Students who initially apply for and are admitted to a fall term may defer their enrollment to the following spring or fall term. Students who initially apply for and are admitted to a spring term can only defer their enrollment to the following spring term.
Deferred enrollment may be granted to first-year students for a variety of reasons—most commonly to allow a student to participate in non-academic/non-credit cultural experiences, perform community service, take part in a non-credit internship, or attend military basic training; for students with disabilities; for those who have chronic medical conditions; for active-duty military personnel; or for circumstances related to COVID-19, including visa issues.
Any first-year 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.
Deferred enrollment may be granted for qualified admitted transfer students with disabilities or chronic medical conditions, for active-duty military personnel, or for circumstances related to COVID-19, including visa issues.
Students will not be granted deferred enrollment to enroll at another academic institution or to enroll in a program that grants college credit in the United States or abroad.
Deferred Enrollment Process
1. Accept your offer and confirm your enrollment by the confirmation deadline
- Log in to the MyUW portal to accept your offer of admission in the Student Center by the confirmation deadline for the term you were admitted
- Spring Term Confirmation Deadline: December 15*
- First-Year Fall Term Confirmation Deadline: May 1*
- Transfer Fall Term Confirmation Deadline: June 1*
*If deadline falls on a weekend, it is extended to the next business day
2. Submit the Deferred Enrollment Request Form
3. If deferred enrollment has been conditionally approved, you’ll receive a letter with next steps:
- Sign and submit the Deferred Enrollment Student Agreement by May 15 (or two weeks from the date of the pre-approval letter, whichever is later)
- Submit final transcripts by July 10
- Your final grades and coursework are reviewed, and deferred enrollment is formally approved
4. After the deferred enrollment period passes, update and submit the Record of Residence form
- New information is reviewed for desired term of entry
5. Follow your Admitted Student Checklist and transition to campus as a Badger!
Frequently Asked Questions
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How Will I Receive Communication During My Deferred Enrollment Period?
All official university communications will be sent to the campus email address that you have on file (@wisc.edu); you can verify what email address that is by navigating to your Student Center and following the instructions here: https://kb.wisc.edu/helpdesk/internal/4126. While deferred, we recommend checking this account for communications from the university.
How Long Can I Defer My Enrollment if I Am Interested in Taking a Gap Year?
Students who initially apply for and are admitted to a fall term may defer their enrollment to the following spring or fall term. Students who initially apply for and are admitted to a spring term can only defer their enrollment to the following spring term. 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?
Students must submit a completed Deferred Enrollment Request form. The deadline to submit is the same as your deadline for confirm enrollment.
What Is the Deadline for Requesting Deferred Enrollment?
The deadline to submit a completed Deferred Enrollment Request form is the same as your deadline for confirm enrollment.
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, and for active-duty military personnel.
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 first-year students.
What Happens After I Submit the Online Deferred Enrollment Request Form?
- 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 first-year students are required to take both the Math and English placement tests. The world 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 & 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?
Contact the Office of Admissions and Recruitment:
Office of Admissions and Recruitment
University of Wisconsin–Madison
702 W Johnson Street, Suite 1101
Madison, WI 53715-1007