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Western Illinois University (WIU) is a public academic institution located in Macomb, Illinois. Founded in 1899, U.S. News and World Report designated the school a Best Midwestern University. According to the Princeton Review, it has also been a Best Midwestern College for 18 years. The Military Times Magazine also announced Western Illinois University as a Best for Vets College.
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Overview of Western Illinois University (WIU)
The university seeks to empower students, faculty, and staff to lead dynamic and diverse communities. Core values include academic excellence, educational opportunity, personal growth, and social responsibility.
The student population is 7,400+, with around 5,400 pursuing undergraduate degrees. Western Illinois University (WIU) employs 443 full and 62 part-time faculty members, all of whom provide instructional assistance. This makes the student-to-faculty ratio is 13:1, which is a good deal better than the national average. There are also 65 graduate assistant positions available, 47 of which are instructional and 18 which are primarily involved in research.
|Campus Setting||Town: Remote|
|Student Faculty Ratio||13:1|
Top Rankings For Western Illinois University
WIU Acceptance Rate and Admissions
|High School GPA||Required|
|High School Rank||NA|
|High School Transcripts||Required|
|College Prep Courses||Required|
|TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)||Required|
|Common Application Accepted||Yes|
WIU Tuition Cost & Financial Aid
The cost of attending Western Illinois University varies depending on the number of credit hours taken each semester. New undergraduate students enrolled in 15 credit hours of coursework can expect to pay approximately $7,318 per semester in tuition and fees. Notably, rates are the same for out-of-state students. Regardless of residency, all students qualify for in-state tuition rates. Graduate students are charged at a different rate, however. Those enrolled in nine credit hours will be charged approximately $5,151 per semester.
Students must remember that these estimates do not include books and other miscellaneous charges such as room, board, books, supplies, and parking permits. Western Illinois University does offer on-campus housing and meal plans. There are many options to choose from, but the standard price per semester is $5,250.
Western Illinois University is unique in that it offers a tuition guarantee. All new undergraduate students entering the institution are automatically included in the plan, which freezes the per-hour rate for a four-year period. This means the cost of tuition remains the same each subsequent year of enrollment.
Additionally, Western Illinois University guarantees new freshmen who meet certain requirements that they will graduate in four years or their remaining tuition will be free. GardTrac requirements include declaring interest in a specific major, maintaining an average 15-16 hours of course work each semester, meeting grade point minimums, and discussing degree progress with advisors.
Notably, the average amount of financial aid and institutional scholarships received by students each year is $18,772. Incoming freshmen with at least a 1030 SAT or 20 ACT and a 3.0/4.0 grade point average (GPA) are also automatically awarded the Western Commitment scholarship, which are renewable for up to eight semesters. Additional federal student aid is also available to those who complete and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
During the 2020-2021 academic year, 95% of beginning students entering postsecondary education at the institution for the first time received some form of financial assistance. Most received some amount in grants and/or scholarships, but 51% still required student loans.
|Average net price||2020-2021|
|Average Total Aid||$13,937|
|Students Receiving Financial Aid||95%|
|Room & Board||$10,192|
- Tuition In-State - $13,669
- Tuition Out-of-State - $13,669
- Books and Supplies - $1,200
- Room & Board - $10,192
- Other - $2,339
Western Illinois University offers a wide variety of in-demand undergraduate and graduate programs, integrated programs, pre-professional programs, and certificate programs. The institution provides student-centered education characterized by innovative teaching, research, and service - all grounded in interdisciplinary, regional, and global perspectives. Students are encouraged to engage in opportunities guided by professional and diverse faculty and staff members.
Those enrolled can choose from over 100 innovative programs. Top majors include:
- Elementary Education
- Mechanical Engineering
- Law Enforcement and Justice Administration
As of fall 2021, Western Illinois University had first-year, undergraduate retention rate of 72% for full-time students and 33% for part-time students. Notably, the national average for full-time students is 68% for all higher education institutions. This indicates that the mass majority of full-time students enrolled at the university were happy enough with their experiences to return the following year.
The overall graduation rate for first-time students who began their studies in 2015 was 51%, which is lower than the national rate. Graduation rates demonstrate how frequently students complete their degrees or certificate programs within 150% of standard time, which is approximately six years. Most students strive to graduate within four years, however. Approximately 32% of full-time, first-time students who began their studies in 2015 were able to complete requirements within this timeframe.
Western Illinois University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Additionally, the institution’s teacher licensure programs are approved by the Illinois State Board of Education. Many other departments and schools are also accredited by professional agencies, including the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Association of Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACBS International), and Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
Student Population Total
Student Population 7,455
Most Popular Programs & Majors
(# of Diplomas Awarded by Subject)
|Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Services||280 Total Graduates / 18%|
|Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Administration||256 Graduates|
|Fire Services Administration||18 Graduates|
|Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Services, Other||6 Graduates|
|All Business Majors||206 Total Graduates / 13%|
|Logistics, Materials, and Supply Chain Management||35 Graduates|
|Business Administration and Management, General||33 Graduates|
|Finance, General||24 Graduates|
|Marketing/Marketing Management, General||21 Graduates|
|All Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities Majors||166 Total Graduates / 11%|
|Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities, Other||148 Graduates|
|Liberal Arts and Sciences/Liberal Studies||18 Graduates|
|All Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs Majors||106 Total Graduates / 7%|
|Speech Communication and Rhetoric||70 Graduates|
|Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs, Other||17 Graduates|
|Radio and Television||16 Graduates|
|Health Professions and Related Programs||98 Total Graduates / 6%|
|Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse||40 Graduates|
|Health/Health Care Administration/Management||19 Graduates|
|Communication Sciences and Disorders, General||16 Graduates|
|Athletic Training/Trainer||6 Graduates|
|All Other Diplomas||44%|
Outcome & Salary
Western Illinois University administers an annual Alumni Survey that asks former students about their employment, further education, satisfaction with the university, and perceptions of educational practices while in college. The most recent survey collected data from alumni one year after graduation in 2015. Of those who responded, more than 61% were employed full-time, while another 21% were employed part-time. Five percent were not employed and not seeking employment, while just over 11% were unemployed and seeking employment.
Many alumni also indicated whether or not their current jobs related to their bachelor’s degree majors. Overall, 70% said their work was related or closely related to their education at Western Illinois University, while approximately 30% said their professions were unrelated. Of those that marked unrelated, 57% said it was by choice and not due to unavailability of professional options.
According to Payscale, the average base salary for Western Illinois University graduates is $69,000.
|College Grads Early Career Salary||$49,200|
|College Grads Average Salary||$70,000|
|College Grads Mid Career Salary||$91,800|
|Return on Investment (ROI)|
|10 Year Salary Earnings Potential||$700,000|
|20 Year Salary Earnings Potential||$1,618,000|
|Cost of Education (Net Price) 4 Year||$46,664|
|10 Year Projected ROI||$653,336|
|20 Year Projected ROI||$1,571,336|
|No College Education Salary Comparison|
|National Average Salary||$38,792|
|10 Year Projected Income||$387,920|
|20 Year Projected Income||$775,840|
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