Last updated 6:33 PM, April 1, 2020

During this period when instruction at UW–Madison is remote, we are here and available to help you achieve success and navigate your academic experience. This isn’t the semester that any of us hoped for, but we remain committed to providing you the support needed to be safe, healthy, and successful. As the situation continues to evolve, we will keep you updated here, by email, and on social media with resources to take care of yourself and finish the semester strong, together!

If you are looking for information about immigration or travel, please visit the International Student Services FAQs.

Academic Support

Remote Learning

Tips to help you get connected and be successful while learning remotely:

Academic Advising and Career Services

  • Students are able to meet with their academic and career advisors remotely: over the phone, or on a computer/phone as either a voice or video call.
  • Find out how to meet and contact your academic advisor.
  • Students should use Starfish or contact their advising office to set up an appointment or email with questions.


If you have a disability-related accommodation, please be in touch with your instructors to discuss any changes for your course. You can also reach out to your Access Consultant at the McBurney Disability Resource Center if you have questions.

Drop a Class Deadline

The class drop deadline without dean’s approval for the spring term has been extended to give students and instructors time to adjust to the new online instructional environment.

Campus Services

Housing & Dining

University Housing will continue to share updates on operations with residents and their families. Refer to the University Housing website for details related to staying on campus and retrieving your belongings if needed.

Limited dining services are still available on campus for students who are unable to return to their permanent residence. Dining options are available at select University Housing locations and for pick-up at Memorial Union and Union South.

All students no longer living in University Residence Halls will receive a prorated room credit, as well as a credit for any remaining Housing resident food account funds on their Wiscard.

Campus Facilities

Updates for each are posted online:


UW Campus’ Metro Bus routes 80 and 84 will continue on the recess schedule, while most Madison Metro routes will shift to abbreviated schedules starting Monday, March 23. Route 81 and 82 do not run during recess service.

Saturday bus schedules will be in effect all seven days of the week for routes 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 13, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 26, 30, 31, 32, 36, 40, 50, 51, 59, 63, 67, 68, 78.

In addition, Metro will operate routes 55, 75, 23, 72, 44, 48 and 49 Monday through Friday only.

Metro’s paratransit service will remain unchanged. Paratransit riders who are at high risk of severe illness are strongly encouraged to protect themselves and stay home if possible.

The dedicated on-campus accessible circulator shuttle will resume the regular semester schedule on Monday, March 23.

Metro will also be selectively increasing the number of buses on routes with high ridership in order to meet the demand while still maintaining a maximum capacity of 15 riders per bus.

Check the Madison Metro website for updated details.

Most surface lots and parking garage/ramps are open and do not require a permit. Learn more at Transportation Services’ website.

Student Support

Health & Wellness

University Health Services has modified its medical and mental health services to reflect operational changes across campus.

The UHS crisis line is open 24/7 at 608-265-5600 (option 9). Additional mental health resources offered for free by SilverCloud for anxiety and stress management and the Center for Healthy Minds for well-being during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tips for Staying Active

University Recreation & Wellbeing will be sharing tips to stay active and live well while their facilities are closed, including at-home workouts. Resources will be posted on their website, blog, and social media.

Financial and Basic Needs

Get connected to resources you may need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Decisions are being made quickly on campus and in our communities, but know that you are not alone. The Office of Student Financial Aid is able to provide financial support, and additional resources are listed on the FAQ page.

The Open Seat food pantry distributes prepackaged food boxes at Union South every Tuesday, noon to 1 p.m. Request a box by noon on Thursday for pickup the following week.

Respect Statement

COVID-19 is not specific to an ethnicity or race—disease does not discriminate. Racist behaviors or stereotyping are not tolerated at UW–Madison. If you experience harassment or discrimination, students are encouraged to file a bias incident report. Employees may file a complaint with the Office of Compliance.


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How long will classes be online only?

Alternate delivery of classes began on March 23 and will continue through the end of the semester.

Faculty and instructional staff have received detailed information from the Provost’s Office about the transition to alternative delivery of instruction.

Last updated 10:46 PM, March 23, 2020

How do I request a refund from UW-Madison?

As you know, the community response to the COVID-19 situation required UW–Madison to transition our in-person classes to remote instruction as of March 23, 2020. We remain committed to delivering instruction, achieving learning outcomes and supporting students in finishing the semester successfully. Therefore, our campus policy is to not refund any portion of tuition and/or fees for the Spring 2020 academic semester, where requests are based on the required change in instructional modality.

We recognize, however, that there may be some extraordinary circumstances where an exception to the campus policy might be warranted. We will examine all such requests after the completion of the spring semester.

If you believe that you have such exceptional circumstances warranting further consideration, please work with your dean’s office and provide:

  1. student name
  2. student ID
  3. a detailed reason for your appeal.

If you have concerns about completing a course or managing the current situation, you should contact your instructor, advisor, or your dean’s office about how to proceed. You should note, however, that the dean’s office is not empowered to grant refunds at this time and will be forwarding requests to a central campus appeals process.

We will continue to post general updates at UW-Madison COVID-19 site.

Thank you again for your communication and your understanding as we navigate this unprecedented situation.

Posted on 11:33 AM, March 29, 2020

Why was the drop deadline moved?

With remote instruction beginning on March 23, the original drop deadline of March 27 would have left students with little time to make a decision while also adjusting to this alternate instruction. By moving the drop deadline to April 17, students will have more time to adjust and settle into a new learning environment and have more certainty about their ability to succeed in this new learning environment.

Advisors are ready to help you finish this semester and plan for future enrollment. If you have questions about the implications of dropping a class, please contact your advisor.

Last updated 11:41 AM, March 30, 2020

Is UW–Madison moving to online courses this fall?

UW-Madison has shifted to online instruction through Summer 2020. We plan to resume in-person instruction for the fall 2020 semester. We’ll continue consulting with public health officials to monitor the situation and keep our community up-to-date if plans should change.
Posted on 6:17 PM, April 3, 2020

Can I attend classes in person?

No. To lessen the risk to our community as much as possible, UW-Madison suspended Spring Semester face-to-face instruction effective Saturday, March 14.

As of March 23, all classes have transitioned to alternate delivery through the end of the semester. Students should work with their instructors during this transition.

Last updated 10:48 AM, March 31, 2020

What is the plan for Commencement?

After much difficult consideration, and in consultation with the senior class officers, UW–Madison is developing a virtual commencement that will post online on Friday, May 8, for all graduates to watch. Students are also helping design an in-person event the university will host when we emerge from this public health crisis, for everyone who can attend.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank recorded a video message to the members of the Class of 2020.

The lack of an in-person commencement ceremony does NOT mean our seniors are not graduating. Students who have met the degree requirements to graduate will receive their diploma and diploma cover 6-8 weeks after the virtual ceremony.

All graduates should complete the Apply to Graduate application in the Student Center of MyUW by Friday, April 3. This ensures their name will be included in the commencement program. We will also use the Apply to Graduate list to communicate with graduates into May and later in the summer as needed. All graduates must complete their application by Friday, April 3 in order to have their name included in the program.

Reservations that have already been placed for cap and gown can be adjusted to include a shipping address. Graduates wishing to cancel their reservation will be refunded in full. Additionally, we will work with the University Book Store and our attire vendor, Herff Jones, to offer additional rental and purchase options for graduates. Please visit this site for more information about available options, including how to make adjustments to existing orders:

We look forward to celebrating virtually in May and in-person at a later date.

Last updated 10:48 PM, March 23, 2020

Where can I get assistance with online instruction?

In partnership with the Office of the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning, the Division of Information Technology (DoIT) has established a website with guidance and support to faculty and instructors who may need to rapidly reconfigure their courses. Visit the Instructional Continuity website. The Office of the Provost will provide additional communication to faculty and planning is underway to proactively support faculty through this process.

UW–Madison Libraries is also offering a number of resources for instructors, including a number of library resources in Canvas. Visit the Library Support for Instruction Continuity site for more information.

Last updated 10:41 PM, March 22, 2020

Where can I find resources and tools to learn or work remotely?

Here is a guide for working remotely and a guide for learning remotely for faculty, staff, and students. A number of software downloads are also available, including Adobe Creative Cloud and Microsoft Office 365.

The DoIT Help Desk is also available to support faculty, staff, and students who need additional assistance.

DoIT has shared tips for how to manage slower internet speed and low bandwidth while working and learning remotely. Students should contact their instructors as soon as possible if their internet connectivity or lack of access to certain equipment or software (such as laptops, digital learning tools, or printers) is restricting their access to course materials and class participation. Instructors are also encouraged to use asynchronous instruction and learning activities wherever possible to reduce the need for high-speed, robust connectivity

If students, faculty or staff need to check out a laptop to assist with remote learning, teaching, or working, please see this guide.

Many carriers are currently offering low-cost wired broadband internet service options. Contact your local internet provider to see if they are offering free or reduced rates. DoIT does not recommend relying on mobile hotspots as they do not provide enough data to sustain continued full-time work or learning from home.

Last updated 2:06 PM, March 31, 2020

Are laptops available if I need one?

Yes. Students, faculty, and staff may need laptops to use remotely during the COVID-19 university response. The InfoLabs and the DoIT Help Desk are partnering to provide laptops during this event. More information can be found here: Laptop Checkout During COVID-19 University Response.

Last updated 10:15 AM, March 24, 2020

Will there be changes to course grading or other academic policies?

Yes. On April 1, Provost Karl Scholz sent the following message:

I’m following up on my message to you last week regarding the special grading option the university has developed for the spring semester. Continue reading the Provost’s message >>

Last updated 6:44 PM, April 1, 2020

Should I expect to offer/receive remote instruction at the same time lecture/discussion/labs usually take place face-to-face?

Instructors are being encouraged to shift much of their content toward asynchronous instruction (e.g., recorded video and audio lectures that students will be expected to view on their own time) and reserve synchronous learning for specific student-instructor interaction (e.g., office hours, online discussion sessions, etc.). Students should watch for communications from their instructors for specific plans for instruction.

Posted on 6:44 PM, March 21, 2020

Where can I get help with advising and career services?

Advisors, career services staff, and students have access to resources that enable them to connect remotely. Students can use Starfish or contact their advising office to set up a remote appointment. Students are also welcome to email advisors or career services staff with questions. More information for advising and career services staff is available at Advising and Career Services Continuity. More information for students is available at Advising and Career Services During COVID-19. Questions can be sent to

For students, advisors and employers with questions about impacts on internship programs, the UW–Madison’s Center for Research on College-Workforce Transitions has published a report titled, What to do about internships in light of the COVID-19 pandemic? A short guide to online internships for colleges, students and employers.

Last updated 11:32 AM, March 31, 2020

When will Summer and Fall 2020 enrollment occur?

At this time, Summer 2020 enrollment will occur as scheduled, beginning on Monday, March 30, 2020. Students will be notified of their individual Summer 2020 enrollment appointments throughout the week of March 23, 2020. Find more information about enrollment appointments on the Registrar website.

Enrollment for the Fall 2020 semester will still begin as scheduled on April 6, 2020 and your advisors look forward to assisting you. Your specific enrollment appointment time (the earliest time you can begin to enroll in classes) will be emailed to you from the Office of the Registrar.

Students are able to meet with their academic and career advisors remotely: over the phone, or on a computer/phone as either a voice or video call. We recommend setting up appointments with advisors soon to give yourself the opportunity to meet prior to course enrollment.

Find out how to meet and contact your academic and career advisors. Students should use Starfish or contact their advising office to set up an appointment or email with questions.

Last updated 11:23 AM, March 25, 2020

What are the plans for Summer Term?

The university is expanding online offerings this summer to include more than 300 courses while in-person Summer Term courses are suspended due to the COVID-19 crisis.

Summer courses help students stay on track to graduation. Summer Term already had a robust online offering and has added more online courses than ever before so students can continue their academic progress.

Students were notified of their individual Summer 2020 enrollment appointments during the week of March 23, 2020. More information about enrollment appointments can be found at For guidance about summer enrollment, connect with Advising & Career Service resources at

For updates on Summer Term, visit For visiting students (non-UW-Madison students) there’s additional information here:

We have a chatbot on the website that’s available to answer questions 24/7 and a “live chat” feature so students can connect with a real person during business hours.

We also have scholarships available,

Last updated 4:44 PM, April 2, 2020

What's going on with spring and summer study abroad?

As circumstances surrounding the worldwide outbreak of COVID-19 continue to rapidly change, our first priority remains the health and safety of UW–Madison study abroad students.

The decision to close UW–Madison programs abroad for the Spring 2020 term was made after the announcement by Chancellor Blank on March 11 regarding campus operations and activities, as well as the World Health Organization’s declaration of COVID-19 as a global pandemic.

Summer 2020 programs abroad have been canceled following the announcement by International Division Vice Provost and Dean Guido Podestá on March 20.

Learn more.

Posted on 6:44 PM, March 21, 2020

What do all of these changes mean for international students?

This is a rapidly evolving situation, and International Student Services (ISS) is working closely with campus partners to ensure that the needs of international students are addressed. ISS is reaching out to international students directly with more information. We will make timely updates here as we receive additional federal guidance.

All courses will be online for the rest of spring semester. You can access your courses from your home in Madison or from your permanent home abroad. You are advised to have a strong internet connection. Information will be shared by your academic unit and professors. 

More information for students who are remaining in University Housing can be found here and here

If you are traveling to your home country: 

  • If you remain fully enrolled, ISS may keep your SEVIS record active. You do not need to submit a Leave of Absence if you remain fully enrolled.
  • Many students have been asking ISS to confirm that they can return to the United States in the future. ISS is unable to provide such confirmation, because this is an ongoing situation. We urge you to consider what is the best option for you with respect to your safety, health, and well-being.
Last updated 11:44 AM, March 22, 2020

How do I access academic journals and other campus subscriptions remotely?

Option 1: Get on UW–Madison’s virtual private network (VPN), which requires a program called GlobalProtect. If you see a globe icon on the top right of your screen, then you already have Global Protect.  Click on the globe and click “connect” using your NetID and password. You may need to re-boot your computer to connect.

If you need to download and install Global Protect:

On a Mac:

On a PC:

If you have trouble, contact the DoIT help desk.

Option 2: To gain access without being on campus VPN, go through the libraries website:

  • Click “Search the Catalog” on the top left portion of the page and select “Databases.”
  • Under the search box on the next page, click “Top 10 Databases”
  • Google Scholar will be on the list of databases.

Here area few online tips and tricks:

How to search if you know the journal you want:

How to search if you have a specific article in mind:

Last updated 10:12 AM, March 24, 2020

Where can I find answers to questions specific to graduate students?

The Graduate Students page on this site includes FAQs addressing graduate-student concerns.

Last updated 2:37 PM, March 23, 2020

Latest Updates

  • Summer Term shifts to online only; scholarship deadlines extended

    The University of Wisconsin–Madison is expanding online offerings this summer to include more than 300 courses while in-person Summer Term courses are suspended due to the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Spring semester grading: More details announced

    Provost Karl Scholz has shared more information with the campus community about grading changes this spring semester.

  • COVID-19 leave extended through May 1

    The university is expanding the COVID-19 paid leave benefit to support impacted employees through May 1. This provides additional paid leave if an employee is unable to work due to COVID-19 related issues, including the inability to work remotely.

  • Housing and dining credits

    As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, all students no longer living in University Residence Halls will receive a prorated room credit, as well as a credit for any remaining Housing resident food account funds …

  • How to manage slower internet and low bandwidth

    The Division of Information Technology has shared tips for how to manage slower internet speed and low bandwidth while working and learning remotely.

  • Self-quarantine instructions for students

    Dear students, I am reaching out to all UW–Madison students who traveled over Spring Break with an urgent health announcement. University Health Services (UHS) has received reports of students returning from Spring Break who have …

  • Message on course grading policy for Spring 2020

    UPDATE: On Wednesday, April 1, Provost Karl Scholz issued an update announcing that students may choose to convert their letter grade in any course to one of two new grades: SD (Satisfactory-Disruption) and UD (Unsatisfactory-Disruption). More …

  • More Graduate students posts
  • More Undergraduate students posts