In order to apply to the program, applicants who are current UW students or transfer students must complete an online application and provide the information and materials listed below.
Starting in 2020, the Informatics program has two admissions cycles per year:
- The application to start the program during Autumn 2020 will open in mid-February and will have a deadline of Friday, April 3.
- The application to start the program during Winter 2021 will open in mid-July and will have a deadline of Friday, Oct. 2.
Schools and Transcripts
Applicants are required to provide information about all schools where they have earned academic credit and are required to provide a transcript for each.
Applicants who have taken a prerequisite course at a school that does not have a transfer agreement with the UW (typically these are schools outside the state of Washington) will be asked to provide a syllabus and/or course description for the class. These applicants will be contacted directly after the deadline passes or can email this information at any time to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applicants will provide information about the prerequisite courses. If the prerequisite course was taken at the UW, the student will select that option in the application. The system will automatically pull the course and grade information into your application. If more than one course was taken that will fulfill the prerequisite requirement, the system will automatically select the course with the highest grade.
In addition to providing information about prerequisite grades and academic history, applicants must submit a statement of less than 3,000 characters (including white space). The Informatics admissions committee will review your statement to learn more about why you want to learn what we teach in Informatics. The committee is specifically interested in four aspects of your life:
- What grades on your transcript do you think best represent your ability to succeed in Informatics? This might be your performance in Informatics classes, your performance in classes you view as related to Informatics, or independent learning you believe is relevant to Informatics.
- What experiences do you have designing information technology, building information technology, or working with data? Describe the most significant project you believe is relevant to Informatics.
- What is a time when you have demonstrated hard work, persistence or focus toward a goal? Did you achieve the goal? This does not have to be related Informatics.
- What goals do you have post-graduation, and how can an Informatics degree support them? You might share specific problems you want to solve, or careers you want to pursue. It's OK if you’re not sure yet or you have many ideas.
Address all four of these topics, but do so in whatever form best fits your answers. For example, you might address each question separately, or you might tell a story that implicitly addresses all of the questions. Your writing should be clear, concise and captivating.
However you present the answers, focus on telling your story, not platitudes and generalities about data, information or technology. If you only tell us what you think we want to hear, we won’t learn anything about you. The admissions committee is not looking for just one type of student; we need diversity of all kinds to promote critical learning about people, information and technology, so we need to know what makes you different.
Your audience will be diverse, including faculty, academic advisors, and current Informatics students. Therefore, to prepare your response, we recommend you first think about what you want to communicate and who your audience is, and then devise a way to convey that information that best communicates your narrative. Test and refine it until it communicates what you intend.
You may include anything you want in your 3,000 characters, as long as it satisfies the following requirements:
- No links are allowed, unless they are for reference (e.g., a link to a company website). The content must be entirely contained within the text. Reviewers will not follow any of the links in your statement.
- Applicants will copy/paste their submission into a text box in the application. (Applicants should not prepare a PDF.)
- Submissions should only be composed of text. (Graphics, pictures, etc. will not be accepted.)
Note: Two-Application Limit
Beginning with the 2020 admissions cycles, applicants will be allowed to apply to the Informatics major a maximum of two times. For this reason, applicants are encouraged to be selective and apply only when they have fulfilled all the criteria and feel that they can present a strong application. (Specifically, applicants who have not completed all five prerequisite courses should not apply to the program.)
Applications submitted prior to 2020 and applications for Freshman Direct Admission do not count toward the two-application limit.