For the latest admissions information, visit our website.
Freshman students can now apply using either the UW System application or the Common App. All other applicants should use the UW System application. No matter which application you use, there’s no undergraduate application fee!
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee encompasses three campuses (UW-Milwaukee, UWM at Washington County and UWM at Waukesha) that offer different degree types and programs. When applying on the UW System application or Common App, please be certain to select the preferred campus to which you wish to apply. You may not submit an application to more than one UWM campus. If you are unsure which campus to choose, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at email@example.com or 414-229-2222.
You will need to supply the necessary documents like transcripts and optional test scores separately. We will accept transcripts and test results submitted electronically from a vendor or testing agency. You will be notified of any additional materials needed to complete your application (including what we still need from you to make an admission decision) and can track the receipt of these documents and the progress of your application review online via the Admissions Portal.
If you wish to apply as a non-degree or summer guest student, you may use the electronic applications available here. If you require a paper application, you can download a PDF of any application from this site.
UWM begins accepting undergraduate applications on August 1 for the following fall term, with a priority application deadline of March 1. After the priority deadline, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions will continue to review applications on a case-by-case basis until enrollment capacity has been reached. Applications for the spring term (classes start in January) are typically accepted until December 1. However, some programs have earlier deadlines and/or requirements. Check our website for up-to-date information.
It is to your advantage to apply early so that you receive important information as soon as possible, not to mention scholarship consideration.
Variations in Admission Requirements and Deadlines
Architecture and Urban Planning
Admission to the School of Architecture and Urban Planning is selective and competitive. Most students admitted to the School will have a high school cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 unweighted scale. The application priority date for Architecture and Urban Planning is April 1 (for the subsequent fall term) or December 1 (for the spring term), but earlier application is advised. The School of Architecture and Urban Planning takes a wholistic approach when reviewing applicants. Grade point average is only a portion of the admission decision. Other factors include the applicant statements, rigor of high school curriculum, and extra-curricular activities.
Engineering and Applied Science
Admission to the College of Engineering and Applied Science is selective. The primary review factors are the strength and quality of the high school curriculum, high school class rank if available, grade point average, and ACT or SAT results. Well-prepared applicants will have four years of high school mathematics at the level of algebra and above and four years of natural science including biology, chemistry and physics. Relevant non-academic factors are also considered. See the CEAS section of this Catalog for additional specific information.
Applicants who do not meet the requirements for admission to the College of Engineering & Applied Science will automatically be considered for admission to the Pre-Engineering program in the UWM College of General Studies. The Pre-Engineering program is an Associate degree level program offered jointly by the College of General Studies and the College of Engineering & Applied Science. The curriculum is designed to prepare students for the engineering program with emphasis on mathematics.
High school science units must include at least one year of high school chemistry. Admission to the pre-nursing program is selective. The application priority date is March 1 for fall applicants. Apply as early as possible; applications will be accepted only until program capacity has been reached.
Peck School of the Arts
- Dance: An audition is required for entry into both the Dance BFA and BA. Audition dates are scheduled during the fall, spring, and summer terms. More information is available through the Dance department.
- Art & Design: The Department of Art & Design requires all incoming students to submit a portfolio for review. The portfolio is required in order to be considered for the Art & Design Incoming Student Scholarship. Portfolio deadlines are October 15 (for spring admission) and March 1 (for summer or for fall admission with consideration for scholarships). More information through Art & Design.
- Music: Students wishing to enter the UWM Music Department must interview and/or audition for admittance to any of the Music degree programs. You must arrange for an instrument or voice audition in person, online, Skype, or alternate submission. More information here.
We strongly encourage you to apply online. The UW System application will provide an expedited experience. If you are applying to UWM and other schools outside of the UW System, the Common App will be most helpful. There’s no undergraduate application fee with either platform. Most applicants find it faster and more convenient, and applications are received and processed much more quickly. To apply for admission as a new freshman, see the Freshman section of this page.
For the latest admissions information, visit the UWM's Undergraduate Admissions page or call the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at (414) 229-2222.
Four-Year Graduation Guarantee
Many students choose to attend classes part time, but for others, attending full time in order to obtain their degree as quickly as possible is the top priority. If that is your goal, UWM's Four-Year Graduation Guarantee may be for you.
To qualify, students must enter UWM as new freshmen during the fall term and must have appropriate academic preparation and placement test scores. They then sign a contract agreeing to satisfy other specified academic progress requirements while following the prescribed program of study. UWM, in turn, guarantees that students who fulfill these requirements will be able to complete their undergraduate degree within four years of initial enrollment at UWM. This program is available within all of UWM's baccalaureate programs, although specific requirements may vary. Your academic advisor can provide more information about this option, or contact the academic advising office of the school or college to which you will be seeking admission.
Advising and Orientation for New Students
All new students are assigned an academic advisor upon admission to UWM. All freshmen and transfer students are required to participate in an orientation program to enroll in classes. Programs are held during the summer for students entering in the fall semester and during January for students entering in the spring semester. A family orientation is held concurrently with the freshman program.
To be invited to an orientation, freshmen must complete:
- The Intent to Enroll survey in the Admissions Portal
- Course Placement
- Submit ACT or SAT scores OR
- Complete UWM-specific math and English placement tests
- Determine your living arrangements
- Complete the University Housing contract and pay the $100 Deposit
- Submit an exemption form with documentation
Transfer students only need to complete their Intent to Enroll to be eligible for Orientation and can choose to only complete a virtual course instead of attending an in-person program to fulfill their requirement. Transfer students are strongly encouraged to meet with an advisor prior to enrolling in courses.
All new students pay a $150 Orientation fee, and freshmen will pay an additional $100 New Freshman Fee for the additional transition programming provided.
More detailed information about this process will be mailed to you upon admission to the University. For more information on steps to complete before you can enroll in classes, see our Admitted Students page.
Summer Sessions Enrollment
Students admitted as degree candidates at UWM for the summer term may attend summer sessions and continue in the fall semester, provided they continue to satisfy established academic standards. Admission requirements are the same as for other semesters. Students enrolled for the spring semester automatically receive registration information for summer sessions.
New freshmen or transfer students admitted for the fall semester also may request a change of term to the preceding Summer Session in order to begin their studies earlier at UWM. For more information about a term change, call the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at (414) 229-2222. Or submit a term change form.
Students enrolled at another college or university during the academic year who wish to attend UWM during the summer term only may qualify for admission as Summer Guest students. See the Non-degree section of this page for specific information.
Find more information about summer sessions enrollment here.
Admission to Pre-professional Programs
Students pursuing pre-professional programs in the School of Architecture and Urban Planning, Peck School of the Arts, Sheldon B. Lubar College of Business, School of Education, College of Engineering and Applied Science, College of Health Sciences, College of Nursing, and Helen Bader School of Social Welfare are admitted directly into those schools and colleges and are advised there. However, admission to a pre-professional program does not guarantee subsequent admission to the professional program or major.
Admission to the professional program/major occurs only after a student has completed the specific pre-professional requirements outlined in the school and college sections of this catalog. Admission to the pre-professional program does not imply or guarantee that a student will be able to enter or complete a professional program/major within any specific time period and, in fact, admission to some professional programs/majors is very competitive. Enrollment in required courses is subject to limitation.
Requirements for employment, licensing, or professional organizations: Students should be aware that some professions and occupations are subject to licensing and/or bonding requirements. When a course of study includes clinical or field training, practice teaching, internships, or the like, students may be subjected to a check of criminal conviction records prior to acceptance by the placement site. Students are responsible for obtaining the information necessary to become knowledgeable about special requirements such as these and should plan their studies accordingly.
For the latest admissions information, visit our website.
Freshman Admission Policy Statement
To provide high quality educational opportunity for students, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions admits students whose academic preparation, background and personal experience suggest that they will succeed at the institution, benefit from that educational experience, and contribute to the educational environment.
Freshman applicants are evaluated through a comprehensive, individualized review process and students with a wide range of academic achievement and personal experience are offered admission at all three UWM campuses.
Freshman Admission Standards
Freshman applicants will typically demonstrate an appropriate level of preparation and potential by providing evidence of the following:
- High school graduation or its equivalent
Your academic performance in the classroom is the most important factor in the review of your application. We carefully consider the pattern and rigor of your high school coursework, class rank (if available), overall GPA and grades in specific courses related to your intended major at UWM. The most competitive candidates for admission to UWM typically surpass these unit requirements.
- English: 4 units
- Math (Algebra 1, Geometry and Algebra 2 or equivalent): 3 units
- Natural Science: 3 units
- Social Science: 3 units
- Academic Electives: 4 units
- Completion of an appropriate college preparatory curriculum
Satisfactory completion of at least 17 credits (1 credit = 1 year) of high school courses, distributed as shown above, is the minimum expectation. Additional coursework beyond this minimum level is strongly encouraged and will increase the applicant’s likelihood of academic success at the university. Some academic programs have additional academic preparation requirements.
- Evidence of academic ability and readiness as demonstrated by academic performance in high school
All relevant academic factors are considered, including grades and grade point average; high school class rank (if available); choice of curriculum; and strength of the academic program relative to the course offerings available to the student in the high school.
- Evidence of academic ability and readiness as demonstrated by performance on standardized test - optional
Test score submission is optional. If you choose to submit test scores, performance on the ACT or SAT is only one factor considered in the admission process. In addition to your composite score, we also consider your sub-scores in the area(s) (English, math, reading, science) that closely relate to your intended major at UWM. While the writing portion of the ACT is not required, we will consider these results if you wish to submit them.
- Additional factors considered
We want to know more about you beyond your academic record and test results! Other factors considered in the review process include, but are not limited to, student experiences, work experience, leadership qualities, motivation, community service, special talents, etc. This information is collected when you complete the application. The essay is where you answer the prompt and tell your story. Letters of recommendation are not required but will be considered should you choose to send them.
For the latest admissions information, visit our website.
Transfer Student Admission and Acceptance of Transfer Credit
Transfer Admission Guidelines
Transfer admission is a holistic and selective process, and no single criterion guarantees admission. The following factors are taken into consideration when reviewing applications:
- Demonstrated satisfactory academic progress
- Successful completion of college-level math and English courses
- Total credit hours completed
- Academic standing at previous institution
If you have fewer than 12 transferable credits, we will also review your high school academic records.
Additional Specific Requirements
Transfer admission to the College of Engineering and Applied Science, the School of Architecture and Urban Planning, and the College of Nursing is selective. Many programs in the Peck School of the Arts have audition or portfolio requirements. In addition, admission to many other individual programs/majors is competitive and subject to capacity limitations, with higher standards or additional criteria considered. For more details, check the admission requirements listed for the particular academic program in which you are interested.
International students have additional application requirements; see that section for details.
Apply electronically via the University of Wisconsin System electronic application website. If you apply electronically, you will need to submit the necessary supporting documents separately. Electronic transcripts sent from schools and third party vendors should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Transfer applicants must submit, at minimum:
- a completed application form;
- official high school transcript(s); and
- official transcript(s) from any post-secondary institution(s) attended
You will be notified of any additional materials needed to complete your application. Complete instructions and information about applicable deadlines are available on the website.
If you are unable to apply online, a PDF may be downloaded from https://apply.wisconsin.edu to print and mail in.
The Registrar’s Office will review your prior college coursework and post your transfer credit equivalencies to your PAWS account. This process can take 1-2 weeks following admission to the university, so it is important that you apply early in order to have this information in time for academic advising and registration prior to your desired term of enrollment (see dates and deadlines below).
Recommended Filing Dates for Transfer Students
Filing and completing your application for admission (including all transcripts and the application fee) as early as possible is recommended so that transfer students are able to receive an appointment to register for classes at approximately the same time as continuing students. In general, a decision on a complete application is made by the Office of Undergraduate Admissions within 2-4 weeks, and transfer credit evaluations are completed within four weeks of the date of admission. Recommended dates by which a completed application should be on file are as follows: February 15 (summer and fall terms) and September 15 (spring term).
Application Deadlines for Transfer Students
Fall term: UWM begins accepting undergraduate applications on August 1 for the following fall term, with a priority deadline of March 1. After the priority deadline, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions will continue to review applications on a case-by-case basis until enrollment capacity has been reached.
Spring term: Applications for the spring term (classes start in January) are typically accepted until December 1. However, some programs have earlier deadlines and/or requirements. Check our website for up-to-date information.
Earlier deadlines apply for certain programs and applications received after enrollment capacity has been reached may not be reviewed. The application priority date for Nursing and Architecture and Urban Planning is March 1 (for the subsequent fall term) or November 1 (for the spring term). For Art & Design or Music, apply by March 1 for scholarship consideration. Check our website for up-to-date information and for applicable deadlines for other terms.
Transfer Credit Acceptance
Credit is generally awarded for relevant and appropriate college-level coursework successfully completed at institutions accredited by a regional accrediting association. Credit also may be awarded for college-level work successfully completed at degree-granting institutions accredited by other national accrediting organizations that are recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), assuming the provisions outlined below also are met. (Foreign institutions must be recognized by the Ministry of Education, or equivalent, of the home country.)
In order for credit to be awarded, courses must typically be similar in nature, level, and content to a course in UWM's undergraduate curriculum, and be applicable to one of UWM's academic programs at the baccalaureate level. Credit generally is not awarded for continuing education coursework or for courses that are remedial, vocational, technical, or doctrinal in nature.
Additional transfer credit may be awarded to students who enter specific programs for which UWM has established articulation agreements or other program-specific transfer credit agreements, with a partner institution.
Seventy-two (72) credits is the maximum total number of credits that may be awarded for coursework earned at one or any combination of two-year (associate degree level) institution(s).
In addition to credit for courses completed at other schools, students can also receive transfer credit for previous education or training or by testing on their current knowledge. See Transfer Information for more information.
Credit Transfer from the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS)
Students enrolled in the Wisconsin Technical College System who wish to continue their education at UWM may transfer credits toward their bachelor's degree in the following ways:
- Students enrolled in a WTCS Associate degree granting schools (at present, these are offered at Chippewa Valley Technical College, Madison Area Technical College, Milwaukee Area Technical College, Nicolet Area Technical College, and Western Technical College) may be eligible to transfer up to 72 credits toward the baccalaureate degree.
- Students enrolled at other WTCS programs or campuses may be eligible to transfer some appropriate general education coursework toward the baccalaureate degree.
- There also are many program-specific transfer credit agreements governing acceptance of credit from some WTCS programs. For details, see Transferring Course Credits.
- The UWM Office of Undergraduate Admissions maintains an office at the MATC-Milwaukee downtown campus in order to assist students with transfer-related questions. For more specific information, get in touch for easy access to an online information request form, as well as phone, email, live chat, or social media contact information.
For more information about these or other transfer opportunities, students should consult with their Wisconsin Technical College advisor, the UWM Office of Undergraduate Admissions, or the UWM Registrar's Office.
Go to Transfer Wisconsin to learn more about how courses transfer in the University of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Technical College, and Tribal College Systems.
For the latest admissions information, visit our website.
Re-entering and Re-admitted Students
Students who have not been enrolled at UWM for more than two semesters must file a re-entry application to return to the University. Official transcripts of all college work taken during the absence from UW-Milwaukee must be submitted. This application is available using the electronic application available here or on our Forms & Resources page.
UWM begins accepting undergraduate applications on August 1 for the following fall term, with a priority deadline of March 1. After the priority deadline, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions will continue to review applications on a case-by-case basis until enrollment capacity has been reached. Applications for the spring term (classes start in January) are typically accepted until December 1. However, some programs have earlier deadlines and/or requirements. Check our website for up-to-date information.
In addition to filing a re-entry application to the University, a student who has been dropped from the University because of poor academic performance must be approved for re-admission by the dean of the school or college from which the student was dropped. Students should schedule an appointment with their academic advisor to begin the school or college approval process.
For more information about re-entry procedures or to request an application form, contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at (414) 229-2222.
For the latest admissions information, visit our website.
Who should apply as an Undergraduate Non-degree Student?
- Guest students from another institution who want to take classes over summer or winter break and then transfer them back to their current institution
- Students who are taking prerequisites to get into a graduate program or professional school (ex: medical school, law school, etc.)
- Students who already have a bachelor’s degree and want to complete an undergraduate certificate program at UWM. Please also contact the department — a certificate program application may be required in addition to the non-degree university application
- Students who want to take some courses at UWM for personal or professional enrichment but do not want an undergraduate degree from UWM. You can either audit the courses (lower cost – no credit, no grades) or you can take courses for credit (transcribed and can be used towards a degree)
60+ Auditors or Disabled Auditors: Request information by calling 414-229-2222 or emailing email@example.com.
Who should not apply as an Undergraduate Non-degree student?
- If you are wanting to receive an undergraduate degree from UWM you should apply as a degree-seeking student. Please review the transfer or new freshmen application process here.
- If you are considering graduate school, please meet with the graduate school to talk about required prerequisites prior to applying as an undergraduate non-degree student.
Non-degree Admission Guidelines
If you have already attended or are currently attending another college or university, then you must be in good financial standing at that institution (not have any past due accounts) to qualify for admission at UWM.
You must have graduated from a recognized high school at least one year prior to the desired semester of enrollment, or be admissible based upon acceptable GED test scores. Exceptions can be made if you are attending another university and can provide a copy of your admissions letter.
In most cases, we will not need your transcripts for admission. No transferable coursework or other credits earned (e.g. via AP or CLEP exam) will be posted to your UWM non-degree student record. Therefore, if you would like to take a course at UWM that requires a prerequisite you have earned elsewhere, you may need to get permission from the department to add the course.
Non-degree Financial Aid
Non-degree students do not automatically qualify for federal student aid. To qualify for aid at UWM, students need to be enrolled at least half time in an eligible certificate/certification program or be enrolled half time to complete prerequisites for a UWM graduate program. You will complete the Non-degree Enrollment Verification Form and have an advisor in your degree program sign it (not your non-degree advisor.) You can find this form here.
For the latest admissions information, visit our website.
Information for Out-of-State Students
Residency, for tuition purposes, is governed by Wisconsin statute. It is the mutual responsibility of the University and the student to make certain that he or she is correctly classified as a resident or non-resident for tuition purposes. If an error is discovered, the student will be notified that he or she must pay the non-resident portion of the tuition immediately. Students who question their status should contact the Office of Undergraduate Admissions in Mellencamp Hall, Room 212, (414) 229-2222. A student who wishes to appeal the nonresident classification should request a non-residency appeal form prior to the tuition due date for the semester. For more information regarding residency, visit our Out of State admissions page.
Minnesota/Wisconsin Reciprocity Agreement
Minnesota residents may be eligible to participate under the Minnesota/Wisconsin Reciprocity Agreement. Students certified under this program pay tuition at a special rate that is less than non-resident tuition. A certification year runs from July 1 through June 30, although degree students are normally certified once during the full duration of their academic career if they remain continuously enrolled.
Persons not certified by the date on which fees are due will be required to pay non-resident tuition and fees. The appropriate amount will then be refunded upon certification by the State of Minnesota Office of Higher Education Reciprocity Program. For more information, contact the State of Minnesota Office of Higher Education, 1450 Energy Park Dr., Suite 350, St. Paul, MN 55108, (651) 642-0567, or (800) 657-3866.
Tuition Discounts for Midwest Residents
UWM offers a special Non-Resident Midwest tuition rate, which is available to students who meet the criteria and are residents of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio and South Dakota. Midwest Tuition applies to all on-campus associate, bachelor’s and graduate programs. Non-degree students from an eligible midwest tuition state who meet the criteria are also eligible for this tuition rate.
Find more information on the Midwest Residence cost and financial aid page.
Milwaukee Advantage Program (MAP)
Illinois students are eligible to receive an additional $1,000 award each year ($500/semester) through the Milwaukee Advantage Program (MAP). Beginning in Fall 2021, Minnesota students will also be eligible to receive the MAP award. The MAP award is renewable.
- MAP will be offered at both fall/spring terms.
- Must be enrolled full time in order to be eligible. Falling below full-time status will result in cancellation of award.
Special Admission Programs for Students Still Enrolled in High School
The High School Special Program and the Early College Credit Program are designed to allow qualified high school students to enroll in university courses concurrently with high school classes. Applicants must generally have a 3.5 or above GPA. For further information, contact your high school guidance counselor or the UWM Office of Undergraduate Admissions at (414) 229-2222. You also may review the information on our Dual Enrollment website.
All incoming freshmen admitted to UW-Milwaukee are required to complete steps to place them into their math and English courses. Students are placed into math and English courses based on either their ACT/SAT scores or by completing both Panther Math Prep and the Guided English Placement. International students can use their TOEFL or IELTS scores for placement into their English courses. Students are placed into French, German, and Spanish foreign language courses via the UW System World Languages placement test. Placement into any other foreign language is based on previous coursework and/or the UWM World Languages Self Assessment Tool. Placement into chemistry courses is determined by a combination of math placement level and previous chemistry coursework, and students in Chemistry 102 are required to take a chemistry placement test during the first week of their chemistry class. Placement methodologies help to ensure that students are placed into the appropriate level of study to maximize success. Incoming freshmen must ensure they have taken the appropriate steps to determine course placement before they are allowed to attend their New Student Orientation session where they will enroll in classes. Transfer students and re-entry students may be required to submit ACT/SAT scores or complete assessments depending on previous coursework and intended degree plan. Transfer and re-entry students should check with their advisor to determine if they need to complete any steps for course placement.
More information on course placement can be found on our One Stop Enrollment and Financial Services site.