Graduate Student Tracking System (GSTS) for Graduate Students

This webpage provides information on how students can access and understand their GSTS Advisement Report using the Graduate Student Tracking System (GSTS).

GSTS provides access to GSTS Advisement Reports for graduate students which track the academic requirements a student needs to fulfill in order to complete a master’s or doctoral degree program at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. This system is an advising tool, not an auditing or degree-clearing system, and is not intended to replace the role of advisors and graduate program coordinators/managers.

All of the requirements built in the GSTS Advisement Reports come from the information on a program’s Guide page. It is important to note that Guide displays the most recent version of a program’s curricular requirements, but students are only responsible for the curricular requirements for the semester in which they enter their program – this is called the student’s requirement term. Curricular requirements for previous requirement terms can be found in the archived versions of Guide, and questions about requirement term can be brought to graduate program coordinators/managers.

It is also important to be aware that prior coursework and individual course exceptions/waivers may not be reflected in the GSTS Advisement Reports immediately as they are manually entered on an individual basis. Additionally, the GSTS Advisement Reports do not track double majors, dual degrees, joint degrees, or the curricular requirements for Doctoral Minors and Graduate/Professional Certificates, and, due to significant changes in policy for graduate degree requirements in Fall 2014, students who began their program prior to that time will not have a report.

Accessing your GSTS Advisement Report

  1. Go to Use your NetID, password, and multi-factor authentication to log into your MyUW account.
  2. Select Launch Full App on the Student Center tile within MyUW.
  3. Select the Graduate Academic Progress tile within Student Center.Tile with the words "Graduate Academic Progress" and a pie chart with three sections.
  4. Select the Academic Progress tab on the left-hand side of the screen to generate your academic advisement report.
    Note: It is not unusual for the report to take a minute or two to load. The system is pulling information from many different sources which can take time.Arrow pointing towards the second option in the menu called "Academic Progress". The highlighted section is not the "Academic Progress Summary" option.
  5. Select and expand report sections to view detailed information about academic requirements and your academic progress.
    Example GSTS advisement report showing clickable sections for different program requirements with green progress bars that indicate a completed requirement.
  6. To navigate back to the full advisement report after opening a specific requirement section, select the Academic Progress back arrow or Academic Progress tab in the upper left corner of the page.

Understanding your GSTS Advisement Report

Each GSTS Advisement Report has six main sections which are explained below:

1. GSTS Report Information (Read Me)

At the top of each report there is a GSTS Report Information section which provides information about what the report shows. Its general purpose is to remind users where the requirements in the report come from and some of the restrictions.

2. Under Construction – Program Coursework Requirements

The next section in the GSTS Advisement Reports is a temporary section that you may see come and go from the reports. The Under Construction section lets users know that the Program Coursework Requirements are in the process of being built or updated, so what is showing at that time may not be official.

3. Program Coursework Requirements

The third section of the report shows specific Program Coursework Requirements. These requirements come from the Required Courses or Courses Required section of the Requirements tab on a program’s Guide page. Depending on what program you are in this section may have a different title than “Program Coursework Requirements” or “Program Requirements”, but the content is the same.

Note: Until a program goes through the onboarding process with the GSTS Project Team the Program Coursework Requirements will not show up on the report. You will instead see only the Under Construction section.

4. Program Minimum Requirements

The fourth section of these reports is the Minimum Requirements section. This information is pulled from the Curricular Requirements section of the Requirements tab on a program’s Guide page.

5. Reference Section/Additional Courses taken as a Graduate Student

The next section of a GSTS Advisement Report is a reference section only. This section displays additional courses taken in the Graduate Career. These courses may or may not have been used to fulfill other program requirements or the breadth requirement (doctoral minor or graduate/professional certificate). If there is a course listed here that you believe should be counting towards specific program requirements that is not, please contact your graduate program coordinator/manager.

For a complete record of all courses taken at UW–Madison, see the Course History section.

6. Course History

The final section of a GSTS Advisement Report is the Course History section. This section displays all of the courses a student has taken at UW–Madison. This includes courses taken as an undergraduate, graduate, or special student.

Requirements show up as either Satisfied or Not Satisfied. Requirements that have been completed will show up as being “Satisfied” with a green check mark indicator, whereas requirements that have not been completed show up as “Not Satisfied” and have a yellow diamond indicator. The progress bars next to requirements can be helpful at a glance, but it is important to know that the percentage is rounded up and should therefore only be taken as an approximation.

Two different types of courses will show up in student’s GSTS Advisement Reports: Taken and In Progress. Taken courses are courses that the student has already completed and received a final grade for, whereas In Progress courses are courses that the student is currently enrolled in that have yet to be completed. The report assumes students will successfully complete any courses that are In Progress.

Planned courses will not show up in graduate student’s report.

Under the Transfer Credits for Prior Coursework policy, graduate programs are allowed to transfer credits for prior coursework. Transfer credits may be used toward degree requirements.

Students should consult with their graduate program to learn about the graduate transfer credits process for their specific program.

Transfer Credit on a GSTS Advisement Report

Course equivalencies will not be completed. This means that courses will not be mapped to an equivalent course at UW–Madison on the GSTS Advisement Report. Transfer credit is attached to a general graduate transfer course. The purpose of this process is to track the number of graduate transfer credits.

Graduate transfer courses appear with the generic description, “Graduate Transfer Course.” The course prefix and number (e.g., GEN ELCT X05) varies depending on the type of transfer credit earned. Below is an example of what the transfer credit looks like in the GSTS Advisement Report. You need to click and expand report sections to locate the transfer course.

Example GSTS advisement report with one line highlighted. The highlighted line reads "GEN ELCT X02, Graduate Transfer Course" and shows a green check mark in a circle to indicate it has been taken.

Once entered, graduate transfer courses automatically appear in the Graduate School’s minimum credit degree requirements section as shown below.

An example GSTS advisement report section on the minimum graduate degree requirement. A highlighted line on the report reads "GEN ELCT X01, Graduate Transfer Course" and shows a green check mark in a circle to indicate it has been taken.

However, graduate programs must manually enter an exception to students’ GSTS Advisement Reports to allow graduate transfer courses to count towards program-specific requirements. Consult with your graduate program for questions related to how transfer credits apply to your program’s requirements.

Once an exception is made to allow graduate transfer courses to count towards graduate program-specific requirements, the graduate transfer course will appear like any other course in the applicable section of your GSTS Advisement Report.

The image below highlights an exception made to a program requirement. The exception populates the generic graduate transfer course description.

An example GSTS advisement report section on research. The last line in the report is highlighted and reads "GEN ELCT X01, Graduate Transfer Course". The same line includes a blue circle containing the letter i under a "notes column", and another green circle with a check mark to indicate it has been taken.

To view notes attached to an exception, click on the blue circle in the notes column.

An example GSTS advisement report section on research. A blue circle containing the letter i under the Notes column of the report is highlighted.

The “Requirement Course Notes” tab will appear once the blue circle is clicked.

An example GSTS advisement report is grayed out in the background behind a pop-up window that says "Requirement Course Notes".


This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

What happens if I get a “Data Integrity Error” message?

When you get a “Data Integrity Error,” the system is telling you that it had trouble processing your request or loading a section of your report. There are several things you can try to refresh your GSTS advisement report:

  • Click the OK button, then click on the “Academic Progress Summary” tab, and come back to the “Academic Progress” tab and try that section of the report again.
  • Click the OK button, exit out of the Graduate Academic Progress tile altogether, and try coming back into the tile and the “Academic Progress” tab.
  • Click the OK button, then try clicking back into the section again. This may take several times.
  • If you ever get kicked back to the “Academic Progress Summary” tab you should be able to go back to the “Academic Progress” tab and view the section where you previously got the error message.

If none of these options work please contact your graduate program coordinator/manager. They can send you a PDF copy of your report or help you reach out to the GSTS manager(s) for more assistance.

What happens if I get some other error message?

If you get any error messages other than a “Data Integrity Error”, or you are unable to access your GSTS advisement report please reach out to your graduate program coordinator/manager to let them know, and have them contact the GSTS manager(s).

How can I get graduate transfer credit for prior coursework added to my GSTS Advisement Report?

Contact your graduate program for questions related to adding graduate transfer credit for prior coursework. Students will need to work with their graduate program(s) to verify appropriate prior coursework policies and procedures.

Why are there different course numbers attached to graduate transfer credits for prior coursework?

The course number attached to transfer courses is generated based on the type of prior course and which minimum degree requirements it fulfills.

Why don’t I see a section for my breadth requirement (i.e. doctoral minor, or graduate/professional certificate)?

Breadth is a required component of doctoral training at UW–Madison as detailed in the Breadth Requirement in Doctoral Training policy. Given that there are multiple paths to breadth, the Graduate School leaves the choice of how students achieve breadth up to the student’s doctoral major program. Programs that build breadth into the major will see those courses included in the advisement reports. In programs where a Doctoral Minor or Graduate/Professional Certificate is used, the GSTS Advisement Report will currently display the name of that credential. The GSTS Advisement Reports, however, do not display the specific curricular requirements for these awards. 

As students work towards completing their Doctoral Minor or Graduate/Professional Certificate, that coursework may fall into the “Reference Section/Additional Courses taken as a Graduate Student” or show up as an elective of some kind. Students should work with their advisor and doctoral program to ensure these courses will count toward the Doctoral Minor or Graduate/Professional Certificate and that they are meeting the breadth requirement.

Why are all of the different tracks/focus areas/concentrations/etc. for my program showing up?

Informal tracks, focus areas, emphasis, concentrations, etc., represent different curricular pathways students can take within a major and are managed by individual programs. Because of this, the default of the GSTS advisement reports is to show all possible focus areas and let graduate programs waive the tracks or areas that are not relevant to the student. This process requires the use of the course exceptions tool and manual effort by the graduate program coordinator/manager.

Check with your advisor or program coordinator to make sure you are on the same page about which track or focus area you are working toward, and ignore the requirements for the other tracks or areas displayed in the report.