Educational Planning

Advisors are available by appointment in the Entry & Advising Center in the Laidlaw Center and quick questions can be answered during daily drop-in times. For drop-in hours or to schedule an appointment, call (360) 383-3080. Students on academic probation are required to have an advisor's signature in order to register each quarter. 

Financial Planning for Success in College  

*NEW*  CashCourse is a financial planning resource for all WCC students.
Popular topics include;

  • Create a budget 
  • Check out money management tips
  • Get out of credit card debt

Decisions You Need to Make

1) Select a degree or certificate program:
     When to decide: By the time you have earned 30 college level credits

A) Choose and prepare for a major to transfer to a 4-year college

B) Choose a Professional / Technical career track

Note: For important information about preparing for a major, please refer to the samples of degree planning sheets.

2) Develop an educational plan for degree completion:
     When to decide: By the time you have earned 45 college level credits

A) Use the general degree planning sheet as a resource.

3) Develop a plan to apply for graduation:
     When to decide: By the time you have earned 70 college level credits 


Resources to Help

  • Degree Planning
    This appointment will explain AAS degree/certificate requirements,discuss the most effective way to obtain your degree and answer your questions about major preparation within your AAS degree. Call (360) 383-3080 to schedule an appointment with an advisor.
  • Western Washington University Majors Fair
    This fall event showcases many of the majors and departments offered at Western. Departmental advisors from each major, general admissions, and advising, work with students to explore options and prepare for acceptance to Western and their intended major.
  • Transfer Fairs
    Whatcom brings representatives from Washington state universities to answer students' questions regarding admissions requirements, major preparation and prerequisite planning. Call (360) 383-3080 or click here for additional information .
  • Career Search Process
    This 3-credit class (Psychology 105) will help you make career and occupational choices for today and for the future. Offered quarterly. Check the Annual Schedule publication or call (360) 383-3055 for more information.
  • Preparing for Work-Based Learning Experiences
    This 1-credit class (Coop 180) will prepare you to search for a job and provide you with the skills to keep it. This class is required prior to enrolling in a Cooperative Education work experience for credit. Offered quarterly. Check the Annual Schedule publication or call (360)383-3065 for more information. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Please be aware that information about other colleges or universities may have changed since they published their catalog. It is important for you to contact the college or university you plan to attend to ensure that you have current information.

  • What grade point average (GPA) will guarantee that I am admitted to the university of my choice?
    Unfortunately, there is no magic number, but a good GPA does impact your ability to be admitted to certain universities and certain programs. Check with the university and the department to find out minimum requirements and GPA averages for students who are admitted. A GPA of at least 2.0 is required in order to receive a degree from Whatcom.
  • What is S/U grading?
    S/U grading (satisfactory/unsatisfactory) is usually requested by students when a letter grade may negatively impact their GPA or when they are taking a class because of interest and do not want a letter grade. Any regular letter grade course can be changed to S/U grading at the registration window through the 8th week of the quarter. Students should think carefully before making this choice. Many universities will not accept S/U grades for courses which are used to meet general university requirements if transferred outside of the AAS degree. Also, many departments do not accept S/U grading to meet departmental course prerequisites. Before signing up for S/U grading, check the transfer policies and departmental policies at the university or college you plan to attend.
  • How is a "W" grade viewed?
    A "W" grade is recorded when a student officially withdraws from a class. One "W" grade is not usually a problem but a pattern of "W" grades may influence your ability to transfer to the college or university of your choice. Whatcom has a policy to alert you if you receive more than 21 credits of non-completion grades and you will be encouraged to discuss your situation with a college advisor. Sometimes, students register for more credits than they can handle and end up dropping a course or two each quarter. It is far better to enroll for less credits and complete them successfully than to enroll for more credits than you can handle. "W" grades are not computed into your GPA at Whatcom.
  • What about a "V" grade?
    A "V" grade on your Whatcom transcript generally means that you stopped attending class, didn't withdraw and the instructor gave you a "V" grade instead of an "F". A "V" grade is not computed into your GPA at Whatcom. However, some colleges and universities (like Western Washington University) will calculate the "V" grade into your GPA. If you are in doubt as to why you received a "V" grade, you should contact your instructor. Check with the college or university you plan to attend if this is an issue for you.
  • Can I repeat a course at Whatcom?
    A student may repeat any course that is not designated as repeatable for credit up to a maximum of 2 times (this is defined as two repeats in addition to the original enrollment.) Whatcom computes the GPA with the highest grade point value for any course that is repeated. If a student notifies the registration office by completing a "Repeat" card, the symbol "R" will be placed next to the grade of the other course and the credits and grade points for that course will not be calculated into the overall GPA on the transcript. Colleges and universities vary widely as to how they will view repeated courses and how they will compute the GPA. Many colleges and universities average the grades and the grade points for both courses. Check with the college or university you plan to attend before you repeat a course.
  • Transfer Information
    Information about how Whatcom credits will transfer to a 4-year college or university can often be found on their websites.  Please click here to check out some of them.

Having Trouble in Your Classes?

1) Talk with your instructor

2) Contact the Learning Center at (360) 383-3090. It is located in Cascade Hall, Room 113.   Learning Center activities include:

  • Drop-in Study Skills
  • Writing Center
  • Tutoring
  • Math Center

If you need additional help, schedule an appointment with a counselor or advisor in the Entry & Advising Center located in the College's Laidlaw Center, Room 116. Call (360) 383-3080.