fall: August 15
Spring: January 1
Summer I: May 1
Summer II: June 15

Test Score Policy

Western Michigan University uses the ACT or SAT test for both admission and scholarship considerations. Applicants who must provide ACT or SAT scores include:

  • First-year applicants who plan to enroll fewer than two years after graduating from high school
  • Transfer applicants who have earned fewer Thant 24 credits after high school and who plan to enroll fewer than two years after graduating from high school

In the interest of promoting college access and providing admission decisions in a timely fashion, WMU uses self-reported test scores for the initial admission decision and scholarship awarding process. All first-year students as well as transfer students with fewer than 24 transferable credit hours, will be required to self-report their test scores(s) on the admissions application.

Once admitted, students who decide to enroll at WMU must provide official test scores prior to new student orientation. Students who do not provide official test scores will have a hold placed on their account that will prevent future semester course registration.

Superscoring

When considering applicants who take either the ACT or SAT test more than once, Western Michigan University will use the highest subscores from any test date to superscore the total (SAT) or composite (ACT) score. That score is what will be used for admission and scholarship consideration. Only scores from the same test type will be used - subscores cannot be mixed between the ACT and SAT. Superscoring will be calculated by:

  • ACT: Average of the highest section score on English, Math, Reading, and Science
  • SAT: Sum of the highest section score on Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing

WMU does not have a preference between the two tests and does not use the writing portion of the tests.

Official Test Scores:

All admitted applicants who choose to enroll at Western Michigan University must provide official scores before beginning classes. Scores can be sent directly from the testing agency or included on an official high school transcript.

Students may request official test scores from the appropriate testing agency:

  • ACT: Use WMU school code 1902
  • SAT (College Board): Use WMU school code 1902

WMU will not accept emailed or faxed test score reports, or any score report from a student or family. Discrepancies between self-reported and official scores may result in admission to WMU being revoked.

Notification of Status

The University notifies transfers of their admission status on a rolling basis. When all materials are on file and the Admissions Committee acts, students receive notification. The decision may be to admit, to hold a decision for work in progress at another institution, or to suggest a student complete more and/or better work before being admitted.

Admission of students attending another institution is provisional, dependent upon successful completion of the work in progress.

Credit Evaluation

Students Transferring to WMU

Students admitted to WMU will receive an evaluation of their previous college work, showing courses transferred with WMU equivalencies. Course equivalencies for Michigan’s public community colleges and other institutions are available at wmich.edu/transfer/credit. Transferable courses completed at another college will be accepted for credit only, and only courses in which a “C” (or 2.00) or better was earned (as determined by WMU) will be eligible for transfer. Grades earned in those classes will be used only to determine admissibility to the University; they will not be recorded on the WMU transcript. Credit earned by examination transfers in some cases to the University. Students who have taken AP, IB, or CLEP examinations should have official score reports sent to the Office of Admissions. Credit is awarded based on exam scores and more information can be found at wmich.edu/transfer/credit.

Western Michigan University typically only accepts credit from institutions of higher education that are accredited by a regional accrediting agency, such as the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) or the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). Credits completed at an institution that is accredited by some other national or specialized program accreditor may only be accepted upon review and approval by faculty from the appropriate department(s) or areas of study. In order to accept the credit, the approving department or program must outline the exact credits that will transfer for specific courses, or as a block, in a Memorandum of Understanding with the sending institution, and transcribed by WMU prior to the student beginning classes at WMU. WMU is responsible for all credit it transcribes, whether earned on campus or transferred from another institution. Per HLC policy, by transcribing transferred credit, WMU attests to the relevancy, quality, and rigor of the coursework completed at the other institution.

College credit from foreign institutions will be evaluated by the Haenicke Institute’s International Admissions Services Office and transfer credit is awarded on a course-by-course basis depending on the result.

WMU Students Transferring Credit Back to WMU

All regulations and procedures concerning transfer of credit for new students also apply to WMU students who take work at other institutions to transfer back to WMU. Before enrolling at another institution, WMU students should discuss course selection with their WMU academic advisor to ensure transferability.

Advising/Registration

All admitted transfer students should make arrangements for an advising session with an appropriate WMU college advisor as soon as they have their admission materials and credit evaluation. All new transfer students receive a Transfer Advising Hold on their account until they have met with an advisor. During the advising session, students will learn how transferred courses apply to their WMU major and will select courses for registration. Registration may be completed after the advising session once the advising office removes the hold. Transfer students should meet with their advisor and register during the registration periods available to current WMU students and should not wait until just before the beginning of classes.

Orientation

For students starting at WMU in the fall or spring semester, a one-day Transfer Transition Program will cover vital information about campus facilities, academic expectations, University services, and student activities. Information about this program will be sent to students after admission.

Admission Procedures for International Students

The Haenicke Institute’s Office of International Admissions and Services handles the special needs of international students by processing applications for admission, conducting orientation programs for new international students, coordinating community programs involving international students, providing immigration advice, and serving as liaison between students and their financial sponsors.

International students interested in seeking admission to Western Michigan University may contact the IAS for application forms and instructions, download forms, or apply on-line at www.wmich.edu/internationaladmissions.

To qualify for admission, international students must show that they are academically, financially, and linguistically capable of succeeding at full-time study. Before an international student can be admitted and the Certificate of Eligibility for a visa issued, the student must:

  1. Complete an online application at www.wmich.edu/internationaladmissions/apply.
  2. Provide complete and official transcripts of secondary, undergraduate, and post-graduate studies (if completed) as well as copies of diplomas, certificates or degrees earned. These must be translated into English and list course titles and grades (marks) received for each. Upload scanned copies for admission purposes and follow up with official copies of the documents sent directly from the school(s) to International Admissions and Services, Western Michigan University, 1903 W Michigan Avenue, Kalamazoo, Michigan 49008-5246 U.S.A.
  3. Provide proof of adequate funding per academic year. This funding amount includes tuition and fees, room and board, books, and health insurance. Personal/family savings must be verified by a bank statement. If sponsored by a government, or other agency, an official letter must be submitted showing that the scholarship is valid for use at WMU, and indicating beginning and ending dates of validity. Complete costs may be viewed at wmich.edu/internationaladmissions/apply/undergraduates#costs.
  4. Provide a copy of passport I.D. page.
  5. Provide proof of English proficiency. Students who have completed English-medium schooling from the countries on the list may be exempted from providing test scores. http://wmich.edu/internationaladmissions/proficiency.

The following tests and scores are accepted at Western Michigan University as measures of English proficiency:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) A minimum score of 61 iBT is required.
  • Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB) A minimum score of 69 is required.
  • General Certificate of Education O-Level Pass in English with grade of A, B, or C from one of the five British-based examining boards.
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic Module. A minimum score of 6.0 is required.
  • International Baccalaureate (IB) A grade of 5 in English at the Higher Level.
  • Successful completion of ELS Level 112 from one of the ELS Language Centers.
  • Pearson Test of English Academic Module. A minimum score of 45 is required.


CELCIS Successful completion of the advanced level and instructor recommendations from CELCIS, Western Michigan University’s ESL program. A prospective student may enroll in CELCIS until achieving the required TOEFL score for academic enrollment or completion of the advanced level with instructor recommendations.

Applications for admission from applicants classified as international students (wmich.edu/apply/international) must be submitted no later than June 15 for the Fall Semester, October 15 for the Spring Semester, and March 15 for the Summer I Session.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS ARE REQUIRED TO HAVE HOSPITAL, MEDICAL AND SURGICAL HEALTH INSURANCE

All international students are required to carry health insurance. There is no University-sponsored program. Health insurance must be in effect on the first day of classes. International students must show proof of coverage including effective dates and a copy of the insurance card, front and back during the first two weeks of a semester/session. Office of International Admissions & Services will approve the policy.

WMU health insurance requirements and insurance recommendations can be found at wmich.edu/internationaladmissions/insurance. The insurance coordinator is available to assist students via email at ias-insurance@wmich.edu.

Nontraditional Admission Programs

Non-degree Admission

Students who do not seek a degree and only wish to take classes should request this admission status. Students who have been enrolled in any academic institution within the preceding five years must meet the same admission requirements and follow the same admission procedures as degree-seeking students. Acceptance for non-degree status does not constitute degree admission to WMU. If a non-degree admitted student subsequently decides to apply to a specific WMU degree program, the applicant will be expected to meet all University and program-specific admission requirements. The time period for any “Non-degree Admission” status may not exceed four years from the time such admission status is granted. Applicants for non-degree admission:

  1. Should complete a regular application for admission and indicate non-degree status for program choice;
  2. May register for any course for which the prerequisites and/or course restrictions have been met; and
  3. May enroll in subsequent terms for up to four years in non-degree status, providing they meet University probation and dismissal standards (see Academic Standards in the Registration, Records, and Regulations section of this catalog).

Certain University courses and financial aid may not be available to non-degree students.

Non-degree Undergraduate Certificate Program

Admission to an undergraduate certificate program is typically for students who are not seeking and undergraduate degree. Hence, applicants will obtain “Non-degree Admission.” Students seeking non-degree status who have been enrolled in any academic institution within the preceding five years must meet the same admission criteria as degree-seeking students. Acceptance for non-degree status does not constitute degree admission to WMU. If a non-degree admitted student subsequently decides to apply to a specific WMU undergraduate degree program, the applicant will be expected to meet all University and program-specific admission requirements. The time period for any “Non-degree Admission” status may not exceed six years from the time such admission status is granted. Applicants for non-degree admission should:

  1. Complete an Application for Undergraduate Admission along with a non-refundable application fee of $40;
  2. Request that each academic institution attended within the preceding five years send an official transcript to the Office of Admissions;
  3. Register for any course for which the prerequisites and/or course restrictions have been met; and,
  4. Enroll in subsequent terms for up to six years in non-degree status, providing they meet University probation and dismissal standards.
  5. Be a high school graduate or have earned the equivalent degree.

Certain University courses and financial aid may not be available to non-degree students. Courses taken for an undergraduate certificate program may be counted towards a subsequent WMU undergraduate degree program, if approved by the appropriate academic advisor and/or academic program unit.

If the requirements of an undergraduate certificate are embedded within the courses a student has taken to complete a degree program, a student must apply for the certificate at the time of graduation from the bachelor’s degree. In the case where a student completes some of the requirements of an undergraduate certificate upon graduation, the student may return at a later date (in accordance with current University Policy), complete the requirements for the certificate and be awarded the certificate.

Individual certificate programs may allow transfer credits for no more than half the program.

Guest Students

Students who are currently in attendance and in good academic standing (at least a 2.00 grade point average) at another college or university may apply to Western Michigan University to take classes as a guest student. Guests should work with their home institution in advance to determine the appropriate classes to be taken at WMU. Guest admission does not constitute degree admission to WMU. Students seeking Guest status should use the guest application available from the Office of Admissions website wmich.edu/apply.

High School Dual Enrollees 

Students who wish to take courses at the University while still in high school should submit a High School Dual Enrollment application (available from the Office of Admissions website). The application requires approval from a high school official and a parent/guardian. Eligibility requirements include:

  1. Ninth-Eleventh grade with an overall grade point average of at least 3.50, or senior with an overall grade point average of at least a 3.25, or
  2. Ninth-Twelfth overall grade point average of at least 2.75 and a qualifying score on a standardized test. Students requiring a qualifying test score should send PSAT, ACT, and/or SAT scores for consideration.

Admission as a high school dual enrollment student does not constitute admission as a degree seeking student. Students who wish to continue their studies at WMU and apply for degree admission must follow the first-year application process and meet regular admission standards.

Project Scope (Senior Citizens’ Opportunity Program in Education)

The following are the key features of the Senior Citizen’s Opportunity in Education Program:

  1. Senior citizens (persons 62 years of age or older) may qualify.
  2. Enrollees may register in one regularly scheduled class, tuition free, each semester or session on a seat-available basis during the drop/add period (in the Office of th Registrar). The late registration fee is waived.
  3. Enrollees may not register for credit.
  4. Only academic facilities necessary for the performance in class are accessible to SCOPE participants. SCOPE enrollees do not have access to normal services available to regular students such as the Sindecuse Health Center, Student Recreation Center, student discounts, etc. Special identification cards are issues to SCOPE participants.
  5. The admission application fee is waived because regular, degree-seeking admission is not extended to enrollees.
  6. Special course fees for materials, trips, etc. are assessed.
  7. Specific courses may not be available to SCOPE students due to space availability.

In the event the account is referred to a collection agency, the student will be responsible for any collection costs, collection fees, and collection charges and/or legal fees incurred in collecting the account balance (in addition to the fees assessed per #6 above).

Questions concerning current fee schedules should be directed to the Office of the Director of Accounting Services.
 

The University reserves the right to withdraw, revoke, and/or cancel an admission decision for any reason, and at any time, it deems warranted. This right shall also apply in instances when the University acquires information about an applicant or student after an admission decision is made.

Admission to Western Michigan University is non-discriminatory.

Accelerated Graduate Degree Program

Three year bachelors programs and five year bachelors-to-masters programs give student the opportunity to accelerate their time to degree as well as the opportunity to get ahead in their careers. Contact college advising offices for more information.