Course Options

What is it?

In 2013, the state of Wisconsin passed Wisconsin Act 20 replacing Part-Time Open Enrollment with a new statewide program called Course Options. Course Options allows high school students enrolled in a public school district the opportunity to take up to two courses in a semester from charter schools, institutions of higher education, and approved nonprofit organizations. For more information, including the Course Options application, visit

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  • Your desired course must have seats available.
  • You must meet course prerequisite requirements.
  • Your high school must approve course selection.
  • Parent/guardian permission must be granted.


Six weeks prior to class start date - The parent/student must complete all required sections of the application (PI-8900), sign and submit the application to Madison College. Madison College will provide a copy of the application to the high school for their records.

  • Students are not required to fill out a Madison College application in addition to the PI-8900.
  • It is recommended that the student notify their high school counselor of their intent to take courses via Course Options and have the counselor submit the application and supporting materials (outlined below) to Madison College on the student’s behalf.

Five weeks prior to class start date – If not submitted as noted in the recommendation above, the high school submits official transcript and any Individualized Education Program records to Madison College Enrollment Center, 1701 Wright St. Madison, WI 53597.

Four weeks prior to class start date - Student creates a Madison College Student Account and submits any other materials needed to demonstrate that course prerequisites have been met.

  • Account Creation: Follow the steps as outlined on the Student Account Creation web page.
  • Course Prerequisites: Most classes have some form of enrollment requirement (also called a prerequisite) that must be met prior to enrolling. You may find course prerequisites listed as enrollment requirements by selecting a class. For example, Trigonometry (catalog # 20804213) has a COMPASS placement score requirement. Online and accelerated classes also require completion of a brief online orientation.
  • Reserved classes: Some classes are reserved for students formally admitted to that program and are not available to Course Options students. Reserved status information may be found in the class notes for any class by clicking the “+” symbol next to the five digit class number. For example, Customer Relations (catalog # 10145189) has classes held for Cosmetology and Maintenance/HVAC students.

Three weeks prior to class start date - Madison College begins processing Course Options applications.

Two weeks prior to class start date:

  1. Student and high school begin to receive approval or denial letters.
  2. High school notifies student/Madison College of approval/denial.
  3. Student submits an accommodation form to Disability Resource Services if desiring accommodations.

One week prior to class start date:

  1. Parent/guardian must submit the final copy of the Course Options application with the “will attend” or “will not attend” box selected.
  2. Student should contact their high school to determine how to get their books required for Madison College class(es). Some high schools have books in their Youth Options/Course Options program office, others arrange for books to be charged through the Madison College bookstore.

After class start date - High school is billed 50% of tuition and 100% of book, material, security, and supplemental fees.

NOTE: Course Options students are not permitted to enroll in classes to hold a seat prior to receiving approval from Madison College. Registering for classes in advance of approval will result in denial for that class.

After class completion – Students are responsible for providing their high school grades received through the Course Options program. Students may view grades and their unofficial transcript in their myMadisonCollege Student Center.

You can view grades online by signing on to the myMadisonCollege Student Center. To view grades, click on the "other academic" drop-down menu under the Academics heading and select Grades. Select the proper term (e.g., Fall 2015-2016) and the correct Academic Career. The Degree Career will show grades for classes that carry college credit. The Non-Degree Career will show grades for classes that do not carry college credit.

Students can print unofficial transcripts by logging into myMadisonCollege and going to the Student Center. Use the "other academic" drill down box and select "Unofficial Transcript." As the unofficial transcript report will open in a pop-up window, your browser must be set to allow pop-up windows. If you are unable to view your report, remove any pop-up blocker and submit your request again.

Already Applied?

Review the responsibilities and expectations of a Course Options student. The Course Options Instructional Guide (PDF, 438 KB) contains all the information you need to succeed. Still have questions? Call the Enrollment Center at (608) 246-6210.