Sophomore Year - Connect

Seek advising to stay on track with GUR progress and major declaration by 90 credits

  • There are many majors and combined majors offered at Western, each with its own major declaration requirements and process. Some require the completion of courses prior to declaring, while others may require a particular GPA or a portfolio.
  • Be aware of the major declaration requirements in the areas you are exploring. You can find this information by visiting department websites or in person, or by reviewing the Programs of Study online.
  • Programs of Study are condensed descriptions of each major offered at Western, including what the study of that topic is, related careers in that field, who to contact for information, how to declare and what the credit and course requirements are.
  • If you were a high credit (45+) Running Start student when you entered WWU, you may want to start this process earlier.


Use Degree Works to monitor GUR completion and progress toward degree requirements in possible majors

  • Degree Works – Western’s academic planning and degree evaluation tool – is used to evaluate coursework fulfilling major, minor, and degree requirements. Degree Works shows how Western courses, transfer courses, and courses in-progress apply toward graduation requirements.
  • You can access Degree Works anytime in Web4U under Student Records. If you have not yet declared a major, or would like to see how completed and in-progress coursework would apply to another major or a minor, you can use the What If tool in Degree Works. More information, including step-by-step instructions, are available on the Registrar’s Office website.
  • Degree Works is not intended to replace face-to-face advising sessions. Continue to see an advisor to discuss your progress toward graduation.


Talk with advisors and faculty in academic departments that interest you

  • Advisors and faculty in are happy to provide you with additional information about courses and potential careers.
  • Sample questions to ask:
    • What are the courses typically like?
    • What skills and interests would a student need to be successful in those courses?
    • What areas of concentration are available in the major?
    • What are the major declaration requirements for acceptance into the major?
    • Are there any prerequisite courses I should be taking?
    • What are typical careers related to this major?
    • What internship and/or research opportunities are available?
    • How can I explore this major further? Are there courses you would recommend taking to explore this major?


Take courses in a variety of disciplines; explore study abroad options

  • Students are often surprised at their interest in subjects they had never before considered; use your GURs and elective credits to explore a variety of subjects. This is a great way to investigate possible major and minor options!
  • If you think you might like to study abroad, start researching options early to be sure you apply within deadline dates and make the best use of your time abroad. You can find information about study abroad programs in the Education Abroad office.


Take career-related assessments, such as the MBTI and Strong Inventory, to guide academic and career decisions

  • The Career Services Center offers career-related assessments to help you choose majors and careers to explore based on your interests and personality characteristics.
  • These career-related assessments are free to students and interpreted in a one-on-one appointment with you by a career counselor.


Become more active with student clubs and organizations

  • Check out AS clubs and programs to get involved in.
  • Have a favorite organization? Contact them and ask how you can get involved.


Attend Career Services events to gather information

  • Every quarter the Career Services Center organizes various events, in association with other departments, to help you explore majors, research career and internship opportunities, and connect with employers.
  • Read over the "How to make effective use of a career fair" webpage.


Become active in community service to make professional connections

  • Identify community service projects or organizations that you value and/or are related to your career goals and get involved!
  • Volunteer your time and skills. This is a great way to develop job skills that will prepare you for internship opportunities.
  • You will also begin to make professional connections that could support your internship and/or job search process later on!
  • Check out Western's Center For Community Learning for ideas!