The minimum number of credits required for graduation is 120, but many degree programs require 130 or more. Consult individual program pages in this catalog for the specific degree requirements associated with each program or major.
Class Standing/Level in School
Prerequisites for certain courses are determined by class standing. The chart below presents the number of credits for the different class standings.
|Class Standing||Business & Information Studies||Letters and Science & Public Health||Nursing||All Others|
|Senior||86 or more||88 or more||96 or more||86 or more|
The prerequisite given in the course listing refers to the qualifications and/or standing needed to enroll in a given course. If no prerequisite is listed, the course is generally open to all students. If more than one prerequisite is listed, all are necessary unless a choice is clearly indicated. A student who enrolls in a course without the required prerequisites may be dropped.
A full course load for undergraduates is considered to be a minimum of 12 credits. This definition may differ from that of the Veterans Administration, the Selective Service System, or other agencies. UWM assumes no responsibilities in this connection.
UWM uses a letter grade system that includes "plus" and "minus" grades and is based on a 4.000 scale. For convenience in computing averages, each letter grade carries a specified number of points per credit. The scale of grades and points follows:
|Grade||(Points per credit)|
|F (0-16)||(0.000) Fail|
In addition, students may be allowed to take a limited number of courses on a "Credit/No Credit" basis, and may enroll on an "Audit" basis in courses for which they do not wish to obtain college credit. The following symbols are used where grade points are not involved:
|Credit||C- or above (credit/no credit courses only)|
|No Credit||Below C- (credit/no credit courses only)|
|NC||Not completed (audit courses only)|
|Not Rptd||Grade was not submitted in time to be reported|
|W||Course dropped by student after fourth week of semester or first quarter of shorter session|
|WR||Administrative drop (enrollment in course violates permitted number of repeats)|
|#W||Administrative drop (enrollment in course violates permitted number of repeats), effective March 2002|
|R||Repeat course (counts in GPA)|
|#||Repeat course (does not count in GPA)|
F Grades – Additional Information
Effective fall 2004, the University modified its system for assigning grades of F in order to comply with federal requirements for students receiving financial aid. When reporting a grade of F, instructors also will report a number corresponding to the student's "week of last participation" in the course. This is the last week of the term for which there is documented evidence of the student's participation in the course. A student receiving the grade of F0 would, therefore, be one who never attended or participated, whereas a student grade of F16 would signify completion of the entire term. The numeral for "week of last participation" will be reflected on unofficial transcripts and grade reports. On official transcripts, only the grade of F will be reflected.
Grade Point Average
The number of grade points earned in a course is computed by multiplying the points for the grade by the number of credits offered for the course. (Example: A B earned in a three-credit course would give you nine grade points.)
The general quality of a student's work is expressed in terms of the grade point average (GPA). This is the total number of grade points earned divided by the total number of GPA credits. The highest possible average is 4.000 or an A in every subject.
The UWM grade point average recorded on your official transcript is based solely upon credits earned or attempted at UWM on a regular graded basis. Even though you may receive credits for coursework taken elsewhere, such transfer credits are not counted as part of the GPA at UWM. Some schools and colleges have different standards for GPA calculation and may include transfer work for admission or graduation; see degree requirements within each school/college for specifics. Credits granted by examination or UWM credits taken on an audit or credit/no credit grading basis also are excluded from the official UWM grade point average.
If you are returning to UWM and have not previously earned your bachelor's degree, your cumulative GPA will continue from your last point of enrollment. If you have previously earned your bachelor's degree, you should apply as a "Second Degree" student. Your credits and GPA will start over with the courses you take upon your return, and your original record cannot be altered.
University-wide Academic Action Policy
The University-wide Academic Action Policy establishes minimum standards for undergraduate students enrolled in schools and colleges. Individual schools and colleges may adopt stricter criteria; students should consult the school/college advising offices for specific information.
A student whose GPA falls below minimum university-wide standards for any grading period will be subject to the following academic actions.
- Academic Probation: Imposed on students whose cumulative GPA falls below 2.000. The student on academic probation whose semester GPA is 2.000 or better, but whose cumulative GPA remains below 2.000, is permitted to continue on academic probation.
- Cleared Probation: Achieved when cumulative GPA increases to 2.000 or above.
- Dropped for One Semester: Imposed on any student on academic probation who fails to earn a semester GPA of 2.000.
- Final Probation: Applies to a student who is permitted to enroll after any drop action. The student on final probation whose semester GPA is 2.000 or better, but whose cumulative GPA remains below 2.000, is permitted to continue on final academic probation.
- Dropped for Two Years: Imposed on any student on final probation who fails to achieve a semester and cumulative GPA of 2.000 or better.
- Re-instatement/Re-admission: A dropped student may be re-instated immediately after a drop action or re-admitted after the drop period. A re-admitted or re-instated student is placed on final probation.
Academic drop is dismissal from the University for academic ineligibility. Academic drop is initiated by administrative offices. The student must apply for re-admission and be granted permission to re-enroll by the dean of the school or college from which the student was dropped.
You may be given an incomplete if you have carried a subject successfully until near the end of the semester but, because of illness or other unusual and substantiated cause beyond your control, have been unable to take or complete the final examination or to complete some limited amount of coursework. An incomplete is not given unless you prove to the instructor that you were prevented from completing the course requirements for just cause as indicated above.
Undergraduates are required to complete a course marked incomplete within the timeframe specified in the Incomplete Policy (S-31). If you do not remove the incomplete during this period, the report of I will lapse to F.
The maximum credit load for undergraduates is 18 credits in all schools and colleges, except Fine Arts (18 credits or three studio courses). Students enrolling in more than 18 credits will be assessed extra tuition above the normal full-time rate. A student must obtain approval for an overload in the office of his/her academic dean. Different credit load maximums apply during the summer and winter sessions. Consult the UWinteriM or Summer Sessions Schedule of Classes.
Unless a restriction is stated in the Schedule of Classes, undergraduates may repeat a course only once, and only the higher of the two grades will be calculated into the grade point average (GPA). Both attempts will appear on the student's transcript.
If the UWM course repeats a course for which the student received transfer credit, only the UWM course will be calculated into the GPA, regardless of grade. Both attempts will be shown on the transcript. Once a bachelor's degree has been earned, the academic career (credits, GPA, and coursework) starts over with any subsequent enrollment and the original record cannot be altered. Courses taken after the bachelor's degree has been earned do not count as repeats of courses taken prior to the posting of the degree.
A student will not be permitted to repeat any course more than once without the prior approval of the student's school/college advising office. Further restrictions apply. More information at uwm.edu/onestop. The single repeat limit also applies to courses taken for audit or credit/no credit.
Note: Exceptions to this policy are variable-topic courses, which may be taken for credit as often as permitted for that particular course, as specified in the Schedule of Classes. A variable-topic course may count as a repeat of a previously taken course only if the topic is identical to that of the student's earlier enrollment and the repeat occurs within the same academic career.
Students who took a course as a repeat prior to fall 1988 are entitled to one additional enrollment. Transfer students who did not previously take a course at UWM are entitled to one repeat at UWM of a course taken at a previous institution.
In courses of limited enrollment, students who have not taken the course previously have priority over students who are repeating the course. Individual schools and colleges may adopt stricter criteria. It is generally advisable for any student to consult an advisor before registering to repeat a course.
If you have previously earned your degree from UWM, your attempted and earned credits as well as your cumulative GPA will start over with the courses you take in pursuit of your second degree. Courses taken as part of your first degree will not be considered repeats. Your original record cannot be altered.
Residence Credit Requirement
Consult individual school or college sections for requirements regarding the number and kinds of credits a student must take in residence at UWM to be eligible to receive a UWM degree.
Students must meet the graduation requirements of their school or college, which includes notifying the advising office in the school or college of their intent to graduate at least one semester prior to graduation. Generally, students may begin to apply for May Commencement in mid-November, and December Commencement in mid-April. To apply for graduation, log in to PAWS. From the "Academics" section of your Student Center, click on the "Other Academic" drop-down box, select "Apply for Graduation," and click on the double arrows to proceed to the application.
Commencement exercises are held in either May or December. Students who graduate at the end of the summer sessions participate in May Commencement. Students who graduate at the end of the UWinteriM session participate in December Commencement. Attendance at Commencement is optional.
Commencement Honors are listed on each Undergraduate program page.
Excess Credits Policy
A University of Wisconsin System (UWS) policy is in effect at all UWS institutions. Under this policy, students pursuing their initial undergraduate degree(s) who have accumulated more than 165 total credits (counting all credits earned at UW campuses as well as credits taken at WTCS institutions and accepted for degree credit at UWS institutions) will be assessed a 100% surcharge on tuition for any additional credits (i.e., your tuition will be doubled). For more specific information about this policy, contact your academic advisor.
Students Called to Military Service
Students called into active military service should contact the Military Educational Benefits Office for more information, Mellencamp Hall 168, (414) 229-5699, or visit the website.
Credit/No Credit Option
To be granted credit for a course for which you have registered credit/no credit, you must earn a grade of C- or better. Consult the table below to determine whether you may enroll for courses on a credit/no credit basis. Courses may not be taken credit/no credit if they are to be used to satisfy the GER English and mathematics competencies or awarding of final honors.
|School or College||Who qualifies?||Which course may be taken?||Limits|
|Architecture and Urban Planning||Pre-Architecture students and upper-level students with a 2.500 cumulative GPA.||Elective courses; courses other than the 48 credits required for the Architectural Studies degree.||Maximum of eight courses; one course per semester.|
|The Arts||Undergraduates in The Arts.||Courses outside the major. Any course that would fulfill the core curriculum requirements.||One course per semester; maximum of eight courses.|
|Business Administration||Undergraduates in Business and Pre-Business.||All non-Business (courses outside the School of Business Administration) that are not required as part of the student's major.||Maximum of eight courses; one course per semester. No Business course may be taken on a C/NC basis by any student regardless of their program unless it is only offered on a C/NC basis. Pre-Business students may not take ECON 103, ECON 104, or MATH 211 on a C/NC basis.|
|Education||Undergraduates in Education and Pre-Education.||Please see your advisor.||Please see your advisor.|
|Engineering and Applied Science||Undergraduates in Engineering and Applied Science.||Free elective or arts/humanities/social science elective courses.||Maximum of 12 credits; no more than three credits in any one semester.|
|Health Sciences||Undergraduates admitted to the College of Health Sciences.||No required courses in any of the pre-professional or professional programs may be taken on a C/NC basis.||Only one course, regardless of number of credits, may be taken per semester. A maximum of 12 credits may be taken C/NC.|
|Information Studies||Undergraduates in Information Resources.||All non-Information Studies (courses outside the School of Information Studies) that are not required as part of the student's major.||Maximum of eight courses; one course per semester.|
|Letters and Science||Undergraduates in Letters and Science.||Courses other than Honors courses that are not in the student's major or minor.||One course per semester; maximum of eight courses.|
|Nursing||Undergraduates in Nursing.||Non-clinical elective courses in Nursing.||Maximum of six credits; no more than one course per semester.|
|Social Welfare||Undergraduate majors and pre-majors in Social Work and Criminal Justice.||Only used in courses outside the 54-65 credit requirements in the Social Work or Criminal Justice major.||One course per semester; maximum of eight courses.|
|University Special and Off-Campus1|
University Special Students should contact an advisor in the the Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Off-campus students should contact the appropriate program coordinator.
Some courses are offered on a C/NC basis only. These may be taken in addition to the above limits. C/NC courses are not counted in the GPA, but courses in which credit is earned will count toward graduation. Courses may be changed from a regular graded basis to C/NC or vice versa only during the same period as courses may be added. Only one such change may be made per semester per course.
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution, and does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, color, creed, national origin, disability, or any other protected status recognized by Wisconsin or federal law. In 1990, s. 36.12, Wisconsin Statutes, was enacted, which provides as follows: No student may be denied admission to, participation in, or the benefits of, or discriminated against in any service, program, course, or facility of the (UW) System or its institutions or centers because of the student’s race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, disability, ancestry, age, sexual orientation, pregnancy, marital status, or parental status.
University policies also prohibit harassment or retaliation against complainants on any of these bases. These policies are in compliance with all relevant Wisconsin and federal laws, rules, and regulations.
Questions about the application of any of these policies, or complaints about violations, may be directed to the appropriate admitting or employing office, or to the campus Office of Equity and Diversity Services, Mitchell Hall, Room 359, or phone (414) 229-5923.
An information booklet on the UWM Disciplinary Guidelines and the appropriate sections of the Wisconsin Administrative Code covering conduct on University lands and student disciplinary procedures is available in the lobby of Mellencamp Hall and in several offices, including the Office of the Dean of Students, Mellencamp Hall, Room 118. Board of Regents rules require adherence by students and others present on the campus. Failure to comply with these rules may subject students to disciplinary action and to civil forfeitures. State of Wisconsin Statutes and Federal Law also apply on the campus of the University.
Under the provision of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, a student is entitled to review the education records related to the student that the University maintains. A student may request a hearing regarding any alleged inaccurate, misleading, or inappropriate information contained in the record.
The University may not disclose information from a student’s record to a third party unless the student gives consent, or unless permitted to do so by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974. A student may contact the Undergraduate Records Office or the Office of the Dean of Students, both in Mellencamp Hall, for further information.
You may restrict the release of your address and phone number and other limited information by checking a box on your registration form. If you do this, your address and phone number will not appear on most mailing lists used by UWM student organizations, campus departments, or on mailing lists obtained from UWM by non-University groups.
The various academic units at UWM have set up appeals and grievance procedures. Students may avail themselves of these procedures by contacting a department chair, the dean’s office of the school or college from which the course was taken, or the Office of the Dean of Students.
UWM Equal Opportunity Policy
It is the policy of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee to provide equal opportunity and prohibit discrimination and harassment for its employees and students in all programs, activities, and employment. UWM is committed to actively implement all federal and state equal opportunity and affirmative action laws, executive orders, policies, plans, rules, and regulations.
UWM's Discriminatory Conduct Policy (Including Sexual Harassment) (S-47) defines discrimination as conduct that
- adversely affects any aspect of an individual's employment, education, or participation in activities or programs at UWM; and
- is based on one or more characteristics of the individual that are protected under federal, state, or local laws.
Characteristics that are protected under federal, state, or local law (protected statuses) may include age; ancestry; arrest or conviction record; color; disability; gender identity/expression; identity as a veteran, disabled veteran, or Vietnam veteran; marital status; membership in the National Guard, state defense force, or any other reserve component of the military forces of the United States or this state; national origin; pregnancy; political affiliation; race; religion; sex; sexual orientation; or use of lawful products off the premises during non-working hours (e.g., smoking cigarettes).
Harassment is a form of prohibited discrimination. UWM defines harassment as conduct that
- is of any type (oral, written, graphic, or physical);
- is directed towards or against a person because of the person's protected status (as listed above); and
- unreasonably interferes with the individual's work, education, or participation in activities or programs at UWM, or creates a working or learning environment that a reasonable person would find threatening or intimidating.
Sexual harassment includes unwanted sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal and physical conduct of a sexual nature.
Speech or expressive behavior (e.g., use of visual, recorded, or written materials) used in the context of an instructional setting may be found to constitute harassment only if the speech is persistent, pervasive, and not germane to the subject matter, or so singularly severe as to create a hostile environment. Protected Expressive Behavior in an instructional situation is explained in UWM Selected Academic and Administrative Policies No. S-44, Public Expression of Opinion.
In addition, the University prohibits retaliation against individuals who engage in protected activities under the policy. Retaliation is defined as employment or academic decisions that are made because a student, employee, or applicant for employment has made a complaint, assisted with or served as a witness in an investigation, or instituted proceedings alleging discrimination.
UWM maintains a written affirmative action plan in order to meet its commitment to the principles of equal opportunity and affirmative action. The plan is available to all persons for inspection and is on reserve in the University Library and on UWM's website.
To protect the rights of employees and students, numerous grievance procedures have been developed on this campus. Although all grievants are encouraged to resolve complaints by working with the relevant parties and administrators, inquiries involving complaints of discrimination or harassment based on protected class status may be directed to the UWM Office of Equity and Diversity Services, Mitchell Hall 359, (414) 229-5923.
Hate/Bias Incident Reporting
In the last few years, there has been an increased focus on the reporting of hate- and bias-motivated incidents on university campuses across the nation. UWM defines a hate- or bias-motivated incident as any disruptive conduct (oral, written, graphic, or physical) that is against an individual, or individuals, because of their actual, or perceived, race, color, national origin/ancestry, religion, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, veteran and National Guard status, marital status, pregnancy, political affiliation, or arrest/conviction record. If you believe the incident involves criminal conduct, please call 911 or 9-911 (UWM campus police) from a UWM phone, in addition to completing the Hate/Bias Incident Reporting Form. You may use this form to report any hate/bias incident that has occurred
- on UWM property, buildings, or housing; and/or
- at UWM-sponsored events or activities, regardless of location.
University Policies and Programs Concerning Illicit Drugs and Alcohol
Consistent with the federal Drug Free Schools and Communities Act, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM) maintains a comprehensive alcohol and other drug abuse prevention program. This includes interventions that target at-risk individuals, programs that target the student body as a whole, and environmental-level strategies that impact the college and surrounding community. UWM prohibits the unlawful possession, use, distribution, manufacture, or dispensing of illicit drugs and alcohol on university property or as part of university activities. Each semester, students receive information that describes pertinent laws, rules, and sanctions, as well as the health effects of abuse, and a list of treatment resources.
For the latest enrollment information, check online at our One Stop Enrollment and Financial Services site.
Eligibility to Enroll
You can find more information on enrollment eligibility at UWM's One Stop site.
Enrollment is the process of signing up for classes, which is typically completed electronically in PAWS. Continuing students are generally able to enroll in classes as long as these requirements are met:
- Enrollment in classes at UWM within the past two fall/spring terms (if not, an application for re-entry to UWM must be submitted)
- An application for graduation was not submitted for the current semester (if so, the Registrar’s Office must be contacted to postpone graduation or an application must be submitted for a new program to pursue after graduation)
- No Holds exist in PAWS (view Hold details in PAWS)
New students must be officially admitted in order to be eligible to enroll. New freshmen enroll during New Student Orientation.
For more information about the application and admission processes, see the Admission section of this catalog.
Academic Advising Prior to Enrollment
All students are assigned an academic advisor upon admission to UWM and all new freshmen must meet with their advisor before they will be permitted to enroll for their first term. Academic advising prior to enrollment is strongly encouraged for all students.
These requirements are subject to change. If you are unsure of the requirements for your particular program, or do not know who your academic advisor is, consult your school/college advising office.
Enrollment Procedures and Deadlines
The initial enrollment cycle begins in October for the winter term, November for the spring term, March for the summer term, and April for the fall term. The Schedule of Classes may be viewed online at uwm.edu/schedule.
Continuing students are assigned enrollment appointment times that can be viewed on PAWS. Enrollment appointments indicate the first opportunity to enroll online using PAWS after priority enrollment begins. New and re-entering students will receive enrollment information as soon as appropriate after admission. New freshmen enroll as part of New Student Orientation.
Students are assigned an "earliest possible" enrollment date and time based on their level and total earned credits within their level (e.g., graduate student, senior, junior, sophomore, freshman, special/non-degree student). More information on enrollment appointments can be found at One Stop.
Details about the enrollment process, deadlines for a particular term, and penalties for late enrollment are described at One Stop. Please ensure that you are taking advantage of your earliest opportunity to enroll, as well as complying with necessary procedures and deadlines.
Priority Enrollment Appointments
The following student populations have been granted priority in assigned enrollment appointments, applicable to continuing and transfer students:
- Military veterans*
- Honors College students
- Student Athletes
- Student Dance/Cheer Team members
- Students approved for priority enrollment through the Accessibility Resource Center.
* Student veterans can be approved for priority enrollment once verified by the Military Education Benefits Office.
Priority Enrollment Appointments are assigned beginning the first hour of the first day of each semester's enrollment period.
Change of Enrollment/Add and Drop or Withdrawal from Classes
After initial enrollment, students have the opportunity to modify their class schedule by adding, dropping, or withdrawing from classes during specific periods prior to the start of the semester. Such changes can be made without financial penalty until the start of the term (or before the start of a particular summer session). However, significant financial penalties can apply for changes made beyond the appropriate deadline, and some departments have unique deadlines and approval requirements governing how and when students may add and drop particular courses. Some academic programs also require their students to obtain specific approval for adding or dropping courses. Consult the Interactive Add/Drop Calendar and Important Dates by Term for dates, deadlines, and procedures.
Late Enrollment and Late Payment Fees
Additional fees and penalties will be assessed of students who enroll after published deadlines or who pay their fee/tuition assessments late. Consult the Interactive Add/Drop Calendar and Important Dates by Term in order to avoid these penalties.
Students wishing to enroll concurrently at UWM and at another college or university may do so only with the advance approval of their UWM school/college advising office.
Students enrolled part time at more than one UW campus normally pay fees separately to each campus. Students enrolled full time at one campus and part time at another generally pay full-time tuition at their full-time campus and only segregated fees at the part-time campus. However, some specialized programs or courses with special class fees may require payment above the full-time fee rate. Contact the Registrar's Office for additional details.
UW System regulations require that each student have a picture ID card. This card is used in the UWM Library, the Klotsche Center, the Union, and other places to verify student status and eligibility for participation or service. Students are expected to obtain their ID during their first semester at UWM. ID cards may be obtained in the PantherCard Office, Union 143.
If you are enrolled only in online courses and wish to obtain an ID card verifying your affiliation with UWM, go to uwm.edu/onestop for more information.
Pursuant to the U.S. Department of Education’s Program Integrity Rule, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is required to provide all prospective and current students with the contact information of the state agency or agencies that handle complaints against postsecondary educational institutions offering distance learning or correspondence education within that state. Students are encouraged to utilize the institution’s internal complaint or review policies and procedures through the Dean of Students Office (414-229-4632) or Office of the Provost (414-229-3203) prior to filing a complaint with the state agency or agencies. This link provides a list of contacts in each state with whom a student may file a complaint.
Online Program Information
The following states require UWM to publish specific statements regarding the offering of online programs in their states:
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is authorized by:
Alabama Commission on Higher Education
P.O. Box 302000
Montgomery, AL 36104-3758
UW-Milwaukee is exempt from authorization under AS 14.48 and 20 AAC 17.015 because the programs are online or distance delivered and do not have a physical presence in the state.
UWM is registered with the Georgia Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission and is subject to the complaint procedures posted on the GNPEC website.
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is authorized by:
The Indiana Board for Proprietary Education
101 W. Ohio Streete, Suite 670
Indianapolis, IN 46204-1984
UWM is registered with the Maryland Higher Education Commission. UWM is subject to investigation of complaints by the Office of the Attorney General of the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC). Contact information for MHEC:
Maryland Higher Education Commission
6 N. Liberty Street, 10th Floor
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
UW-Milwaukee is registered as a private institution with the Minnesota Office of Higher Education pursuant to Minnesota Statutes, 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.
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is authorized by the Washington Student Achievement Council and meets the requirements and minimum educational standards established for degree- granting institutions under the Degree-Granting Institutions Act. This authorization is subject to periodic review and authorizes the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee to offer field placement components for specific degree programs. The Council may be contacted for a list of currently authorized programs. Authorization by the Council does not carry with it an endorsement by the Council of the institution or its programs. Any person desiring information about the requirements of the act or the applicability of those requirements to the institution may contact the Council at P.O. Box 43430, Olympia, WA 98504-3430.
General Education Requirements
The General Education Requirements are intended to give structure to each student's education while providing the student the greatest possible freedom to design an individual academic program. These requirements include two major categories, competency and distribution.
The competency requirements are designed to assure basic proficiency in oral and written communication, quantitative literacy, and foreign language. The GER Quantitative Literacy Part A and Oral and Written Communications Part A requirements should be completed early in the academic career to ensure acquisition of critical skills for subsequent coursework. Many UWM schools/colleges require completion of Part A of those competencies prior to advancing to the professional portion of the major. Completion of the relevant Part A competency is also a prerequisite for some intermediate and advanced courses. The distribution requirements are designed to provide students with a broad body of knowledge in the areas of the arts, humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences as a foundation for specialization.
Specific GER requirements are as follows:
Oral and Written Communication (OWC) Competency
OWC Part A
Completion of OWC Part A can be demonstrated by satisfying one of the following options:
- earning at least three credits with a grade of C or higher in ENGLISH 1021; or
- transferring at least three credits with a grade of C or higher in a course equivalent to ENGLISH 102 or higher level expository writing course1; or
- achieving an appropriate score on the English Placement Test (EPT).
OWC Part B
The OWC Part B is satisfied by completing an approved advanced course (at least three credits) with a significant written or oral communication component by students who have completed the Part A requirement.
Courses that count toward the OWC Part B requirement may be offered in a variety of disciplines and students are encouraged to choose the course that matches their interests and helps them best meet the requirements of their degrees.
Quantitative Literacy (QL) Competency
QL Part A
Completion of QL Part A can be demonstrated by satisfying one of the following options:
- earning at least three credits with a grade of C or higher in MATH 102, MATH 103 (formerly 106), MATH 105, MATH 108, MATH 111/PHILOS 111, MATH 175, or equivalent courses1; or
- achieving a placement code of at least 30 on the mathematics placement test.
QL Part B
The QL Part B is satisfied by completing at least one approved QL Part B course (at least three credits) as decided by the major. QL Part B courses make significant use of quantitative tools in the context of other course material.
These courses may not be taken credit/no credit if they are to be used to satisfy the OWC Part A requirement or QL Part A requirement.
Completion of the foreign language requirement can be demonstrated by satisfying one of the following options:
- complete with passing grades, prior to enrollment at UWM, at least two consecutive years of high school-level instruction in a single foreign language; or
- complete with passing grades at least two consecutive semesters (minimum of 6 credits) of college-level instruction in a single foreign language; or
- demonstrate foreign language ability at least equivalent to 6 credits in two consecutive college semesters of a single foreign language by means of a satisfactory score on an approved placement, proficiency, departmental, or other appropriate examination.
Courses taken for distribution provide the general educational background for each student. The distribution requirements comprise course choices from the following knowledge areas:
- The Arts. Three credits in a course in the history, philosophy, theory, or practice of the creative and interpretive arts (e.g., visual arts, dance, music, and theatre).
- The Humanities. A total of 6 credits in at least two courses.
- The Natural Sciences. A total of 6 credits in at least two courses. At least one course must include laboratory or field experience illustrating the generation and testing of data and the application of concepts and knowledge to the solution of problems.
- The Social Sciences. A total of 6 credits in at least two courses.
- Cultural Diversity. All UWM students who are subject to the GER (and entered UWM in fall 1989 or later) must complete, as part of their distribution requirements, 3 credits pertaining to the study of the life experiences of African Americans, Latino/Hispanic Americans, American Indians, or Asian Americans.
A list of GER Standard Distribution courses may be found online at uwm.edu/schedule/. Individual schools and colleges may have limitations on what GER courses from other schools and colleges can be counted; students should check with their advisor.
Exceptions to GER
Students who entered UWM as freshmen and/or earned transferable credit as a college student prior to September 2013 are not responsible for the Oral and Written Communication Part B or the Quantitative Literacy Part B.
Students who entered UWM as freshmen and/or earned transferable credit as a college student prior to September 1999 are not responsible for the GER foreign language competency. However, individual schools and colleges may require completion of higher-level foreign language courses; students are strongly encouraged to check with their advisors and/or review their Academic Requirements report on PAWS.
In general, second degree candidates from an accredited institution and students whose first semester in a degree program at an accredited institution predates September 1986 are not subject to the General Education Requirements.
All degree programs have specific requirements beyond GER. Consult with an academic advisor to design an appropriate course of study.