Developmental Math Program

students working on a math problem

Developmental math refers to introductory level courses that do not satisfy degree requirements in the University of Wisconsin system. The primary function of the developmental courses is to provide students with the skills they will need for success in the degree credit algebra courses. Current developmental math course offerings are MAT 090 Pre-algebra, MAT 091 Elementary Algebra, and MAT 081 Topics in Geometry. Course offerings may vary by semester and campus, so students should check their campus course schedule for up-to-date course information.

Important information about Developmental Math

  • Students may be required to take one or more of the developmental math courses because of high school credit deficiencies or low math placement test scores.
  • Developmental courses do not satisfy any degree requirements and will usually not earn transfer credit to other institutions.
  • The courses are offered for 2 to 4 non-degree credits, which may vary depending on course and campus.
  • Non-degree credits are counted towards a student’s total semester load.
  • Non-degree credits will count towards the total credit load for financial aid purposes. 
  • Developmental courses will appear on the student’s official transcript.
  • Grades earned from non-degree credit courses are not used in computing cumulative grade point average.
  • Grades earned from non-degree credit courses may affect academic standing and financial aid eligibility.

Students who successfully complete MAT 091, Elementary Algebra, (with a grade of C or better) should continue their math work with MAT 105, Introduction to College Algebra. MAT 105 may be followed by either MAT 108 Quantitative Reasoning or MAT 110 College Algebra to complete the core math requirement of the UW Colleges Associate of Arts and Sciences degree. Ask your advisor about which course is best for your educational and career plans.

We highly recommended that you continue taking math each semester, with no gaps in instruction, until you complete as much as you need for your individual program of study.


Developmental Math Coordinator
Janette Miller