Education Planning

Whether you are planning to complete a degree or just need a few classes to update your skills, you can choose from a wide variety of credit and noncredit learning classes and programs to meet your educational and professional goals. 

Explore options and determine your next steps during an individual appointment tailored to your unique needs. No charge for appointments.  Contact our office, 608-263-6960 or to make an appointment with one of our advisors. 

We also provide education planning workshops and web resources to help you get started on your educational journey.

University of Wisconsin-Madison options

To take UW-Madison credit classes in either degree or nondegree status, you must be admitted to the university, and then enroll. Adult Career and Special Student Services admits nondegree students to take credit classes at UW-Madison. Students admitted by Adult Career and Special Student Services are known as “Specials” or “Guest auditors.” If you have not been admitted to the university, see Become a Student for more information about the process.

UW-Madison Schedule of Classes

The Schedule of Classes lists all courses offered for credit at UW-Madison by semester, including those offered in the evening, on weekends, and via distance technologies. For UW-Madison online classes visit our Class Search FAQ to learn how to search for online and evening courses at UW-Madison.

Certificate options

Certificates are one of the numerous options for continuing your education.  Often taking less time to complete (1-2 semesters typically) than a traditional degree program, they are a compilation of courses focused on a certain topic or area of study and participants usually obtain documentation of the certificate upon completion. Learn more about UW-Madison Capstone, Undergraduate, Graduate/Professional, and Noncredit certificate programs.

Flexible and online degrees

UW-Madison's Advance Your Career portal includes information about flexible and online degree programs as well as Capstone and noncredit certificate programs.

Summer programs

Get information about Summer Sessions at UW-Madison including special programs, sessions offered, housing and other services. Search for summer credit courses using the Schedule of Classes.

Community outreach

Learn about ACSSS programs in the community and for employers. 



Photo by: Jeff Miller, University Communications

University of Wisconsin System options

The University of Wisconsin System includes 26 campuses throughout the state.  The resources below can help you navigate the many options available. Note: If you are interested in transferring class credit to UW-Madison, see UW System Transfer Information System for online advising, transfer credit information and a listing of all the majors and programs at the 26 UW System campuses.

UW System Help

Use UW Help to locate credit opportunities offered through the UW System. The site includes links for Adult Learners and Distance Learning.

UW Catalog of Independent Learning

Site includes over 400 university, high school, vocational, and continuing education courses. Begin any time and study at your own pace.

UW System Flexible Option

Learn more about the UW System Flexible Option programs.

Online/distance learning options

Whether you are planning to complete a degree or just a class or two, there are many online options available.  Both credit and noncredit options are listed here.

Not sure if online learning is right for you? Check out these helpful resources:
Getting started - UW System's eCampus outlines the steps to get started and includes a readiness survey
Learn@UW - UW-Madison's eLearning technology support 


UW-Madison courses

UW-Madison Schedule of Classes Includes all UW-Madison credit courses. See our Class Search FAQ to learn how to search for online classes at UW-Madison.  

Note: To take classes listed in the UW-Madison Schedule of Classes you must be an admitted UW-Madison undergraduate, graduate or University Special student.

University of Wisconsin System distance learning options

Distance Learning Credit and noncredit courses are offered through UW System campuses using a variety of delivery methods such as online, print, and videoconferencing.

eCampus UW System's eCampus is your gateway to online education programs offered throughout the statewide UW System of 26 campuses.

Independent Learning Catalog University of Wisconsin Independent Learning courses can help you keep on track earning your degree. Begin any time, study at your own pace, and take up to one year to complete your course. Not sure if distance education is right for you? Take this free online personal assessment tool.

UW Colleges Online Online courses and an online two-year associate degree.

UW System “Major Mania” Searchable site of UW System undergraduate and graduate academic programs including those offered via distance education.

Wisconsin Technical College System online learning

Wisconsin Technical College System Overview of Wisconsin's 16 public technical colleges with links to online learning and other flexible learning alternatives.


UW-Madison Noncredit Continuing Studies Catalog More than 40 professional development and personal enrichment programs delivered online.

UW-Madison MOOCs - Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are noncredit classes offered at no cost to learners around the world. 

UW-Extension topics Includes resources for family, home, work, and community.


Noncredit continuing education at UW-Madison

You don't need to be admitted to the University to take noncredit classes. When you take a noncredit course you are not earning university-level credit toward degree program requirements. Most noncredit courses offer continuing education units (CEUs), and many will help with certification or other licensing requirements.

Registration for noncredit courses is easy and fees are typically lower than for credit classes. Many noncredit courses offer similar content to credit programs so compare your options.

Continuing Studies noncredit catalog



Other Madison area options

The Madison area offers many postsecondary options for lifelong learning.  Explore technical college system schools and private colleges and universities.

Wisconsin Technical College System

Madison College and MATC-Milwaukee offer technical and college transfer credit opportunities for adults.

Southern Wisconsin Association for Continuing Higher Education

SWACHE is an association of accredited public and private institutions of higher education including UW-Madison. Find credit and degree courses in southern Wisconsin that fit your needs.


Photo by: Bryce Richter