Graduate Admissions

Why choose the UW-Madison Computer Sciences MS/PhD program?

Graduate students at UW-Madison have the opportunity to create new knowledge by performing research with leaders in every branch of computer science. In addition:

  • All PhD students complete a minor outside of Computer Sciences. This gives students the opportunity to explore another area in conjunction with their major area of study in CS. 
  • The Wisconsin Idea, a concept unique to the University of Wisconsin, holds that education should influence people’s lives outside the classroom. We take this seriously, and in addition to the important research our students carry out, we encourage outreach and service to the whole state of Wisconsin, the rest of the country, and the world. Locally, many CS students embrace opportunities to serve students in our public schools and other organizations.
  • We are growing! The School of Computer, Data, and Information Sciences brings together Computer Sciences, the Information School, and Statistics, and we will soon be together in one new building, scheduled to be completed in early 2025. The new building will provide state-of-the-art facilities, plenty of gathering places for students to work together and socialize, and more opportunities for closer collaboration. 

Below you will find everything (we hope!) you need to know about applying to graduate programs in computer science at UW-Madison, as well and information about the campus and the city of Madison. If you have any questions, please email the appropriate program manager – see email addresses below.

(Looking for more information about a particular graduate program? Click here!)

Application Deadlines


MS – Data Engineering (MSDE) and MS – Data Science (MDS): MARCH 15

Professional Master’s (PMP): Admissions with application deadline MARCH 15
**Spring admissions is ONLY open for pre-admitted Plus One Pathway students.

Professional Capstone Certificate Program (PCP): The application deadline to be considered for the Fall term is June 1, for the Spring term is October 15, and for the Summer term is February 15. Applications received after the deadline will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

MAD UX (Capstone Certificate in User Experience Design): APRIL 15

To Apply

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Application Process MS/PhD

Applications for the MS/PhD program are accepted through the Graduate School (GRE not required):

MS: Application information here
PhD: Application information here

Graduate School online application

Do not apply to both MS and PhD programs! All applications, whether the application indicates the MS degree program or the PhD degree program, are considered in a single pool for determining admissions. There are not different criteria used to determine admission for MS versus PhD applicants. Furthermore, applicants do not compete with existing graduate students in the department for admission to the PhD program.

The purpose of stating your degree goal on the application is to provide the Graduate Admissions Committee with information on your initial plan for graduate school. This preference is not binding. If a student applies and is admitted for the MS program, but later decides to pursue a PhD degree, the student does not need to reapply to the department. If a student has made satisfactory progress, continuing for a PhD is contingent upon successfully completing the department’s PhD Qualifying Process.  This process consists of finishing course breadth requirements and passing a written examination in one depth area.

Questions? Email

CS Graduate Admissions FAQ (MS/PhD)

Application Process PMP, MSDE, and MDS

Applications for the PMP, MSDE, and MDS programs are accepted through the Graduate School (GRE not required):

PMP: Application information here
PMP: Graduate School application requirements here
MSDE: Application information here
MDS: Application information here 

Graduate School online application

PMP and MSDE application review begins February 15th. Final application deadline is March 15, 2024. Some early decisions will be communicated by mid-March with all remaining decisions being communicated by early April.

PMP admissions questions:

MSDE admissions questions:

MDS admissions questions:

CS Graduate Admissions FAQs (PMP)

Application Process PCP & Mad UX

Professional Capstone Certificate Program students should apply to the Division of Continuing Studies as a special student:

PCP admissions questions:

MAD UX students should also apply as a special student through the Division of Continuing Studies. This is a joint program between Computer Sciences and the Information School (iSchool) and is administered by the iSchool. More information can be found here. 

Mad UX admissions questions:

International Student Information

Current students - adding a second major in CS or changing PhD major to CS

Graduate students who are currently enrolled in a graduate program at UW–Madison need to follow a different procedure for:


Email admissions questions to the following email addresses for each program. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can!

CS Traditional MS/PhD:





Mad UX:

Graduate Program Managers

Jenny Greiber

Mad UX - iSchool

Academic Program Manager

Kyle Martinez

Graduate Program Manager

Jinda Moore

MS in Data Science (MDS) - Statistics

Professional Programs Specialist

Nibedita Pattnaik

Graduate Academic Program Specialist - PCP

Chloe Prosser

Graduate Program Admissions and Recruitment

Mollie Stolbov

Traditional MS/PhD Program, Computer Sciences

Graduate Program Manager - MS

Angela Thorp

Traditional MS/PhD Program, Computer Sciences

Graduate Program Manager - PhD


Rm 4297 Computer Sciences Building