Jul 21, 2024  
2021-2022 Catalog 
2021-2022 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]


James E. Short Center
710 S. Atlantic St.
Dillon, Mont. 59725-3598
406-683-7331 or 877-683-7331 (toll free)
Email: admissions@umwestern.edu
Website: Admissions

Montana Western’s Admissions Office provides accurate, timely, and consistent information about UMW to prospective students through the highest quality presentations, publications, and personalized service possible. In meeting its mission, the department helps further the institutional strategic plan by increasing enrollment, diversity in the student body, retention, and positive public image and perception. Ultimately, the goal is to make sure the process of applying to Montana Western runs smoothly and meets the needs of all students.

Applications for admission are accepted from in-state, out-of-state, and international students. Staff assist full-time, part-time, and non-degree applicants through the admission process.

Campus Visits

Visiting the campus is an important step in selecting a college or university. The Admissions Office arranges individualized campus visits Monday through Friday. Guided by students, campus tours acquaint prospective students and their families with the University’s academic programs, on-campus living options, extracurricular activities, athletics, services, faculty, staff, and fellow students. It is recommended that visit arrangements be made one week in advance to allow scheduling of meetings that accommodate the prospective student’s individual interests.

Admissions Standards

All students seeking college credit, certification, or a degree must be fully admitted to Montana Western. Students are responsible for submitting applications and supporting documentation for admission, immunization, financial aid, and housing. Montana and out-of-state freshman applicants who do not meet the admission requirements or the Montana Regents’ College Preparatory requirements may be considered for an admission exemption. Priority consideration will be given to students who apply prior to:

  • March 1 for Fall Semester.
  • December 1 for Spring Semester.
  • May 1 for Summer Session.

Freshman Admission

Freshman Application Process

  • Submit a completed UMW paper Application for Admission, or apply on-line at www.umwestern.edu and select “Apply” on the top of the website. Paper applications are available by contacting the Admissions Office.
  • Non-resident students must submit a $30 non-refundable application fee.
  • Submit a current high school transcript showing classes already competed and academic status.
  • Submit proof of two measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) immunizations.
  • Submit a final official high school transcript after graduation, or official high school equivalency report.
  • Students can submit an ACT or SAT test score but it is not required for admission.  Students are encouraged to submit test scores if they are applying for Montana University System (MUS) scholarships or the University of Montana Western’s Chancellor’s Leadership Scholar Award.

When to Apply

Applicants are encouraged to apply:

  • By July 1 for the upcoming Fall Semester.
  • By October 15 for Spring Semester.
  • By March 15 for Summer Session.


Students may not be considered for scholarship, financial aid, or housing, nor will they be eligible to register for classes, until their admissions application is processed and acceptance has been granted.

Full Admission

To be fully admitted as first-time, full-time undergraduates into a four-year university program (without conditions or provisions), students must meet the following requirements:

Completion of the Regents’ College Preparatory Program:

  • Four years of English: in each year the content of the courses should have an emphasis upon the development of written and oral communication skills and study of literature.
  • Three years of mathematics including Algebra I, Geometry and Algebra II (or the sequential content equivalent of these courses). Students are encouraged to take a math course in their senior year.
  • Three years of social studies which shall include global studies (such as world history or world geography); American history; and government, economics, Indian history or other third-year courses.
  • Two years of laboratory science: one year must be earth science, biology, chemistry, or physics; the other year can be one of those sciences or another approved college preparatory laboratory science.
  • Two years chosen from the following:
    • Foreign language (preferably two years);
    • Computer science;
    • Visual and performing arts; or
    • Career/technical education units which meet the Office of Public Instruction guidelines.

Demonstration of Mathematics Proficiency:

  • A score of 22 or above on ACT mathematics; or
  • A score of 27.5 or above on SAT mathematics; or
  • A score of 3 or above on the AP calculus AB or BC subject examination or a score of 4 on the IB calculus test; or
  • A score of 50 or above on the CLEP subject examinations in selected topics (College Algebra, College Algebra-Trigonometry, Pre-calculus, Calculus, or Trigonometry); or
  • Completion of a rigorous high school core including four years of mathematics in high school (Algebra I, Algebra II, Geometry & a course beyond Algebra II) and three years of laboratory science; or three years of mathematics including a course beyond Algebra II and four years of laboratory science, in addition to English, social studies, and electives as described in the Regents’ College Preparatory program, with grades of C or better in all courses; or
  • A cumulative high school GPA of 3.00 or higher; or
  • A cumulative high school GPA of 2.50 or higher AND an Algebra II (or the sequential content equivalent) course grade of C or better.
  • For information about developmental and general education math courses, follow this link: Developmental and General Education Mathematics Courses at UM Western

Demonstration of Writing Proficiency:

  • A score of 7 or above on the essay or 18 on the ELA test of the ACT; or
  • A score of 25 or above on the writing and language test of the SAT; or
  • A score of 3.5 or above on the Montana University System (MUS) writing assessment; or
  • A score of 3 or above on the AP English language or English literature examination; or
  • A score of 4 or above on the IB language A1 exam; or
  • A score of 50 or above on the (CLEP) subject examinations in composition; or
  • A cumulative high school GPA of 3.00 or higher; or
  • A cumulative high school GPA of 2.50 or higher AND a course grade of C or better in an 11th grade English course.

General Preparation as Demonstrated Through at Least One of the Following:

  • A composite score of at least 22 on the ACT or a total score of at least 1120 on the SAT; or
  • A high school grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.5; or
  • A ranking in the upper half of the school’s graduating class.

Provisional Admission

Students who do not demonstrate the ability to meet the standards of mathematics and/or writing proficiency may be admitted provisionally to a four-year degree program or without condition to a two-year degree program at the University of Montana Western. Operational rules pertaining to provisionally admitted students are:

  • Students must be informed of their admission status by letters that include the following points:
    • The minimum mathematics and/or writing score(s) required compared to their score(s) that did not satisfy the requirement;
    • An explanation of what they must do to attain full admission status; and
    • Academic support services available to students, such as tutoring centers.
  • Provisionally admitted students must attain full admission status by completing at least one college-level mathematics and college-level composition course with grades of C- or better before completing 32 credits or 3 semesters, whichever comes last.
  • Provisionally admitted students may declare a major
  • The term “provisional admission” has a particular meaning in the Montana University System, under Board of Regent’s policy. It cannot be used to describe any other admissions status or situation in the System.
  • Provisional admission does not change existing rules within the Montana University System concerning financial scholarship eligibility, satisfactory academic progress, or academic probation and suspension rules

Two-Year Program and Provisional Admission

The University of Montana Western seeks to offer admission into a two-year program to the following group of students:

  • Students who seek admission into a four-year program who score below an 18 on the math test ACT or below a 24 on the math test SAT; or students who do not meet college preparatory or general preparation requirements will be admitted into Montana Western’s equivalent two-year program as this route improves chances of student success. Once the student has completed the two-year program they will be admitted into the equivalent four-year program. Students who score just below these requirements (16-17 on ACT or 22-23.5 on SAT) and who meet College Preparatory requirements for math with a cumulative GPA of 3.00 may be provisionally admitted into a four-year program.
  • Students who do not meet these requirements may appeal the decision to be admitted into a two-year program by submitting an essay that outlines why the student received low math marks and addresses the student’s specific plans for academic success at Montana Western. The University of Montana Western’s Academic Standards Committee will review the appeal and, if granted, the student will be provisionally admitted into a four-year program and will follow provisional requirements.

Enrollment Management Procedures

Campuses may apply admission review processes that improve the likelihood of student success; encourage rigorous college preparation among applicants; and ensure balanced treatment of all student applications.

  1. For applicants who exceed every criterion of undergraduate admissions standards, campuses may establish facilitated admissions procedures, and may identify such students with special privileges, titles, or honors.
  2. For applicants whose transcripts and exam scores leave some question about the prospective student’s success, additional documentation (such as essays, letters of recommendation, and/or portfolios) may be required before granting admission.


Exemptions are used to admit students under special circumstances and must be used judiciously:

Exemptions for First-Time, Full-Time Students:

Institutions may exempt up to 15% of first-time, full-time undergraduates from the requirements of this policy, with the exception of Completion of the Regents’ College Preparatory Program, for students with special talents, minorities, and others who demonstrate special needs.

Categorical Exemptions:

The following categories of students are also exempt from the requirements of this policy:

  • Non-traditional students (those who do not enter college for a period of at least three years from the date of high school graduation or from the date when they would have graduated from high school);
  • Summer only students; and
  • Part-time students taking seven or fewer college-level semester credits.

Non-Accredited High School or Home School Student Requirements

Students who complete their secondary education through home schooling or at an unaccredited high school may satisfy the requirement of high school graduation by doing one of the following:

  • High school equivalency certificate based on the high school equivalency exam
  • Home school transcript reflecting the use of an accredited home school curriculum and listing all courses and grades signed by the teacher (the teacher can be a parent).

Eligibility for State-Supported Scholarships

Only students who have completed the High School Rigorous Core program shall be eligible for Regents High School Honor Scholarships. Students who have completed the College Preparatory program may be eligible for other state-supported scholarships, tuition waivers, or grants-in-aid awarded on the basis of academic achievement. In unusual circumstances, this provision may be waived for students who graduated from high school three or more years before applying.

Transfer Student Admission

Transfer Student Requirements

(Note: International transfer students may be required to submit additional items-see International Student section).

  • Submit a completed UMW paper Application for Admission, or apply on-line at www.umwestern.edu. Paper applications are available by contacting the Admissions Office.
  • Non-resident students must submit a $30 non-refundable application fee.
  • Submit final official transcripts from all colleges/universities previously attended.
  • Submit proof of two measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) immunizations.

What the Student can expect from Montana Western

Within ten working days after a student’s admissions file is complete with all information listed above, Montana Western will provide new applicants with written notification of the following:

  • Total credits accepted at Montana Western.
  • The GPA of the transfer courses that have been accepted.
  • The student’s classification and academic standing at Montana Western based upon accepted coursework.
  • A completed Transfer Evaluation Sheet indicating how accepted transfer courses will apply to the applicant’s UMW program of study, including the General Education Core.
  • A listing of remaining/uncompleted coursework that must be taken at Montana Western (applicants must provide or communicate education program goals to receive this information).
  • Admission decision.

When to Apply

Applicants are encouraged to apply:

  • By July 1 for the upcoming Fall Semester.
  • By October 15 for Spring Semester.
  • By March 15 for Summer Session.

Students may not be considered for scholarship, financial aid, or housing, nor will they be eligible to register for classes, until their admissions application is processed and acceptance has been granted.

Transfer Student Policies

Credits Accepted for Transfer

The following policies guide Montana Western’s decisions as to whether transfer courses or credits are accepted for transfer:

  • Coursework and credits must be college-level and applicable to a degree at the transfer institution.
  • Courses must have been taken at a regionally accredited college/university in the United States. Coursework from foreign institutions is evaluated on a case-by-case basis; foreign credentials must be officially translated to English as part of the admissions process.
  • All transfer course credits will be converted to semester credits.
  • There are no limitations on transfer credits accepted if transferred from a four-year regionally accredited post-secondary institution or from a two-year institution. Note that no upper-level credit will be awarded for courses completed at a two-year institution.
  • Approved courses that are passed with grades “A” through “D-“, plus “P” or “S” grades, will be accepted for transfer to UMW, but only applicable courses graded “C-” or higher will be used to satisfy degree requirements at UMW. 
  • Students who complete a General Education program at a unit of the Montana University System or those who complete the MUS General Education Core are deemed to have completed the General Education program at UMW.

Credits Used to Meet Requirements (Transfer Credits )

The following general policies guide Montana Western’s decisions as to how an accepted transfer course can be used to meet requirements for UMW degrees or programs:

  • To be applied to a degree at UMW, the transfer course content must be similar or equivalent to the required UMW course, or the transfer course must be an acceptable substitute or elective.
  • The number of course credits must be similar (e.g., three vs. four credit differences are acceptable, two vs. four credits are not). Students may take Independent Study or Directed Study to make up credit deficiencies.
  • Course level must be similar (e.g., a 100/200 level course from the transfer institution may not be used to meet a 300/400 level requirement at UMW).
  • Courses must be successfully completed with grades of “C-” or better; grades of “S” and “P” are accepted but with limited application; department and/or division approval is required.
  • Some courses may need further evaluation as to their applicability toward a given program; substitution/waiver forms should be used to document department and division approval of such applicability. Courses subject to this further review and approval will need more time for certification than the ten working days.
  • All transfer students must successfully complete at least one-fourth (25%) of the coursework required for a degree while in residence at UMW. A majority of courses required in the Major and/or Minor must be taken at UMW and generally these courses must be the last courses taken prior to graduation (see Degree Residency Requirements section of this Catalog).
  • No student will graduate from UMW with less than a 2.0 institutional GPA; however, some degree programs require a higher minimum GPA.
  • Beginning in the 2015-16 academic year transfer course data for newly enrolled students is recorded on a transfer student’s UMW academic record as it appears on the transfer transcript. Prior to this academic year, only summary transfer course data was recorded on a transfer student’s UMW academic record.
  • Only the UMW GPA appears on a student’s transcript, although total hours earned will reflect all credits earned at UMW and those accepted from other colleges attended. All courses attempted at all institutions attended will be used to calculate a cumulative GPA for purposes of determining eligibility for top student in the UMW graduating class, athletic eligibility according to NAIA or NIRA regulations, and/or instances where third parties authorized to have such information request such a calculation.
  • Limitations on transfer credits:
Maximum Transfer Credit Applied
UMW Degree Transfer from four-year college/university Transfer from two-year college (No upper-level credits awarded
Associate Degree (64 credits) 48 semester credits 48 semester credits
BAS; BA; Non-education BS Degrees (120 credits) 90 semester credits 60 semester credits
BS Education Degrees 98 semester credits 64 semester credits
  • Transfer applicants who complete a general education core at one of the units of the Montana University System, or those who complete the MUS General Education Core are deemed to have satisfied the general education requirements for a degree (Associate or Bachelor) at UMW.
  • Outdated (Transfer) Coursework: “Acceptable” transfer courses that are more than five years old at the time of admission to UMW, at the discretion of the University, may be excluded from consideration in meeting major/option, minor/related area, or professional requirements for a degree. Acceptable transfer courses that are more than 15 years old at the time a student is admitted to UMW, at the discretion of the University, may be excluded from consideration in meeting general education or elective requirements for a degree (MUS Board of Regents Policy 301.5.1).

Montana University System (General Education) Core Curriculum

New students transferring to UMW from any of the units of the Montana University System (MUS) and who have satisfactorily completed a minimum of twenty (20) credits of campus-specific general education courses (distribution requirements considered) prior to transferring to UMW can elect to complete the MUS (General Education) Core Curriculum in lieu of the UMW General Education program. Information on the MUS core can be viewed online at http://mus.edu/transfer/muscore.asp.

New transfer students who are eligible for this option should communicate their choice of General Education program (UMW or MUS) at the earliest possible time so that UMW personnel (faculty advisors and Advising Office staff) may provide the most accurate and reliable degree advice possible.

Appeals - Transfer of Credits

Appeals regarding the acceptance of transfer credits should be directed to the UMW Registrar. Questions or appeals concerning the application of courses or credits to a specific degree or program of study should be directed to the Director of Student Success.

International Student Admission

International Student Requirements

Montana Western welcomes the cultural and academic stimulation international students bring to its campus. Students from other countries who have completed a secondary school are considered freshmen; those who have completed college-level coursework equivalent to 12 credits or more beyond secondary school are considered transfer students.

The following credentials are required in the Admissions Office for international student applicants:

  • Application form—Forms are available from the Admissions Office or online at http://w.umwestern.edu/section/international.
  • Application fee—A $30 non-refundable fee is required of all applicants. The fee must be in U.S. currency, and must be paid before the application will be processed. Checks should be made payable to UMW.
  • English language proficiency—Citizens of countries other than Australia, Canada, England, Ireland, New Zealand, Scotland, or Wales are required to certify English proficiency by providing an official Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL score report. A minimum score of 500 on the paper-based test, 173 on the computer- based test, and 61 on the Internet based test is required. Any questions regarding TOEFL should be directed to TOEFL, P.O. Box 899, Princeton NJ 08541. UMW does not offer an English as a Foreign Language class. Results of the SAT II: English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) may be used in lieu of TOEFL, with a required minimum score of 950.
  • Academic credentials—Applicants must submit a certified copy of secondary school transcripts or the equivalent, and any college or upper-level transcripts. International students who have attended institutions outside the United States or Canada must request an evaluation of Academic Credentials from a foreign credential evaluation service. Evaluation of credit may not reflect actual college credits accepted by UMW. Allow 8-12 weeks for the evaluators to complete the evaluation process. Foreign credential evaluation services charge a fee for credit evaluation. Contact the following services for information and applications for credit evaluation:

ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.)
PO Box 514070
Milwaukee WI 53203-3470
FAX: 414-289-3411
www.ece.org (download applications for evaluation)

Office of International Education Services
FAX: 202-872-8857

  • Statement of financial support—Applicants must submit a certified statement from a bank or sponsor verifying that adequate financial resources are available to pay the estimated expenses for the first year and thereafter. The estimated expenses amount, available from Admissions, is adjusted annually.
  • Medical history report—Each applicant must provide a physician-validated record showing immunization for diphtheria, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella (two doses of measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine after first birthday), and a recent skin test for tuberculosis. Each of these must be identified on the record in English and must be signed by a licensed physician or registered nurse.
  • Proof of a valid visa.

If admitted, the applicant will receive an international student acceptance packet containing a letter of acceptance, an evaluation of transfer credit (if applicable), and an I-20 form needed to obtain an F-1 student visa.

When to Apply

All of the above requirements must be received by Admissions according to the following schedule:

  • By March 1 for Fall Semester.
  • By October 1 for Spring Semester.
  • By January 1 for Summer Session.

Additional Admission Categories

Former Student Re-admission

Any former UMW student who did not attend UMW the preceding year may be readmitted after completing the following requirements:

  • Submit a completed Application for Readmission, available online at https://www.umwestern.edu/section/readmits/
  • Submit official copies of transcripts from all institutions attended since last enrolled at UMW.
  • Proof of measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) immunization may be required.
  • Meet the admission requirements of a transfer student if the student attended another institution since last registering at UMW.
  • An application fee is not required unless a student is changing status to a second degree/certificate student.

Non-Degree Student Admission

Applicants who are unable to meet all the requirements for admission, but who are not candidates for a degree, may be considered for admission without meeting the usual entrance requirements if they provide satisfactory evidence that they are academically prepared to pursue the special courses desired. All first-time UMW students must provide proof of two immunizations for measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) and non-resident students must pay the one-time non-refundable $30 application fee. Other requirements may also be imposed. A non-degree student must acquire status as a regular student and become a candidate for graduation by maintaining good standing academically and completing all entrance requirements for admission.

Non-Traditional Freshmen Student Admissions

First time freshmen students who are 21 or older or who have graduated from high school more than three years prior to the date in which you wish to enroll are classified as non-traditional students. Non-traditional students may be admitted after completing the following requirements:

  • Submit a completed UMW paper Application for Admissions, or apply online at www.umwestern.edu and select the “Apply Now” icon. Paper applications are available by contacting the Admissions Office.
  • Non-resident students must submit a $30 non-refundable application fee.
  • Submit proof of two measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) immunizations.
  • Submit proof of high school graduation or completion of high school equivalency.

Credit Opportunities for High School Students

UMW has developed agreements with several high schools that allow eligible students, as defined by the Montana Board of Regents Policies 301.1 and 301.17, to enroll in dual-credit, concurrent-credit and early college courses.  Home-schooled students may enroll through the school district in which they reside.  Each applicant is considered on an individual basis.  Dual-credit, concurrent-credit, and early college students may enroll in a maximum of eight credits per semester. Dual-credit, concurrent-credit and early college courses are provided at a reduced cost for tuition and fees.

Dual-Credit, Concurrent-Credit, or Early College students must:

  • Be at least 16 years of age or a high school junior.
  • Meet prerequisites for the course including placement tests or proficiency scores for math and writing.
  • Have successfully completed the required high school classes at that grade level and be on track for high school graduation.
  • Meet same admissions requirements as on-campus students, except for a high school diploma or complete HiSET.
  • Exhibit maturity and academic ability to be successful in a college course.
  • Have approval signatures of a parent or guardian and high school official.

To register for Dual-Credit, Concurrent-Credit, or Early College, students must:

  • Be enrolled in a school district with an agreement with the University of Montana Western.  Home-schooled students may enroll through the school district in which they reside.
  • Complete the Dual Enrollment Application and Registration Form.
  • Obtain a signature from a parent or guardian that acknowledges financial responsibility for payment of college tuition and fees.
  • Submit the Dual Enrollment Student Authorization for Release of Information form.

Admission using the Application for Dual Enrollment for Students does not constitute permanent or regular admission to the University of Montana Western.  High school students interested in dual-credit, concurrent-credit, or early college courses should contract their high school counselor and the Dual Enrollment Coordinator at the University of Montana Western, (406) 683-7537.

Early College Admission

The UMW Early Admission program allows students who have not yet graduated from high school to be considered for conditional admission.  As admission is very selective, Early Admission applicants must demonstrate academic ability and general maturity to warrant such acceptance.  Candidates must be able to handle university-level and general maturity to warrant such acceptance.  Candidates must be able to handle university-level coursework while at the same time continuing completion of high school graduation requirements.  Applicants must be juniors or senior in high school to be considered for Early Admission.  Each application is considered on an individual basis.

To apply for Early Admission, candidate must submit:

  • A completed Application for Dual Enrollment Home School and Early College Students form.
  • An official high school transcript, sent directly from the high school to the UMW Admissions Office.
  • Proof of two measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) immunizations.
  • Written approval from the applicant’s parents/guardians.

Early Admission students may enroll in a maximum of eight credits per semester.  Final grades for Early Admission students are withheld pending receipt by UMW of a final high school transcript verifying graduation from high school.



Dual Admission with Flathead Valley Community College

College students may apply for joint admission to UMW and Flathead Valley Community College (FVCC) using a form available from FVCC. Students accepted for dual admission will not be required to pay an additional application fee when transferring to UMW if criteria for transfer are met under the agreement. These criteria include having a minimum grade point average of 2.00 from all colleges or universities previously attended and an Associate Degree or 60 semester credits from FVCC. Students admitted to the dual admission program are entitled to obtain a UMW student identification card that entitles them to certain privileges at Montana Western, such as library use. These privileges begin as soon as the student enters FVCC under the dual admission program.

The Montana University System Affiliate Students

Montana Western waives the undergraduate application fee for students who paid the undergraduate application fee as part of an admissions application to and attendance at a Montana University System campus. An official transcript from the other MUS unit serves as a basis for waiving Montana Western’s undergraduate application fee. This policy does not apply to students seeking a second degree, certificate, or endorsement.

Previously Earned Credit

Credit for Nontraditional Learning Experiences

UMW has established specific policies as defined by the Montana Board of Regents Policy 301.19 that govern the recognition and awarding of credit for prior learning occurring outside the traditional college classroom. As part of the admissions application process, prospective students should provide official documentation that identifies and describes the kind of learning experience they have completed (i.e., AP or  CLEP score reports, military training completion certificates, Dual Enrollment, etc.). Enrolled students attempting or completing a nontraditional learning program are required to provide official documentation upon completion of the learning program. Individuals who are considering earning credit via nontraditional methods (with the idea of having those program credits meet part of a UMW degree requirement) should consult with  all appropriate UMW officials (Academic Department Chairs, Advising Office officials, Registrar, etc.) before committing resources.  Prior learning assessment credits are transferable within the Montana State University system.


Advanced Placement (AP) Program

Credit may be awarded by satisfactory completion of the Advanced Placement Tests from the College Entrance Examination Board. Students must provide official AP exam score reports or show proof of advanced placement credit awarded through another affiliate Montana University System college or university through submission of official transcripts from the transfer institution. For more information regarding minimum scores and application of AP exam credits to degree requirements, contact the Registrar’s Office, (406) 683-7371.


College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Credit may be awarded for satisfactory completion of the College Entrance Examination Board College Level examinations. Official score reports must be sent from the College Board directly to the UMW Admissions or Registrar’s Office. Credit for specific CLEP Subject Examinations and minimum score requirements are outlined in the UMW CLEP policy available at the Registrar’s Office. If credit for CLEP has been awarded by another Montana University system college or university, students should provide a copy of their official transcripts for transferring of the CLEP equivalent courses. Credits awarded for satisfactory CLEP scores will be issued “P” (Pass) grades. For more information, contact the Registrar’s Office.


Military Service Training Credit

UMW may grant credit for selected and successfully completed learning experiences acquired as part of United States military training programs.The evaluation of previous postsecondary education and training is mandatory/required for VA beneficiaries. For students utilizing Veterans benefits who are approved for transfer credit as a result of this evaluation, the institution will grant appropriate credit, reduce the program length proportionately, notify the student and Veterans Affairs in writing of this decision, and adjust invoicing of the VA accordingly.    Such training must be college level as recommended by the American Council on Education in the “Guide to Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services.” Application of military training credits to specific UMW program requirements is contingent upon department faculty approval. Individuals seeking credit for military training should submit their military transcripts to either the Admission or Registrar’s Office.  For more information contact the Registrar’s Office.

Course Challenge Exams

Students initiate the course challenge exam procedure by contacting the chairperson of the department through which the course is to be challenged. Department chairs, or regular UMW faculty, must agree to oversee the course challenge process. Details of the course challenge (exam time and place, evaluation criteria, and requirements, etc.) must be documented and agreed to by the student, the supervising faculty, and the Provost. Supervising faculty administer challenge exams and determine whether students earn credit. Courses attempted via institutional challenge exams are graded “Pass/ Fail” and become part of the student’s permanent academic record. Copies of the course challenge petition and related documentation including if credit should be awarded are processed and filed in the Registrar’s Office after completion. Students may not challenge college courses they have previously attempted (e.g., failed, audited, dropped). UMW officials will determine equivalency/similarity of transfer courses. Only degree-pursuing students enrolled in a regular curriculum may petition to challenge a course at UMW. A course fee ranging between $25-300 may be assessed for challenge exams. Challenge exams do not exist for all courses.

Additional Admission Information

Immunization Requirements

The Montana School Immunization rules reflect the requirements of the State Immunization Law (MCA 20-5-401). Current immunization recommendations related to UMW and other post-secondary students state that “All non-foreign students entering any institution of the Montana University System born after December 31, 1956, must show proof of immunization against measles and rubella on or after their first birthday and after December 31, 1967.”

  • Two doses of measles vaccine are required for students entering a post-secondary school in Montana only MMR (measles/ mumps/rubella) vaccine is acceptable for immunizations given after June 11, 1993, to meet the rules for vaccination against measles or rubella.
  • A conditional enrollment period is allowed for students who arrive at school and lack even one dose of measles vaccine. These individuals are allowed to attend classes after they receive a first dose of MMR vaccine and are conditionally enrolled at UMW until the start of the next term.
  • Applicants born prior to January 1, 1957, are exempt from immunization requirements if they provide documentation of age as described above.
  • Requests for exemptions to the immunization requirements will be reviewed by the Admissions Office.

HISET or High School Equivalency

A student may be admitted to UMW upon presentation of an official high school equivalency certificate issued by the Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction under authorization of the Board of Public Education. The high school equivalency certificate based on the HISET or GED examination may not be used to satisfy the requirement of high school graduation until after the student’s high school class has graduated Further information regarding requirements and test center locations in Montana may be obtained from the Office of Public Instruction, PO Box 202501, Helena MT 59620-2501.

Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE)

Montana Western participates in the Western Undergraduate Exchange, a program of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education and other western states. Through WUE, certain non-Montana resident students may enroll at UMW, 150% paying resident tuition plus other fees that are paid by all students.

Because Montana Western participates in the WUE, residents of Montana may enroll under the same terms in designated institutions and programs in other participating states. WUE states include Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Information about WUE programs available at Montana Western may be obtained from the Admissions Office. Montana residents interested in information about WUE programs in other states may contact one of the following:

Certifying Officer for Montana
WICHE Student Exchange Program
2500 Broadway Helena MT 59620-3101
(406) 444-6570

WICHE Student Exchange Program
PO Drawer P
Boulder, CO 80301-9752
(303) 497-0210