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    The University of South Dakota
   
 
  Sep 25, 2017
 
 
    
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog

Academic Policies


Click on any of the following links for information:

Academic Advising

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Academic and Career Advising consists of a series of interactions requiring the serious involvement of both student and advisor. Academic advisors help students make informed choices about courses, majors, and careers. With the assistance of academic advisors, students are encouraged to explore the many opportunities for intellectual, personal, and professional growth at the University of South Dakota. The Academic & Career Planning Center  welcomes all students regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, class, gender identification, or sexual orientation.

Advisees are expected to:

  1. Know and understand the general education, college, major and minor requirements necessary for their graduation. 
  2. Arrive on time for scheduled advising appointments.
  3. Prepare a preliminary schedule prior to their advising appointment. 
  4. Be honest and forthcoming about their academic progress and performance in their course work.
  5. Monitor and keep informed about their progress toward the completion of graduation requirements.

Advisors are expected to:

  1. Know and understand the general education, college, major and minor requirements for students in their department and/or college.
  2. Understand that students may be subject to the requirements under different catalogs and to know how to access relevant information. 
  3. Ask students about their academic progress and plans for the future. 
  4. Encourage students and help them plan to complete their degrees in four years. 
  5. Encourage students to engage fully in the college experience, including participation in student organizations, study abroad/away opportunities, and internships. 
  6. Help students think and plan for their first full-time job.

Departments are expected to:

  1. Facilitate faculty training to ensure accurate advising and the broader mentoring of students. 
  2. Disseminate information to students regarding internships, scholarships, campus organizations, and other opportunities for intellectual growth. 
  3. Be aware of and affirming of cultural differences among their advisees. 
  4. Help students connect to experiences outside of the classroom that will lead to post-graduate employment or graduate school. 
  5. Design and implement a mechanism by which to inform students about advising appointments.

Advisor Assignment

Professional advisors in the Academic & Career Planning Center  (ACPC) will advise students who have not declared a major, secondary education majors, students who have declared any major within the College of Arts & Sciences; or students in the following majors within the School of Health Sciences : Alcohol and Drug Studies, Health Sciences Major, Medical Laboratory Science, Nursing and Social Work. Students advised by the ACPC will remain advisees of the ACPC until they complete 45 credit hours of college course work. After 45 hours of completed course work, students will be assigned a faculty advisor in their major department.

Students who have declared Dental Hygiene or a major within the College of Fine Arts are assigned faculty advisors by their departmental offices. Students interested in degrees within the School of Business  or School of Education  for Elementary or Special Education are initially advised by the professional advisors located in the student services centers within those schools, then by assigned faculty advisors.

Academic Amnesty

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Per SDBOR Policy 2:10, under certain conditions, students may apply to remove from current GPA calculations the work from prior enrollments. Students may request removal of all previous post-secondary coursework, all post-secondary coursework at a specific institution, or coursework completed at any post-secondary institution during a specified time period not to exceed one academic year (fall/spring) by applying for academic amnesty to the dean of his/her college, meeting qualifications, and following the required procedure.

Eligibility Requirements

The student must:

  1. Be an undergraduate full-time or part-time, degree-seeking student at one of the universities in the South Dakota regental system;
  2. Not have been enrolled in any postsecondary institution for a minimum of three consecutive terms (including only Fall and/or, Spring terms) prior to the most recent admission to the home institution. Exceptions may be granted in rare cases only by the Board of Regents Vice President for Academic Affairs upon recommendation by the Vice President for Academic Affairs;
  3. Have completed a minimum of 24 graded credit hours taken at any regental university with a minimum GPA of 2.0 for those 24 credit hours taken after the most recent admission to the University;
  4. Not have earned a baccalaureate degree from any university;
  5. Not have been granted any prior academic amnesty at any regental university;
  6. Submit a formal Academic Amnesty Petition to his or her degree-granting university, following the procedures established by that university.

Conditions

  1. Academic amnesty does not apply to individual courses. Academic amnesty may be requested for either (a) all previous post-secondary education courses, (b) all previous post-secondary education courses at a specific institution, or (c) a specified time period not to exceed one academic year (fall/spring) completed at any postsecondary institutions.
  2. Academic amnesty, if granted, shall not be rescinded.
  3. Courses for which academic amnesty is granted will:
    1. remain on the student’s record;
    2. be recorded on the student’s undergraduate transcript with the original grade followed by an asterisk (*);
    3. not be included in the calculation of the student’s grade point average because no credit is given;
    4. not satisfy any of the graduation requirements of the current degree program.
  4. Academic amnesty decisions will be made by the student’s degree-granting university, will be honored by all programs within the home institution, and will be honored by all other institutions within the South Dakota regental system.
  5. Universities outside the South Dakota regental system are not bound by the academic amnesty decisions made by the South Dakota regental systems.
  6. Regental graduate programs and graduate professional schools may consider all previous undergraduate course work when making admission decisions.

Procedures

  1. To apply for academic amnesty, the student will submit a Petition for USD Undergraduate Academic Amnesty to the Office of the Registrar for verification of qualifications. In the event the student does not meet the qualifications, the Registrar will contact the student directly. Otherwise, the Registrar will forward the application, along with transcript copies, to the office of the dean of the student’s school or college.

The dean will contact the student to schedule an interview. The purpose of the interview is to ensure that the student is fully aware of the amnesty procedure as well as alternatives to amnesty. Even though a student may meet the qualifications, it may sometimes be advisable for the student to remedy GPA problems via the repeated course policy rather than via amnesty. If the student and the dean agree to invoke the amnesty policy, both parties shall sign the petition, and the dean shall return the petition to the Registrar for appropriate adjustments to the student’s record.

Academic Appeals

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(USD Policy 1.001)

SDBOR policy 2:9 Student Appeals for Academic Affairs guides disputes for academic decisions with a significant degree of finality such as a course grade or removal from a program. The Academic Appeals by Students form is located on the portal. For any questions, please contact Academic Affairs by email at AcadAffairs@usd.edu or by phone at 605-677-6497.

Academic Calendar

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Click to access the: Academic Calendar

Academic Integrity

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(USD Policy 1.017)

SDBOR policy 2:33 Student Academic Misconduct. Faculty suspecting academic misconduct shall begin the resolution process under this policy. Allegations of academic misconduct, both when disposition is achieved and not achieved under SDBOR policy 2:33, will then move to SDBOR policy 3:4. Students can expect communication from the Director of Student Rights & Responsibilities regarding the final disposition of allegations of academic misconduct; referring faculty and the Dean will be notified of disposition as well. The Academic Misconduct Disposition Form is accessible on the portal. For any questions, please contact Student Rights and Responsibilities by email at srr@usd.edu or by phone at 605-670-6030.

Academic Standing and Minimum Progression

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The basic policy of the University regarding student academic status and academic progression standards is described in this section. The schools and colleges may have additional scholastic requirements for their students. Academic status will be evaluated at the end of each term (fall, spring, summer) that a student is enrolled.

Academic Progression Standards

Minimum progression standards and related actions are based on the student’s cumulative grade point average and system term grade point average. In order to remain in good standing and meet minimum progression standards, students must maintain at least a 2.00 cumulative grade point average.

SDBOR policy 2:10.3

Class Completed Credit Hour Range GPA Standard
Freshman 0 - 29.99 2.0
Sophomore 30 - 59.99 2.0
Junior 60 - 89.99 2.0
Senior 90 + 2.0

Minimum progression standards and related actions are based on the student’s cumulative grade point average and system term grade point average.

  1. A student with a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or better is considered to be in good academic standing.
  2. If a student’s cumulative grade point average falls below 2.0 in any academic term (i.e. fall, spring, summer), the student is placed on academic probation the following term.
  3. While on academic probation, the student must earn a system term grade point average of 2.0 or better.
  4. When a student on academic probation achieves a cumulative grade point average of 2.0 or better, the student is returned to good academic standing.
  5. A student on academic probation who fails to maintain a system term grade point average of 2.0 or better is placed on academic suspension for a minimum period of two academic terms.
  6. Students on academic suspension will not be allowed to enroll for any coursework at any Regental university except when an appeal has been approved by the Regental university from which the student is pursuing a degree. An approved appeal granted by one Regental university will be honored by all Regental universities. Also refer to SDBOR policy 2:3.3.G Probation/Suspension of Students.
  7. Academic Suspension will be entered on the student’s transcript. Academic probation will be noted in the internal academic record only.

Transfer students seeking admission who have a cumulative GPA of less than 2.00 or students seeking readmission who have a cumulative GPA less than 2.00 may only be admitted subject to the approval of the Academic Appeals Committee. Students shall appeal to the committee by writing a letter, detailing the circumstances surrounding their academic performance to date, reasons for wanting to attend USD, and plans to insure success if admitted.   All letters of appeal must be sent electronically to a specific email address (e.g. appeals@usd.edu). The Academic Appeals Committee will review the petition. If admitted or readmitted, their initial academic status will be “academic probation.” Students thus admitted on probation whose system term GPA meets or exceeds the GPA standard and whose cumulative GPA remains below the standard will be continued on academic probation.

Although the successful repetition of a course may raise a student’s term GPA for a prior term, that will not invalidate the academic status originally determined for that prior term.

Students on academic probation will be allowed to participate in extracurricular activities within the regulations imposed by the organization conducting the activity.

Academic Recognition

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Dean’s List Designation (SDBOR policy 2:10:7)

Undergraduate full-time students may be designated for the Dean’s List at the end of the fall and spring terms. The Dean’s List designation is based on a student’s total course registrations for academic credit for the term from any South Dakota regental university. The Dean’s List designation does not appear on the transcript.

The following criteria must be met to be awarded Dean’s List designation:

  1. Students must have earned a minimum of 12 credit hours during the term in courses numbered 100-699;
  2. Students must have achieved a system term GPA of at least 3.50; and
  3. Students must have no F, I, U, RI, or RU grades for the term regardless of system term GPA attained.
  4. Students who receive an IP grade must meet all criteria without consideration of the course in which the IP grade was assigned. 

Academic Recognition For Part-Time Students (SDBOR policy 2:10:8)

Undergraduate part-time students may be designated for Academic Recognition for Part-Time Students at the end of the fall and spring terms. The Academic Recognition for Part-Time Student’s designation is based on a student’s total course registrations for academic credit for the term from any South Dakota regental university. The Academic Recognition for Part-Time Students designation does not appear on the transcript.

The following criteria must be met to be awarded Academic Recognition for Part-Time Students designation:

  1. Students must have completed at least 12 credit hours prior to the current semester at one or more South Dakota regental institutions;
  2. Students must have earned at least 3 and up to 11 credit hours during the term in courses numbered 100-699;
  3. Students must have achieved a system term GPA of at least 3.50; and
  4. Students must have no F, I, U, RI, or RU grades for the term regardless of system term GPA attained.

Students who receive an IP grade must meet all criteria without consideration of the course in which the IP grade was assigned.

Graduation with Honors

The University of South Dakota encourages and recognizes outstanding scholastic achievement. Therefore, the University determines the scholastic honors, if any, to be awarded with a degree. Announcement of such honors is made on the diploma, on the official transcript.

Baccalaureate Degree

Graduation honors are awarded on the following basis:

Summa Cum Laude   Cumulative & institutional GPA equal to or greater than 3.9
Magna Cum Laude   Cumulative & institutional GPA equal to or greater than 3.7 and less than 3.9
Cum Laude   Cumulative & institutional GPA equal to or greater than 3.5 and less than 3.7

Associate Degree

Graduation honors are awarded on the following basis:

With highest honor   Cumulative & Institutional GPA equal to or greater than 3.9
With high honor   Cumulative & Institutional GPA equal to or greater than 3.7 and less than 3.9
With honor   Cumulative & Institutional GPA equal to or greater than 3.5 and less than 3.7

In addition, students must have completed a minimum of 30 credit hours at the degree-granting institution.

University Scholar and Thesis Scholar     

The designation of University Scholar has been specified by the University Senate as the highest honor granted to an undergraduate at the University of South Dakota. A University Scholar must complete the Honors Program Core Curriculum, including an honors thesis, and have a cumulative USD grade point average of at least 3.25. The designation of Thesis Scholar is an honor bestowed upon an undergraduate who completes the General Education Core Curriculum, two honors seminars, an honors thesis, and has a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25. Both designations require admission to the University Honors Program.

Honor Societies

Phi Beta Kappa

This organization is the best-known and most prestigious academic honorary society and is the only chapter at a South Dakota private or public college or university. Students are elected to membership as juniors or seniors based on high scholastic achievement and completion of a liberal education, including one semester of calculus; one year of western civilization or world civilizations or Honors Interdisciplinary Civilization; one year of a non-English language; one year of sequential study of laboratory science; two courses at the 300 or 400 level of Social Sciences. The chapter hosts the annual Lifto Amundson Phi Beta Kappa Lecture. For more information contact chapter offices through the College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Office at 677-5221, visit the chapter website at www.usd.edu/pbk or e-mail the chapter at pbk@usd.edu.

Omicron Delta Kappa

Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK) is a national leadership honor society for college students, faculty, staff, administrators, and alumni that recognizes and encourages superior scholarship, leadership, and exemplary character. Membership in ODK is a mark of the highest distinction and honor. A limited number of USD students (no more than 15) are selected for ODK membership each year. One distinguished faculty member is also selected. To become a student member, the student must rank in the top 35% of his/her class and be on track to complete at least 90 credits at the end of the spring semester of the year in which they apply for membership. Deserving faculty members can be nominated or express interest in joining by sending an email to odk@usd.edu.

Mortar Board

A National Honor Society recognizing the top 5% of the senior class for their outstanding scholarship, leadership and service. Members are elected during the second semester of their junior year through an application process. Students must have shown substantial campus leadership and at least a 3.2 GPA. Mortar Board selects up to thirty-five new members each year.  Mortar Board’s national philanthropy is “Reading is Leading” and works closely with the local Vermillion schools to donate books, work book sales, and help promote reading with the children of Vermillion.  Mortar Board sponsors annual rose sales every year, as well as the Miss USD pageant.

National Society of Collegiate Scholars

NSCS recognizes high achievement among first and second year students in all academic disciplines; to encourage and promote high standards throughout the collegiate experience; to provide opportunities for personal growth and leadership development for members; to organize and encourage learning opportunities through community service. Membership is by invitation and only those students meeting the following criteria may be elected: be a first or second year student at the time of affirmation; completed at least 12 hours but no more than 60 hours of coursework; attain at least a 3.4 grade point average on a 4.0 scale.

Departmental and Professional Honors Societies

A number of honor societies and honorary organizations exist on campus for student in specific fields of study or interests. For information about these societies contact your academic discipline or department.

National Residence Hall Honorary

The University Of South Dakota Coyote Chapter of The National Residence Hall Honorary is a student run organization of residence hall leaders. Membership in our chapter is limited to 1% of students that are currently living in our residence hall facilities.

Catalog of Graduation

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SDBOR policy 2:17.4

  1. The catalog of graduation begins with the summer term and ends with the subsequent spring term.
  2. Every student is required to have a catalog of graduation. New and transfer students are assigned the catalog in effect at the time of their initial enrollment at the university from which they are seeking a degree.
  3. Students may elect a catalog of graduation that is later than their initial catalog but may not elect a catalog of graduation that is earlier than their initial catalog. In order to receive a degree, a student must meet the program requirements listed in his/her catalog of graduation.
  4. Students who discontinue enrollment at any Regental university for more than two consecutive semesters are assigned the catalog in effect at the time of their re-enrollment as their catalog of graduation.
  5. Students are considered to be in continuous enrollment for purposes of the catalog of graduation so long as any break in enrollment at any Regental university is for two or fewer consecutive semesters (excluding summer) and students maintain their degree seeking status at the same Regental university.
  6. Students who change their degree seeking status from one Regental university to another Regental university are assigned the catalog of graduation that corresponds to the term they are admitted to their new degree granting university.

Courses and Grading

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Add/Drop Period

  1. Courses may be added or dropped on WebAdvisor or by completing the add/drop form in the Registrar’s Office.
  2. The add/drop period is the time during which students may adjust their academic schedule for the term without financial or academic consequences. No refund is provided for courses dropped after that time, except by administrative action. The last day of the drop/add period for a course is designated as the census date for that course and is the official date for enrollment reporting for the course. The end of the drop/add period for standard (those that conform to the regular semester schedule) and non-standard courses offered in a semester shall be the date the first 10 percent of the term ends or the day following the first class meeting, whichever is later. The timeline for this may be found on the academic calendar at: http://www.usd.edu/registrar/calendars/academic-calendar-2017-18. Students may only add courses after the drop/add period with the approval of the student’s academic dean. 
  3. Do not stop attending a class without dropping the course or an “F” will be recorded.
  4. Students who want to drop a course who will fall below 12 credit hours should consult with Financial Aid to determine the financial aid implications.

Grades for Dropped Courses

Students who drop a course shall receive a withdrawal grade if that action occurs anytime between the day after the census day for that course and the day that corresponds with the completion of 70 percent of the class days for that course. 

Beginning with the fall 2015 semester, students are permitted to drop only 6 classes over an academic career without penalizing their GPA. These 6 will receive a WD grade. Any additional classes dropped will receive a WFL grade which will calculate into the GPA as an F (SDBOR policy 2:10).

Last Day to Drop (SDBOR policy 2:6.8)

For standard classes, the last day to receive a grade of “W” is determined by calculating 70 percent of the class meeting days in the term, counting from the first day of classes in the term and rounding up if the calculation produces a fractional value greater than or equal to 0.5.

For any non-standard course, the last day to receive a grade of “W” is based on the number of class meeting days for the course, using the method described above.

Similar proportional dates would be established by the Registrar’s Office for summer, interim and other courses taught outside of the normal nine-month academic year.

A notation of the date of withdrawal will be included on the student’s transcript if he/she withdraws from the system. (SDBOR Policy 5:7.2)

Students may not drop a course or withdraw from the System after the time period specified above. (SDBOR Policy 5:7.2)

If extenuating circumstances (i.e., illness) have prevented class participation, a petition for an individual drop may be filed.

Audit Policy

Individuals (both students and non-students) who wish to audit courses may do so with the approval of the instructor and the dean of the school/college in which the courses are offered, providing that there is space in the classroom after all registered students have been accommodated. Participation in class by auditors is at the discretion of the instructor. No USD credit is granted for courses that are audited. All auditors must submit a “Request for Audit” form to the Registrar’s Office before the end of the drop/add period. Regular tuition and fees are charged for audited courses. Auditors wishing to change registration from audit to credit must do so during the regular drop/add period (SDBOR policy 2:6). The audit fee assessed for students and employees is the established tuition and fee rate (SDBOR policy 5:5:3). An AU grade is given for Audit. This grade does not calculate into the semester or cumulative grade point average.

Repeated Courses

For most courses listed in this catalog, students will not be given credit more than once for each course. Exceptions to this general rule are noted in the course descriptions, and typically include such courses as independent study, readings, research, topics seminars, individual instruction in music, music ensembles, and physical education activities courses. Students may, however, choose to repeat courses for which credit may be granted only once in order to improve a grade. Students wishing to repeat such courses more than three times must obtain permission from the student’s academic dean (SDBOR policy 2:8).

When students repeat such courses, the grade received for the most recent registration is calculated in the grade point average; the earlier grade(s) received are indicated on the official record, but notation is made that the course has been repeated.

If students repeat such courses and elect a satisfactory/unsatisfactory option, the original grades and courses will not be calculated in the GPA. However, students should consult the satisfactory/unsatisfactory policy for their schools or colleges and recognize that this option is generally restricted to courses that are electives and not University or major requirements.

If a student takes a course that is normally repeatable for credit (such as PE 100) and receives a low grade, and the student then takes the course again intending to improve the grade, the student must report this to the Registrar’s Office. If the student does not do so, the student records system will automatically include both courses in the student’s GPA.

Students should contact the Registrar’s Office if any situation on their transcripts does not conform to the repeated course policy as described above.

Undergraduates Taking Graduate Courses

Undergraduate students who have successfully completed ninety (90) credit hours may register for up to twelve (12) graduate credit hours at the 500 or 600 level with the approval of the Graduate Dean serving as designee for the Vice President of Academic Affairs. Such permission does not constitute admission to the Graduate School or graduate program as a degree seeking student.

Moreover, undergraduate students who qualify for and are admitted to a graduate program through a South Dakota Board of Regents approved early, fast-track program may register for graduate program requirements and these credit hours may apply to both undergraduate and graduate degree requirements.

Students will pay graduate tuition for graduate courses and the courses will be recorded on a graduate transcript. Undergraduate students without a baccalaureate degree enrolled in graduate credit have an undergraduate status and are considered special students in the Graduate School. Evidence of an earned bachelor’s degree is required for full admission to the Graduate School.

Forms for petitioning to enroll in graduate courses before completing a bachelor’s degree are available at link.usd.edu/3367. Applications for advanced admission to select graduate programs can be found on the Graduate School website at: www.usd.edu/graduate-school/.

Grading System

Grade   Definition   Grade Points
A   Exceptional   4.00 grade points
B   Good   3.00 grade points
C   Average   2.00 grade points
D   Lowest Passing   1.00 grade points
F   Failure   0.00 grade points
S   Satisfactory   Not calculated in GPA
U   Unsatisfactory   Not calculated in GPA
RI   Incomplete (Remedial)   Not calculated in GPA
RS   Satisfactory (Remedial)   Not calculated in GPA
RU   Unsatisfactory (Remedial)   Not calculated in GPA
W   Withdrawal   Not calculated in GPA
AU   Audit   Not calculated in GPA
I   Incomplete   Not calculated in GPA
IP   In Progress   Not calculated in GPA
EX   Credit by Exam   Not calculated in GPA
CR   Credit   Not calculated in GPA
TR   Note for NSE/MEDT   Not calculated in GPA
LR   Lab Grade linked to Lecture Grade of Composite Course   Zero credit course
NG   No Grade   Zero credit tracking course
NR   Grade Not Reported by Instructor   Not calculated in GPA
*   Indicated Academic Amnesty   Not calculated in GPA
SP   Satisfactory Progress    
   

A satisfactory progress (SP) grade may be granted only for students enrolled in MATH 095. If the grade of SP is awarded the following conditions apply:

  1. The grade is an alternative to RS and RU.
  2. The student must have made satisfactory progress during the course but the student did not develop mastery of all the required content. If the student successfully mastered the materials, the grade of RS should be assigned. If progress was not made, the grade of RU should be assigned.

Grade Point Average (GPA) Hours/Hours Earned

The number of GPA hours is the total number of hours for which students have enrolled and received a grade of A, B, C, D, or F, except as provided for by repeated courses or academic amnesty. The grade point average is determined by dividing the number of grade points earned by the number of GPA hours.

The following types of grade point averages are calculated within the South Dakota regental system:

Institutional GPA-based on credits earned at the degree-granting institution. Used to determine if degree requirements have been met and to determine Honors designation at graduation.

System Term GPA-based on credits earned at any of the six South Dakota regental universities within a given academic term (fall, spring, summer). Used to determine minimum progression status.

Transfer GPA-based on credits earned and officially transferred from an accredited college or university outside the South Dakota regental system. When a letter grade that normally calculates into the grade point average exists for a non-academic course (e.g., credit earned by examination), it will be included in the GPA calculation.

Cumulative GPA-based on all credits earned by the student. Used to determine minimum progression status and if degree requirements have been met. When a course is repeated for credit, all attempts are entered on the transcript but the last grade earned is used in the calculation of the cumulative GPA.

Incomplete Grades

The grade of incomplete may be assigned at the discretion of the instructor when a student experiences extenuating circumstances that prevent completion of a course. The purpose of the incomplete grade is to allow students to complete courses at a later date without repeating work already satisfactorily completed and without repeating the course. Anticipated course failure is not justification for an incomplete.

The assignment of an incomplete grade creates an obligation on the part of a student to complete the coursework in a prescribed timeframe and an obligation on the part of the instructor to evaluate the coursework and assign a grade. The instructor and the student must agree on a plan to complete the coursework which does not necessitate repeating the course. The work must be completed within one semester following the original semester of registration. Until the deadline, students do not need to re-register for the course to earn the credit. If students do not complete the coursework in the prescribed timeframe, students must re-register and pay for the course again in order to earn credit for the course.

Whenever an incomplete grade is assigned, the instructor is required to file a “Requirements for Removal of Incomplete Grade” form with the department office. This form indicates the deadline for removing the incomplete grade. In individual cases, a one-semester extension may be granted by the dean of the college or school offering the course. If the student does not complete the work within the specified time, a grade of F will be assigned; or, if the course was taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis, a grade of U or RU will be assigned.

Only the coursework for which students are registered in a given term is counted toward the student’s full-time or part-time status for that term. Therefore, for example, the work a student might need to do during a spring semester to make up an incomplete from a previous fall semester course would NOT count toward the student’s full-time/part-time status in the spring (unless the student re-registers and pays tuition and fees for the course in the spring).

Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory Grade Option

With the exception of first-year students (students with less than 30 hours), undergraduate students may enroll in courses on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis subject to the regulations of the colleges or schools in which the students are enrolled. Courses offered solely on the satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis are not affected by this policy. Students choosing this option must file satisfactory/unsatisfactory grade authorization form with the Registrar’s Office before the end of the drop/add period the required forms indicating their dean’s approval.

College of Arts and Sciences

Only students who are sophomores, juniors, or seniors may elect the satisfactory/unsatisfactory option. Students may sign up for one satisfactory/unsatisfactory option per semester, and the course may be used for elective credit only.

Beacom School of Business

Students in the Beacom School of Business may elect the satisfactory/unsatisfactory grading option only for free electives (including advanced free electives), provided that only one course per semester is taken on this basis. School of Business majors may allocate a maximum of six (6) credit hours of School of Business classes offered on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis to satisfy BBA major requirements.

School of Education

Students may elect for one satisfactory/unsatisfactory option per semester and the courses must not be required in the major, minor, or University general requirements. Students will receive a satisfactory/unsatisfactory grade for their student teaching course (ELED/SEED/SPED 488) and for TET 435 Internet in the Classroom.

College of Fine Arts

Students of sophomore standing or above may elect to take one course under the satisfactory/unsatisfactory option per semester with a maximum of six courses in total taken on this basis. Such courses may include only open electives or non-required courses beyond the minimum hours required in the major or minor fields.

Credit through Alternative Assessment

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Credit by Examination

Undergraduate students enrolled with the University may, under special circumstances, receive credit by examination subject to the following regulations:

  1. Permission to take an examination must be obtained from the relevant departmental chair and the dean of the student’s college or school.
  2. In addition to written examinations, students may be required to successfully complete oral examinations before committees who are chosen by the deans to represent the disciplines. A course fee is charged for all such examinations and is subject to change each year.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP)

Undergraduate students enrolled at the University of South Dakota may receive credit for select courses by earning satisfactory scores on the appropriate CLEP subject examinations. USD does not permit credit for CLEP general examinations. When credit is earned, it is recorded on the student’s USD transcript as credit by examination and indicates the course for which credit has been earned with the grade of “EX” (credit by exam, no grade). Approved CLEP subject examinations may be used to fulfill major, minor, or general education requirements for graduation with the baccalaureate degree.

CLEP testing is administered by the Division of Continuing and Distance Education (CDE) at USD. Testing is available to eligible students by appointment. CDE reports CLEP scores to the Registrar’s Office to transcript. Approved subject exams and scores, applicable fees, site information, etc., is available online at: http://www.usd.edu/registrar/student-resources/clep-credit.

Credit for college-level courses granted through nationally recognized examinations such as AP, CLEP, LTI, DANTES, etc., will be evaluated and accepted if the subjects are equivalent to regental courses and the scores are consistent with regental policies. Such credit will appear as transfer credit on the student’s transcript.

Refer to Academic Affairs Guidelines policy 7.3

Credit for Advanced Placement

Credit for Advanced Placement (AP) coursework is awarded per AAC and SDBOR guidelines, refer to Academic Affairs Guidelines policy 7.5 and SDBOR policy 2.5.

Consult the Modern Language Credit section for information about advanced placement in foreign language.

Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES)

The Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support (DANTES) program is an extensive series of examinations in college subject areas that are comparable to the final or end-of-course examinations in undergraduate courses. DANTES funds paper-based DSST testing for eligible Service members and civilian examinees at DANTES Test Centers and at national test centers (colleges and universities) offering the Internet-based (iBT) DSSTs. South Dakota Board of Regents policy on specific courses for which credit is given and other requirements are found at DANTES testing guidelines. If the student successfully completes the examination, the permanent record will show “Credit by Examination” with a grade of “EX”. No entry will be made on a permanent record if the examination is failed.

International Baccalaureate Program (IB)

USD recognizes IB credits per South Dakota Board of Regents guidelines.

Credit by Verification

New, first-year undergraduate students who are placed in advanced classes in the modern languages or mathematics may receive a limited amount of credit by examination for a prerequisite course if they meet certain grade requirements. The departments should be consulted for questions about policy and process.

High School Dual Credit Program

What is Dual Credit?

Dual credit is an opportunity for high school students who meet admissions standards to enroll in public postsecondary institutions in South Dakota and simultaneously earn credits for both their high school diploma and postsecondary degree or certificate.

Dual credit courses are offered by the postsecondary institution’s faculty members, are governed by the postsecondary institution’s policies, and follow the postsecondary institution’s established processes for admissions, registration, billing and grade reporting.

Through a new program approved by the South Dakota Legislature, dual credit coursework is available to high school students in grades 11-12 at the rate of $48.33 per credit.

Students are responsible for the $48.33 per credit cost and any required textbooks or related course materials. Students are able to choose from a number of on-campus and online classes, and University Center in Sioux Falls.

*Tuition rates are subject to change. The Board of Regents generally make tuition determinations at its April meeting.

Benefits of Dual Credit

Why enroll in Dual Credit Courses? Get a jump start on your future and take advantage of the following benefits.

  • Get a jump start on their college education.
  • Save on college costs, greater flexibility in scheduling and time to accomplish higher education goals.
  • Exposure to different career tracks.
  • Experience in college level courses and online learning.
  • Students earn college credit at the low cost of $48.33 per credit hour.
  • Positioning for college scholarship opportunities.

Eligibility

Admission Requirements (Applicants Must Meet One of the Four Requirements Below):

  1. High school junior eligible to enroll in a high school in South Dakota who meets one of the following requirements: 
    1. earn an ACT composite score of 24 reflective of the 70% percentile; or
    2. rank in upper one-third of their graduating class; or
    3. earn a cumulative GPA of at least 3.50 on a 4.0 scale;
  2. High school senior eligible to enroll in a high school in South Dakota who meets one of the following requirements:
    1. earn an ACT composite score of 21 reflective of the 50% percentile; or
    2. rank in the upper one-half of their graduating class; or
    3. earn a cumulative GPA of at least 3.25 on a 4.0 scale;
  3. High School junior or senior eligible to enroll in a high school in South Dakota who meets all of the following

Undergraduate admissions requirements:

  1. ACT score of 18 (or 21 for USD & SDSM&T); and
  2. Successful completion of coursework requirements
  • Four Years of English
  • Three years of advanced mathematics
  • Three years of laboratory science
  • Three years of social studies
  • One year of fine arts
  1. Take one of the assessments below and meet the required score(s):
    1. 10th Grade ACT Aspire Summative Assessment - (Score 434 or higher)
    2. Accuplacer (Sentence Skills - Score 86 or higher AND Elementary Algebra - Score 76 or higher)

For more information on dual credit contact:

Division of Continuing and Distance Education: 605-658-6140 or Toll Free: 800-233-7937 or additoinal information below:

Military Service Credit ##Pending approval

Evaluation of Credit for Basic Training

  • All basic training military credit is considered undistributed with some exceptions in Military Science, Aerospace, and SPH courses.
  • Credit Evaluators will post up to 15 hours for basic training.
  • If a student has more than 15 hours, the credit evaluator will post additional credit beyond basic training in accordance with SB 331 and the University policies below.
  • Students may also receive ACE credit by evaluation of specific programs/courses.
  • Specific schools vary in how much credit they allow, and how they transfer the credit (undistributed, by length of service, broken into specific MS credits, etc.)

Evaluation of Course and External Exam Credit

  • For coursework taken as part of a military occupation or position beyond basic training, military personnel will receive distributed or undistributed credit as established by the appropriate disciplinary faculty or as recommended through ACE (ACE: http://www2.acenet.edu/militaryguide/CourseSearch.cfm). USD will “recognize and use the ACE Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services to determine the value of learning acquired in military service. Award credit for appropriate learning acquired in military service at levels consistent with ACE Guide recommendations and/or those transcripted by CCAF, when applicable to a Service member’s program” per Service Occupational Colleges’ requirements.
  • Receive distributed or undistributed credit as established by USD for CLEP, DSST, credit by examination or verification, and portfolios;
  • Evaluation of military coursework will take place based on the JST* as the primary transcript for military credit. The DD214 may be required for additional information. The USD Department of Military Science determines the amount of credit granted.

Military credits towards other academic disciplines are evaluated according to guidelines set forth by the American Council on Education (ACE) and published in the Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Services. The credit must be approved by the school or college overseeing each discipline. Validation of Military credit is limited to 30 hours of credit for baccalaureate degrees and 15 hours of credit for associate degrees. Validation of Military credit is subject to BOR policy 2:5.

There is no charge for transcription of credit for military service.

Modern Language Credit

Policy on Credit by Examination in Foreign Language

This College of Arts & Sciences policy identifies the circumstances under which students may earn “credit by examination” in foreign language at USD. The policy is intended to assist students who have some knowledge of a language other than English but do not have transferable college credit to document their knowledge.

Credit by examination is available only to current USD students. The award of Advanced Placement (AP) credit as described at http://www.sdbor.edu/services/academics/documents/AP_guidelines_000.pdf is not addressed by this policy.

Aside from AP, there are three options for credit by examination:

Students with exceptional situations should consult the Chair of the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics . Issues not resolved by that means may be brought to the attention of the Dean’s Office in the College of Arts & Sciences.

Credit by Examination (by departmental recommendation):

Definition: Credit by examination via departmental recommendation is an institutional process whereby students are determined by the faculty of an academic department to have the necessary skills and knowledge for course credit despite not having taken the course(s) at issue. Most commonly, this form of credit by examination is used for subject matter in which learning is especially cumulative or sequential, such as foreign language and mathematics. At students’ request, the department offering the subject may recommend them for credit by examination. This option is available in any language taught at USD.

Availability: Students are eligible to purchase credit by examination via departmental recommendation only if they have completed a USD language course. Credit by examination via departmental recommendation may be awarded in USD language courses numbered 101, 102, and 201. Students requesting credit must have completed the class immediately above with an A or B. Specifically:

  • Completion of 102 with an A or B enables purchase of 101.
  • Completion of 201 with an A or B enables purchase of 101 and 102.
  • Completion of 202 with an A or B enables purchase of 101, 102, and 201.

Credit by examination will not be recommended or approved based on an anticipated grade. The grade must be recorded. Credit by examination via departmental recommendation is not available for 202 courses or upper-division language courses, with the exception of SPAN 202. Students who complete SPAN 320 with an A or B may purchase credit for SPAN 202. No grades are earned for credit obtained by examination.

Process: For credit by examination via departmental recommendation, students must submit to the appropriate academic department the applicable form (available at the Registrar’s Office website) and a print-out of their complete course list from WebAdvisor. This form of credit by examination requires approval of the department chair and the College of Arts & Sciences Dean’s Office. Students may contact departments as follows:

  • History: Ancient Greek, Latin
  • Modern Languages and Linguistics: French, German, Lakota, Spanish

Students will not be notified automatically of their eligibility for credit by examination based on grades earned. Students must pay all fees associated with credit by examination.

CLEP (College-level examination program):

Definition: CLEP is the College-Level Examination Program, a program of the College Board administered at USD through the Division of Continuing and Distance Education. Based on their score on a CLEP test, students may be able to obtain credit for specified coursework in a limited number of languages.

Availability: CLEP testing is offered in French, German, and Spanish only. Credit may be earned through CLEP testing for 101, 102, 201, and 202. Completing a USD language course is not required. No grades are earned for credit obtained by examination. The credit will appear on the transcript with a grade of “EX.”

Process: Students must make an appointment for CLEP testing with the Division of Continuing and Distance Education (CDE), subject to any applicable restrictions. CLEP scores are reported by CDE directly to the Registrar’s Office, where credit is entered. Students must pay all fees associated with credit by examination. For more information, consult the CLEP webpage at http://www.usd.edu/registrar/student-resources/clep-credit.

LTI (Language Testing International):

Definition: LTI is Language Testing International, a company exclusively licensed by American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language (ACTFL) to offer language proficiency examinations scored using ACTFL ratings. Scores correlate with credit recommendations of the American Council on Education (ACE). LTI tests are administered at USD through the Division of Continuing and Distance Education . Based on their score on LTI written and oral examinations, students may be able to obtain credit for specified coursework. LTI examinations are available in many languages; visit http://www.languagetesting.com/ for more information.

Availability: LTI testing is available in a larger number of languages than CLEP offers. Credit may be earned through LTI testing for 101, 102, 201, and 202. Completing a USD language course is not required. In order to be eligible, students must take both the written test and an oral test in the language chosen. The ACTFL ratings used to score LTI exams are: Novice Low, Novice Mid, Novice High, Intermediate Low, Intermediate Mid, Intermediate High, Advanced Low, Advanced Mid, Advanced High, and Superior. Scores on LTI examinations result in course credit as follows:

101 (4 cr.)

Written: Novice Mid or above

Oral: Novice Mid or above

102 (4 cr.)

Written: Novice High or above

Oral: Novice High or above Student must have one score of Intermediate Low (4) or above

201 (3 cr.)

Written: Intermediate Mid or above

Oral: Intermediate Mid or above

202 (3 cr.)

Written: Intermediate High or above

Oral: Intermediate High or above

No grades are earned for credit obtained by examination. The credit will appear on the transcript with a grade of “EX.” Where the USD catalog does not include a subject prefix specific to the language at issue, credit will be transcripted with the MFL (Modern Foreign Language) prefix.

Process: Students must make an appointment for LTI testing with the Division of Continuing and Distance Education , subject to any applicable restrictions. LTI scores are reported by CDE directly to the Registrar’s Office, where credit is entered. Students must pay all fees associated with credit by examination. For more information, consult the LTI webpage at http://www.usd.edu/usd-online/testing-center/lti-testing.

Prior Learning Assessment

The University of South Dakota serves adult learners through its Prior Learning Assessment Program (PLA) which recognizes that adult learners may have gained college-level learning from employment, employer training programs, military experience, volunteer and community service, independent study, and other life experiences. Through PLA, adult learners enroll in a portfolio building course where they complete their portfolios with the aid of a teaching mentor. Portfolios are assessed by certified faculty members in the appropriate subject field. The credit may not be transferrable to other colleges and universities. A grade may not be raised by the portfolio process. A course may not be repeated by the portfolio process. Contact Academic Affairs at 605-677-6497 for more information.

Degree Audit and Graduation

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Candidates for degrees are required to make formal application for their degree by the deadline published in the Schedule of Classes. Upon completing 75 semester hours of credit, students should apply at the Registrar’s Office for graduation and request an undergraduate degree audit. This audit will determine the requirements that remain to be met to qualify for the degree. A student’s official date of graduation shall be the graduation date for the term in which the student successfully completes all requirements for the degree. The form may be emailed to: rgstrar@usd.edu or faxed to: 605-677-6753.

Degree Requirements

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SDBOR policy 2:29

  1. Total Semester Hours of Credit: Completion of at least 120 semester credit hours at the 100 level or above for the baccalaureate degree or 60 semester credit hours for the associate degree.
  2. Grade Point Average: A cumulative grade point average and institutional grade point average of 2.00. The cumulative grade point average is based on all courses taken, including transfer courses and those taken at other regental institutions. The institutional grade point average is based on all coursework taken at USD. The grade point average for the major(s) must be at least 2.0.  If a course is repeated only the last grade received will be included in the calculation of the cumulative and institutional grade point averages. 
  3. Developmental Education Course Requirements in English and Mathematics: Developmental education courses include ENGL 032, ENGL 033, and MATH 095. Credit hours for the developmental education courses are included in the total number of credit hours attempted. The grades assigned for these courses will be RI, RS and RU and will not be included in the GPA calculation.
  4. Completion of University general education requirements .
  5. Majors : Each degree candidate must select the work of one department or discipline as a major subject and must complete all requirements as set out by the major department. Any deviation from this requires the written consent of the chair of the department and the dean of the relevant college or school. Note: Exceptions to the System-wide Requirements must be approved by the dean of the student’s college or school and the Vice President for Academic Affairs or designee.

Students pursuing more than one major must complete all requirements for the majors as set forth by the academic units involved. When the majors are offered within the same college or school and may be completed within the same degree program structure, students complete the requirements for only one degree, and only one degree is awarded. Students wishing to complete two undergraduate majors that are offered in separate colleges or schools, or in the same school or college but not within the same degree program structure, must complete all requirements for each related degree, and two separate degrees are awarded. Completion of a second degree will not be allowed when both majors may be awarded under the same degree. Students may pursue minors outside the college/school of their major program.

Simultaneous degrees at a Regental University (earned on the same graduation date)

Students wishing to complete two undergraduate majors that are offered under different program structures must complete both curricula corresponding to the declared major, resulting in the completion of two baccalaureate degrees.

For two degrees to be awarded during the same graduation, all requirements for both degrees must be met.

  • The System General Education requirements are met once.
  • The specific requirements of each degree program must be met.
  • Two degrees and two diplomas are issued.
  • Courses may meet the requirements of both degrees provided the overall university requirements are met and the system requirements are met.

Students who have earned a baccalaureate degree and who later wish to add another major or degree should consult the Office of Academic Affairs for information (605-677-6497).

  1. Upper-Division Requirement: A minimum of 30 semester hours of credit in courses numbered 300 or above. Specific academic units may require additional hours of upper-division work.
  2. Institutional Credit Requirement: Credit taken by students at USD or at its approved sites using any approved method of delivery is considered institutional credit, including credit from courses that are part of a formal collaborative agreement between USD and another regental university. The minimum number of credit hours that must be earned as institutional credit is 30 credits for the baccalaureate degree and 15 credits for the associate degree. The number of credit hours immediately preceding completion of the degree that must be earned as institutional credit is 15 of the last 30 credits for the baccalaureate degree and 8 of the last 15 for the associate degree. The minimum number of credit hours in the discipline of the major and the minor that must be completed as institutional credit is 50 percent. Degree-seeking students may, however, complete a minor from any of the South Dakota regental universities; the minor will be recorded on the student’s transcript in conjunction with a degree, indicating the university from which it was earned.
  3. Degree seeking students may complete requirements for a minor at any Regental university that has been approved to grant that minor. This minor will be recorded on the transcript in conjunction with a degree/major at that university or a degree/ major at any other Regental university. A minor will only be recorded on the transcript in conjunction with a degree and major.

Equal Opportunity, Non-Discrimination, Sexual Harassment

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Equal Opportunity SDBOR policy 1:19

In accordance with the South Dakota Board of Regents Policy 1:19, the institutions under the jurisdiction of the Board of Regents shall offer equal opportunities in employment and for access to and participation in educational, extension and other institutional services to all persons qualified by academic preparation, experience, and ability for the various levels of employment or academic program or other institutional service, without discrimination based on sex, race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, gender, gender identification, transgender, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, genetic information or veteran status or any other status that may become protected under law against discrimination.

Non-Discrimination, Civil Rights, and Affirmative Action SDBOR policy 1:19

The Board reaffirms its commitment to the objectives of affirmative action, equal opportunity and non-discrimination in accordance with state and federal law. Redress for alleged violations of those laws may be pursued at law or through the procedures established by the provisions of 1:18 of this policy.

Concerns should be reported directly to the Director, Equal Opportunity and Chief Title IX Coordinator.

Khara Iverson, Director, Equal Opportunity and Chief Title IX Coordinator
University of South Dakota, Human Resources
205 Slagle Hall
Vermillion, SD 57069.
Phone: 605-677-5651
E-Mail: Khara.Iverson@usd.edu

Harassment including Sexual Harassment SDBOR policy 1:17 

Title IX: No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance - Title 20 U.S.C. section 1681

Title IX of the U.S Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), 20 U.S.C. §1681, is a Federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs and activities. Discrimination based on sex, race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, gender, gender identification, transgender, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status or on any other status that may become protected under law against discrimination is likewise prohibited.

Under Title IX, discrimination on the basis of sex can also include sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking and sexual coercion.

For further information regarding Title IX please see: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/qa-201404-title-ix.pdf

Prevention of Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking SDBOR policy 1:17.1; USD policy (refer to page 42)

State and federal laws and policies strictly prohibit sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, often treating such actions as criminal offenses. Such misconduct is not permitted or tolerated at the University.

For Complaints by faculty and staff and students involving faculty and staff:

Khara Iverson, M.A., J.D
Director of EEO & Chief Title IX Coordinator
Slagle Hall 205
Phone: 605-677-5651
Email: Khara.Iverson@usd.edu

For Complaints by students:
Dr. Kimberly Grieve
VP/Dean of Students
MUC #218
506-677-5331

*The university will strive to keep all reported information confidential, however it may not be able to guarantee such a request if in doing so may potentially jeopardize the safety of the campus community or if other legitimate reasons may necessitate such disclosure.

*Any person who either files a compliant or is a witness and or involved in any stage of the investigative process will not be subject to harassment, interference, intimidation or retaliation.

Human Rights Complaint Procedures: SDBOR policy 1:18

This policy governs the process through which human rights complaints such as discrimination occurring in the delivery of or access to education services are to be resolved.  Students may initiate a complaint by contacting the Director Of Equal Opportunity & Title IX Coordinator. Persons who bring complaints of discrimination and persons who participate in the investigation and disposition of such complaints will not be subject to harassment, interference, intimidation, or retaliation. Students may also be called upon to respond to a complaint under this policy. Should the basis of a student’s academic grievance under SDBOR policy 2:9 suggest sexual harassment or another form of discrimination, the matter will be investigated under this policy prior to any action under SDBOR policy 2:9.

Excused Absence

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(USD policy 1.004)

When necessary, make-up of course requirements missed because of student participation in university sanctioned events and activities shall be worked out between the instructor and the student upon the student’s timely initiative. For a university related event, a student must contact his/her instructor at least two days prior to the absence and provide documentation from the sponsoring unit indicating the dates that the student will be absent from class.

Final Examinations

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(USD Policy 1.016)

A final examination schedule for each semester is prepared by the Registrar’s Office and published on the USD Portal at: http://link.usd.edu/3830. Faculty members are expected to follow the final examination schedule as published. In addition, faculty members should be aware of the following aspects of the final examination policy as passed by the University Senate:

  1. All combined examinations must offer a schedule alternative;
  2. In case of a conflict in examination times, the student must notify the instructor 30 days prior to the scheduled final;
  3. A student who is scheduled for more than three exams in one day should resolve the overload by selecting an alternate examination time for a combined examination, if possible;
  4. If a student is scheduled for more than three exams in one day, the student should attempt to resolve the overload with individual instructors; and,
  5. The student with more than three exams in one day should arrange, no later than 30 days before the scheduled final, for a make-up examination.

Faculty members may also be governed by complementary policy statements issued through their respective schools or colleges.

There are to be no required in-class written exams on the two academic days immediately preceding the final examination period (USD Policy 1.015).

Home Institution

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Effective since fall 2003, all the universities governed by the South Dakota Board of Regents are in a merged environment in which credit earned by a student at any regental university, as well as all transfer work received and recorded from outside the regental system, is recorded on one “system” transcript. In this environment, students designate as their “home institution” the institution from which they seek their degree, and the home institution governs the policies affecting its students.

Institutional Assessment and Evaluation

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The University has a comprehensive program for the assessment of student academic achievement. It provides the basis for ongoing examination of the effectiveness of teaching and learning in each academic discipline as well as in the general education curriculum. The assessment program helps the University to determine whether it is accomplishing its mission and ensures that it is responsive to the need for improvement.

Pursuant to Board of Regents policy, student participation in the assessment program is required. Students may be involved in the assessment of the general education curriculum in addition to that of their major. This involvement may take various forms, including participation in exit exams, surveys, and/or capstone experiences. Students who refuse to participate shall be denied subsequent registration and/or graduation.

Plans of Study Within Degrees

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Major

An academic major or primary area of study within a degree program enables students to make an in-depth inquiry into a discipline or a professional field of study. It is organized around a specific set of goals and objectives that are accomplished through an ordered series of courses, whose connections define a structure and whose sequence advances levels of knowledge and understanding. Declaration of a major provides students with a “home department” for academic advising and the opportunity for regular contact with faculty members on an individual basis. A major that focuses on a specific discipline draws its courses predominantly from one department. A major that encompasses a professional field of study or is interdisciplinary usually obtains its courses from more than one department. All students must complete the requirements of at least one major. Majors are specified in the catalog and designated on the student’s academic transcript. (Academic Affairs Guidelines 2.9)

Minor

An academic minor within a degree program enables students to make an inquiry into a discipline or field of study beyond the major or to investigate a particular content theme. Minors are intended to provide limited competency in the subject area. Depending upon the particular degree program, students may be required to complete a minor. Minors are specified in the catalog and designated on the student’s academic transcript. (Academic Affairs Guidelines 2.8)

Specialization

A specialization is a designated plan of study within an existing degree program. It may be an alternative to the primary format of the major or one of several tracks within a broad major. Specializations are specified in the catalog and designated on the student’s academic transcript. (Academic Affairs Guidelines 2.6)

Emphasis

An emphasis is a concentration within a major that is structured by individual student choices within a plan of study. An emphasis is not regarded as a separate program. It may be described in the catalog, but not detailed as a specific plan of study. It is not designated on the academic transcript. (Academic Affairs Guidelines 2.7)

Privacy and Confidentiality of Student Information (FERPA)

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The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. They are: 1) the right to inspect and review the student’s education records; 2) the right to request the amendment of the student’s education records to ensure that they are not inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the student’s privacy or other rights; 3) the right to a hearing if the request to correct an alleged inaccuracy is denied; 4) the right to consent to disclosures of personally identifiable information contained in the student’s education records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent; and 5) the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Dept. of Education concerning alleged failures by the University of South Dakota or any of its schools or colleges to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The complete student records policy of the University is available online at: http://www.usd.edu/-/media/files/policies/1014-student-records.ashx?la=en. Other frequently asked questions regarding FERPA may be found at: http://www.usd.edu/registrar/student-records-policy.cfm.

Student Code of Conduct

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SDBOR policy 3:4 Student Code of Conduct. Policy obliging students and student organizations to minimum standards of behavior within which, prohibited conduct, process regarding allegations of misconduct, possible outcomes, and appeal rights are treated. Students may be called upon to respond to allegations of misconduct in the form of notification from the Director of Student Rights & Responsibilities (or another designee). Students, too, may initiate a conduct complaint against another student, students, or student group under this policy.

Student Email

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Official messages sent to USD students will be sent to the university-assigned, coyotes email addresses and will be posted as announcements in myUSD Portal (USD policy 2.014).  E-mail will constitute an official form of communication between university students and university (SDBOR policy 3:19). It is the student’s responsibility and obligation to access official university email messages in a timely manner.

Students with Disabilities

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Disability Services is an integral part of the University of South Dakota, committed to ensuring students with disabilities shall not be discriminated against because of their disability in accordance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment Act of 2008. Disability Services provides support to students with disabilities to ensure full and equal access to the educational opportunities, programs, and activities USD offers through the provision of reasonable and appropriate accommodations. Reasonable and appropriate accommodations do not fundamentally alter the nature of programs or lower academic and other essential performance standards.

A student is responsible for the accommodation process and actively participating in the process by making timely and appropriate disclosures and requests. Any delay in the process on the student’s part may result in limiting the ability of Disability Services to provide reasonable accommodations. The process includes:

  • Self-Disclose Disability and Register - It is the student’s responsibility to identify as a person with a disability and register with Disability Services. A student may self-disclose at any time, however students are encouraged to self-disclose and register before classes begin. A student may contact Disability Services via e-mail or phone to schedule a time to meet to self-disclose, register, and begin the interactive process of requesting accommodations.
  • Provide Disability Documentation - A student must provide Disability Services with documentation to support their request for accommodations.  Each student and each disability is unique, therefore the type of documentation each student provides will be different.  However, all documentation must be current and relevant, address the current impact of the disability, and illustrate a connection between the disability and the requested accommodation.
  • Request Accommodations - Accommodation requests are approved to ensure full access to the educational opportunities, programs, and activities of USD.  Accommodations ensure access by lessening or removing a barrier that may exist due to the student’s disability.  A student must request accommodations that are reasonable and appropriate in a college setting.
  • Actively Communicate - A student must actively and continuously communicate with Disability Services and their professors to assure the accommodations are effective.  Active communication also allows for accommodations to be adjusted as needed throughout the course of the semester.

If you are a student with a disability, please contact Disability Services as soon as possible if you want to request accommodations.  If you are a student and you suspect you may have a disability, contact Disability Services.  Disability Services will refer you to the appropriate agency or organization for evaluations.

Service Center North, R119B
Phone: 605-677-6389
Fax: 605-677-3172
disabilityservices@usd.edu

Student Travel & Field Trips

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To promote safe travel by members of the USD community, the University has established policies and procedures for certain student activities that take place away from campus, whether domestic or international. Refer to USD policy 2.003 Out of State Travel, USD policy 2.007 Field Trips and Study Tours, and USD policy 1.005 International Activity for policies and procedures.

Study Abroad & U.S. Department of State Travel Warnings

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International experiences are very important for students, faculty, and staff. To maximize benefit and to minimize risk for the participants and the University, the International Activity policy addresses the procedures to be followed when the U.S. Department of State issues a Travel Warning for a country in which undergraduate or graduate students are studying or planning to study. Refer to USD policy 1.005 International Activity for the policy and procedure.

Study Abroad Transfer Credits

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Students who plan to study abroad with the intent of transferring the credits earned to USD must receive written permission to do so from the Center for Academic & Global Engagement before undertaking such study. The University does not accept credit from all foreign institutions. Students who take courses abroad without prior permission from CAGE may not receive USD credit for these courses.

Please contact the Center for Academic & Global Engagement (Academic Commons 103, 605-677-6338, theworld@usd.edu) for additional information about approved programs and application deadlines.

Withdrawal from the University

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Students who find it necessary to withdraw from the University (i.e., drop their only course or all courses in which they are enrolled in a term) may obtain the form for this purpose from the Office of the Registrar, Belbas Center 223. After completing the form, students must file it with the Registrar’s or Financial Aid Office in the Belbas building in order to withdraw officially. Tuition and refundable fees are assessed or refunded as appropriate within the guidelines of the Board of Regents policy, according to the date of official withdrawal. (See Financial Information Section for further information.)

Students who completely withdraw from the Regental system from the first day of a class(es) through census date of the class(es) will have a pseudo course of WD 101 (Undergraduate) or WD 801 (graduate) with a “WW” grade entered on their Transcript.  Undergraduate and graduate students who withdraw from the System shall receive a grade of “WW” if that action occurs anytime between the day after the census day for that course and the day that corresponds with the completion of 70 percent of the class days for that course.

A notation of the date of withdrawal will be included on the student’s transcript if he/she withdraws from the system. (SDBOR Policy 5:7.2)