The College of General Studies serves as the academic home for the Associate of Arts and Sciences (AAS) degree at UW-Milwaukee. The AAS curriculum provides a general education core that serves as the foundation for bachelor's degree programs. The College offers courses at a branch location in Waukesha.

Policies and Regulations

Grade Appeal Policy 

This grade appeal policy is based on the following principles: (1) the instructor has responsibility for assignment of grades; (2) students should be free from prejudicial or capricious grading; and, (3) no grade may be assigned or changed without departmental faculty authorization. The following steps constitute the procedure to be followed by a UW-Milwaukee College of General Studies student wishing to appeal a grade:

  1. A grade appeal should normally be initiated within 30 days of receipt of the grade report. Prior to making a formal appeal, the student should check with the instructor to make sure that no clerical error has been made.
  2. The student shall submit a written appeal to the instructor detailing the basis on which the student believes the grade ought to have been different. During this first phase of the process, the student and instructor might meet to discuss the basis for the grade, if both are willing to do so. The instructor shall normally respond in writing to the student within 30 days.
  3. The student may continue the appeal process by submitting his/her case, including copies of all correspondence to date, to the chair of the appropriate academic department or, in the case of a conflict of interest, to a designee appointed by the department's executive committee. This must be done within 30 days of receiving a written response from the instructor, and the department chair or designee shall acknowledge the appeal in writing with a copy to the instructor.
  4. Each department must have a review process and review body to adjudicate grade appeals. The review body should examine available information to determine if any of the following grounds for changing a grade are present: inconsistent treatment, procedural errors, capricious judgments, or use of inappropriate criteria. The review body may request additional information from the instructor or student and/or may ask to see copies of the student's work. The department shall conclude its review within 60 days. After first securing the endorsement of the department chair, the chair of the reviewing body shall inform the instructor and student of the outcome of the review with copies to the Department Chair, the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, and the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. If the review process finds with the student and a change in grade is recommended, the department chair or designee shall notify the instructor, discuss the findings and suggest that the instructor change the grade and so notify the student. Should the instructor decline to change the grade, the chair or designee shall forward the findings to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs who will implement the grade change. If the review upholds the original grade, the department chair or designee, having already endorsed the review body's report, need take no further action.
  5. The student may appeal a decision upholding the original grade to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, who shall examine the record created by the departmental review body, and shall uphold the decision of that body unless he or she finds:
    1. The evidence of record does not support the findings and recommendations of the departmental review body;
    2. Established procedures were not followed by the departmental review body and material prejudicial to the student resulted;
    3. The decision was based on factors proscribed by state or federal law regarding equal educational opportunities; or
    4. The decision was arbitrary and capricious.

Should the review by the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs find any of the above, he or she will remand the appeal to the department for action consistent with the finding.

Late Add/Drops

Requests to add or drop a class that are outside of University published deadlines must go through the campus Academic Actions Committee. Contact your respective Solution Center or advisor for more information. 

Overload/Maximum Credit Policy

The maximum credit load in a Spring or Fall term:

  • 18 credits (undergraduates)

The fall and spring registration limit using PAWS is 18 credits for undergraduates. Students wishing to enroll in an overload must obtain approval from their school/college advising office on an Add/Drop form.

The maximum credit load in a Summer term:

  • You may enroll in a total of 12 credits for the full duration of the summer sessions, but no more than four credits during any session less than or equal to four weeks

The summer registration limit using PAWS is 12 credits for undergraduates. Students wishing to enroll in an overload must obtain approval from their school/college advising office on an Add/Drop form.

The maximum credit load in UWinteriM:

  • You may enroll in a total of 4 credits for the full duration of the UWinteriM session

The UWinteriM registration limit using PAWS is 4 credits for undergraduates and, due to the short duration of the term, overloads are generally not permitted. Degree-seeking students wishing to enroll in an overload due to exceptional circumstances must obtain approval from their school/college advising office on an Add/Drop form.

Non-degree/guest students wishing to enroll in an overload must appeal to the Registrar’s Office and requests will be reviewed with academic departments and school/college administrators.

Approval for overload does not waive any course prerequisites or permit enrollment in closed classes. Forms must be submitted to Mellencamp Hall 274 after the student's initial registration appointment time, and will be processed by Registrar's Office staff.

Retroactive Application for Graduation 

Students who either 1) earned or were close to having their AAS degree under the UW Colleges and who have completed the requirements for the AAS, or 2) who, while pursuing a bachelor's degree at UW Milwaukee have completed coursework that satisfies the requirements of the AAS, can apply to have the AAS degree retroactively posted. This is for students who did not apply for graduation but met the degree requirements. Such students need to complete a Retroactive Application for Graduation. Student must submit any transcripts from institutions other than UWM, prior to earning the AAS degree.

Taking a Class on the Main/Kenwood Campus

Special permission is required for branch campus students who need to take a class at the main/Kenwood campus. Students must contact their advisor in the College of General Studies and there must be a significant reason why the course needs to be taken while concurrently enrolled in CGS. Very few exceptions will be made. Courses taken at the main campus will carry the tuition rate for that course of the main campus. 

UW College Courses Online

UW College Courses Online offers more than 125 fully accredited online courses. Courses are taught by UW faculty and widely transferable. Online courses through UW College Courses Online can help you complete your Associate of Arts and Science degree, earn a certificate, or fulfill requirements for other degree programs. See the UW College Courses Online website for more information.

Honors Program

The College of General Studies Honors Program is a challenge extended to our best students. Through enriched course content and a closer association with professors and other honor students, the college experience is broadened and enhanced through research, creative thought and independent learning. Students who have participated felt they were better prepared for subsequent university work and the ability to earn an Honors Degree at a four-year campus.

Who Qualifies?

This program is designed for highly motivated, above-average associate degree students who are new or continuing at UWM.

Those who are eligible have accomplished at least one of the following:

  • Graduated in the top 15 percent of their high school class
  • Been enrolled in the UW System for at least one semester and earned a minimum GPA of 3.5
  • Have an ACT score of 27 or higher
  • If you transfer from a college or university outside of the UW System, you may participate in the Honors Program if your GPA is 3.4 or above.

If you do not meet these criteria, you may appeal to the College of General Studies Academic Actions Committee for admission to the program.

Continuing students will be invited to participate in the program after completing 12 credits or more with a 3.5 GPA or better. To continue in the program students need to maintain a GPA of 3.25 or better each semester.

Honors Awards

If you are in the Honors Program, you may earn an Associate of Arts and Sciences Degree with Honors. To do this, the following must be accomplished: 

  • Earn a cumulative grade point average of 3.25
  • Complete the Associate of Arts and Sciences Degree requirements 
  • Earn a grade of “B” or better in 12 of the degree credits earned in honors courses
  • Earn at least six of the 12 honors credits, across the humanities, fine arts, social sciences, and/or mathematics/natural sciences

Those who have met the Associate of Arts and Sciences Degree with Honors requirements, need to apply for the degree the semester prior to completion.

Phi Theta Kappa

Honors students with a 3.5 or above cumulative grade point average might wish to join Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), a national two-year honor society. Eligible Students will receive an invitation to join PTK.


Many UW System four-year campuses have honors programs to obtain a bachelor's degree with honors. Others campuses may have enrichment studies which do not earn a special degree.

How To Register

You can apply online for the Honors Program. For more information about the program, please e-mail or write to:

Professor Ellyn Lem
Professor of English
UWM at Waukesha
1500 N. University Drive 
Waukesha, WI  53188

Anyone may enroll in courses for honors credit, but students not in the Honors Program must have the consent of the class instructor. You can add honors after registration in the first two weeks of classes by getting the signature of the instructor. You can drop honors at any time before the end of the semester. If you want to take a course for honors even though it is not listed for honors credit, you often can arrange to take it for honors by consulting the professor.

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