Undergraduate Study at UW–Madison
Academic Enrichment and Honors Programs
UW–Madison offers students many ways to enrich their academic program, regardless of the major field of study they choose to pursue. Engaging in research, studying abroad, being part of learning communities, participating in university honors, becoming a student leader, engaging in service learning—these are all vital components that enhance and strengthen classroom learning. This partnership between in- and out-of-classroom learning form the foundation of the Wisconsin Experience. The university encourages students to take advantage of opportunities to integrate their learning experiences.
The Wisconsin Experience website provides links to key aspects of the Wisconsin Experience and undergraduate academic life.
Honors programs, which vary slightly among the schools and colleges, are designed for students who wish to undertake work that is more intensive than regular course work. High grade point averages are required to maintain honors student standing. For more information, students should refer to the specific school or college section in this catalog, contact an honors advisor or consult Honors and Scholars Programs.
One of the most exciting things in life is to discover something new. UW–Madison provides unique opportunities to learn from and work with some of the world’s leading researchers and scholars. Options range from assisting with professors’ ongoing research to designing and directing one's own projects. For many examples, see Undergraduate Research Opportunities. The Undergraduate Research Scholars Program is one opportunity available in the first or second year of study. Students may cap off their undergraduate degree with a senior thesis or senior honors thesis and are encouraged to present their work at the Undergraduate Symposium. For program descriptions, see Undergraduate Symposium. For a sampling of the many grants and awards available to support and honor this work, visit the Undergraduate Academic Awards Office.
Undergraduates have access to more than 100 service-learning courses each year. These courses emphasize hands-on experiences that address real-world issues as a venue for educational growth. More information on service learning is available at the Morgridge Center for Public Service.
UW–Madison's rich tradition of supporting learning communities means that the traditional classroom is not the only place where students learn. Students may choose to participate in any of the many residential and nonresidential learning communities, where students, faculty, and staff work together as both learners and teachers to pursue their academic interests. For a list of options, see Learning Communities.