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Graduate admissions

photo of graduate students in Christian Franck's lab

The best option for your graduate study

If you’re planning to apply for graduate study in our college, you’ve made an excellent choice. Our grad programs are among the best in the country, and you’ll have the support of top-tier faculty and staff who are invested in your success, want to help you achieve your goals, and can help you navigate life as a grad student. You’ll be part of an elite and vibrant community of scholars from every corner of the globe—all working together on a comprehensive campus known not only for its research preeminence, but also for its culture of collaboration. You’ll also forge deep friendships and have lots of fun making memories in Madison (we could go on and on about the many places to see and things to do in our fair city; this is a great start)!

Learn more about how to apply!

Researching your options

In the College of Engineering, you can pursue a graduate degree in the field and format that best fits your needs. And, we have lots of options—including programs that are coursework-only—so that you can customize your education.
Online capstone certificates

In online programs that require only 9 or 10 credits, you can develop your technical leadership in the field of your choice.

Online master’s degrees

Through focused online degree programs, you’ll have access to world-renowned instructors who teach you through real-world projects you can apply immediately.

Accelerated master’s degrees

Delivered in person, these intensive programs enable you to enhance your knowledge and competency in a specialized area.

Research-based master’s degrees

Working in person, guided by a faculty mentor, you’ll complete a research project that prepares you for a career as an engineer or for additional training as a PhD student.

PhD degrees

Working in person, guided by a faculty mentor, you’ll conduct advanced research that will prepare you for technical leadership roles in the private or public sector or for a career in academia.

Preparing to apply

At UW-Madison, graduate admission is a shared process between the academic program and the Graduate School.


Chloe Gunderson in lab

1) Get to know our programs, research and faculty: One of the first things you can do to help ensure a good fit is to learn more about our graduate programs. Our college has four research focus areas, each of which is divided into the specific topics we study across all of our academic programs. Explore each of those topics in detail and, if you are interested in a research program, start identifying the professors you might like to study under.

2) Research your program’s specific requirements: In addition to the Graduate School’s minimum requirements, each degree program also has admissions requirements, and these vary by program. You can read these in the “how to apply” section on each graduate degree program page.

3) Complete the online application to the graduate school: You will apply through the Graduate School, which allows you to apply to up to three UW-Madison programs.

Graduate programs