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Updates on the 2020 Census for UW students

April 13, 2020

Despite the disruption of campus life due to COVID-19, UW–Madison is still working to help students meet their obligation to be counted in the 2020 Census.

Every ten years, the Census Bureau collects a count of all U.S. residents and information about them based on where they live. It is important that everyone is counted at the address where they reside for the majority of the year, because this helps determine the allocation of millions of federal and state dollars to our community.

Please find your category below and review the steps for completing the Census.

Students residing in university-owned residence halls

UW–Madison students who live in, or who have recently moved away from on-campus, university-owned residence halls will be counted as part of the Census Bureau’s Group Quarters operation.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Census Bureau has advised universities to  complete an eResponse for each student who resided in the university’s on-campus residence halls. We will supply the Census Bureau with your directory information (name and residence hall address) which we can share under federal privacy law. We will not provide any other information about you to the Census Bureau. As long as you have not restricted the release of your directory information, you do not need to take any action.

For students who have “opted out” of directory information, we will be unable to respond to the Census on your behalf. If you know that to be case, please visit, select “If you do not have a Census ID” and complete the Census using your university residence hall address. Please see this link for a list of the addresses for each residence hall.

Students residing in off-campus housing

Students who live in off-campus housing and have remained in Madison should fill out the form they received in the mail, or fill it out online, and respond using the ID code provided in the letter. Residents of every housing unit should work together to fill out one questionnaire per household. They should include all roommates (nonstudents, too) who live in the home most of the time.

Students who live in off-campus housing but have left Madison and do not have the letter from the U.S. Census Bureau can still respond without the ID code. Go to, select the link under the login button that says “If you do not have a Census ID, click here” and complete the census using the address of the off-campus housing at which you live while attending UW–Madison.

All Students

Don’t worry if you have already filled out a census form or if someone in your family has included you in their response. There is no consequence for registering for the census, and the Census Bureau has tools for filtering out duplicate responses and ensuring each individual is counted at the correct address.

For more information, The U.S. Census Bureau has also put together this video to help you fill out your census form.