Access includes total enrollments, where students come from, participation of Wisconsin high school graduates, new transfer students, and access for underrepresented and lower-income students.
Measures of performance and success should be viewed through the lens of university context and mission. The Universities of Wisconsin have differences in missions, students served, and resource capacity. All UW universities work to create environments that respond to their unique mission-driven mandates and support their student success goals.
Fall enrollments and UW Restructuring
In fall 2018, UW restructuring joined the thirteen UW Colleges two-year campuses with seven four-year UW universities. As such, UW Colleges enrollment is no longer reported after fall 2017. Instead, those enrollments are reported under the following UW universities:
• UW-Eau Claire – includes UW-Eau Claire-Barron County headcounts and FTE from fall 2018 onward
• UW-Green Bay – includes UW-Green Bay, Manitowoc Campus; UW-Green Bay, Marinette Campus; UW-Green Bay, Sheboygan Campus
• UW-Milwaukee – includes UW-Milwaukee at Waukesha County and UW-Milwaukee at Washington County
• UW-Oshkosh – includes UW-Oshkosh Fond du Lac and UW-Oshkosh Fox Cities
• UW-Platteville – includes UW-Platteville Baraboo Sauk County and UW-Platteville Richland (closed fall 2023)
• UW-Stevens Point – includes UW-Stevens Point at Marshfield and UW-Stevens Point at Wausau
• UW-Whitewater – includes UW-Whitewater at Rock County
Fall enrollments by headcount and FTE
Enrollments consist of all students enrolled in fall semester in academic credit courses provided by the Universities of Wisconsin, unless noted otherwise. Headcount reflects the number of individual students. Full-time equivalent (FTE) enrollments capture proportional course-taking activity of full- and part-time students. FTE is calculated for undergraduates as credits divided by 15, for graduate students as credits divided by 12, for PhD students as credits divided by 7, and for pharmacy and law students as credits divided by 15. Medical and veterinary medicine students are each considered one FTE.
Fall enrollments by race/ethnicity
Race/ethnicity is self-reported by the individual in one or more of the following categories: African American, American Indian, Hispanic/Latino(a), Southeast Asian, Other Asian American, White, and International. Beginning in fall 2008, new race/ethnicity categories were implemented that allow for self-identifying as Hawaiian/Pacific Islander or as more than one race/ethnicity; these new categories are reported where data are available. The category of Hispanic/Latino(a) includes individuals identifying as Hispanic/Latino(a) alone or in combination with other race/ethnicities. Individuals who are non-resident aliens (temporary U.S. visa holders) are categorized as International. Individuals who are not International and do not report a race or ethnicity are categorized as Unknown.
Fall enrollments by geographic origin
Maps show UW new freshmen by their home address at the time of application to the Universities of Wisconsin. New freshmen from the United States without a state or zip code are not included.
Participation of Wisconsin high school graduates
The participation rate is the percentage of Wisconsin public and private high school graduates who enroll as Wisconsin resident new freshmen in the fall semester immediately following high school graduation. The source for the number of Wisconsin high school graduates is the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI). Beginning with 2013, the number of high school graduates reflects a change in DPI methodology and is calculated as completers from prior cohorts within 4, 5, and 6 years. Due to data collection errors for some districts and private schools, high school graduates in 2016 and 2017 are an estimate developed by the UW-Madison Applied Population Laboratory.
Participation of Wisconsin high school graduates by race/ethnicity
The participation rate by race/ethnicity is based on Wisconsin public high school graduates. The source for the number of Wisconsin public high school graduates is the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI). DPI does not record the race-ethnicity of Wisconsin private school graduates. The DPI data do not distinguish among Asian American groups or include international students. Separate categories for Hawaiian/Pacific Islander and for Two or More Races were added in 2011 (not shown). Beginning with 2013, the number of high school graduates reflects a change in DPI methodology and is calculated as completers from prior cohorts within 4, 5, and 6 years. Due to data collection errors for some districts and private schools, high school graduates in 2016 and 2017 are an estimate developed by the UW-Madison Applied Population Laboratory.
Annual new transfer students
Transfer student enrollments are annual unduplicated headcounts of each UW universities’ undergraduate new transfer students. Transfer students are shown by the last institution they attended: a Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS) institution, a private Wisconsin institution, a U.S. institution not in Wisconsin, a non-U.S. institution, UW Colleges (through 2018-19), or a UW four-year university (through 2018-19).
Notes on changes related to restructuring: (1) Branch campus data are reported under UW Colleges prior to fall 2018, including summer 2018-19. (2) Beginning 2019-20, the Universities of Wisconsin, as a transfer source, represents transfers among UW universities (branch, main and former UW Colleges).
Fall new transfer students by race/ethnicity
The percentage is based on undergraduate new transfers enrolled in fall term.
Undergraduates receiving Pell Grants
Pell Grants are provided to students with financial need using federal guidelines. The percentage of Pell Grant recipients for the Universities of Wisconsin includes the UW Colleges and is the number of undergraduates receiving a Pell Grant during the academic year divided by undergraduate enrollment in the fall term. The national percentage is the number of undergraduate Pell Grant recipients at public four-year institutions during the academic year divided by the undergraduate fall enrollment at public four-year institutions in the fall term. National data are from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS).
Underrepresented minorities and Pell Grant recipients by residency status
Underrepresented minority (URM) students include those who indicated African American, American Indian, Hispanic/Latino(a), or Southeast Asian alone or in combination with other race/ethnicities. Pell Grants are provided to undergraduate students with financial need using federal guidelines. Residency status reflects a student’s fee basis.