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Most Memorable Experience

I travelled in four different countries, climbed Machu Picchu and Glacier Perito Moreno, took classes in a different language, made new friends and found my way around the chaotic city of Buenos Aires. However, some of the best days abroad involved getting on and off the right bus or providing an Argentine with accurate directions. The sense of accomplishment from those little things made the whole experience that much better.

Julie-Ann Spatz

Legal Studies, Criminal Justice Certificate
IAP Buenos Aires, Argentina

Incoming Exchange Students


Exchange students will take all of their courses with degree-seeking UW-Madison students. Please note that exchange students are rarely, if ever, allowed to enroll in courses from UW-Madison professional schools (Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Pharmacy, Nursing, Law, Education, etc). Economics courses are available to exchange students, but are very popular and fill quickly during enrollment time. Some courses in Journalism are also not open to exchange students.

Business Courses: Students will not receive priority enrollment for courses in the Wisconsin School of Business. They may have to wait until after the regular enrollment period is complete or even until they arrive in Madison to enroll in these courses. Many courses may be full by the time exchange students can enroll. Exchange students should not assume they can enroll in business when making decisions about whether to attend the UW-Madison exchange program.

Beyond these areas, exchange students can enroll in any courses or programs at UW-Madison for which they are qualified (have completed the course pre-requisites) and there is space available in the course. Students are advised to register for courses as soon after their registration date and time as possible; the longer students wait to register, the more courses they will find to be "closed" or "full".

Exchange students can browse course listings in the Class Search and Course Guide. You will be sent an email from the Office of the Registrar once you are officially accepted on the exchange program, which will contain an invitation to enroll in courses and a date to enroll. Your enrollment date will be several months before the start of the semester. You will be able to enroll in coursework anytime after this date and time, up until the "add course deadline", which is a short time after the beginning of the semester. If you plan to take courses with pre-requisites, you will need to receive authorization from the instructor or the department. Our office will provide you with more detail by email prior to your enrollment date.

The number assigned to a course gives an indication of the level of difficulty and indicates for whom the course is intended. Courses numbered under 300 (100-299) are undergraduate-level courses. Courses in the 300-699 range may be taken for credit by both undergraduate and graduate students; courses in the 300-499 range are generally considered intermediate level and courses in the 500-699 range are generally considered advanced level. Graduate students taking courses numbered 300-699 are expected to do graduate-level work, though they are enrolled in an undergraduate level course. Courses in the 700-999 range are open only to graduate students.

Most courses are 3 or 4 credits, though UW-Madison offers courses of many different credit amounts. While you are at UW-Madison, you must maintain full-time student status. A full-time undergraduate (bachelor's level) course load is 12-18 credits. Full-time graduate (postgraduate) students must enroll in 8-12 credits.