Non-degree and guest applicants are students who would like to take a few courses but do not intend to earn a degree from UWM.

Apply to UWM as a non-degree/guest student if you are…

  • a recent high school graduate deferring college for now.
  • a current college student at another institution who is taking a break and staying close to home.
  • a college student looking for an alternative gap year experience.
Application requirements for non-degree and guest students are below.

Preparing to Apply to UWM as a Non-Degree/Guest Student

I’m interested in a specific subject or class.

With more than 200 academic programs to choose from, UWM has a learning experience that’s right for you. Whether you’re looking to try something new, explore your options or upskill, UWM has hundreds of courses to pick from.

Browse through next semester’s course offerings:

I’m interested in taking a service-learning course.

Students who take a course with a service-learning component will engage in community projects that are related to the course content and then reflect on the experience in class discussions or through written work. UWM has many service-learning course offerings so that students in various disciplines can learn through this powerful pedagogical practice.

If you have questions about service learning, please contact Laurie Marks, director of the Center for Community Based Learning, Leadership, and Research, at or 414-229-3161.

I would like to work on a research project.

Would you like to work closely with a faculty member on a research project? Research experiences help build your resume by giving students valuable training in a specific field guided by faculty mentors.

I want to learn another language.

Some students might want to learn a particular language to connect with their cultural roots, while others may have dreams of travel. And learning a less commonly taught language will give you a specialized skill to expand your career opportunities. UWM teaches over a dozen languages in addition to English — find one that’s right for you!

I want to fulfill general education requirements.

With hundreds of courses to choose from, guest students can take general education courses that meet either competency requirements or distribution requirements. Competency requirements are designed to assure basic proficiency in oral and written communication, quantitative literacy and a language other than English. Distribution requirements are designed to provide students with a broad body of knowledge in the arts, humanities, natural sciences and social sciences as a foundation for specialization.

I want a gap year alternative.

Students looking for an affordable alternative to a gap year can take advantage of research opportunities, experiential learning, language study and skills-based courses here at UWM. You can explore for a semester or year focused on a discipline or theme of your choosing. Chart your own course, pursue your interests, build your resume and serve your community.

Cost and Financial Aid for Non-Degree/Guest Student

How much will studying at UWM cost as a guest student? You can estimate the per credit cost from the latest tuition table as a good guide. Generally, an in-state student will pay approximately $1,700 for a three-credit class taken during the fall or spring semesters.

Non-degree and guest students are generally not eligible for financial aid. Exceptions can be made for those enrolled in eligible certificate programs or those taking prerequisite courses for admission to a UWM degree or certification program. Learn more at One Stop.

Advising and Registration

After admission, you can register for classes through your PAWS account. You can work with your dedicated Academic Advisor for assistance with course selection and registration.

Are you a high school student wanting to earn college credits ahead of time?