He received his undergraduate degree from Brown University in 1961 and his doctorate from Princeton University in 1966. Fulton worked at Princeton and Brandeis University from 1965 until 1970, when he began teaching at Brown. In 1987 he moved to the University of Chicago.
He is, as of 2011, a professor at the University of Michigan.
Fulton is known as the author or coauthor of a number of popular texts, including Algebraic Curves and Representation Theory.
American Mathematical Society. National Academy of Sciences. Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.
American Academy of Arts and Sciences]
Fulton is a member of the United States National Academy of Sciences and was elected a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in 2000.