Satisfactory Progress Policy and Pre-major Extension
The University of Washington has a policy called Satisfactory Progress that requires students to declare a major by the time they have earned 105 credits and completed 5 quarters. Both conditions need to be met in order for the satisfactory progress rules to go into effect. This policy is also known as the 105 credit + 5 quarter rule.
- Students who have completed 90 or more credits and 4 or more academic satisfactory progress quarters will receive an email warning that they should plan to declare their major soon. No hold is placed at this point.
- Students who have completed 105 or more credits and 5 or more academic satisfactory progress quarters but have not declared a major will receive a registration hold and will not be allowed to register for the next quarter. Transfer students who enter with 105 or more credits are expected to declare a major before registering for their second quarter at the UW.
Students with this registration hold, who are not able to declare a major, will need to work with their academic adviser on a Premajor Extension or PME. A PME is an education tool design to support a student's informed choice of and preparation for a major. PMEs are granted at the discretion of a student's academic adviser and are typically granted for one quarter.
Students who have not declared a major when the extension expires will receive a registration hold (SPPEXT) and must meet with an adviser again.
Step 1: Connect with your assigned adviser
To begin, schedule a 30-minute in-person appointment with your assigned adviser. You will need to bring your prepared written statement to this appointment (see step 2 for instructions).
Step 2: Prepare a written statement
In a written statement that you will share with your assigned adviser, please answer the following questions:
How this major fits with your goals and your interests.
The broader personal and social factors that have shaped your choice of major (i.e. the “non-academic” considerations that have led you to this decision).
The activities you have engaged in at UW to explore this major. When do you plan to apply/declare?
If the major is capacity-constrained, what are the open or minimum requirements major(s) you are also considering? How do those majors connect with your goals and your interests.? When do you plan to apply/declare?
Your adviser will carefully review this statement. If your adviser does not find the responses satisfactory, no PME will be granted. The adviser will notify the student of the decision and provide sufficient feedback about your next steps.
Step 3: Submit your statement
This reflection must be written and submitted to the student’s adviser during an appointment or via email. Students will work with their assigned adviser to determine the best method for submission.
How long will it take to have my registration hold removed?
Once a student has satisfied the requirements for a PME and it has been approved, the registration hold is typically removed in 3-5 business days.
What if my request is denied?
The function of a pre-major extension (PME) is to support a student’s exploration and preparation for a major. This tool serves to foster decision making and planning skills in students as they navigate their learning here at UW. To be effective, the PME request must be thoughtfully prepared and represent a reasonable plan forward. In the circumstance when the request does not meet these criteria, it will be denied AND the student will receive information and feedback from their adviser about next steps. Next steps may include (but are not limited to):
- The student revises their PME request (for the same major)
- The student revises their PME request (for the different major)
- The student seeks an extension from the departmental adviser of their intended major
- The student declares an open major
Can I get a PME during drop-in advising
No, PME requests take time and good planning, drop-in advising is not adequate for this. Unless previously arranged with your assigned adviser, PME requests will not be processed during drop-in advising.
What if I need an additional PME?
To request an additional PME, a student will need to provide...
- An updated version of the reflection from the first PME that addresses this prompt: Describe why you think this major is a good fit for you and what led you to choose this major? In your answer please address:
- If the major is capacity-constrained, the non-capacity-constrained majors you are also considering.
- If the major is capacity-constrained, your reasons for believing you are a viable applicant.
- The activities you have engaged in at UW to explore this major (e.g. met with an academic adviser or a faculty member in the department, taken one or more exploratory classes, had a conversation with a student in the major, independent study/research in the subject, etc.)
- The broader personal and social factors that have shaped your choice of major (i.e. the “non-academic” considerations that have lead you to this decision).
- How this major fits with your goals and your interests
- In addition, the student must design a plan for courses they will take over the next 3 (three) quarters based on their intended major AND an alternative major.
The adviser will carefully review the student demonstration. If any additional information or clarification is needed the adviser will follow-up with the student directly. If the adviser finds the responses satisfactory, a PME will be granted. If the adviser does not find the responses satisfactory, no PME will be granted. The adviser will notify the student of the decision and provide sufficient feedback about the student’s next steps.
What are the requirements for an additional PME?
If a student is not in a major when their first PME expires, they may request an additional extension from their assigned adviser.