Undergraduate Catalog

University Profile

Western Illinois University serves approximately 8,500 students in the heart of the Midwest through its traditional, residential four-year campus in Macomb, IL (population 20,000) and its metropolitan, commuter campus in the Quad Cities/ Moline, IL (QC population 384,000; Moline population 43,000). WIU’s friendly, accessible, nurturing campus communities are dedicated to Higher Values in Higher Education and are comprised of strong faculty, state-of-the-art technology and facilities, and a wide range of academic and extracurricular opportunities for students and staff. Committed to empowering students through the opportunity to earn a high-quality education that is also affordable, WIU’s GradTrac and Cost Guarantee programs ensure that students can achieve their degrees within four years while paying a fixed rate for tuition, fees, and room and meal plan. WIU remains the only University in Illinois to guarantee the cost for tuition plus fees and room and meal plan for students over a four-year period at both the undergraduate and graduate level. WIU’s Cost Guarantee program is the model for the state’s “truth-in-tuition program” that has helped students control cost.

The University offers 63 undergraduate degree programs, 38 master’s/specialist degree programs, and 2 doctoral programs. Approximately 79 percent of WIU students are undergraduates and 21 percent are graduate students. The curriculum includes the natural sciences, humanities, social sciences, fine arts, business, education, and a number of pre-professional and technical fields of study. Although students primarily come from Illinois, more than 1,050 are from out of state, and approximately 370 are international students. Between July 2017 and June 2018, 1,905 students completed undergraduate degree requirements.


Providing excellent instruction is the highest priority of the University’s 587 faculty members. The faculty is responsible for 96 percent of the total student credit hours earned at the undergraduate level with graduate teaching assistants contributing the remaining 4 percent. As a group, full professors devote approximately 90 percent of their professional responsibilities to undergraduate instruction. The on-campus ratio of students to faculty is 13:1, and the average undergraduate class size is 19. Although primarily dedicated to teaching, WIU faculty members participate in extensive research and creative activities.


University Libraries provides research assistance; instruction in library use; group study space; lectures and special events; regional archives; and is a Federal Depository location. The libraries house an extensive collection and offer online database access to thousands of academic journals and publications. The Leslie F. Malpass Library in Macomb is the main branch and provides an inviting environment for research and study. The Macomb campus also has two specialized branch libraries for music and curriculum. The WIU—Quad Cities campus houses a branch library and provides access to the same materials as the Macomb libraries.

Computing Facilities

WIU provides approximately 500 computers for use in 10 general use computer labs and 13 computer resource centers throughout the Macomb campus and 2 computer labs at the Quad Cities campus. Detailed listings and a map of the computing facilities can be found on the WIU website. Computer labs are locations with computers for use that are staffed with a worker to help aid students with their computing needs, while computer resource centers contain computers for use but are unstaffed. The University also provides access to numerous software packages, the Internet, e-mail, campus information systems, and other resources. Students have access to Macintosh and Windows-compatible computers, scanners, laser printers, and CD/DVD readers/writers. Personal file storage is available via a personal network drive known as Samba (or the P:\ drive), unlimited file storage on Google Drive (drive.g.wiu.edu), and 1TB of free file storage when signed up for a free Office 365 account available to all students.

Cultural Center

The College of Fine Arts and Communication is at the center of the rich cultural and artistic community at Western. Students, faculty, and guest artists of the School of Music perform over 180 exhilarating concerts and recitals every year. The Department of Theatre and Dance produces eight major theatrical and dance productions and more than 12 studio shows in Western’s three theatres. This is drama, comedy, and musical theatre at its finest. The Department of Broadcasting and Journalism is at sports and breaking news events daily reporting on radio, TV, and the web. The University Art Gallery exhibits work by the talented WIU students and faculty, as well as nationally-recognized artists. The Bureau of Cultural Affairs (BCA) brings comedy, music, and magic to campus, and students get to attend most events FREE. Check us out. There is something for everyone!


Fifty-nine buildings are situated on more than 1,000 acres in Macomb. In addition, the University operates the Alice L. Kibbe Life Sciences Station on the Mississippi River, the Frank J. Horn Field Campus, and the University Farm, which provide nearby facilities for students enrolled in Agriculture; Biology; and Recreation, Park and Tourism Administration courses. Western Illinois University— Quad Cities Riverfront Campus in Moline provides baccalaureate degree, graduate degree, and post-baccalaureate certificate programs in various disciplines, along with Museum Studies courses at the Figge Museum.


New students can attend Western Illinois University for approximately $26,500 in 2019–2020, including tuition, fees, room, meal plan, books, and personal expenses. Financial assistance is provided for qualified students. More than 77 percent of Western’s undergraduate students receive some type of financial assistance. In 2018–2019, more than $130 million total in financial assistance was distributed. Of that total, over $57 million was in the form of grants/scholarships which do not have to be repaid, and $73 million was through loans and campus employment.


The main campus is located in Macomb, the McDonough County seat, 40 miles east of the Mississippi River. The city has a population of almost 20,000. Two U.S. highways, 136 and 67, intersect at Macomb and provide direct access to Interstates 74, 80, and 55. Rail passenger service is available twice daily from Quincy and Chicago to Macomb. Western Illinois University—Quad Cities is located in Moline, Illinois, which is approximately 80 miles north of the main campus in Macomb.

Residence Halls

Residence hall facilities provide more than 4,400 students with living and dining services. Several residence halls offer lifestyle floors such as honors, First Year Experience, major, and wellness. Grote Hall, featuring a stateof- the-art suite-style environment, is the University’s newest residence hall. All residence halls are smoke-free and wired for Internet and LAN use. Many offcampus housing possibilities, including fraternities and sororities, are open to upper-division students.

Student Organizations

More than 270 student organizations on campus represent a wide range of interests. Opportunities for participatory student governance are provided by the Student Government Association, Inter-Residence Hall Council, Panhellenic Council, Student Tenant Union, Black Student Association, Latin American Student Organization, International Friendship Club, and other organizations.


Western offers a broad-based athletics program, sponsoring 19 NCAA Division I intercollegiate varsity sports (9 for men/10 for women). Football competes in the NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision through the Missouri Valley Football Conference; all other varsity sports compete at the Division I level through the Summit League. More than 50 different intramural events and a variety of sports clubs are available to Western students.

Western Illinois University—Quad Cities (WIU—QC)

Western Illinois University offers several undergraduate degree programs in Moline, Illinois, which is approximately 80 miles north of the residential campus in Macomb. Undergraduate majors are offered in the following disciplines at WIU—QC: Accountancy; Bilingual/English as a Second Language Education; Civil Engineering; Communication; Electrical Engineering; Elementary Education (Elementary Education option); Engineering; Engineering Technology; English (Literature and Language option); General Studies; Human Resource Management; Information Systems; Law Enforcement and Justice Administration; Liberal Arts and Sciences; Management; Marketing; Mechanical Engineering; Psychology; Recreation, Park and Tourism Administration; and Supply Chain Management. Nineteen graduate degree programs and eight post-baccalaureate certificate programs are also offered at WIU—QC.