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UWW Graduate Dayani Pieri speaking at Commencement

The University Without Walls (UWW) Program is a competency-based degree program that leads to a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree. UWW recognizes learning that occurs outside of the traditional classroom. Students work with an academic advisor, a community advisor and the UWW advisor to design an individualized curriculum.

Graduation is based on demonstrated competencies, rather than credit hours completed.


Prospective applicants to UWW attend a Prospective Student Meeting. Click here for dates and times.

Admission to UWW begins with submission of a Narrative Application that includes:

  • Autobiographical statement
  • Prior and proposed learning in the Depth Area
  • Prior and proposed learning in the Breadth Areas
  • Prior and proposed learning in Effective Communication
  • Documentation of prior learning
  • Official transcripts from all previously attended institutions--sealed, paper transcripts
  • Official high school or GED transcripts (if applicable: please see the University Catalog for details)

UWW prospective students are required to attend a prospective student meeting prior to submitting their Narrative Application.

When the Narrative Application is approved applicants submit the following to be accepted to Northeastern:

  • Northeastern Illinois University Application, obtained from NDP office
  • $30 application fee

For general Northeastern admission requirements, the Admissions Office helps new and returning students through the application process. In addition, the Transfer Center assists transfer and Veteran students with transitioning to our campus.

Narrative Application Deadlines

March 30, 2017 for the Fall 2017 semester.


Each UWW student works with an Academic Advisor who is a NEIU faculty member or administrator with knowledge in the student’s academic concentration.

The Academic Advisor

  • assists the student with the development of the Learning Contract
  • helps students develop Independent Study and, if necessary, choose courses 
  • ensures documentation of all learning
  • evaluates and approves the Learning Contract  and Semester Reports
  • provides written feedback on Independent Study and progress towards degree each semester
  • assists the student in preparation for the Graduation Review Board and is an integral member of the Review Board.

Each UWW student also works with an off-campus Community Advisor who has professional and/or academic expertise in the student’s academic concentration.  The Community Advisor

  • acts as a resource person for the  depth area
  • helps design the Learning Contract
  • evaluates Semester Reports
  • serves as a member of the  Graduation Review Board.

The Faculty Advisor for University Without Walls is Dr. Timothy Barnett.

Learning Contract

The Learning Contract addresses prior and proposed learning in each of UWW’s three programmatic areas: depth, breadth and effective communication. 

Graduation Review Board

Academic requirements of a student's UWW program are determined by the Graduation Review Board.

The Semester Report

The Semester Report  details and documents learning accomplished each semester and is accompanied by documentation of the learning. The report is reviewed and signed by both advisors and submitted to the UWW Program Office by the established deadline.  

Independent Study Deadlines

Fall 2017 deadline: August 14, 2017 at 5:00 p.m.


Documented evidence of competence is the key to the UWW program.  

Review Board and Graduation

Graduation is based on demonstrated competencies, not credit hours.  A Graduation Review Board at the Review Board Hearing examines the student’s completed work and determines if the student has fulfilled all academic requirements.

Careers and Graduate Schools

Our graduates enter a variety of careers and graduate programs.

Contact Us

Visit our Contact Us page!

Nontraditional Degree Programs

Contact Faculty and Staff

T 773-442-6030

Contact Faculty and Staff

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