firstSTEP Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

When does firstSTEP Orientation Session registration begin?

Registration for firstSTEP Orientation began March 30, 2015.

How do I register for a firstSTEP Orientation Session?

For firstSTEP Orientation registration please visit our firstSTEP webpage and follow the directions.

What does it cost to attend the firstSTEP and Transfer Express Orientation?

firstSTEP Orientation is part of your EWU confirmation fee.

What happens at firstSTEP Orientation?

Students attending the firstSTEP Orientation will:

  • Learn about academic requirements;
  • Meet with an academic advisor to learn the steps to earn a degree and receive their fall quarter class schedule;
  • Have the opportunity to meet with and build relationships with faculty, staff, and peers and learn about the campus and surrounding community;
  • Visit select residence halls;
  • Receive detailed information regarding academic expectations of students and relevant academic policies;
  • Connect with campus support services to ensure a smooth transition to campus; and
  • Meet other Eastern students!


Parents and family members attending the firstSTEP Orientation will:

  • Have the opportunity to sign up for the EWU Parent E-Blast (Listserv) to receive campus information and other related news;
  • Learn about your student's academic requirements;
  • Have the opportunity to meet with and build relationships with faculty, staff, and other EWU parents and learn about the campus and surrounding community;
  • Connect with campus support services to ensure that your student experiences a smooth transition to campus;
  • Visit select residence halls; and
  • Meet other Eastern families!

When are the firstSTEP Orientation Sessions?

Summer 2015 firstSTEP Orientation Session Dates

For EWU first year students (Freshman, Transfer, non-traditional) with zero or FEWER than 40 university/college credits and ALL Running Start students:   

  • June 19
  • June 26
  • July 10
  • July 17
  • July 24
  • July 31
  • August 7
  • August 14


Transfer students with 40 or MORE university/college credits will attend our Transfer Express Orientation (TEO) September 21, 2015.

How long is a firstSTEP Orientation Session?

The firstSTEP Orientation Session is an all day 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. program. Please visit our firstSTEP Orientation webpage to see a sample schedule (COMING SOON).

How do I make changes to my fall schedule after firstSTEP?

Changes can be made through the myEWU Portal after August 15, 2015.  We recommend you consult your academic advisor before making any changes to your schedule.  Course sequencing is critical in order to ensure you graduate on time.

Is housing provided during the firstSTEP Orientation?

Housing is not provided at firstSTEP Orientation. Please see the "What hotels are near the EWU campus?" for lodging information.

What accommodations are near the EWU campus for lodging?

Holiday Inn Express, Cheney University Area (1.7 mi. from campus)
(509)-235-1100

Super 8 Motel (8.7 mi. from campus)
(509)-838-8800

Holiday Inn Spokane-Airport (13.7 mi. from campus)
1-800-HOLIDAY
509-838-1170

Ramada Inn, Spokane Airport (17.1 mi. from campus)
(509)-838-5211

What do I need to bring to firstSTEP?

You should plan to bring a state issued picture ID, latests unofficial transcript(s)  and any other documents that may be used for your reference. Everything else will be provided at check in.

What if I need special accommodations?

For special accommodations please call The Office of New Student Transitions and Parent Programs at 509.359.6843 at least five (5) business days prior to your scheduled session.

How do I get advised and register for classes if I don't attend firstSTEP or Transfer Express Orientation?

Please call New Student Transitions and Parent Programs at 509.359.6843 to discuss your options.

Do I have to attend the firstSTEP Orientation?

Students: Yes, in order to receive your fall schedule, you must attend the firstSTEP orientation. If you are unable to attend the firstSTEP orientation, your fall registration may delayed and your schedule changed.

Parents/Family/Guardian member: You are highly encouraged to attend the firstSTEP Session with your student.

I am an out of state student. Do I have to attend the firstSTEP Orientation?

If you are an out of state incoming student and is unable to attend any of the firstSTEP Orientation Sessions please call New Student Transitions and Parent Programs at 509.359.6843 to learn of your options.

How can I change my firstSTEP Orientation Session date?

To change your firstSTEP Orientation session date please call New Student Transitions and Parent Programs at 509.359.6843 at least five (5) days prior to your scheduled session.

How do I change my intended major after I registered for the firstSTEP Orientation?

Please call The Office of New Student Transition and Parent Programs at 509.359.6843 to do so.

I didn't register a guest but I plan to bring one or I need to add more guests. How do I register them?

Please call The Office of New Student Transition and Parent Programs at 509.359.6843 to do so.

What placement tests are required?

With very few exceptions, all students must take the math placement assessment one (1) week before attending their firstSTEP Orientation Session and before they are allowed to register for fall math courses. Eastern Washington University currently uses computer based assessment software called ALEKS. for more information please visit the Math Placement Assessment webpage for more information.

The English Placement Test is given to new or transferring students who are unable to be placed by an ACT/SAT or TOEFL score. For more information please visit the English Placement Webpage.

Can I still attend firstSTEP Orientation if I haven't taken the ALEKS Math Placement Assessment?

You only have to take the math placement Assessment (MPA) one week before if you are planning to take a math course this fall quarter. If you do not plan to take a math course in the fall, please consult with your advisor, you may attend firstSTEP without having previously taken the ALEKS MPA.

What is the Online Orientation?

The Online Orientation is a guidance and reference tool for new incoming students. Please visit www.ewu.edu/onlineorientation for more information.

Note: The Online Orientation is not to be completed in lieu of the firstSTEP or Transfer Express Orientations.

Do I have to do the firstSTEP Orientation and Online Orientation?

The online orientation is a guidance and reference tool for new incoming students. Not to be an alternative to the firstSTEP or Transfer Express Orientations.

What Transportation services are there in the area?

Spokane Transit Authority

Cheney Cab Co. LLC (509) 993-7989 for Airport Reservations

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