University of Wisconsin–Madison


As part of the UW–Madison Partnership with Nazarbayev University, select students from NU regularly enroll in summer courses at UW–Madison as part of the Visiting International Students Program (VISP). The NU VISP program began in 2014 and continues for its fifth summer in 2018. This summer, UW–Madison expects to receive 14 students from NU’s School of Humanities and Social Sciences (SHSS) under Agreement 6 of the partnership with NU.

Prof. William Barker teaches geology in the field for NU students studying at UW–Madison during VISP 2015.

In Summer 2014 and 2015, 30 undergraduate students from SHSS and 30 undergraduate students from the School of Science and Technology (SST) studied at UW-Madison under Agreement 4 and as part of the Visiting International Students Program (VISP). In Summer 2016, 20 students from SHSS and 15 students from the NU undergraduate School of Engineering (SEng) enrolled in L&S and College of Engineering summer session courses at UW–Madison, and in Summer 2017, UW–Madison welcomed 42 NU VISP students, 14 from each of the three undergraduate schools (SHSS, SST, and SEng).

In the first two years of the VISP program, UW–Madison offered two common “cohort” courses—all SHSS students took a common course focused on social science research methodology, with a required research project. The course was custom designed for those cohorts by political science and economics faculty. Similarly, all SST students took a customized scientific research methods course designed by geology faculty and completed an empirical science research project.

In addition to the common courses, each student enrolled in one or two regular summer session courses. UW–Madison staff and students provided them with a variety of support services, including writing tutoring, library assistance, peer mentoring, and academic advising. To round out this study abroad experience, VISP and the partnership offered regular social and cultural activities, including the “WisKaz language partner program,” a Mallards game, and field trips to Devil’s Lake and Chicago.

Since 2016, all NU students enroll in regular summer session courses. Support services and cultural activities—such as the “NUUW Connections” program, which partners NU and UW students for socializing and mutual language study (Kazakh, Russian, and English)—continue to be offered, providing visiting Kazakhstani students with a rewarding “Wisconsin Experience.”