Glossary of Terms

Colleges use many terms that might be new to you. The glossary is designed to simply explain some of the most common terms that are used on campus. If you ever have a question about a term used at the college, ask us; we are happy to help explain.

If you don’t see a term on this list and you think it should be here, please contact the Vice President for Student Services: or (425) 739-8208.

Term or Acronym Definition

Academic Standards of Progress (Alert, Probation, Suspension)

You must earn a cumulative and quarterly GPA of 2.0 or higher. If you drop below a 2.0 GPA, you will be placed on Academic Alert, Probation, or Suspension. These levels are assigned depending on how many times, in back to back quarters, your GPA falls below 2.0.

  • Alert: You are placed on alert if you do not earn a 2.0 quarterly or cumulative GPA.
  • Probation: The second time in a row of back to back quarters you do not earn a 2.0 quarterly or cumulative GPA. You are required to meet with an advisor to create an improvement plan for future quarters before you can register for classes.
  • Suspension: The third time in row of back to back quarters that you do not earn a 2.0 quarterly or cumulative GPA. You will be suspended for one quarter and unable to register for classes. You also may not participate in any events or activities at the college. You may appeal the suspension. After the quarter-long suspension, assuming you do not appeal the decision, you may return to take classes. You will be on academic probation and must raise your quarterly GPA to a 2.0. If you do not earn a 2.0 quarterly GPA, you may be dismissed from the college for up to one year.

Add/Drop Form

Paper or online form used to add a class or drop a class up to the first day of the quarter. See Enrollment Services forms page.

Admission Coach

Your first point of contact at LWTech. This person will create a personalized plan to help you get started with signing up for classes.


This is a commonly used process. Using the appeal process, you ask the college to reconsider an action or decision. The process is generally easy and fast. A form, additional documentation, and/or personal statement may be necessary for the appeal form. Examples include: reinstatement of financial aid, admission decisions, student conduct decisions, or class grade disagreements.


Canvas is LWTech’s online Learning Management System where your classes are located, including lab-based classes. Faculty members use Canvas differently, but generally canvas has your course syllabus, access to course materials, assignment turn-in, and tests and quizzes. You can also communicate with your professors and classmates. This is also where grades for individual assignments will be posted. An orientation to canvas is available online.

Change of Program Form

Paper or online form used to update which program a student is studying at LWTech. The change of program form is used to formally update financial aid and degree audit process.

College Catalog

A list of LWTech programs and the courses required to earn a degree and/or certificate for each program. See the college catalog.

College Catalog Year

A college catalog is printed each year. You may fulfill the catalog requirements based on the year you started in your program or any catalog thereafter. Once you enter a program you have a maximum of seven years to use those catalog requirements.


The graduation ceremony held each year in June to celebrate the academic success of LWTech graduates.


This is usually an informal process used to alert the college that you are dissatisfied with a process, event, employee, or another student. It may lead to change, but is generally not officially documented. If you prefer a formal response to your concern, consider using the appeal or grievance process.


ctcLink is a single, centralized system of online functions to give students, faculty and staff anytime, anywhere access to a modern, efficient way of doing their college business. At LWTech ctcLink is branded as LionsLink Powered by ctcLink.

Cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA)

The overall GPA a student has earned which includes all grades for all coursework taken at LWTech. Please note there are cumulative grade point averages for both college level (courses numbered 100 and above) and all course work, regardless of course number.


This term has three different meanings:

  • In admission, this is when your admission to a specific program is delayed to a later time either due to a full program or because you requested that deferral.
  • In grading, this is when your final grade is delayed based on circumstances beyond your control. Instead of a grade, you are given a temporary Incomplete I grade by your faculty to provide you additional time to finish final assignments.
  • In Financial Aid, this means your deadline to pay tuition is delayed so there is enough time to finish processing your financial aid file. You will be asked to sign a “payment deferral” form.

Degree Audits

A display of classes you have taken in your program of study (i.e. Automotive, Culinary, or Design). The audit shows which classes you have remaining to complete your degree or certificate.

Financial Aid Appeal Form

Paper or online form used to request an exception to financial aid suspension. Students whose financial aid has been suspended may apply to have their aid reinstated if they have circumstances beyond their control that impacted their ability to meet Satisfactory Progress. Students must provide a written statement with the petition form, and any additional documentation that supports the request. Students must identify the unusual circumstance in their request and how the situation has been resolved.

Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP)

Students receiving financial aid are required to make satisfactory academic progress (SAP) in order to keep their financial aid for future quarters. There are several guidelines and requirements to achieve satisfactory progress. SAP requirements for federal financial aid can be found on the Financial Aid Policies page.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

This application is completed online at It determines your eligibility for federal and state grants, on campus work-study jobs, and/or loans. During in-person college operations, regularly offered workshops focus on helping you complete this application.

Full-Time Student

A student enrolled in at least 12 credits during a quarter.

General Petition Form

Paper or online form used to request the following exceptions:

  • Adding a class past the posted deadline.
  • Dropping a class past the posted deadline.
  • Extending a deadline to remove an Incomplete grade (I).
  • Asking for a refund past the posted refund deadline.
  • Other, like a medical, or emergency withdrawal.

Students can request a general petition from the enrollment services office or an academic advisor. Students must provide a written statement with their petition and may be asked to provide additional forms or documentation depending on the exception being requested.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

Displayed on the student transcript, the GPA shows the average grades for courses taken as compared to the total number of credits taken.


The paperwork process required to tell the college you have completed all your program’s requirements. Completing this paperwork leads to completed degrees and certificates being listed on your transcript. If you complete more than one degree or certificate, all titles will be posted on your transcript.


This is a formal, written request from you asking the college to formally investigate a significant problem and respond to your concern with a letter describing the investigation, any findings, and any applicable changes. Examples include: concerns about discrimination or harassment, evidence of mistreatment, or evidence of willful incompetence. More information including timelines can be found on the Grievance and Complaints page.


This is a temporary action that may prevent you from registering for classes or finishing the financial aid process until the issue is resolved. Examples of what might cause a hold include: incorrect mailing address, unpaid tuition, requirement to meet with an administrator due to student conduct, or missing paperwork. Please contact the enrollment services office so we can describe the type of hold and exactly what you need to do to resolve it. See Enrollment Services

Incomplete Grade Contract Form

Paper or online form used to request an “I” grade for a specific class you are unable to finish during the quarter. “I” grades give students “extra time” to complete the required work for a course if they no longer need further direct instruction. “I” grades: are only approved by your professor; could impact ability to receive financial aid; and may impact registration in a subsequent class if it is a pre-requisite. Extra time is described as no longer than the end of the next quarter with the exception of spring quarter where the coursework must be completed by the end of fall quarter.

Information Change Form

Paper or online form used to change personal information like name, mailing address, and phone number. You can also update your preferred name on this form. You need to update your contact information with the college anytime your personal information changes.


Software system that connect LWTech students, faculty, and staff. You can review LWTech resources and services, ask for help, schedule appointments with an advisor, and access your professors and advisors in one place. Visit the Legend page.


LionsLink Powered by ctcLink is a self-service cloud-based software will provide a set of common, mobile-friendly tools for students and staff to manage college business online, such as enrolling for classes, managing courses, and other college business. Visit the LionsLink page.

MyLWTech Portal

Online portal used to reset your LWTech login password, view your print usage, and link to your student email. Visit MyLWTech.

New Student Orientation (NSO)

This currently virtual orientation welcomes new students to the college and guides them through what it means to be a student at LWTech. The New Student Orientation introduces students many resources used by students ensuring academic and social success.

Official Transcript

A list of corresponding classes and grades assigned for each class taken that is either order by you or sent to another college as requested by you. Official transcripts are ordered through an online distribution process and not handled by you. Learn how to request your official transcripts.

Part-Time Student

A student enrolled in less than 12 credits during a quarter.

Placement Test/Assessment

A process the college uses before you register for classes to determine your math and English needs. Based on your placement level, we will help you plan the classes you need to complete for your degree or certificate. There is no score that would prevent you from becoming a student at the college.


A class you must take and pass before registering for the next class. For example, the prerequisite for English 101 is English 099. A prerequisite prepares a student for the next level of academic requirements.

Priority Registration

Students in qualified groups able to register a day earlier than other continuing students. Students who receive priority registration are: Military Veterans, Students graduating in the next quarter, Students enrolled in Worker Retraining or Work First, and students enrolled with Disability Support Services.

Selective Admission Programs

Some LWTech programs (All Bachelor of Applied Science programs, Nursing, Physical Therapist Assistant, Dental Hygiene) require a separate admission application and have specific requirements for acceptance and enrollment.

Student Conduct Process

All students must conduct themselves as responsible college community members by following the Student Code of Conduct. The Student Code of Conduct outlines unacceptable behavior for LWTech students and applies to conduct on-campus (at all times), while participating in off-site college sponsored activities (including field trips and online classes), and off-campus (when the behavior impact the college community or an individual connected to the college). Potential student conduct violations are referred to the Student Conduct Officer. After due process, if students are found in violation of the Student Code of Conduct they will receive disciplinary sanctions (repercussions) that can range from a warning to a dismissal; depending on the student’s past conduct history at the college and/or the severity of the violation. Students may also receive secondary sanctions which could include but are not limited to: educational sanctions, community service, completion of a reflection essay or apology letter, or anger management classes.

Student Email

An email address assigned to you when you apply for admission. Your student email will appear as, and take about 48 hours to create. LWTech student emails are used for official college transactions and may replace the need to use some paper forms. All official notices from the college are also sent to this assigned email address.

Student Handbook

Online guide to policies, procedures, expectations, and resources for all LWTech students. The guide can be found on the Student Handbook page.

Student Identification Card

This free student ID card is used as your library card and provides access to on-campus printing and copying. Your Student ID Card is also used to sign into COVID-19 checkpoints at the college. Student ID Cards are available at the Enrollment Services Office

Student ID Number (SID)

A unique, nine-digit number given to you when you apply for admission to the college. You will use this number for multiple reasons, including signing up for classes. If you attended another WA community or technical college prior to enrolling at LWTech, that SID will be your LWTech SID when you apply to LWTech.

Substitution Form

Paper or online form that allows one course to count in place of a different course for a program requirement. Substitution forms must be signed by the faculty advisor and program’s dean.


A document provided by your professor for each class. The syllabus is your guide to that class and outlines college polices, class expectations, assignments, meeting times, and class supply lists.


A list of corresponding classes and grades assigned for each class taken at LWTech, or another college, if you have official transcripts sent to the college. Transcripts display a student’s college level and overall GPA (Grade Point Average).


The amount of money owed by a student to the college for their registered classes. Various fees are also included in tuition costs. You can find a description of all college fees online

Unofficial Transcript

A list of corresponding classes and grades assigned for each class taken that can be printed by you, using LionsLink Powered by ctcLink, and used in registration or in advising appointments. Learn how to print your unofficial transcripts.


If a class is fully enrolled, you can use the waiting list process. This process automatically adds you to any openings in a class before the first day of the quarter. Check your class schedule the first week the class is offered and see if you were enrolled. If you no longer want to enroll in the class, use student toolbox or contact enrollment services to remove yourself from the waitlist. Learn more about waitlists.

Washington Application for State Financial Aid (WASFA)

Complete this online application at Non-U.S. citizen students who are Washington state residents, complete this application to determine eligibility for State grants and on-campus work-study jobs. During in-person college operations, regularly offered workshops focus on helping you complete this application.


Dropping a class or all classes after the 10th day of classes. After the 10th day of the quarter, a “W” grade displays on your transcript and does not impact your GPA. Tuition and fees are adjusted based on the refund policy. Please note, a “W” may change your financial aid status.