Finding a Favorite Study Spot for #YouAtUW

Let’s face it, between trips to The Terrace, strolls down State Street, and student organization meetings, you’ll have to carve out some time for the academic portion of your first-year experience. We take academics very seriously at UW-Madison and encourage you to find the study habits (and study location) that best suites you! Because some #FutureBadgers prefer solitude while others desire the white-noise of conversation, our staff at the UW-Madison Center for the First-Year Experience (CFYE) has compiled a list of our favorite, unique study spots. Check out our suggestions or explore on your own to find the #SecretStudySpots of your dreams!

If you’re looking for somewhere quiet:

Memorial LibraryIMG_0972.JPG

“The computer lab in the Memorial Library. Because the computers are great, the room is really quiet, and there are many printers and copiers.” – Fei He, SOAR New Student Leader

Memorial Library is definitely for the serious studiers looking to get things done. Need silence, no distractions, and maybe even a study carrel to lock yourself in until your work is done? Then this is your place. This no-nonsense location is located right off of Library Mall on State St. Just a short walk from Bascom Hill. At this library, as well as many others, students can check out printed materials, rent equipment including laptops, video cameras, and gaming systems, and ask a librarian about finding resources for an assignment. If the carrels seem a little intimidating to you, but you’re still looking for quiet to help you concentrate, have no fear! Memorial Library also offers a variety of reading and study rooms that appear much friendlier. Visit this study spot at 728 State Street.

If you’re looking for somewhere nearby:

Residence Hall Study Room


All students will have access to a technology learning center within walking distance of their residence hall. These study spots allow students to utilize UW-Madison desktop computers (all of which run both IOS and Windows) or take advantage of desk space at a convenient location close to their living quarters. Many residence halls also have UW-Madison classrooms within them which can be utilized as a secondary study space for individual students, groups, classes, or tutoring services. Consider inviting some floor mates to a study party (pizza is always a must) and never be forced to change out of your pajamas! Find the location that will be closest to you in the fall.

If you’re looking for somewhere beautiful:

Wisconsin Historical Society


“I adore the Historical Society study areas. The beautiful architecture and quiet environment keeps me focused (and feeling so studious).” – Cassidy Johnson, Communications Intern

This Harry Potter-esque building is a favorite amongst many of our students. The Wisconsin Historical Society is not only a popular feature of our campus but also one of the nation’s finest historical institutions. If you’re a sucker for marble floors, high ceilings, historic pillars, and large windows- prepare to feel inspired to succeed in this space. The Historical Society boasts its own library, reading rooms, and an archive collection with many published and unpublished works. The archives are especially amazing for film buffs, as UW-Madison possesses one of the world’s most extensive collections of films, photographs, posters, and more! Visit this study spot at 816 State Street if you desire a place full of art and culture.

If you’re looking for somewhere welcoming:

The Red Gym


What makes The Red Gym so special is the many student centers that exist within its walls. Offices for the LGBT Campus Center (LGBTCC), Multicultural Student Center (MSC), International Student Services (ISS), and the Center for Leadership and Involvement (CfLI) are just a few of the amenities a student can find in this building. Although many of these groups offer events and resources, they also invite students to use their space for studying. If you’re looking for a community that will function as your support network (for academic endeavors or otherwise), you’re sure to find just that at the Red Gym. Visit their students and staff at 716 Langdon Street.

If you’re looking for somewhere bustling:

Union South


Photo by Wisconsin Union

“My favorite study spot on campus is the first floor of Union South. The combination of light music and people creates the perfect study spot for me!” – Bit Ohvall, SOAR Operations Intern

Recognize this study spot from #UWSOAR? We hope so! The Wisconsin Unions serve as a hub for students, staff, community members, and visitors on UW’s campus. Although Memorial Union is currently under construction, Union South is still alive, well, and ready to be your new favorite place to hit the books. If the quiet is more distracting to you than a slight hum of conversation, the Union may be just your place. Plus, students who choose to hang out here have access to a variety of restaurants (study break, anyone?), including The Sett, The Daily Scoop, Urban Slice, and more! If this campus classic seems interesting to you, bring your books to 1308 West Dayton Street.

For questions or concerns, contact the UW-Madison Center for the First-Year Experience at 608-263-0367 or


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