University of Wisconsin–Madison
Wisconsin Historical Society Library

Top 10 study spaces on campus with a view

With exams on the horizons and distractions in abundance, finding just the right study space on campus can be challenging. Luckily for you, we’ve done our homework and compiled a list of the best 10 study spaces on campus with some of the most unbeatable views at UW Madison.

College Library
You’ll find scenic views of campus from 3rd floor windows. College’s café is fully stocked with caffeine when you need a little pick-me-up. Open 24 hours starting December 5. See College Library’s hours of operation during the fall semester.

Sunset Lounge, Memorial Union
Sit by the fire and catch the sunset over Lake Mendota. Sunset Lounge is a quiet location to study with views you can’t beat. This convenient location offers food and drink just seconds away. See the Union’s hours of operation.

Union South
A busy hub on campus where you can enjoy many food and drink options. Check out the upper levels to block out the activity on the 1st floor. Computer Lab available on the 2nd floor. Weather permitting, you can find comfy, outdoor seating on the 3rd floor. See the Union’s hours of operation.

Student Activity Center
Head to the 3rd or 4th floors either solo or with a group to enjoy the social, yet quiet atmosphere. Get access to computers and printers and enjoy the views of East Campus Mall. See the SAC website for hours of operation.

Memorial Library
Find computer labs on 1st and 2nd floors and quiet, secluded sections within the north and south stacks. If you like the sight of books, this is the study location for you. See Memorial Library’s hours of operation.

Wisconsin Historical Society Library
This bright and airy space offers a two-story reading room to comfortably study. Each study table has several outlets and offers enough space to spread out. Enjoy the historical ambiance and quiet space. The library is open Monday – Thursday, 8am – 9pm; Friday and Saturday, 8am – 5pm.

Discovery Building
Enjoy this vibrant location for group and private study spaces, spanning the entire first floor. Sit by a waterfall and surround yourself with the trees to stay concentrated.  Keep up your energy levels with food and drink options at Steenbock’s and Aldo’s. Open Monday – Friday, 7am – 10pm; Saturday, 9am – 10pm.

Educational Sciences Building
Make you way up to the 13th floor to find a quiet study space. Up here you’ll find beautiful views of campus from Lake Mendota to Lake Menona.

Kohler Art Library in the Chazen Art Museum
Tap into your creative side as you surround yourself with beautiful art and an impressive book collection. Enjoy comfy large or individual study tables and computer workstations. If you need a study break, head over to the Chazen Museum. See Kohler Art Library’s hours of operation.

School of Human Ecology (SOHE)
This popular study and snack location boasts a beautifully designed building and the most interesting bathrooms on campus. Check out Robin’s Nest on the 2nd floor for food and drink.


If you need additional ideas, check out these study spaces at UW-Madison:

  • Microbial Science Building: Beautiful space. Café on the 2nd floor. Tidy, yet comfortable atmosphere.
  • Law Library: Brightly lit, beautiful, and quiet. See the Law Library website for hours of operation (access is limited during exam periods).
  • School of Library and Information Studies (SLIS) Library: Located on 4th floor of Helen C. White, enjoy the beautiful lakeside view.
  • Grainger Hall: Looks like an Ivy League library, complete with the traditional green lamps.
  • Humanities (Music Hall): Find a study den and plenty of benches in the hallways for studying. You’ll often hear band and orchestral music to keep you energized.
  • Ebling Library: Access printing, photocopying, computers, laptop/accessory checkout and group study rooms. See the Ebling Library website for hours of operation.


This article was updated to inlcude UW-Madison specific locations, and changed Wisconsin Institute of Discovery (WID) to the Discovery Building, where the described study spaces are located.