University of Wisconsin

University of Wisconsin Admissions and General School Information

The University of Wisconsin's main campus is located at Madison, WI on Lake Mendota; this campus' student population is 41,620 undergraduate and graduate students. Degrees offered include 160 undergraduate majors in liberal arts and humanities, social and physical sciences, classical and modern languages, engineering and several interdisciplinary options. Graduate programs number about 156, ranging from African languages and agroecology to women's studies and zoology.

General Information about University of Wisconsin

The University was created in a clause in the state's constitution in 1832. Its first class began in 1849. The University of Wisconsin system includes 13 4-year universities offering bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree programs, 13 2-year community colleges and an online college. University of Wisconsin Online offers general liberal arts courses and awards the Associate of Arts and Science (AAS) degree.

Vitamin A was discovered here (as well as at Yale, independently), and scientists here were part of discovering vitamin B. University researchers were involved in enriching milk with vitamin D and in iodizing salt, which largely eliminated rickets and goiter in the U.S.

UW - Madison houses 17 colleges and schools. The Graduate School and two specialized divisions (international studies and continuing education) draw from many of these colleges. Several of the colleges allow students to design an individualized major if they wish.

Admissions and Enrollment Information at University of Wisconsin

Students apply online or by mail. The application period opens in September. The various schools and programs may have different deadlines, so applying early is a good idea. Application form, fee and SAT or ACT scores are required. If you are still in high school, have your guidance office submit the Counselor Form, available in a mailed packet or online.

High school transcripts must be sent officially from your high school. If you have college credits and wish to transfer them, official college transcripts must be submitted for consideration. Check the program you want to attend for more specific requirements.

Colleges and Schools at the University of Wisconsin - Madison

College of Letters and Science

This school supplies general education courses to all students and enrolls over half of the students in its degree programs. About 21,000 students belong to this large college. The most popular undergraduate degree programs are political science, biology (with College of Agriculture and Life Sciences), English, psychology and history. The largest graduate level programs are social work, library and information studies, chemistry, physics and history. Over 65 modern and ancient languages may be studied here. Letters and Science includes the Schools of Library and Information Studies, Public Affairs and Social Work.

College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS)

With 24 majors plus the option to individualize a degree program, and with a distinguished research record, this college plays a significant role in UW - Madison's identity. Dairy science, biology in many varieties, resources management, nutrition and agriculture are offered. The Farm and Industry Short Course, a 17-week intensive agriculture training program, is very popular. The school currently enrolls about 3,000 students.

College of Business

U.S. News & World Report ranked University of Wisconsin's Business School #13 in the country in 2008. Undergraduates may choose actuarial science or risk management among the ten major options, as well as specialized business certificates in French, Spanish, German, healthcare or supply chain management. The Master of Business Administration (MBA) program offers 12 'career specializations' to full-time students; the part-time and executive programs have a diversified general management focus.

College of Education

Consistently ranked among the top schools of education, this college earned 2010 U.S. News & World Report #1, #2 or #3 rankings in seven of its departments or programs. Offerings include teacher preparation in many subjects, educational policy and leadership, curriculum and instruction and ongoing teacher education. Almost 3,000 students are enrolled in 43 education majors.

College of Engineering

This top-20 engineering school houses eight regular departments plus the Department of Engineering Professional Development, which offers continuing education courses, certificate programs and three specialized master's degree programs. Undergraduates may choose among 12 majors, while graduate students select from 18 major concentrations, and 11 certificate programs allow for more learning diversity. Besides mechanical, electrical, computer, civil and other traditional engineering fields, the school offers Japanese studies for engineering students, polymer engineering and other interdisciplinary specialties.

Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies

The Nelson Institute offers undergraduate and graduate certificates and three graduate degrees. Students learn about environmental science, resources and sustainable development, conservation biology, cultural factors and energy policy. Named for Wisconsin governor and senator Gaylord Nelson, who initiated Earth Day, the Institute also sponsors research and community events.

School of Human Ecology

This school offers majors having to do with the interaction of people and the social environment. Eight undergraduate degree programs in retailing, family education and other diverse topics and three graduate programs in human development, consumer behavior and design studies illustrate the broad range of the field.

School of Journalism and Mass Communication

UW-Madison's 'J-school' boasts an excellent rate of graduates working in their chosen career within six months of leaving school. Credit belongs to strong career counseling and many internship opportunities. Students learn about mass communication in both traditional and new digital media.

School of Music

Nine majors in areas of performance, composition, education and musicology are offered in this college, as well as an artist's certificate. The school has an opera company and 60 faculty members.

Law School

The UW Law School focuses on 'law-in-action,' or how legal ideas play out in the average person's life. The school has a large program of clinical experience in support of this idea.

School of Medicine and Public Health

Since 2005 when the medical and public health schools merged, UW Madison has pursued an educational paradigm uniting the two fields. The mission is to improve the health of all Wisconsin residents by integrating education in biomedical science, population health and individual health care, thereby modeling this new way of thinking for the rest of the U.S.

Nursing School

The nursing school offers Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Doctor of Nursing Practice (starting 2010) and Ph.D. degree programs. Practicing nurses also take continuing education courses here.

School of Pharmacy

Undergraduates earn the Bachelor of Science in Pharmacology & Toxicology. Graduate students pursue the professional Pharm.D. or research M.S. or Ph.D. in pharmaceutical science or social and administrative issues in pharmacy. License-eligible pharmacists moving into hospital pharmacy administration may enter the Master of Science in Pharmacy degree program.

School of Veterinary Medicine

This school offers research-focused master's and doctoral degree programs in comparative biomedical science, a Master of Public Health and a professional program leading to the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. As is true in most veterinary schools, the large majority of places in the DVM program are reserved for state residents.

Contact Information

  • Address: University of Wisconsin Madison, Madison, WI, 53706; street address varies by department. The Welcome Center for visitors is located at 21 North Park Street, Madison, WI 53706
  • Phone: (608) 262-1234