Admitted students may request to defer enrollment for up to one year for the consecutive spring or fall terms.
Students granted deferred enrollment may not enroll at another academic institution, including another college, university, or in a program that grants credit through an accredited institution (in the United States or abroad). A deferred student who does so will forfeit their deferred enrollment status.
Deferred enrollment may be granted for a variety of reasons, most commonly to allow a student to participate in non-academic cultural experiences, attend military basic training, play junior hockey, perform community service, or for medical reasons.
Deferred Enrollment Process
Submit the Deferred Enrollment Request Form
- Your request is reviewed, and deferred enrollment is conditionally granted
If deferred enrollment has been conditionally approved, you’ll receive a letter with next steps:
- Submit final transcripts by July 10
- Your final grades and coursework are reviewed, and deferred enrollment is formally approved
- Sign and submit the Deferred Enrollment Student Agreement by June 1 (or two weeks from the date of the pre-approval letter, whichever is later)
After the deferred enrollment period passes, update and submit the Record of Residence form
- New information is reviewed for desired term of entry
Follow your Admitted Student Checklist and transition to campus as a Badger!
Deferred Enrollment Eligibility
Any freshman student admitted in the Early Action or Regular Decision application periods may request to defer enrollment. Students admitted from the wait list are traditionally not eligible for deferred enrollment, but will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
The University of Wisconsin–Madison also provides reasonable accommodations for qualified admitted transfer students with disabilities, chronic medical conditions, for active-duty military personnel, and related to COVID-19.
Note: At this time, we are unable to consider deferred enrollment requests for student admitted for Fall 2020.
Frequently Asked Questions
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HOW LONG CAN I DEFER MY ENROLLMENT IF I AM INTERESTED IN TAKING A GAP YEAR?
Admitted freshmen who plan to enroll at the university may request to defer enrollment for either one semester or up to one year. Deferred enrollment requests are not valid for beyond one year from the time the student was initially admitted.
HOW DO I REQUEST TO DEFER ENROLLMENT IF I AM INTERESTED IN TAKING A GAP YEAR?
Student must submit a completed Deferred Enrollment Request form. The deadline to submit is usually May 1, however, due to the impacts of COVID-19, we will continue to review requests for deferred enrollment requests on a case-by-case basis taking into consideration each student’s unique situation.
WHAT IS THE DEADLINE FOR REQUESTING DEFERRED ENROLLMENT?
The traditional deadline to submit a completed Deferred Enrollment Request form by May 1. However, due to the impacts of COVID-19, we will continue to review requests for deferred enrollment requests on a case-by-case basis taking into consideration each student’s unique situation.
ARE TRANSFER STUDENTS ELIGIBLE TO DEFER ENROLLMENT?
In most cases, transfer and reentry students cannot defer enrollment. The University of Wisconsin–Madison also provides reasonable accommodations for qualified admitted transfer students with disabilities, chronic medical conditions, for active-duty military personnel, and related to COVID-19.
Transfer students who have confirmed enrollment and are unable to enroll at UW–Madison in the term specified on their acceptance letter due to one of the reasons listed above may request to defer enrollment.
ARE STUDENTS WITH VISAS ELIGIBLE TO DEFER ENROLLMENT?
Yes, but only admitted freshmen.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I SUBMIT THE ONLINE DEFERRED ENROLLMENT REQUEST FORM BY MAY 1?
- Students will receive an acknowledgement email indicating whether or not their request has been conditionally approved. They will be prompted to submit their final high school transcript by July 10 and to submit the Deferred Enrollment Student Agreement by June 1 (or two weeks from the date of the pre-approval letter, whichever is later) and will be notified of next steps.
- After review of the student’s final grades and confirmation of successful completion of senior year, the appropriate deferred enrollment letter (either formal approval or denial) will be posted to the Student Center.
DO I NEED TO REAPPLY FOR ADMISSION?
No. A student’s deferred enrollment is finalized upon successful completion of high school and submission of the Deferred Enrollment Student Agreement. At that point, admission is guaranteed for the desired term of entry if the student adheres to the Deferred Enrollment Student Agreement.
WHAT IS THE DEADLINE TO SUBMIT THE DEFERRED ENROLLMENT STUDENT AGREEMENT THROUGH THE STUDENT CENTER?
June 1 (or two weeks from the date of the pre-approval letter, whichever is later).
DO I NEED TO PAY THE APPLICATION FEE AGAIN IF I AM GRANTED DEFERRED ENROLLMENT?
No. Students granted deferred enrollment are not required to submit a new application nor pay the application fee again.
WHAT HAPPENS TO MY ACT/SAT/TOEFL/IELTS SCORES AND THE RESULTS FROM MY AP, IB, CLEP, AND/OR PLACEMENT TESTS?
All scored exams that have been sent to the Office of Admissions and Recruitment will remain in each student’s file.
WHAT IF I HAVE NOT YET TAKEN PLACEMENT TESTS?
If students have not yet taken their placement tests, they should visit testing.wisc.edu. Please follow this link for placement testing information specific to UW–Madison students Incoming freshmen are required to take both the Math and English placement tests. The foreign language placement test is optional prior to attending Student Orientation, Advising, and Registration (SOAR).
Students granted deferred enrollment should take the placement tests and submit the placement test results to the Office of Admissions and Recruitment as soon as possible prior to attending SOAR for the new term.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I AM ADMITTED TO THE UNIVERSITY FOR THE NEW TERM?
Housing information will be sent a few days after the admission decision is made. Students will need to confirm their enrollment by paying the $100 enrollment deposit via the Student Center by May 1 prior to the new term. Beginning in April, students who have paid the enrollment deposit will receive an email from the Center for the First-Year Experience inviting them to register for SOAR (Student Orientation, Advising, and Registration).
IF I AM GRANTED DEFERRED ENROLLMENT, WHEN DO I ATTEND SOAR?
Students who are deferring enrollment until the spring term will be required to attend SOAR in January. Students who are deferring enrollment until the fall term will be required to attend SOAR in the summer before they begin classes.
WHAT HAPPENS TO MY FINANCIAL AID IF I AM GRANTED DEFERRED ENROLLMENT?
Students who have already applied for financial aid and/or scholarships will need to reapply for financial aid after they are admitted for the new term. They will also need to update their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). For more information, contact the Office of Student Financial Aid at 608-262-3060 or email@example.com.
WHAT HAPPENS TO MY UNIVERSITY HOUSING CONTRACT?
Students who planned to live in the University Residence Halls should contact University Housing at 608-262-2522 or firstname.lastname@example.org to make new arrangements.
IF I WAS ADMITTED INTO THE COLLEGE OF LETTERS AND SCIENCE HONORS PROGRAM, DO I NEED TO REAPPLY TO THE PROGRAM?
No. A student’s admission to the L&S Honors Program will carry through to the new term of enrollment.
WHAT IF I HAVE MORE QUESTIONS?
HOW WILL I RECEIVE COMMUNICATION DURING MY DEFERRED ENROLLMENT PERIOD?
Your access to your wiscmail (@wisc.edu) email will be deactivated during the deferral period. You will need to forward your email from your wiscmail to a personal account so that you do not miss updates, notifications, or other important information. Learn more on how to forward your wiscmail here.