Liberal Arts & Applied Studies


Who We Are

The Department of Liberal Arts and Applied Studies, as part of the UW-Madison Division of Continuing Studies, provides education to adult learners by: providing education to adult learners; conducting outreach on issues of societal importance; and undertaking scholarship on teaching and learning related to professional development and lifelong learning.

Our Learners

Our learners have diverse motivations to seek noncredit classes for professional development and personal enrichment. They include people who:

  • Require professional education to stay current in their fields
  • Seek classes for personal enjoyment
  • Attend classes on the UW-Madison campus
  • Participate in online classes
  • Hold a college or professional degree or degrees
  • Are enrolled in their first college-affiliated course

Our Programs

We offer classes in:

  • Arts, history, and humanities
  • Behavioral health
  • Distance education practices for teachers, corporate trainers, the military, and others
  • Independent learning
  • Language and Culture
  • Leadership, management, and workplace skills

Some of our faculty and instructional staff also teach credit classes in other academic departments at UW‑Madison.


In addition to our classes, each year we host conferences that bring people together from across the country to learn from experts in fields ranging from distance education to leadership to creative writing and more.

Explore conferences


Looking to build and demonstrate your expertise? Whether online or in person, a certificate from UW-Madison Continuing Studies provides proof of your commitment to your profession.

Explore certificates

Custom Training

Looking for top-quality training tailored to your industry’s needs? Want to focus on goals specific to your organization? UW-Madison Continuing Studies can help.

Explore custom training


Amy Anderson

Human Service Program Director

Angela Johnson

Director, WRAP

Ann Geocaris

Program Coordinator

Ann Whitaker

Outreach Program Manager

Ashley Kuehl

Program Coordinator

Barbara Nehls-Lowe

Outreach Specialist

Bridget Powell

Program Manager

Chariti Gent

Program Director, Life Coaching

Christine DeSmet

Faculty Associate

Christine Wagner

Instructional Specialist, Odyssey Jr.

Christopher Moore

University Services Program Associate

Colleen Johnson

Director, Development & Community Relations, Odyssey Program

David Werther

Independent Learning Instructor

Denise Nolden

University Services Program Associate

Doug Whittle

Program Director

Elizabeth Meland

Human Services Conference Director

Elizabeth Nagel

Program Assistant Supervisor

Elizabeth Snodgrass

Summer Music Clinic Director

Emily Auerbach

Professors of English/Director

Emily Azad

Program Coordinator

Jamie Henke

Distinguished Faculty Associate

Janet Staker Woerner

Faculty Associate, Program Manager

Jenny Pressman

Sr. Development Specialist, Odyssey

Jessica Courtier

Program Area Director in Arts & Humanities

John Oppenheimer

Instructional Designer/Technologist

Julie Dahl

Faculty Associate

Karen Dreyfuss

Instructional Specialist, Odyssey Jr.

Kevin Mullen

Assistant Faculty Associate

Kimary Peterson

Conference Manager

Kristi Obmascher

Behavioral Health Area Manager

Laura Kahl

University Services Program Associate

Laura V. Page

Program Director

Laurie Scheer

Program Director

Lori O’Neill

Program Assistant Supervisor

Louise Fowler

Office Operations Associate

Lynn Tarnoff

Program Director

Matthew Griffin

Assistant Faculty Associate

Matthew Hora

Assistant Professor

Megan Reading

Senior Outreach Specialist

Narra Smith Cox

Department Chair/Professor

Patsy Hutchison

Program Coordinator

Robbi Dreifuerst

Program Director

Robert Toomey

Program Director

Roberta Wang

Senior Administrative Program Specialist

Sage Goellner

Assistant Professor

Sarah Korpi

Independent Learning Coordinator

Stephanie Bernard Wilson

Associate Instructor Specialist, Odyssey Jr.

Sunshine Jansen

Program Coordinator

Suzanna Waters Castillo

Distinguished Faculty Associate

Tina Smith

University Services Program Associate

Tracy Marks

Arts and Humanities Pre-College Coordinator

Wendy Fritz

Program Director