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Northwest Missouri State University


 (Photo by University Photography)

Northwest Self-Service Password Web Portal

Northwest Missouri State University gives students, faculty, staff and misc. (organizational) a unique Northwest Network Account that allows access to a variety of campus technology services and resources.  The Northwest Network Account is comprised of a Username and a Password.  The Northwest Network Account password is what is used to access the following:

  • Student Email
  • Faculty, Staff and Organizational Email
  • myNorthwest
  • Northwest Online
  • Library Proxy Server (i.e. search for articles when off campus)
  • Logon for all Northwest computing equipment such as campus-issued laptop computers

The Information Technology department at Northwest provides a self-service password manager (SSP) application to allow students, faculty and staff to reset your forgotten or expired Northwest Network Account password. The self-service system is powered by Netwrix software, and gives you the ability to change your Northwest Network Account password while you are away from campus through the use of password recovery questions.

Note:  Users can change their Northwest Network Account password on a campus-issued desktop computer connected to the Northwest network via a Windows application without having to use your campus-issued laptop's SSP Windows Client or going online to use the SSP Web Portal.  Again, this application is only available on campus.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Northwest's Information Technology (IT) department provides basic FAQs and Self-Help guides about your Northwest Network Account password.  See the green tabs above for those FAQs and self-help guides. 


Need More Help?

If you have reviewed the FAQs related to your role at Northwest (see green tabs above) and Self-Help and do not see what you need or still have further questions or need additional assistance, please contact the Information Technology (IT)Help Desk at 660.562.1634.  You can also email the IT Help Desk athelpdesk@nwmissouri.edu.  Email is not recommended where timeliness is a factor.

Northwest Network Account Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Below are some frequently asked questions regarding the Northwest Network Account password.  If you have a question not listed below, please see the Self-Help guides (green tab above) or call the Information Technology (IT) Help Desk at 660.562.1634 for assistance.  You can also email the IT Help Desk at helpdesk@nwmissouri.edu.  Email is not recommended where timeliness is a factor.


What can I access with my Northwest Network Account (Username & Password)?

  • Student Email
  • Faculty, Staff and Organizational Email
  • myNorthwest
  • Northwest Online
  • Library Proxy Server (i.e. search for articles when off campus)
  • Logon for all Northwest computing equipment such as campus-issued laptop computers

How do I get a Northwest Network Account?

Once you are registered for classes as a student or are hired as Universitiy staff or faculty, you will be issued a Northwest Network Account.  The account consists of a username and password.

Students will typically be given their Northwest Network Account username and password at SOAR or, once registered for classes, students can locate their Northwest Network Account username and initial Northwest Account password within CatPAWS.  The Northwest Network Account username and password is located within Personal Information in CatPAWS and the link to click on is entitled Retrieve Initial Email Login.

  • Student Example - Northwest Network Account username:  s500500
  • Student Example - initial Northwest Network Account password:  BeKrgZc4

Faculty and Staff will have their Northwest Network Account username and initial Northwest Network Account password set-up and given to them through Northwest's Human Resources office.

  • Faculty/Staff Example - Northwest Network Account  username:  JSmith
  • Faculty/Staff Example - initial Northwest Network Account password:  GreenTower1

Note:  You can not change your assigned Northwest Network Account username, but your initial Northwest Network Account password will expire in 120 days of its creation (essentially 4 months).  You can keep the initial password or change it immediately if you prefer.  The password you change your initial password to will also expire in 120 days of its creation (essentially 4 months) and subequent passwords will also do so accordingly.  The password expiration date of 120 days can not be changed.  The 120 day password expiration policy is an important security measure to protect your information and the Northwest network. 


How do I reset my Northwest Network Account password?

There are 3 ways to reset your password:

  • Self-Service Password (SSP) Management System (both on and off-campus, wired or wireless):
    • On your campus-issued laptop computer (software already installed on your University laptop)
      • Will change login for the majority of Northwest online services
      • Will immediately change login on your campus-issued laptop
    • On the SSP web portal
      • Will change login for the majority of Northwest online services
      • Will not immediately change login on your campus-issued laptop
      • Must connect campus-issued laptop to campus network to sync
  • Campus-issued desktop computer (Faculty, Staff, Misc. Accounts Recommended Only):
    • The campus-issued desktop computer must be connected to the wired campus network
    • You must be able to login with your current Northwest Network Account password to have access to this feature
      • Will change login for the majority of Northwest online service
      • Will need to log off desktop computer and re-login once you have changed the password to have access to Outlook, printing, etc.

If you need help resetting your Northwest Network Account password through your campus-issued laptop or through the SSP Web portal, please see the Self-Help guides (green tab above) or call the IT Help Desk at 660.562.1634.


Can I reset my Northwest Network Account password without using my campus-issued laptop or going online?

Faculty, staff and Misc. (Organizational/Departmental) accounts can also change their Northwest Network Account password on a campus-issued desktop computer connected to the Northwest network without having to go online to use the SSP Web Portal.  Again, this service is only available on campus.  See the Self Help guides (green tab above) for details.


Does my Northwest Network Account Password ever expire?

Yes, your Northwest Network Account password expires every 120 days (essentially 4 months).

Note: Whenever you change your Northwest Network Account information you will need to update any personal devices (i.e. Smartphone, tablet, etc.) that have your Northwest Network Account password on those devices if you have Northwest email or Wifi on them.


What is Northwest Network Account Password Criteria?

  • Your Network Network Account password must be 8 characters long, not to exceed 16 characters
  • You password must contain 1 capital letter, 1 lowercase letter and 1 number
  • The password can not contain common words, sensitive numbers associated with you or your name.
  • The password must not be one you have had previously.
    • The system remembers up to 24 of your old passwords
  • Other than the underscore symbol ( _ ) or hashtag/pound (#) symbol, special characters are not recommended.
    • Do not use a special characters at the end or beginning of your password or you will get an error message
    • Example of an appropriate way to use the underscore symbol in a password: Evergreen_1

What do I do if I forget my Northwest Network Account password?

If you are enrolled in the self-service password system, then you can completely forget your password and still change it as long as you know your identity verification questions.  There are 3 ways to reset your password without knowing your password:

  • Option 1 - If you have a campus-issued laptop computer with the Self-Service Password Management software installed on it, simply click the Switch User button beneath the Username and Password Login textboxes and then click on the key and lock icon that say's click on “Click to reset Northwest password” icon and follow the Windows Client Wizard.  You will need active internet to be able to use this method, either wired or wireless.
  • Option 2 - If you do not have a campus-issued laptop, you can go out to the SSP Web portal to reset your Northwest Network Account password  Once on the SSP Web portal, you can click on Reset Password link , answer two of your identity verifications questions and you can change your password.
  • Option 3 - If the first two options are not available to you or they are not working for you, please contact the IT Help Desk at 660.562.1634 for help with resetting your password.

Who do I contact if I need help with my Northwest Network Account password?

If you have questions, please contact the IT Help Desk at 660.562.1634 or email at helpdesk@nwmissouri.edu.  Email is not recommended where timeliness is a factor.

CatPAWS Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The Cat Personal Access to Web Services program (CatPAWS) is a web-based program that allows students, faculty and staff to enroll in classes, drop or add classes, view their bill, submit Mid-Term and Final Grades and view employment information.

Below are some frequently asked questions regarding CatPAWS.  If you have a question not listed below, please see the Self-Help guides (green tab above) or call the Information Technology (ITHelp Desk at 660.562.1634 for assistance.  You can also email the IT Help Desk at helpdesk@nwmissouri.edu.  Email is not recommended where timeliness is a factor.


How do I login to CatPAWS for the first time?

The following steps will assist you in logging into CatPAWS for the first time. These steps will also establish your login information for accessing CatPAWS in the future.

  • Go to the Northwest Homepage
  • Mouse over Connect (located at the top right-hand side of the homepage)
    • A drop down menu will appear
  • Click on CatPAWS beneath the Quick Tools list
  • Click on Login/Enter Secure Area
  • Enter your Northwest User ID (aka Bearcat ID) number in the User ID: textbox
    • Example:  919000000
    • Your Northwest User ID number can be found on your Bearcat ID Card
    • You will need to include the 919 in the User ID field and not just the last six digits
  • Enter your PIN in the PIN: textbox
    • Your initial PIN will be your date of birth in the 6-digit format of MMDDYY or it will be the last 6 digits of your Northwest User ID number (also know as Bearcat ID).
    • You will be prompted to set a new PIN.
  • Enter your current pin in the Enter Old PIN: textbox
    • Old PIN refers to your birth date or last 6-digits of your Northwest User ID when going through the initial PIN set-up
  • Enter your new PIN in the Enter New PIN: textbox
    • The new PIN must be at least 6 numbers or 6 letters and numbers (Numbers are recommended)
  • Enter your new PIN again in the Re-enter New PIN: textbox
  • Click Change PIN
  • The Terms of Usage page will appear.
  • Click Accept
  • Next you will be asked to set a Security Question
  • Enter your new PIN in the textbox provided
  • Select your Security Question from the dropdown list
  • Enter the answer to your question in the Answer: textbox
  • The answer is case sensitive and needs to be entered how you would normally type the answer
  • Click Submit
  • You will now be taken to the main screen of your secure area of CatPAWS

Note:  If you decide you wan to reset your PIN at a later time, once logged in to CatPAWS, you can go into Personal Information and reset both your PIN and Security Question.


How do I reset my CatPAWS PIN?

  • Go to CatPAWS
  • Click on Login/Enter Secure Area
  • Login with your CatPAWS Northwest User ID (aka Bearcat ID) and PIN
  • Click on  Personal Information 
  • Click on Change Your PIN
  • Enter your old PIN
  • Enter your new PIN
  • The new PIN must be at least 6 letters or 6 letters and numbers (Numbers are recommended)
  • Enter your new PIN again
  • Click on Change PIN

Can I reset my CatPAWS PIN if I have forgotten my PIN?

Yes, you can reset your CatPAWS PIN if you have forgotten your PIN.  Simply do the following:

  • Go to CatPAWS
  • Click on Login/Enter Secure Area
  • Type in your Northwest User ID (aka Bearcat ID) in the User ID: textbox
  • Leave the PIN area blank (don't type anything in the textbo)
  • Click on the button below the PIN: textbox that say's Forgot PIN?
  • Your previously set-up Security Question will appear
  • Answer your Security Question correctly and you will be allowed to create a new PIN
  • Once you create a new PIN, you will then have access to your CatPAWS Account

What do I do if I don't remember by CatPAWS Security Question or the Security Question was not set-up?

If you can't answer your Security Question or the Security Question was not set-up, you can use the Forgot Your User ID (919#) or PIN? form to request your CatPAWS Username and PIN be sent your email.  To get to this form, do the following:

  • Go to CatPAWS
  • Click on Forgot Your User ID (919#) or Pin?
    • This is located beneath Login/Enter Secure Area
  • Fill out the form and click the Submit button
  • An email should appear in your email within 10 minutes or less with your login information

Does my CatPAWS PIN ever expire?

Yes, your CatPAWS PIN expires every 3 years.


What is CatPAWS Account Password Criteria?

  • Your CatPAWS PIN must be 6 numbers in length
    • Can also be 6 numbers and letters if you prefer, but numbers are recommended
  • Must not exceed 15 numbers or numbers and letters

Can I give my parent, spouse, guardian or other authorized user access to my CatPAWS account?

Northwest does not recommend that you give your CatPAWS User ID and PIN information to anyone.  However, if you would like to create a separate user account that your parent, spouse, guardan or other authorized user can use to access your confidential records such as bill and grades, you can create an authorized user account for them that is separate from your own login information for CatPAWS.  This is referred to as a T11 account.

To create such an account, you must login to your CatPAWS account and fill out the Authorize Release of Information form.  To find and fill out this form do the following:

  • Go to the Northwest Homepage
  • Mouse over (put your cursor over) the Connect option
    • Connect is located on the top green bar close to A-Z and Site Search textbox
  • Select Quick Tools menu
  • Select CatPAWS
  • Click on Login/Enter Secure Area
  • Enter your Northwest User ID (aka Bearcat ID) number and CatPAWS PIN in the User ID and PIN textboxes
  • Click on Student
  • Click on Authorize Release of Information
  • Fill out the information requested in full
  • A T11 account will be created and this will allow them access to those confidential account items that you want them to see
  • You must then give the initial login information to your parent, spouse, guardian or other authorized user so they can then set-up a preferred PIN and security question for their T11 CatPAWS account

Who do I contact if I need help with my CatPAWS User ID and PIN?

If you have questions, please contact the IT Help Desk at 660.562.1634 or email at helpdesk@nwmissouri.edu.  Email is not recommended where timeliness is a factor.

The following self-help materials are provided to assist you with basic tasks within Outlook and Student Email.  If you cannot find the email task that you wish to accomplish among the materials below, please contact the Information Technology (IT) Help Desk at 660.562.1634 for assistance.  

You can also email the IT Help Desk with you questions or suggestions for additional email instructional guides at helpdesk@nwmissouri.edu.  Email is not recommended where timeliness is an issue.


Northwest Network Account Self-Help 

  • Changing/Managing Your Northwest Network Account Password
    • Self-Help Topics Include
      • Using the Self-Service Pasword Web Portal (Non-Campus Issued Computer)
      • Reset Your Password Using Your Campus-Issued Laptop Computer
      • Changing Your Password Password without Using the Self-Service Password Software or Web Portal
      • Download, Extract and Install the Self-Service Password Software (Only for Campus-Issued Comptuers)
      • Password Enrollment Process Using Your Campus-issued Laptop Computer

CatPaWS Account Self-Help

  • CatPAWS & You
    • Self-Help Topics Include
      • CATPAWS - A Student Guide
      • CatPAWS Account Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) - takes you to Accounts & Access (see CatPAWS green tab on this page)
      • CATPAWS at a Glance [Site Map]