Direct Freshman Admission (DFA)

About recent changes to the DFA policy

In 2011, a Direct Admit Team appointed by Interim Provost Mary Lidstrom considered logistics for direct admission into a major. Their report concludes “DFA is effective in attracting high-­quality students.” It recommends incremental expansion of DFA into competitive majors and proposes logistics for implementation related to the following:

  • New DFA: Setting up DFA for the first time in programs or majors
  • Changes to DFA: Changing DFA of existing DFA programs or majors to bring in more students or to change your process of working with the UW Registrar

The report recommendations were presented to the Provost and Board of Deans and Chancellors, leading to a new process for DFA approvals outlined below.

New process for requesting DFA approval

Units must obtain both academic and financial approval to start DFA or to make changes to existing DFA processes. The approvals are separate but can be pursued simultaneously (see Approval Processes map below). For details on expectations and requirements for direct admission requests, see the 2011 Direct Admit Team Report.

1. Academic approval from FCAS

To obtain academic approval, submit the Registrar’s Form 1503: Creating & Changing Undergrad Academic Programs for review by the Faculty Council on Academic Standards (FCAS). You can submit at any time. Turnaround time is approximately 2 weeks.

2. Financial approval from the Provost

To obtain financial approval, submit the Direct Freshman Admission Request Form to the Provost’s office by October 1 for both new DFA and changes to existing DFA for the following academic year

Expect a 4 week turnaround and a follow-up conversation with the Provost and Executive Vice Provost, who is leading this process on behalf of the Provost. Upon the Provost’s approval (subject to FCAS approval of Form 1503), a signed copy will be returned to the unit contact and appropriate central administration offices.

DFA approval processes

Click image below to enlarge.

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