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Student Achievement Outreach

Frequently Asked Questions


Getting Started

Taking Classes

Financial Matters



General Questions


What technical skills and resources do I need?

To take advantage of online learning, you must have a computer running either Windows or Mac OS. All of the top internet browsers support online learning; Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Internet Explorer. Click here to view our recommendations for technology. A basic knowledge of how to operate a computer and browse the web is also essential.

Do I need special software?

No special software is generally required for online learning; however some may be helpful or required in certain courses.

How do I log into MyCWU?

1.  Visit
2.  Click “MyCWU” at the top of the page
3.  Enter your credentials and click "Login"

How do I log into Canvas?

1.  Visit
2.  Click “MyCWU” at the top of the page
3.  Enter your credentials and click "Login"
4.  Canvas can be found under "Applications" on your MyCWU home

How do I get my PIN?

Each student is mailed a letter from Admissions with their student ID number and a five digit PIN number.  If you have lost, or forgotten your PIN, you may call the Registrar's Office at 509-963-3001 to reset your PIN number over the phone. Please have your Student ID number ready prior to calling.

How can I search for just online courses?

You can search for online classes within MyCWU. In your student center, click “Search Classes”. Choose all the filters you want to apply. At the bottom of the page, instead of search, click “Search Web Classes Only”. This video can help you.

Where can I find out what books my classes need?

Option #1

1.  Log into MyCWU
2.  Go to your "Student Center" found in "Other Links"
3.  Click on section number
4.  Find your "Class Schedule" under the drop down menu which displays as "other academic..."

In list view, your classes will be displayed

5.  Click the section number next to the class of interest
6.  The books required for the course will be shown under "Textbook/Other Materials"

Option #2

1.  Visit the CWU Wildcat Shop Book Store here.
2.  Select a term
3.  Select a subject
4.  Select a number
5.  Click “find books”
Required textbooks will be displayed along with status: Required, all or none.

Classes start in two weeks and I do not see my classes in Canvas. Where are they?

Classes will not typically appear in Canvas until closer to the start of the quarter. Many classes won’t even appear until the very first day of the quarter. If your classes have not appeared by the first day of the quarter, we recommend that you email your instructor.

What are the tuition and fees for online programs?

Official tuition and fee rates for the academic year (fall, winter, and spring) can be found on the Registrar Services site. Official tuition and fee rates for Summer Session can be found on the the Summer Session website.

Please visit our "Tuition and Fees for Online Students" page for a full explanation and additional links to helpful resources.

Is financial aid available?

You may be eligible for financial aid. You must submit a FAFSA form for consideration. Please visit our financial aid website, here.

How do I know what the important dates of the quarter are?

Academic calendars can be found on the Online Student Resource Center under “Helpful Links” or by visiting

How do semester credits transfer to Central?

Central is a quarter school. Semester credits transfer to Central at a 1 to 1.5 ratio. For example, if you are transferring in a 4 credit semester course, you would be awarded 6 quarter credits (4 x 1.5=6).

I have a hold on my account, what do I do?

Students should frequently review their holds in MyCWU student center. There are many types of holds all with different contact people. Students can see who to contact by clicking on the “details” link.

How do I declare an online major?

It is important that online students declare their major as soon as they can as many online classes are restricted to students enrolled in online majors. Students can apply for their major by submitting the major application form. After submitting the application, students are encouraged to contact the program advisor for further advising. You can view the information for programs, applications, and faculty contacts here.

When should I apply for graduation and how do I do it?

Students should apply for graduation no later than 6 months prior to the end of the quarter they would like to graduate.
Application deadlines can be found here.
To apply in your MyCWU Student Center, go to:
Main Menu>>Campus Solutions>>Self Service>>Degree Process/Graduation>>Apply for Graduation

Will I be able to attend a commencement ceremony after getting my online degree?

Yes, online students who apply for graduation are eligible to participate in the commencement ceremony.

Will my diploma or transcript say I was in an online program?

Your CWU transcript does show that you were in an online major. Your diploma will not have any wording that indicates that you were in an online major.

Are online courses "work at your own pace"?

The majority of online classes have deadlines and due dates, just like in person classes. Online classes require a lot of self-discipline to stay on task and we recommend the use of scheduling tools to make sure students stay on task.

How can I be sure my online program will be high quality?

The highest priority of Central Washington University is the success of students in all our educational programs and in every learning modality. The Office of Multimodal Learning produces an annual Quality Assurance of Online Learning report to assess online student success through a variety of measures: student evaluation of instruction, course-level grade analysis, satisfaction surveys, and retention statistics. For more information, please view our Quality of Online Learning at CWU page.

Will I need to come to the CWU campus?

Online students are not required to come to campus. However, online students can come to any of our campuses for in-person assistance.  Students should be aware that some services may be limited at our branch campuses. If you think you would benefit from coming to campus for assistance, we recommend contacting the campus you intend on visiting to ensure that the services you need are available there. You can view our regional campus information here and our main campus can be contacted by calling 509-963-1111.



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