Tuitions throughout the University of Wisconsin System will rise 5.5 percent for the 2012-13 academic year.
The Board of Regents approved the proposal Thursday at the UW-Milwaukee campus. The measure passed by a vote of 17-1.
The increase applies at the system's 13 four-year colleges and 13 two-year campuses.
UW System President Kevin Reilly proposed the maximum increase, saying the rate hikes would help compensate for cuts in state aid.
Regent Charles Pruitt said a tuition hike was a reasonable alternative to cuts that would lead to larger classes and students needing an extra year to graduate. But Regent John Drew said he couldn't vote for a tuition increase considering flat how resident incomes in the state have remained.
The average annual increase at the four-year schools is about $400.