Phi Beta Kappa-- Alpha Chapter of Wisconsin



(608) 262-2941

Phi Beta Kappa Alpha Chapter of Wisconsin 
University of Wisconsin-Madison
1225 Linden Drive, Rm 207
Madison, WI 53706

Phi Beta Kappa is the nation's oldest academic honor society. Since its inception in 1776, Phi Beta Kappa has been committed to fostering and recognizing excellence in the liberal arts. The main function of the local Chapter is to honor undergraduates for outstanding scholarly achievement. While national guidelines recommend that no more than ten percent of the graduating class be elected to Phi Beta Kappa, the Alpha Chapter of Wisconsin (so named because this campus was granted the first charter in the state) traditionally invites no more than three or four percent of the University's bachelor's degree candidates to join. Election is therefore quite an honor.

Minimum requirements for consideration include:

  • outstanding academic achievement as demonstrated both by cumulative GPA and by grades in the major(s)
  • a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.75 (for seniors) or 3.9 (for juniors)
  • the course load should average 15 credits a semester
  • College level math, statistics, or logic course (200 level or above; or AP calculus or AP statistics)
  • Excellence in depth and breadth of study in the liberal arts as determined by Number and variety of courses taken outside the major and the balance and proportion of the candidate’s program as a whole. Demonstrated achievement beyond the introductory level in two of the following three areas: humanities, social sciences, natural sciences
  • Phi Beta Kappa is the accolade for an undergraduate liberal arts education, thereby requiring evidence of both breadth and depth of study in the liberal arts. This normally means that the student should be enrolled in the College of Letters and Science and be a candidate for the liberal bachelor degree. Senior candidates must have 90 credits of work in the College of Letters and Science; Juniors must have virtually all credits in Letters and Science.