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Admissions Table in Guide/Lumen Q&A
This document addresses questions about the table that was added to Guide on the Admissions tab in 2019.
What is the admissions table?
The Graduate School added a table with consistent formatting and information to the Admissions tab on every Master's and Doctoral degree page in Guide, except for those in the School of Business, which uses a different admissions system. The table looks like this:
Which pages have the table added?
All admitting master's and doctoral degrees, including named options, had the table added. "Parent plan" pages that have named options did not have the table added as those admissions tab point students to the named options. The table was not added to pages of degrees with Suspended Admissions. When/if you unsuspend admissions to your program, or if a non-admitting degree is made admitting, adding this table will be part of that process in the Lumen Program Proposals system.
Why did you add this table?
We have received a lot of feedback that the requirements for what must be on the Admissions tab in Guide are confusing and vague. We also know that some of the most frequently asked questions we receive and that graduate programs receive from applicants are about the basics with applying to Graduate School: what's the deadline?, is the GRE required?. In the past the system for changing admissions information was done entirely over email or phone calls without a record for why the change was being made or of whom approved the change. This table is meant to address all of these concerns, giving applicants a clear, easy way to keep track of when applications are due and what is required and also making sure all faculty and staff in the program are aware of their deadline and other requirements. Above all, we are considering the student applicants and how to make applying to Graduate School less stressful for them.
How do I change my application deadlines, what semesters the application is open, and other admissions requirements?
Guide is considered the record of truth at UW-Madison for all of our academic program information. It is important to us and to our accrediting body, the Higher Learning Commission, that there be this single record of truth that students can trust. Since the Admissions tab in Guide is required by campus as governed content, we feel it is important we do the best we can to present accurate, consistent admissions information on that tab.
As you may know, the Lumen Program Proposals form is the only way to make changes to governed content. An admissions change is considered a "less than 50% change to curriculum." Therefore, while it needs to go through the governance workflow steps in Lumen Programs, this change does not require a vote at a meeting of GFEC or UAPC. You should check with your individual School/College (e.g., Letters and Science, Engineering, Agricultural and Life Sciences) to confirm an admissions change does not require a School/College Academic Planning Council or Curriculum Committee vote.
A new Guide is published associated with the Fall, Spring, and Summer terms. Admissions deadline changes can be made in the Fall and Spring Guides, which currently publish in June and October, respectively. Keeping in mind that the application opens a year ahead of the enrollment term for students, programs will need to be deliberative and thoughtful when changing deadlines, realizing that they will need plenty of lead time. We do not require that the admissions deadline change be made "effective" for the future term it applies to. In other words, we suggest you treat the June and October publication dates as the two times a year you can update any of your admissions deadlines, regardless of which semester (fall, spring, summer) they are for.
What are my deadlines for updating my admissions content in Guide?
Deadlines can be found here.
What information is included in the table?
The table includes seven rows: (1) Fall Deadline, (2) Spring Deadline, (3) Summer Deadline, (4) GRE (Graduate Record Examination), (5) English Proficiency Test, (6) Other Test(s) (e.g., GMAT, MCAT); (7) Letters of Recommendation Required.
Because we want to be able to export data from these tables, you are not allowed to create additional rows to the table and we have decided on specific terms that can be used in each row. Any additional information that must be included in the table can be added as a footnote, but keep in mind you can also still write as much additional information as you want below the table or on your program website.
An example of when you might use a footnote is if the GRE is required, but students can request a waiver. This would show as "Required" in the table, with a footnote saying "Applicants may request a waiver."
These are the phrases that can be used in each row:
Fall Display Deadline, Spring Display Deadline, Summer Display Deadline:
- January 1 [or whatever your deadline is]
- January 1 for international students; March 1 for domestic students [or whatever your deadlines are]
- This program does not admit in the summer. [or "in the spring" or "in the fall"]
English Proficiency Test
- Every applicant whose native language is not English or whose undergraduate instruction was not in English must provide an English proficiency test score and meet the Graduate School minimum requirements (https://grad.wisc.edu/apply/requirements/#english-proficiency). [Add specific language for your program here]
Note: information about the English Proficiency Test requirements that duplicates the Graduate School minimum requirements should not be added to this field in the table.
GRE (Graduate Record Examination)
- Not required.
- Not required but may be considered if available.
- May be required in certain cases; consult program.
Other Test(s) (e.g., GMAT, MCAT)
- The MCAT may be accepted as an alternate to the GRE.
- [Information about the GRE Subject Test specific to your program]
Letters of Recommendation Required
- [whatever your number is]
How do I update deadlines that are not the "Display Deadline"?
As those of you who work in admissions in your programs likely know, there are sometimes "hidden" deadlines used in the eApp system. Because Guide is a public document that is largely student-facing, we can only include the Display Deadline in this column. The Office of Admissions in the Graduate School will continue to contact you to gather information prior to each term about your "App Deadline," "App Deadline Firm," "Rec Deadline," and "Rec Display Deadline," which are behind-the-scenes deadlines not advertised publicly to students.
Remember, you will not be able to update your display deadline in any other way than a Lumen Programs Proposal.
How do I close or open admissions for a specific semester?
This is also updated through the Lumen Programs Proposal form. Basically, if you would like to open admissions to the summer term for your program and in Guide it currently says "This program does not admit in the summer," making a Lumen Programs Proposal change that edits that language to "February 1" as the deadline, e.g., will then prompt us to open summer admissions for your program with that associated display deadline.
Where do I put information not encompassed in the table?
The table is the minimum the Graduate School requires to exist on Admissions tabs for admitting degrees, but we expect most programs will continue to include more detailed information below it.
When we added the table to your pages in Guide, we did not delete any of the information that you currently have on your Admissions tab unless it conflicted with what you provided to us. You can also decide to link applicants to your program website instead of adding additional information to the Admissions tab.
Any content added beneath the admissions table should be unique in that it does not duplicate information in the table.
Why don't I see an admissions table on my page?
There are two likely reasons:
1) Your degree program is non-admitting or suspended, or
2) You are actually looking at the parent plan page of a degree that contains named options.
You might also be in the School of Business. The Graduate School does not handle admissions for School of Business programs, and as such, our table is not on those pages. Please contact the School of Business academic planners with questions about your admissions content.