University of Wisconsin–Madison
Welcome to the GISPP Family

FAQs for New and Current Students


  • How do I set up my NetID and email?

    Just what everyone wants – another email address to keep track of! 😉

    Seriously, though, your NetID and subsequent email account will provide you access to the University of Wisconsin online. So you want to set this up as soon as you can.

    Once the Graduate School officially admits you, you should receive a formal letter from them with your Campus ID number listed at the bottom. (Your ID number should also be available on your actual application – you’re given one as soon as you apply.)

    Visit the following link to set up your NetID:

    Once your NetID is set up, you should be able to log into MyUW from the top of the page.

    Image of homepage with MyUW tab highlighted

    You are now free to roam about the university… virtually, at least.

    If you run into any problems, don’t hesitate to contact us at with the subject line “NetID set up issues.”

  • I have received my NetID but I cannot set up my email. What do I do?

    Sometimes the student information system takes a few days to update you from applicant to student. If you cannot set up your email right away please be patient. Wait a few days and try again. If you continue to have trouble 1-2 weeks after you’ve received your NetID please email your program coordinator – Brittney Krauss (

  • What is MFA-DUO and how do I set it up?

    MFA-DUO is multi-factor authentication (MFA) and adds an extra layer of security to your NetID login process. It combines something you know (your NetID and password) with something you have (smartphone, token/fob) to verify your identity.

    Learn how to set it up and more information here:

  • How do I access my program orientation?

    Key information about the GIS Professional Programs requirements, policies, and operations are located in your program orientation. You can find the orientation in the GISPP Virtual Lab in Canvas. You will receive additional instructions on how to access this space when you are admitted to your program.

    Once you are added to the GISPP Virtual Lab you can navigate through the orientation materials by hitting the “NEXT” button on the bottom right hand side of the screen. If you get lost or want to go back to another page you can always hit “Modules” on the navigation menu on the left hand side to see the full table of contents.

  • When do classes begin? How long is the semester?

    Great question! These things change every semester depending on holidays, government policy, and other things beyond any single person’s control.

    Click here to view the most up-to-date Academic Calendar.

    Online Students
    Unlike in-residence courses, online courses do not have holiday breaks during the semester.

    Due dates will never be on a holiday, but since the courses are asynchronous, you are expected to plan ahead for trips, personal holidays, or required breaks. You can always work ahead in our online courses. Please email your instructor if you require accommodations for missing course deadlines.

    There are no final exam periods for online students. Your semester ends on the last day of instruction listed on the Academic Calendar.

  • Where are my online classes? How do they work?

    The University of Wisconsin – Madison uses Canvas as its Learning Management System (LMS).

    Canvas is a “shell” of sorts. It’s an online infrastructure where you will find all of your online classes.

    Your courses typically “go live” the day that the semester begins. Sometimes they will begin before that. You can always access your courses at:

  • When and how do I pay tuition?

    Tuition for our online professional programs is $800 per credit ($3200 a course). The university also imposes a one-time fee ($60-$100) as well on your first tuition bill.

    Accelerated Master’s students will have a different tuition rate based on residency and segregated fees for local services. To view the most up-to-date information on these variable rates, click

    Once you have enrolled in your classes, the Bursar’s Office will create an invoice on MyUW for the classes you have signed up for. The invoice will have a due date (typically the Friday before after the start of the semester). Current tuition due dates are available here.

    Tuition is due in full on the due date or a late fee may be incurred.

    There is a BadgerPay option (three payments instead of one) for qualified students.

    Tuition bills will be sent to your WISC.EDU email address as an eBill. It can be viewed on the Tuition eBill/ePayment secure website.

    For more detailed information about paying your tuition, please visit:

  • How do I prepare for the first semester?

    In order to prepare you for your first semester and the courses throughout the program, we’ve put together several “micro-courses” for you.

    Make sure you go through these two courses and get your computer prepped before the semester begins. They should take about 30-minutes to one-hour each to complete.

    GIST 101

    This micro-course covers how to install Windows 10 in Boot Camp on your Mac computer. (It’s entirely free!) From there it goes on to show you how to install ArcGIS and a variety of other desktop software on your machine.

    Complete GIST 101 Now

    GIST 102

    This tutorial includes the installation of a variety of additional software and web mapping services.

    Complete GIST 102 Now


    At this time we do not offer Virtual Machines for our courses. You are expected to complete coursework using your own machines. For information on what type of machine is required, please view GIST 101, which makes some recommendations. You can use a Mac or PC, but you will be required to install Windows 10 (free to all UW–Madison students).

    Chromebooks are not supported at this time.