Top Hat - Overview (UW-Madison)

UW-Madison has procured an enterprise license for Top Hat, which takes effect for the Fall 2022 semester. The new license will allow all UW-Madison instructors and students to use the tool without paying for subscriptions.

Top Hat is a Student Response System (SRS) that allows you to ask questions, take polls, give quizzes, and receive feedback from your students during class. Top Hat is a bring-your-own-device solution, which means that students can use any web-enabled device (laptop, tablets, smartphones) to participate. Top Hat also allows for text messaging to submit answers, so students can submit without using network data.

Select this link to list all Top Hat documents from the Learn@UW-Madison Knowledgebase at the bottom of this page.

Getting Started


Guidance from your instructor will be provided about how Top Hat will be used within your course. Please keep in mind that instructors can chose to use Top Hat differently; some may choose to send you an email invitation to their course and others may simply provide you with an access code in class.

For instructions on signing up, see Top Hat - Account Setup (Students).

Top Hat provides extensive, very helpful support documentation about their product. Please see their support websitefor documentation, including tutorials, that will show you how to log on and get started with Top Hat.


Instructors interested in using Top Hat have several options for getting started:
Andrew Furgal
  • For extensive product documentation, including tutorials, please see the Top Hat Success Center.
  • For ideas about how to use Top Hat in your course, please contact DoIT Academic Technology's learning technology consultants at
  • For information about UW-Madison's agreement with Top Hat, including pricing questions, departments/courses already using Top Hat, policies, concerns, and so on, please contact DoIT Academic Technology by emailing


Top Hat is a cloud-based software-only SRS product, free of charge to instructors. Students are required to purchase a subscription in order to use the product. Purchasing a subscription enables a student to use Top Hat with an unlimited number of active courses (courses occurring during the subscription period). 

Top Hat Basic (free)

Top Hat offers a free version of their software for students, known as Top Hat Basic. While this is free, please keep in mind that:

  • Basic does NOT integrate with Canvas
  • Basic does not offer any formal grading capabilities

For more information, please see Top Hat’s pricing guide.

Top Hat subscriptions

UW-Madison students receive reduced subscription prices for Top Hat:

  • One semester (4 months) - $16 (This option cannot be upgraded to a year.)
  • One year (12 months) - $20
  • Lifetime (5 years) - $54

When purchasing a subscription, you'll have the opportunity to select the duration of your choice. UW-Madison reduced pricing will be shown during the purchase process.

Getting Product Support

If you have questions or are having technical difficulty with Top Hat, please contact them at their Success Center or by phone at (888) 663-5491.

Complying with UW-Madison Policies When Using Top Hat

UW-Madison's Responsible Use of Information Technology Policy applies to Top Hat. 
Students using Top Hat for UW-Madison courses must abide by the Dean of Students Office's Guidelines for Academic Integrity

See Also:

Keywords:top hat tophat student response system SRS clicker iclicker turning i>clicker overview getting started get intro introduction 101   Doc ID:59791
Owner:Learn@UW Madison .Group:Learn@UW-Madison
Created:2016-01-15 13:34 CDTUpdated:2022-05-31 16:00 CDT
Sites:DoIT Help Desk, DoIT Tech Store, Learn@UW-Madison
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