Types of Appointments

UW–Madison has three employment categories: Unclassified, University Staff and Temporary Employees.  These categories split into eight different groups: Academic Staff, Employee-In-Training, Faculty, Limited Appointees, Student Assistants, Student Hourly, Temporary Employees, University Staff, and Unpaid appointments.

  1. Job Titles. Each job title includes positions that have comparable work, responsibilities, and job duties. Positions are assigned to titles based on a “best fit” concept, i.e., each position is assigned to a title that is the closest match between the title description and position responsibilities.
  2. Salary Ranges. Salary ranges, where appropriate, are established and job titles defined within this employee category framework. Each salary range includes job titles that have comparable levels of authority/responsibility and job requirements.


** Summary of Unclassified Appointment Types **


Academic Staff

Academic Staff: a professional and administrative employee whose duties are exempt from the overtime provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and who performs work that is primarily associated with a higher education institution or its administration.


  • Short Term: > 9 month and < 12 months
    • Health insurance eligible under “grad” benefits
    • No leave benefits
  • Fixed Term: > 12 months and ≤ 24 months
    • Fully benefits eligible
  • Renewable
    • Fully benefits eligible
    • Appointment automatically renews each fiscal year


Employee-in-Training: a person who is not a matriculated student and is appointed primarily to pursue advanced study or research, usually at the postdoctoral level.


Faculty: a person who holds the rank of professor, associate professor, assistant professor, or instructor in an academic department or its functional equivalent in UW–Madison, as described in UW–Madison Faculty Policies and Procedures (FPP).

  • Types
    • Tenure and tenure track - Employees who have been granted tenure or employees with a promotional clock who are pursuing tenure with the University.
    • CHS Faculty - Employees with a promotional term who teach residents and medical students, perform scholarly work, and have clinical responsibilities.
    • CT Faculty - Employees who teach residents and medical students, and have clinical responsibilities with no promotional term.
    • Visiting Professor - Employees who previously held a tenured position at another institution and are awaiting faculty title approval with the department.  These may also be individuals who come from outside the UW System for temporary academic assignments.
    • Joint and Affiliate faculty appointments - Secondary appointment for employees who hold a paid appointment with another UW department.  Joint appointments offer some specific voting rights while Affiliate appoitment do not.


Limited Appointee: an appointee to a designated administrative position, the holder of which serves at the discretion of the authorized official who made the appointment. Certain positions must be designated as limited appointments under Wis. Stat. § 36.17(2), while the appointing authority may designate other positions as limited appointments at the time of appointment.

Student Assistants

Student Assistant: graduate students who hold a fellowship, scholarship, or traineeship; who hold an appointment that is intended primarily to further the education and training of the student; who are employed to assist with research training or other academic programs or projects and/or have been assigned teaching responsibilities in an instructional department under the supervision of a faculty member. In addition, Student Assistant titles are available to undergraduate students when no qualified graduate student is available to perform a function that would normally be assigned to graduate students (i.e., Undergraduate Assistant — requires advance approval of the dean), or when the terms of a supporting grant or contract preclude the use of other normally appropriate titles (Undergraduate Intern).

Student Hourly

Student Hourly: Students who provide part-time and/or temporary administrative, clerical, laborer, technical, or other general support to UW–Madison Faculty and staff, and who meet the eligibility requirements.

Temporary Employee

Temporary Appointment: An at-will position with no expectation of continued employment, capped at 1,044 hours worked in 26 consecutive bi-weekly payroll periods, nonexempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act, and lasting one year or less (based on the start date of the appointment).

University Staff

University Staff: an employee who is non-exempt from the overtime provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and therefore is eligible to receive overtime for all hours worked over forty in a pay period. University Staff appointments may be ongoing or Fixed-term Finite.

Unpaid Appointments