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The Graduate School Catalog

The Graduate School Catalog is the official document of record for a two-year period. Archived editions from past years are available in the Catalog and Bulletin Archive. Students are responsible for meeting the academic requirements that were in effect at the time that they matriculated, including satisfactory progress and minimum degree requirements. In situations where academic requirements have changed during a student’s time of enrollment, the Graduate School and the academic program may elect to enforce requirements that are in the best interest of the student.

The Catalog provides an overview of UW–Madison programs that offer graduate degrees, doctoral minors, graduate/professional certificates, and capstone certificates. Some major programs have identified sub-majors, known as named options. These official named options are approved by university governance, and appear on the transcript with degree conferral. Some programs also have unofficial specializations that do not appear on the transcript. 

The Catalog references program-specific policies, rules and regulations as well as Graduate School-level policies regarding admission, coursework, the awarding of degrees and certificates, and the general criteria governing satisfactory progress in a degree program.

Information in this catalog is presented by academic program.

The Admission and Financial Aid section includes Graduate School admission requirements and general information about financial aid services. The Degrees, Minors, Certificates section offers the official listing of available majors, degrees, certificate programs, and doctoral minors. This section also links to official Graduate School policies and procedures. Academic program information provides an overview of program features, contact information, current faculty listings, admission and degree requirements, and course descriptions. 

Other Graduate School Publications

The Graduate School's Academic Policies and Procedures complements the Catalog and provides information about Graduate School academic and administrative policies and procedures. Copies are available online.

The Guide to Graduate Student Life, published by the Graduate School Office of Professional Development and Communications, offers information about a wide range of topics related to the graduate experience, and advice about the university and community from a student's perspective. The Guide is distributed electronically to all new graduate students before they arrive on campus.

Graduate Student Professional Development

The Graduate School Office of Professional Development and Communication coordinates, develops, and promotes learning opportunities to foster the academic, professional, and life skills of graduate students and postdoctoral researchers and scholars. Professional development topics include Individual Development Plans (IDPs), communication, mentoring, grant writing, dissertation writing, career exploration, job search strategies, and more. The Office of Professional Development and Communications collaborates with the Writing Center, Libraries, Fellowships and Funding Resources, Financial Aid, DoIT Software Training for Students, L&S and CALS career centers, and others to provide a wealth of resources, workshops and events tailored to the needs of UW–Madison graduate students and postdocs.

More information on campus resources for student professional development is available at Graduate Student Professional Development.  Students may keep up-to-date by reading GradConnections, the weekly e-newsletter for graduate students, and bookmarking the Events Calendar to keep tabs on upcoming workshops of interest.

Useful Links for Students

University websites useful to students are listed below. In addition, most program entries in this catalog provide links to program and department websites.

Campus and Visitor Relations
Center for Leadership and Involvement
Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC)
Office of Financial Aid
Graduate School
Graduate School Academic Policies and Procedures
Graduate Student Professional Development
Graduate Funding Information
Guide to Graduate Student Life
Information Technology, Division of (DoIT)
International Student Services (ISS)
Libraries
McBurney Disability Resource Center
My UW–Madison
Office of the Registrar
Division of Student Life
University Health Services (UHS)
Wisconsin Union
The Writing Center

Affirmative Action and Compliance Statement 

The University of Wisconsin–Madison is committed to providing equal opportunity and equal access and to complying with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations and University of Wisconsin System and university non-discrimination policies and procedures. For information on all covered bases, the names of the Title IX and Americans with Disabilities Act Coordinators, and the processes for how to file a complaint alleging discrimination, please contact the Office of Compliance. The Office of Compliance is located at 361 Bascom Hall, 500 Lincoln Drive, Madison WI 53706 and can be reached at Voice: 608-265-6018 (relay calls accepted); Fax: 608 263-4725; Email: uwcomplianceoffice@wisc.edu.

The following are the nondiscrimination bases for covering students and applicants for admission to the university; university employees and applicants for employment at the university; and those wishing to take part in university programs and activities, including visitors to campus.

Students/Educational Programs

  • age
  • ancestry
  • color
  • creed
  • disability
  • ethnicity (specifically involving harassment by UW employees)
  • gender identity or expression
  • marital or parental status
  • national origin
  • pregnancy
  • race
  • religion
  • retaliation for opposing discrimination, making a complaint of discrimination or taking part in an investigation relating to discrimination
  • sex
  • sexual orientation
  • or any other category protected by law, including physical condition or developmental disability as defined in Wisconsin Statutes§51.01(5).

Employees/Applicants 

  • age
  • ancestry
  • arrest record
  • color
  • conviction record
  • creed
  • disability
  • ethnicity (specifically involving harassment by university employees)
  • gender identity or expression
  • genetic information including genetic testing
  • honesty testing
  • marital or parental status
  • military service
  • national origin
  • pregnancy
  • race
  • religion
  • retaliation for opposing discrimination, making a complaint of discrimination or taking part in an investigation relating to discrimination
  • sex
  • sexual orientation
  • use or nonuse of lawful products off the employer’s premises during nonworking hours,
  • veteran status
  • declining to attend a meeting or participate in any communication about religious matters or political matters, or any other category protected by law

Visitors and Program Participants/University Activities

  • age
  • ​ancestry
  • color
  • creed
  • disability
  • national origin
  • race
  • retaliation for making a complaint of discrimination, or taking part in an investigation relating to discrimination, or opposing discrimination
  • sex
  • sexual orientation

Also covered is any other non-discrimination category that may be subsequently added, even if not included in the above list, as a result of federal or State of Wisconsin court, legislative, or regulatory action, or action taken by UWS or the University.

Information for Students with Disabilities

The University of Wisconsin–Madison is committed to providing equal opportunity and equal access to people with disabilities who are members of the University community. The McBurney Disability Resource Center provides disability-related services and accommodations to undergraduate, graduate, professional, Special, and guest students. The center works closely with students and faculty on the provision of reasonable accommodations to ensure access to the learning environment. Common accommodations include extended time and/or small group environment for exams, class notetakers, sign language interpreting, real time and media captioning, and conversion of printed materials to an accessible format. McBurney staff members also collaborate with students and faculty to determine reasonable flexibility with regard to attendance, participation, and deadlines for disorders that fluctuate in severity over the course of enrollment. The center makes referrals to other campus offices or community resources for nonclassroom accommodations related to housing, transportation, personal care needs, and so on. Students should contact the center upon admission to begin the eligibility for services process. Early notice is essential in order to have accommodations in place prior to the start of the semester. For detailed information, see How to Become a McBurney Client.

McBurney Disability Resource Center
702 West Johnson Street, Suite 2104
Madison, WI 53706
608-263-2741 (voice)
608-225-7956 (text)
608-265-2998 (fax)
mcburney@studentlife.wisc.edu
www.mcburney.wisc.edu

Accreditation

The University of Wisconsin–Madison is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, 230 South Lasalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604, telephone 1-800-621-7440; www.hlcommission.org. UW–Madison, which was first accredited in 1913, was last accredited in 2009, and will go through a reaccreditation process again in 2018–19.


Registration with the Minnesota Office of Higher Education: The University of Wisconsin–Madison is a public institution registered as a "Private Institution" with the Minnesota Office of Higher Education pursuant to sections 136A.61 to 136A.71. Registration is not an endorsement of the institution. Credits earned at the institution may not transfer to all other institutions.

Changes to the 2016–2018 Graduate School Catalog

For changes to the catalog since it was published June 2016, see this page.