7 Most Popular Colleges in Wisconsin

From Madison to Milwaukee, find out if a college in Wisconsin is right for you.

The oldest university in Wisconsin, UW Madison was actually founded when Wisconsin became a state.

By Adam Jazairi

America’s dairyland is much more than scenic landscapes and the Green Bay Packers. Wisconsin can also be a great place to go to school. If you want to explore the academics of the Badger State, a good place to start is the extensive University of Wisconsin system, which comprises many of the Wisconsin's most popular colleges.

To help you get a sense of Wisconsin’s top destinations for postsecondary education, we’ve compiled a list of the state’s most popular colleges. You can find out which schools have the highest enrollment, what their costs are, and which of their academics are strongest.

7. Marquette University

Type: Private University

Enrollment: 11,516

Cost: $26,678

Best Programs: Through the College of Professional Studies, Marquette University offers very practical graduate degrees in leadership, public service and dispute resolution.

Fun Fact: The St. Joan of Arc Chapel, which is located on Marquette’s campus, is the only medieval church west of Europe.

6. University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh

Type: Public University

Enrollment: 12,772

Cost: In-state: $5,690, Out-of-state: $13,029

Best Programs: The Center for New Learning offers many programs geared toward adult students, such as an online bachelor’s degree in human services leadership.

Fun Fact: Because it excels at academic flexibility, University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh is a popular choice for nontraditional students.

5. University of Wisconsin Colleges

Type: Public Two-Year College

Enrollment: 13,029

Cost: In-state: $4,619, Out-of-state: $11,603

Best Programs: University of Wisconsin Colleges offers associate’s degrees in many academic disciplines, including the opportunity to complete a collaborative bachelor’s degree program.

Fun Fact: More than 80 percent of professors at University of Wisconsin Colleges have PhDs in their field.

4. Madison Area Technical College

Type: Community College

Enrollment: 14,647

Cost: In-state: $3,011, Out-of-state: $17,366

Best Programs: Madison Area Technical College students can choose from an array of vocational programs ranging from agricultural equipment technology to fashion marketing.

Fun Fact: If you’re interested in the skilled trades, you should consider pursuing one of the trade apprenticeships available at Madison.

3. Milwaukee Area Technical College

Type: Community College

Enrollment: 17,193

Cost: In-state: $3,056, Out-of-state: $17,411

Best Program: The School of Health Sciences is one of the college’s most popular divisions, due to the high demand for health care professionals.

Fun Fact: Because of its urban location, Milwaukee Area Technical College offers students an exciting and diverse college life.

2. University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Type: Public University

Enrollment: 29,338

Cost: $6,954

Best Programs: The urban studies programs at University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee provides great opportunities for service learning.

Fun Fact: UW Milwaukee is very research oriented, which is great for most areas of graduate study.

1. University of Wisconsin, Madison

Type: Public University

Enrollment: 41,563

Cost: In-state: $7,185, Out-of-state: $21,435

Best Programs: The University of Wisconsin, Madison features many excellent academics, including an outstanding School of Education.

Fun Fact: The oldest university in Wisconsin, UW Madison was actually founded when Wisconsin became a state.

Quick Tips

  • To save money on tuition on a bachelor’s degree, you might consider starting at a community college and transferring to a four-year institution.

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