College of Science & Engineering

FAQ - ID Admissions

What is the application process to become an Industrial Design (ID) student?

Becoming an Industrial Design major at WWU requires three steps.
1. Apply to the University (see University Admissions for details)
2. Apply to the ID program with an Entrance Portfolio to become a pre-major (see Admissions for details)
3. Eligible pre-majors apply to the major in the middle of sophomore year (see Sophomore Review for details)

When should I submit an Entrance Portfolio?

After acceptance by the University students should plan to apply to the program the quarter before they plan to start at WWU. For instance, if students plan to start at WWU in fall quarter they should apply to ID by the April deadline prior.  Applying to the ID program requires an Entrance Portfolio. See Admissions page for details.

After submitting an Entrance Portfolio, when can I expect to find out if I was accepted?

ID faculty typically notify applicants by email within a week of the due date.  For students who apply in April, they will receive notification before the May 1 deadline to commit to universities.

How many students apply to be a pre-major in Industrial Design? And what is a pre-major?

The program typically receives 80-100 Entrance Portfolios in an academic year and 24 are accepted.  Portfolios are accepted 3 times a year and approximately 8 are accepted each time, which totals 24.

A pre-major is a student in the program who takes foundational coursework in ID as well as math, physics and engineering courses. ID courses specifically are restricted to those students who have been accepted into the program with an Entrance Portfolio.

If I am not accepted the first time, can I apply again?

Yes, it is typical that students might need to apply more than once to be accepted as a pre-major.  The program accepts portfolios every quarter.  In the meantime, students can take other requirements for the major such as math, physics, art history and general university requirements.

Can I get feedback on my portfolio if I am not accepted the first time?

In order to get feedback on your portfolio, you will need to contact the Industrial Design faculty to schedule an appointment in person or over the phone.

Jason Morris
Professor, ID Program Director
360.650.2514; ET335

Arunas Oslapas
Professor, Industrial Design
360.650.3425; ET337

What courses can I take at a community college or other institution towards the Industrial Design program?

Transfer students are strongly encouraged to take the following courses prior to transferring to WWU for Industrial Design:

  • Foundation Drawing I - the ID program will accept this as equivalent to ID 110
  • Pre-calculus I and II - in order to transfer your math courses to WWU, you must complete the series at your transfer institution
  • General Physics I - will be accepted for PHYS 114
  • Art Appreciation - will be accepted as ART 109 by the ID program


Courses to take to build or strengthen the Entrance Portfolio, but won't necessarily transfer:

  • Art Studio classes such as ceramics, painting, and/or sculpture
  • Computer aided design
  • Graphic Design


If you are taking courses at a school in Washington state, please refer to the Transfer Equivalency Guide to check for equivalencies. The university catalog is the most accurate place to find Industrial Design requirements.

If you would like your transcript evaluated by the department, please send a PDF of your unofficial transcript to the pre-major advisor.

If I complete a two year degree at a community college, how long will it take to graduate after transferring to WWU?

Transfer students interested in majoring in Industrial Design should expect to spend at least three years completing the requirements.  The time to degree depends greatly on courses taken at the community college and whether or not the student is accepted into the program on the first try.

What do students typically do if they are not admitted into the major after Sophomore Review?

This is probably the most frequently asked question as well as the most difficult to answer.  In recent years, students who didn't make it past Sophomore Review did a number of things including switch to Design or Art Studio, transfer to another institution, or wait a year to apply again.