Graduates of the School of Business possess highly sought-after technical and specialized expertise in a functional area of business as well as general leadership, problem-solving, analytical, and decision-making skills. Utilizing these skills, many of the school's 30,000 alumni have achieved remarkable success in business, government, service, and academic arenas worldwide.

The high scholarly productivity and leadership of the school's 84 faculty are regularly noted in national rankings. Recent studies of U.S. and worldwide scholarly research productivity rated UW–Madison's School of Business faculty among the top graduate business schools in the country. In addition to world-renowned recognition for research, the School of Business faculty bring a variety of real-world experience to the program.

Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress

To make progress toward a graduate degree, students must meet the Graduate School Minimum Degree Requirements and Satisfactory Progress in addition to the requirements of the program.

Master’s Degrees

M.A.

Minimum Graduate Degree Credit Requirement

30 credits

Minimum Graduate Residence Credit Requirement

16 credits

Minimum Graduate Coursework (50%) Requirement

Half of degree coursework (15 credits out of 30 total credits) must be completed in: courses numbered 700 or higher.

Prior Coursework Requirements: Graduate Work from Other Institutions

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of graduate coursework from other institutions. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission to a master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison Undergraduate

No credits from a UW–Madison undergraduate degree are allowed to count toward the degree.

Prior Coursework Requirements: UW–Madison University Special

With program approval and payment of the difference in tuition (between special and graduate tuition), students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of coursework numbered 700 or above taken as a UW–Madison University Special student. Coursework earned five or more years prior to the master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

Credits per Term Allowed

15 credits

Program-Specific Courses Required

Contact the program for information on any additional required courses.

Overall Graduate GPA Requirement

3.00

Other Grade Requirements

The Graduate School requires an average grade of B or better in all coursework (300 or above, not including research credits) taken as a graduate student unless conditions for probationary status require higher grades. Grades of Incomplete are considered to be unsatisfactory if they are not removed during the next enrolled semester.

Probation Policy

The Graduate School regularly reviews the record of any student who earned grades of BC, C, D, F, or Incomplete in a graduate course (300 or above), or grade of U in research credits. This review could result in academic probation with a hold on future enrollment or in being suspended from the Graduate School.

Advisor / Committee

Every graduate student is required to have an advisor. To ensure that students are making satisfactory progress toward a degree, the Graduate School expects them to meet with their advisor on a regular basis.

An advisor generally serves as the thesis advisor. In many cases, an advisor is assigned to incoming students. Students can be suspended from the Graduate School if they do not have an advisor. An advisor is a faculty member, or sometimes a committee, from the major department responsible for providing advice regarding graduate studies.

A committee often accomplishes advising for the students in the early stages of their studies.

Assessment and Examinations

Contact the program for information on required assessments and examinations.

Time Constraints

Master’s degree students who have been absent for five or more consecutive years lose all credits that they have earned before their absence. Individual programs may count the coursework students completed prior to their absence for meeting program requirements; that coursework may not count toward Graduate School credit requirements.

Language Requirements

Contact the program for information on any language requirements.

The Graduate School sets minimum requirements for admissions. Academic program admission requirements are often more rigorous than those set by the Graduate School. Please check the program’s website for details.

Knowledge and Skills

  • Students will be able to apply foundational knowledge in arts and core business topics to arts and/or nonprofit contexts that include evidence-based analysis, cultural sensitivity, artistic integrity, and appreciation for the research foundations of their work.
  • Students will be able to create, communicate, and execute a strategic plan with mission-based outcomes that relies on research-based evidence, a historical context to forecast future trends, and stakeholder engagement.
  • Students will be able to adaptively develop and manage the necessary resources in a mission-based organizational context to create sustainable systems that meet the needs of diverse stakeholders and honors the culture of the communities served.
  • Students will be able to successfully articulate their ideas to a diverse set of constituents and stakeholders via multiple methods so as to be informative, persuasive and inspiring.
  • Students will be able to make significant contributions to the thought leadership, and industry insight that strengthens and provides service to the field, lifelong learning, and career development.

Professional Conduct

  • Students will develop self-awareness and leadership skills necessary to:
    1. utilize creativity and art to articulate a clear vision;
    2. engage/inspire a diverse group of colleagues,
    3. evaluate the immediate and long-term ethical impacts of one's actions on stakeholders;
    4. and influence and promote progress in a variety of professional roles and contexts.
  • Students will be able to engage and sustain a strong cross-functional network of professionals.