University of Washington Bothell


A freshman applicant is one who has not attempted college course work after leaving high school.  This classification includes participants in the Washington State Running Start Program as long as they do no enroll in another degree seeking program after leaving high school and before enrolling at UWB.

Admission Policy

The University offers admission to those applicants who will most benefit from and contribute to the University's educational resources.  In selecting the freshman class, the University does not make its admission decisions solely on the basis of past academic accomplishments. Important academic objectives are furthered when classes are composed of students with diverse talents, skills, interests, and backgrounds.

Admission is competitive, which means that there are more applicants who meet the minimum qualifications than the University can accommodate.  applicants are evaluated on the rigor of their curriculum: there grades and test scores; activities or accomplishments; educational goals; living experiences, such as growing up in an unusual or disadvantaged environment; family educational backgroun and socioeconomic status; special talents; and cultural awareness.  The list is not exhaustive, and the factors are not of equal weight; moreover, no single factor is sufficient to confer admission.  Furthermore, no factor will result in the admission of an academically unqualified applicant.

Minimum Grades in Core Courses

A passing grade is the minimum to meet a core requirement.  this includes a Pass (in a course taken on a Pass/Not Pass basis) or a D.  there are additional grade requirement in Mathematics. 

How to Apply

The fastest way to apply is online.  Applicants who choose not to apply online but have access to a computer may download a PDF version of the application form from the Web site.  For more information on application information, please visit 

High School Core Subject Requirements.

To ensure that students entering the University have an appreciation for the liberal arts and are adequately prepared to succeed in college, all freshman and transfer applicants are required to complete a minimum level of preparation in six subject areas.  These areas are known as the core subject requirements.  Most applicants will satisfy these requirements through high school course work (generally defined as that completed in grades 9 - 12).  Because these are university admission - not graduation - requirements, they must be completed before enrolling at the University of Washington Bothell.



If taken in high school

If made up through college course work*



4 Years

Four years of study are required, at least three of which must be in college-preparatory composition or literature.

  • One of the four years may be satisfied by courses in drama as literature, public speaking, debate, journalistic writing, business English, or English as a Second Language (ESL).
  • Courses that are generally not acceptable include those identified as remedial or applied (e.g., acting, basic English skills, developmental reading, library, newspaper staff, remedial English, review English, vocabulary, yearbook/annual).

NOTE: English courses are considered equivalent to ESL unless taken in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, or the U.S.

College course work must be at the 100 level or higher. For the composition/literature component, generally any course with an English or Writing is prefix acceptable.

  • One of the four years may be satisfied by a college course in speech, drama as literature, journalistic writing, business English, ESL, or engineering/technical writing.
  • Courses such as developmental or speed reading, vocabulary, or remedial English are not acceptable.

NOTE: English courses are considered equivalent to ESL unless taken in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, or the U.S.



 3 Years

Three years of study are required, at least at the level of algebra, geometry, and second-year algebra.

  • An algebra course completed in the last year of junior high school may partially satisfy the requirement if the second-year algebra is completed in secondary school.
  • Arithmetic, pre-algebra, business math, and statistics will not count toward the requirement.

If your high school preparation in mathematics was insufficient, you must complete one of the courses listed below:

•A course in intermediate algebra - At UW Extension, as well as at many community colleges in Washington, MATH 098 is the necessary course. The course must be completed with a grade of 'C' (2.0) or better, even though it does not transfer to the UW as college credit and the grade earned in the course is not used in computing the transfer GPA.

•MATH 104 (Trigonometry) or its equivalent - The course must be completed with a grade of 'C' (2.0) or better.

•MATH 107 (Mathematics: A Practical Art) or its equivalent - The course must be completed with a grade of 'C' (2.0) or better.

Mathematics courses with intermediate algebra as a prerequisite (except philosophy and statistics courses) - This includes any higher-level math courses such as elementary functions, calculus, and beyond.   NOTE: Courses in philosophy (e.g., logic), statistics, or computer science do NOT satisfy the mathematics requirement.

Social Studies:


3 Years

Three years of study are required in history or in any of the social sciences, e.g., anthropology, contemporary world problems, economics, geography, government, political science, psychology, sociology.

  • Credit for religion courses, consumer economics, student government, or community service will not count towards the requirement.

Courses in the social sciences-e.g., anthropology, economics, ethnic studies, history, philosophy, political science, psychology, sociology-will count toward the requirement.



2 Years

Two years of study are required.  Applicants must complete one full year - both semesters in the same field - of the basic principles of biology, chemistry, or physics, with a laboratory experience.  The principles of technology course taught in Washington state high schools may also satisfy the laboratory science requirement.  The second year of science may be completed in any course that satisfies your high school's graduation requirement in science.

  • Two years of agricultural science are equivalent to one year of science.

College science courses with a lab will count toward the laboratory science portion of the requirement. Any course in astronomy, atmospheric science, biological structure, biology, botany, chemistry, environmental science (but not environmental studies), genetics, geology, oceanography, physical anthropology, physical geography, physics, or zoology will count toward the second-year requirement, as will introductory courses in biological or physical science.

Foreign Language:


2 Years

Two years of study are required. The two years must be completed in the same language.

  • The foreign language requirement will be considered satisfied for applicants who complete their education through the seventh grade in school(s) a) where English was not the language of instruction and b) in countries other than Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the UK, and the U.S.
  • International applicants who entered the U.S. education system prior to the 8th grade must satisfy the foreign language requirement.

Any natural language that has been formally studied may be used to satisfy this requirement, including American Sign Language (AMESLAN, the language of the deaf community), and languages no longer spoken, such as Latin and ancient Greek. However, neither computer 'languages' nor forms of deaf signing aside from AMESLAN are acceptable.

A foreign language course taken in the eighth grade may satisfy one year of the requirement if the second-year course is completed in high school

For purposes of admission, each quarter of language in college is considered equivalent to one year in high school. Applicants who have never studied a foreign language will need to complete ten quarter credits of a single foreign language. However, an applicant who studied French for one year in high school needs to complete only the second 5 quarter credits (e.g., FREN 102) or the second 3 semester credits of a first-year language sequence. Of course, you may prefer to begin with 101 to refresh your memory.

Fine, Visual, or Performing Arts:


1/2 Year

One-half year or one trimester of study is required in the fine, visual, or performing arts, to be chosen from art appreciation, band, ceramics, choir, dance, dramatics performance and production, drawing, fiber arts, graphic arts, metal design, music appreciation, music theory, orchestra, painting, photography, print making, or sculpture.

Courses generally not acceptable include architecture, color guard, creative writing, drafting, drill team, fashion design, foreign languages, interior design, sewing, speech, web design or graphics, woodworking, & yearbook

Two quarter credits (or 2 semester credits) chosen from any of the following subjects will satisfy the requirement:

  • art, art history, cinema/filmmaking, dance, music, or photography;
  • any course in drama except drama as literature courses.

Courses in architecture are generally not acceptable, except for those in architectural history.

Electives in Core Subjects:


1/2 Year

Academic electives are courses in any of the six subject areas (defined above) beyond the minimum number of years specified above. One additional half- year of study is required.

Three quarter credits (2 semester credits) chosen from the six subject areas described above count toward this requirement.

Total: 15


*In general, five quarter credits (or three semester credits) in a college-level course equal one year of high school study.  If you completed a portion of the core requirements via high school course work, you can complete the balance of the requirement via college course work.  A college course may be used to satisfy both an admission core requirement and a UWB graduation requirement. 

Copyright © 1994-2006. University of Washington Bothell
Updated: 2006-11-20 13:08:00