Advising FAQ


You will find detailed instructions for major declaration on each major's 'Program of Study' in the WWU catalog. The declaration process is different for every major. To declare a Special Education, Early Childhood, Language, Literacy and Cultural Studies or Human Services major you will need to be accepted to a program/department. Other majors aligned with our programs/departments can be declared through other colleges at WWU before applying to Woodring.

Education is not a major at WWU. Our teacher education programs either contain their own major or have a list of aligned majors. Many of these majors are Bachelors of Arts in Education (BAE), however there is no general "Education" major.

Each major has its own dedicated advisor. You will be able to find advisor information under the 'Contact Information' section of each major's 'Program of Study' in the WWU catalog. Woodring College Advising provides general advising, can answer questions about Woodring programs and get you connected with the best advisor.


  • All programs vary in length. Each student will have a unique plan of study due to their personal circumstances, including number of transfer courses completed, minor/major/program choice, program level: Undergraduate (UG), Post-Baccalaureate (PB) or Graduate (MIT). Below is a general list of typical/approximate program completion times:
    • Elementary Education
      • Bellingham UG: 8-9 quarters
      • Bellingham PB: 6-7 quarters
      • Everett/Bremerton PB: 8 quarters
    • Early Childhood Education (UG and PB):
      • Bellingham: 8 quarters
      • Bremerton: 8 quarters
    • Special Education (UG and PB):
      • Special Education/Elementary Education: 10 quarters
      • Special Education plus content endorsement: 9 quarter
      • Early Childhood Special Education: 10 quarters
      • Everett/Bremerton, Education for Inclusive Environments: 8 quarters
    • Secondary Education (not including endorsement coursework):
      • Bellingham UG and PB: 4 quarters 
      • Bellingham: MIT: 5 quarters 
      • Everett: MIT: 7 quarters

All programs vary in length. It's important to create a plan of study early to ensure you are meeting requirements. If you are completing a teacher preparation program your time to degree or completion may be longer than 2 years. This is because along with your bachelor's degree you are also gaining a teaching certificate. These additional requirements can add additional time onto your overall time in the program at WWU.

Woodring works closely with community partners to provide quality internship and student teaching experiences for students. Students completing a teacher preparation program will work with the Office of Field Experience for placement in a student teaching experience.

The Masters in Teaching Program is only offered for the Secondary Education Program. However we do offer Post-Baccalaureate options for the Early Childhood, Elementary and Special Education programs. These Post-Baccalaureate programs lead to Teacher Certification.

The Educational Administration program is designed to prepare elementary and secondary school teachers and ESAs to assume leadership roles as principals, vice principals, program and department leaders, or instructional technology specialists. Candidates receive a master’s degree and/or are recommended for principal certification after completion of a year-long internship.

School counselors need to hold a Master's Degree in Counseling or complete a qualifying program. Visit WWU's Master's in Education: School Counseling page for more information.


Students completing GUR courses at WWU may want to consider completing some of the Woodring recommended GUR courses. Students are not required to take these courses to complete GURs. This list should be used as a guide of suggested courses.

It's important to understand the math requirements for your program and/or for completing General University Requirements (GURs). Use Woodring recommended GUR course list to identify your math requirements. It's recommended that students complete the math requirements as soon as possible.

It's recommended that all students work on completing their General University Requirements (GURs) including, English 101. It's also recommended to participate in our pathway programs including Compass 2 Campus (C2C), Family and Community Engaged Teaching (FACET) and the Education and Social Justice (ESJ) minor. 

The Elementary, Early Childhood and Special Education programs have prerequisite courses. Students are encouraged to complete these courses before they start programs if possible. Carefully review program information early to ensure you are completing these courses. Take special care to complete any math or science requirements early. 


Yes, you will also need to apply to your program/major. Review your program of interest for details about when and how to apply.

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In the event that you miss an application deadline please contact Woodring Advising to find out if late applications are being accepted. If late applications are not being accepted you can work with Woodring Advising to develop a unique and meaningful schedule.

If you plan to apply for the PB program, are a current WWU student and are not taking any quarter off (except summer) you do not need to complete a WWU PB application. Students continuing from their Undergraduate program onto a PB program are considered to have continuous enrollment. For example, if you take undergraduate courses in spring quarter and start our PB Program in fall quarter, you will not need to apply to WWU as a PB student because you would have continuous enrollment.

The WEST-B is a basic skills test like the SAT and ACT. All students entering a teacher preparation program will need to complete a basic skills test in the area of Reading, Writing and Math. Woodring accepts SAT and ACT scores for this requirement. If you have not taken the SAT or ACT or are missing a score from one of the three areas, we suggest you take the WEST-B. Students can apply for a test voucher by completing a test voucher form.

The NES and WEST-E are content specific tests all students will take to qualify for their endorsement area.

No, you do not need to complete the NES or WEST-E test before applying to your teacher prep program. It is required for all students to attempt the NES or WEST-E test before their internship/student teaching and pass the NES/WEST-E before receiving certification.

Teacher Certification

To gain a Teaching Certificate all teacher candidates must complete a teacher preparation program. Woodring offers programs for Elementary, Secondary and Special Education areas.

An endorsement is the area you are qualified to teach. Endorsements are listed on your teaching certificate. All certificates have at least one endorsement.

Yes! Teachers and teacher candidates can add on additional endorsements. Some endorsements must be added on through additional coursework and state testing. Other endorsements can be added on through state tests only.

Washington State test-in endorsements

Endorsements offered through Woodring

Yes! Teachers are able to transfer their certificate to other states. There may be some additional requirements depending on the state you are transferring to. Contact the Certification Office ( to find out one more information about how to transfer your certificate.