University of Washington Receives ETS/CGS Award for Innovation in Promoting Success in Graduate Education
    December 7, 2017

    For Immediate Release:



    Katherine Hazelrigg, CGS

    (202) 461-3888 |



    Tom Ewing, ETS

    (609) 683-2803 |



    Washington, DC – Today the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) and the Educational Testing Service (ETS) presented the University of Washington with this year’s ETS/CGS Award for Innovation in Promoting Success in Graduate Education: From Admission through Completion. Dr. David Eaton, senior vice provost and dean of the Graduate School, accepted the co-sponsored award on UW’s behalf during the 57th Annual Meeting of the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS).


    The award recognizes promising, innovative proposals to enhance student success and degree completion at the master’s or doctoral levels while promoting inclusiveness. The winning institution is selected on the strength of its proposal to meet the award’s goals and to serve as a model for other schools. The winner receives a two-year, $20,000 matching grant.


    Through the project University of Washington’s U501: Extend the Reach, the University of Washington intends to expand its University 501 (U501) online orientation modules and reach more students, staff, and faculty at UW, as well as at other universities. U501 “flips” orientation so all incoming graduate and professional students can view online modules containing text and videos with students, faculty, and staff introducing key information before they arrive on campus. Students may access these at any time - day or night, in any country, at their own pace. It introduces the nuts and bolts of graduate school, gives an overview of the graduate student experience and details resources and support systems.


    “We are so honored to have been selected, and very gratified that the importance of welcoming and engaging students well before they step foot on campus has been recognized,” said David Eaton, senior vice provost and dean of the Graduate School, University of Washington. “We look forward to improving and expanding U501 and to sharing a rich and powerful toolkit with our colleagues.”


    “This award competition showcases practices that greatly benefit the graduate education community. We are grateful to ETS, whose support makes possible this novel way to promote best practices among graduate schools,” said CGS President Suzanne T. Ortega.


    “Building a comprehensive orientation program for new graduate students across departments is a challenging endeavor. U501 incorporates online programming accessible to students at any time, providing a level of engagement that goes a long way to ensuring higher levels of student success,” said David G. Payne, Vice President and COO of ETS’s Global Education  Division. “ETS congratulates the University of Washington for their innovative and inclusive approach.”


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    About ETS

    At ETS, we advance quality and equity in education for people worldwide by creating assessments based on rigorous research. ETS serves individuals, educational institutions and government agencies by providing customized solutions for teacher certification, English language learning, and elementary, secondary and post-secondary education, as well as conducting education research, analysis and policy studies. Founded as a nonprofit in 1947, ETS develops, administers and scores more than 50 million tests annually — including the TOEFL® and TOEIC® tests, the GRE® tests and The Praxis Series™ assessments — in more than 180 countries, at over 9,000 locations worldwide.


    About CGS

    The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) is an organization of approximately 500 institutions of higher education in the United States and Canada engaged in graduate education, research, and the preparation of candidates for advanced degrees. The organization’s mission is to improve and advance graduate education, which it accomplishes through advocacy in the federal policy arena, research, and the development and dissemination of best practices.


    CGS is the leading source of information, data analysis, and trends in graduate education. Our benchmarking data help member institutions to assess performance in key areas, make informed decisions, and develop plans that are suited to their goals.
    CGS Best Practice initiatives address common challenges in graduate education by supporting institutional innovations and sharing effective practices with the graduate community. Our programs have provided millions of dollars of support for improvement and innovation projects at member institutions.
    As the national voice for graduate education, CGS serves as a resource on issues regarding graduate education, research, and scholarship. CGS collaborates with other national stakeholders to advance the graduate education community in the policy and advocacy arenas.  
    CGS is an authority on global trends in graduate education and a leader in the international graduate community. Our resources and meetings on global issues help members internationalize their campuses, develop sustainable collaborations, and prepare their students for a global future.