Jun 24, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
    
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Admission Policies & Procedures


Click on any of the following links for information:

Applicants desiring to enroll at the University of South Dakota are encouraged to apply at least four months but not less than ten days prior to the planned date of attendance. In addition to the admission requirements of the University, applicants will be required to fulfill any special requirements of the school or college in which they plan to enroll. The application is not considered complete until all required materials have been received. All men born after December 31, 1959, who are applying for admission to the University of South Dakota, must comply with selective service registration requirements.

Application Procedure

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To complete an application, submit the following materials to the Office of Admissions:

1. Application Submit your completed application
Online Application
2. US $20 Application Fee
  • Application Fees are non-refundable
  • Fee waivers are available with the application for those with financial need.  
  • Exceptions are made for students who are non-degree seeking, or have previously applied, paid the fee, and attended a university in the Board of Regents system within the previous three semesters.
3. Official High
School and College Transcripts
  • Official high school transcript sent directly to USD.*
    • To be eligible to receive Title IV federal financial aid, the regulations require that institutions admit, as regularly enrolled students, persons who have a high school diploma or its recognized equivalent (GED).
  • Official transcripts (in English or with translation) from each college or university you previously attended, sent directly to USD.*

*The University reserves the right to request an official external credential evaluation in order to complete an admission decision. Credential evaluations will only be accepted from organizations/agencies who are approved members of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (www.naces.org) or the Association of International Credential Evaluators (www.aice-eval.org). No foreign transfer credits will be accepted without a course-by-course evaluation from World Education Services (www.wes.org) or Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc. (www.ece.org). 

4. Test Scores (Optional) Official ACT or SAT scores sent to USD directly from the testing agency. Test scores can be used for admission, scholarship consideration and course placement. 

Application forms may be obtained from the Office of Admissions or you may apply online at: https://www.usd.edu/Admissions-and-Aid/Undergraduate-Admissions/How-to-Apply. All correspondence should be addressed to:

Office of Undergraduate Admissions
University of South Dakota
414 East Clark Street
Vermillion, SD 57069

Phone: 1-877-COYOTES (1-877-269-6837)
Fax: 605-677-6323
E-mail: Office of Admissions (admissions@usd.edu)
Website: www.usd.edu/Admissions-and-Aid/Undergraduate-Admissions

Undergraduate Admission Requirements

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SDBOR policy 2.2.1

First Year Students

Baccalaureate Degree Admissions for High School Graduates

To be admitted to a baccalaureate degree program at USD, you must have the following credentials:

  1.  ACT Composite Score of 21 or above (SAT 1070)

    or

    High School GPA of 2.60 on a 4.00 scale in all high school courses
    Or

    Achieve a 3 or higher on the English Language Arts and Mathematics Smarter Balanced Assessments

    OR

    Rank in the upper 50% of high school graduating class.

  2. Students should complete the following core courses with a “C” average or better:

  • 4 years of English
    or ACT English sub-test score of 21 or above
    or AP English score of 3 or above

  • 3 years of Advanced Mathematics
    or ACT Math sub-test score of 23 or above
    or AP Calculus score of 3 or above

  • 3 years of Social Sciences
    or ACT Social Studies/Reading sub-test score of 20 or above
    or AP Social Studies score of 3 or above

  • 3 years of Laboratory Science
    or ACT Science Reasoning sub-test score of 20 or above
    or AP Science score of 3 or above

  • 1 year of Fine Arts for students graduating from South Dakota high schools
    or AP Fine Arts score of 3 or above

Applications from students with deficiencies are reviewed on an individual basis. Admission criteria are subject to change.

Nontraditional students (24 years of age or older), who do not meet the above criteria, may be admitted at the institution’s discretion.

Associate Degree Admissions for High School Graduates

Admission to associate degree (two-year) programs is granted if you meet one of the following criteria:

  1. Baccalaureate admission requirements;
    OR
  2. Rank in the top 60% of your high school graduating class;
    OR
  3. Achieve an ACT composite score of 18 or above;
    OR
  4. Earn a cumulative GPA of at least 2.6 on a 4.0 scale.

Associate Degree students who did not meet the baccalaureate degree admission requirements and who want to enter a baccalaureate degree program must:

  1. Complete at least 15 credit hours of the system general education requirements with a 2.0 GPA
    AND
  2. Meet university minimum progression standards .

Non-High School Graduates

Applicants who have not graduated from high school but who have earned a GED High School Equivalency certificate may be considered for admission based on their GED scores. An applicant for baccalaureate or associate admissions who is not a high school graduate must:

  1. Be 18 years or older to meet the compulsory school attendance requirement in South Dakota;
    AND
  2. Complete the General Educational Development (GED) test credential with the following minimum test scores:
    1. Scores earned since 2014: Reach a score of at least 145 on each subject and a total score of 580 or higher across all four subjects;
    2. Scores earned from 2002 to 2013: Earn a score of at least 410 on each subject and a total score of 2250 or higher across all five subjects (i.e., an average score of 450 across all five subjects);
    3. Scores earned from 1997 to 2001: Earn a score of at least 40 on each subject and a total score of 225 across all five subjects (i.e., an average score of 45 across all five subjects);
    4. Scores earned from 1981 to 1996: Earn a score of at least 40 on each subject or a total score of 225 across all five subjects (i.e., an average score of 45 across all five subjects);
    5. Scores earned from 1943 to 1980: Earn a score of at least 35 on each subject or a total score of 225 across all five subjects (i.e., an average score of 45 across all five subjects)

OR
complete the High School Equivalency Test (HiSET) and obtain a minimum score of 15 on each of the five subsections
OR
complete the Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) and obtained a minimum score of 500 on each of the five subtest categories;

Home Schooled Students

Students who are home-schooled or who attend a non-accredited high school must submit an official transcript (in a semester format) for review from either an accredited regional authority or home school provider in conjunction with state requirements. The University of South Dakota Office of Admissions reserves the right to ask for a public school exemption form.

  1. Baccalaureate Degree Program
    For admission to baccalaureate degree programs, home school graduates must:
  • Meet the minimum course requirements established in baccalaureate degree program requirements (section 1 of this policy with an average grade of C (2.6 on a 4.0 scale);
    OR
  • Demonstrate appropriate competencies in discipline areas consistent within the baccalaureate degree program requirements discipline area-(section 2 of this policy where course requirements have not been met);
    OR
  • Obtain an ACT composite score of 21 or SAT score of 1070, or concorded equivalent for older SAT scores or above
  1. Associate Degree Program
    For admission to associate degree programs, home school graduates must:

English Proficiency Requirements for Applicants who have Completed Secondary Education Outside of the United States 

Must demonstrate English Language Proficiency by meeting one of the following:

  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)
    • 71 or higher (iBT)
    • 8 or higher (TOEFL Essentials)
  • IELTS Academic (International English Language Testing System)
    • 6.0 or higher
  • Duolingo English Test
    • 105 or higher
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE)
    • 48 or higher
  • ACT or SAT
    • ACT English 18+ OR
    • SAT Evidence-based Reading and Writing 500+
  • Advanced Placement English
    • (AP) 3 or higher
  • ELS Language Center
    • Successful completion of the ELS English for Academic Purposes level 112 
  • Successful completion (equivalent of >2.6 GPA) of one of the following: 
    • British O Level/GCSE/IGCSE 
    • British AS/A Levels 
    • IB Certificate or Diploma 
    • WAEC 
    • High school within the United States 
    • English-medium high school outside the United States but accredited by a US-based accrediting organization (such as WASC or NEASC) 
    • US College Coursework 
    • Successful completion of a college level English composition course at an accredited U.S. institution with a grade of C or higher. 
  • Native Speakers of English 
    Applicants who hold a conferred degree from one of the following countries are exempt from providing proof of English proficiency: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Canada, Cook Islands, Dominica, Fiji, Ghana, Grand Cayman Islands, Grenada, Guyana, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Malta, Montserrat, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pitcairn Islands, Saint Helena, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Singapore, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos, United Kingdom. 

International Students:

  1. International students entering the university on an F1 or J1 visa must demonstrate financial ability to pay for at least one year of academic and living expenses before being issued a Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Status (I-20) by the University of South Dakota. The University of South Dakota follows the average annual enrollment of 30 credit hours for undergraduate students plus an estimate for living costs.

Transfer Students

You are considered a transfer student if you have college credits from an accredited institution and are six or more months beyond high school graduation. If you are currently enrolled at another institution, you can send partial transcripts and be considered for provisional admission until the final, official transcript arrives.

Students transferring directly from another South Dakota Board of Regents school (Black Hills State University, Dakota State University, Northern State University, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, South Dakota State University) need only submit an application and an application fee if not enrolled within the last three academic terms.

Students who are transferring to baccalaureate programs

Students who are under the age of twenty four (24) at the start of the term and who are transferring into baccalaureate degree programs with fewer than 24 transfer credit hours must meet the baccalaureate degree admission requirements. Students with 24 or more transfer credit hours with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 may transfer into baccalaureate degree programs and do not have to meet the baccalaureate degree admission requirements. Specific degree programs may include additional admissions requirements.

Students who are transferring to associate programs

Students who are under the age of twenty four (24) at the start of the term and who are transferring into associate degree programs with fewer than 12 transfer credit hours must meet the associate degree admission requirements. Students with 12 or more transfer credit hours with a cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 may transfer into associate degree programs and do not have to meet the baccalaureate degree admission requirements. Specific degree programs may include additional admissions requirements.

Former Student (“Readmit”)

If the last school you attended was the University of South Dakota and you are returning to USD after being away for a semester or more, you may apply as a readmitted student. If you are returning to school and USD is not the last school you attended, you should apply as a transfer student (see section above).

Student transferring within the Regental System

Students transferring directly from another South Dakota Board of Regents school (Black Hills State University, Dakota State University, Northern State University, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, South Dakota State University) need only submit an application and an application fee, if not enrolled within the last three academic terms. (Refer to SDBOR policy 2.2.2.1 Seamless Transfer of Credit).

Students who have been admitted to a degree seeking or special program at one Regental university may register for courses at any Regental university without submitting another application.

Concurrent High School Students

High school students who have completed their sophomore year and who wish to enroll in limited coursework prior to completion of their high school education may be granted acceptance. It is a temporary status without a degree commitment.

Procedure:
Submit a completed Non-Degree Seeking Application form.

Non-Degree-Seeking Students

Unclassified admission is reserved for applicants who wish to enroll for a limited number of credit hours but do not wish to commit themselves to working toward a degree from the University. The University is under no obligation to grant a degree to unclassified students until those students change acceptance status from unclassified to regular admission. Students who apply as unclassified will not be eligible to receive financial aid. If regular admission is desired, unclassified students must fulfill the admission requirements as they exist at the time of their applications for regular admission. After regular admission has been granted, credits earned while enrolled as unclassified students may be used to meet the requirements for a degree with the approval of the dean of the school or college concerned.

Procedure:

Non-degree-seeking students are required to submit a completed admissions Non-Degree Seeking Application form.

A person who is qualified academically may be denied admission to or dismissed from the University if misrepresented or falsified information is submitted during the application process or if the applicant is a potential threat to the property or safety of others. The Dean of Enrollment may request additional information from a student or may obtain information from public records if there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the applicant has falsified or misrepresented information or is a threat to the property or safety of others. The Dean of Enrollment will determine whether there is sufficient cause to deny admission on these grounds. The decision of the Dean of Enrollment may be appealed to the Vice President of Marketing, Enrollment, and University Relations.

Admitted Students

Students admitted to any South Dakota regental university will be considered South Dakota regental students and allowed to take courses at any of the six universities. Courses taken at any of the six universities will be reflected on a single transcript, along with transfer work received and recorded from outside the regental system. The university from which the student is seeking the degree is considered the student’s “home institution” and will govern the academic policies related to that student.

Placement

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Academic Affairs
(605) 658-3854
usdtest@usd.edu

Students are placed into initial English and mathematics courses according to procedures established in South Dakota Board of Regents administrative guidelines.  Placement into initial English coursework is determined primarily by ACT English scores, but also may be determined by Smarter Balanced scores or ACCUPLACER scores.  Placement into initial mathematics coursework is determining primarily by High School GPA but also may be determined by Mathematics Index scores (a combination of ACT Mathematics scores and high school GPA), Smarter Balanced scores, ACCUPLACER scores, or Challenge Index (a combination of high school GPA and ACCUPLACER score).  Detailed placement rules for English and mathematics are shown in SDBOR Administrative Guidelines 2.2.1.1.A and 2.2.1.1.B.  

Students who wish to contest an initial placement decision may request an opportunity to challenge their initial placements.  Challenges are attempted using ACCUPLACER exams and return an $20.00 fee.

Regental Policy for Transfer of Credit

SDBOR policy 2.2.2.1-Seamless Transfer of Credit

  1. Academic courses will be transferred as meeting graduation requirements if the courses parallel the scope and depth requirements for the degree or if the courses meet electives required for the degree. Credit will not be given for duplication of courses Grading schemes will be converted to a university equivalent.
  2. For the purposes of this policy, an accredited institution is an institution holding accreditation from one of the following regional accrediting bodies unless otherwise specified: Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), Higher Learning Commission (HLC), Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).
  3. Total transfer credit completed at an associate college shall not exceed one-half of the hours required for completion of the baccalaureate degree at the receiving institution. Waivers can be requested for the program and must be approved by the system vice president for academic affairs. The System Vice President for Academic Affairs may approve program-specific agreement waivers of up to seventy-five (75) total transfer credit hours at the receiving institution. Formal Board of Regents approval for baccalaureate program-specific waivers of seventy-six (76) total transfer credit hours up to a maximum of ninety (90) total transfer credit hours at the receiving institution. 
  4. Transfer students who do not qualify for transfer of credit may appeal through the appropriate institutional appeal procedures. Transfer students should contact an advisor to help submit coursework for evaluation of transfer. 
  5. Prior credit coursework is evaluated for transfer based on the following policies. The policies are established to meet specific student needs:  

Transfer of General Education Coursework

  1. Student Transfer Within the Regental System
    1. A student who has completed the general education requirements outlined in Policy 2.7 at the sending Regental institution will have fulfilled the System General Education Requirements for their degree program. The completion of the requirements will internally transfer with the courses, credit hours and grades assigned regardless of the course distributions or approved course lists.
    2. A student who has not completed all System General Education requirements at the sending institution will be required to complete additional coursework consistent with the course requirements at the receiving South Dakota Regental institution.
    3. All prerequisites for associate and baccalaureate programs must be completed as determined by the student’s degree plan.  
  2. Student Transfer From Accredited Non-Regental Institutions with an Associate’s Degree (AA and AS)
    1. A student who has completed General Education requirements that are consistent with the six goals and credit hour requirements outlined in Policy 2.7 will enter the Regental system having fulfilled the General Education program requirements. Students will be expected to meet all degree program requirements including course prerequisites.
    2. When considering whether undergraduate transfer of academic courses received from non-Regental accredited institutions shall qualify to meet the System General Education credit hour requirements outlined in Policy 2.7, a Regental institution shall:
      1. Evaluate the general education goals and student learning outcomes rather than specific course equivalencies;
      2. Ensure that a minimum of three (3) credit hours of coursework is required for each of the six general education goals and that a total of at least twenty-four (24) credit hours of general education coursework are required by the sending institution for associate degree students and thirty (30) for bachelor’s degree students; and
      3. Request a general education transfer agreement be approved for students entering from the institution
    3. When it is determined that the goals and credit hour requirements from a nonRegental accredited institution do not align with Policy 2.7, a Regental institution may request a partial general education transfer agreement be approved where goal consistency does exist.
  1. Undergraduate courses considered for transfer are subject to all BOR policies and any conditions for validation that may be prescribed by the accepting institution. When a university evaluates and accepts the transfer of undergraduate credit under the provisions of this policy, these courses will be recorded and equivalencies granted using the following guidelines:
    1. If there are specific undergraduate courses at the university evaluating the credit, these specific courses should be used when granting equivalencies.
    2. If the academic discipline is available at the university evaluating the credit, but there is no discipline equivalent course, use the discipline prefix and the appropriate course level (100 for Freshman level, 200 for Sophomore level, 300 for Junior level, and 400 for Senior level).
    3. If the academic discipline is not available at the university evaluating the credit, use the ELEC prefix and the appropriate course level (100 for Freshman level, 200 for Sophomore level, 300 for Junior level, and 400 for Senior level).
  2. Undergraduate transfer of academic courses received from accredited United States colleges and universities.
    1. All undergraduate transfer courses and all transfer grades (whether the grades are passing or not passing) must be recorded and an equivalency specified by the Regental university, calculated into grade point averages according to the Regental grade scheme, and recorded on the student’s academic transcript.
    2. Courses of a vocational/technical nature are generally not transferable.  However, if such work is judged to be pertinent to the needs of a particular curriculum or program, credit will be granted upon the recommendation of the department offering the course.
    3. Remedial courses (as identified on the sending institution’s transcript) received in transfer are recorded, transcripted, and assigned an equivalency at the receiving university but do not calculate into grade point averages.
    4. Orientation, Life Experience, an approved high school equivalency examination, and high school level courses are not recorded as transfer credit nor are they granted equivalent credit. 
      1. High school courses for which students received college credit will not be entered as transfer credit, or given equivalent credit, unless one of the following conditions are met:
        • Validation by and Advanced Placement or CLEP score that meets Board of Regents guidelines for acceptance of credit;
        • The college credit is granted by a university with which the Board has a dual credit agreement; or 
        • The college credit is granted by an institution meeting the accreditation standards of the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (NACEP). 
  3. Undergraduate transfer of technical courses received from accredited United States colleges and universities.
    1. University discretion is permitted in acceptance of courses. Courses considered for transfer are subject to all BOR policies and any conditions for validation that may be prescribed by the accepting institution.
    2. When the courses are accepted for transfer, equivalent courses are recorded on the transcript but the grade earned at the technical institute is not recorded or calculated into the grade point averages.
    3. In any subsequent evaluation, equivalencies for system common courses and system general education courses will not be changed. Equivalencies for unique courses may be changed, re-evaluated, or inactivated. Additional equivalencies may be added and evaluated.
    4. The university-specific degree requirements determine if the courses transferred are applicable to the student’s degree program at that university and if they meet the minimum grade criteria.
  4. Graduate transfer courses received from accredited United States colleges and universities.
    1. All graduate transfer courses and transfer grades judged to be acceptable by the evaluating university, are recorded and evaluated by the Regental university, calculated into grade point averages according to the Regental grade scheme, and recorded on the student’s academic transcript
    2. If transfer credits are judged acceptable; these courses will be recorded, and equivalencies granted, using the following guidelines:
      1. If there are specific equivalent graduate courses at the university evaluating the credit, these specific courses should be used when granting equivalencies.
      2. If there are no equivalent graduate courses at the university evaluating the credit, these courses will be recorded, and equivalencies granted, using the following guidelines:
        1. If the academic discipline is available at the university evaluating the credit, but there is no discipline equivalent course, use the discipline prefix and the appropriate course level (500/600 for master’s programs and 700/800 for doctoral programs).
        2. If the academic discipline is not available at the university evaluating the credit, use the GEN, ELEC, or UNSP prefix and the appropriate course level (500/600 for master’s programs and 700/800 for doctoral programs).
    3. Transfer grades not existing in the Regental grading scheme will be equated to the Regental grading system
    4. In subsequent evaluation, all equivalencies may be re-evaluated, inactivated, or changed. Additional equivalencies may be added and evaluated. In subsequent evaluations, grades previously recorded cannot be changed.
    5. The university-specific plan of study requirements determine if the courses transferred are applicable to the student’s degree program at that university and if they meet the minimum grade criteria.
  5. Transfer courses received from accredited postsecondary technical institutes.
    1. An academic course is defined as a course that is equivalent to a Regental general education requirement at the 100 or 200 level.
    2. A technical course is defined as a non-academic course that meets the technical program requirements for a diploma, certificate, or Associate of Applied Science degree.
    3. South Dakota Technical Institutes
      1. Transfer of academic courses from South Dakota postsecondary technical institutes is governed by BOR policies 2.7, 2.2.2.1, 2.2.2.2, 2.2.2.3, 2.2.2.4, and 2.2.2.5.
        1. Transfer grades not existing in the Regental grading scheme will be equated to the Regental grading system
        2. In any subsequent evaluation, equivalencies for system common courses and system general education courses will not be changed. Equivalencies for unique courses may be changed.
      2. Academic courses taken under articulation agreements in effect between July 1, 1999 and June 30, 2005 will be transferred according to those agreements.
      3. Transfer of technical course credit hours from South Dakota postsecondary technical institutes occurs as part of a program to program articulation agreement or specific program approved by the Board of Regents and South Dakota Board of Education Standards, unless an institution determines a course equivalency consistent with the process outlined in this policy. 
      4. The transfer of technical course credit hours occurs as a block of credit hours upon completion of requirements for the university articulated program for which a CR grade will be assigned. 
    4. Other Technical Institutes
      1. University discretion is permitted in acceptance of academic courses. Academic courses considered for transfer are subject to all BOR policies and any conditions for validation that may be prescribed by the accepting institution.
        1. When the academic courses are accepted for transfer, equivalent courses are recorded on the transcript.
        2. In any subsequent evaluation, equivalencies for system common courses and system general education courses will not be changed. Equivalencies for unique courses may be changed, re-evaluated, or inactivated. Additional equivalencies may be added and evaluated.
        3. The university-specific degree requirements determine if the academic courses transferred are applicable to the student’s degree program at that university and if they meet the minimum grade criteria.
      2. Transfer of technical course credit hours from non South Dakota postsecondary technical institutes only occurs as part of a program to program articulation agreement approved by the Board of Regents.
        1. The transfer of technical course credit hours occurs as a block of credit hours upon completion of requirements for the university articulated program
        2. When the academic courses are accepted for transfer, equivalent courses are recorded on the transcript. 
  6. Undergraduate and graduate credits received from United States colleges or universities that are not accredited.
    1. University discretion is permitted in acceptance of courses. Courses considered for transfer are subject to all BOR policies and any conditions for validation that may be prescribed by the accepting institution.
    2. When the courses are accepted for transfer, equivalent courses are recorded on the transcript but the grade earned at the non-accredited institution is not recorded or calculated into the grade point averages using the following guidelines:
      1. If there are specific equivalent graduate courses at the university evaluating the credit, these specific courses should be used when granting equivalencies.
      2. If there are no equivalent graduate courses at the university evaluating the credit, these courses will be recorded, and equivalencies granted, using the following guidelines:
        1. If the academic discipline is available at the university evaluating the credit, but there is no discipline equivalent course, use the discipline prefix and the appropriate course level (500/600 for master’s programs and 700/800 for doctoral programs).
        2. If the academic discipline is not available at the university evaluating the credit, use the GEN, ELEC, or UNSP prefix and the appropriate course level (500/600 for master’s programs and 700/800 for doctoral programs).
    3. In any subsequent evaluation, equivalencies for system common courses and system general education courses will not be changed. Equivalencies for unique courses may be changed, re-evaluated, or inactivated. Additional equivalencies may be added and evaluated.
    4. The university-specific degree requirements determine if the courses transferred are applicable to the student’s degree program at that university and if they meet the minimum grade criteria.
  7. Courses submitted in transfer from postsecondary technical institutes that are not accredited will not be accepted.
  8. Undergraduate and Graduate Courses from Postsecondary Institutions outside the United States.
    1. Courses considered for transfer are subject to all BOR policies and any conditions for validation that may be prescribed by the accepting institution.
    2. When the courses are accepted for transfer, equivalent courses are recorded on the transcript. Most commonly, the grade earned at the sending institution is not recorded or calculated into the grade point averages. However, at the discretion of the institution’s chief academic officer, grades may be recorded and used to determine the transfer and cumulative GPA’s (see Policy of Transfer for International Credit below). The following guidelines will be used:
      1. If there are specific equivalent undergraduate or graduate courses at the university evaluating the credit, these specific courses should be used when granting equivalencies.
      2. If there are no equivalent graduate courses at the university evaluating the credit, these courses will be recorded, and equivalencies granted, using the following guidelines:
        1. If the academic discipline is available at the university evaluating the credit, but there is no discipline equivalent course, use the discipline prefix and the appropriate course level (500/600 for master’s programs and 700/800 for doctoral programs).
        2. If the academic discipline is not available at the university evaluating the credit, use the GEN, ELEC, or UNSP prefix and the appropriate course level (500/600 for master’s programs and 700/800 for doctoral programs).
          1. In any subsequent evaluation, equivalencies for system common courses and system general education courses will not be changed. Equivalencies for unique courses may be changed, re-evaluated, or inactivated. Additional equivalencies may be added and evaluated.
          2. The university-specific degree requirements determine if the courses transferred are applicable to the student’s degree program at that university and if they meet the minimum grade criteria.
  9. Credit Received Through Validation Methods & Prior Learning Assessment
    1. Credit earned through validation methods other than nationally recognized examinations is limited to a maximum of 30 hours of credit for baccalaureate degrees and 15 hours of credit for associate degrees. Credits may be earned through established procedures for prior learning assessment, including but not limited to assessment of military training and education. Each campus may determine appropriate course equivalencies established by the American Council on Education (ACE) when making final decisions. 
      1. Validation of military credit is limited to an additional 30 hours of credit for baccalaureate degrees and an additional 15 hours of credit for associate degrees.
      2. University discretion is permitted in acceptance of validated military credit for graduate programs, limited to a maximum of 12 credit hours.
    2. Credit for college level courses granted through nationally recognized examinations such as CLEP, AP, DDST, etc., will be evaluated and accepted for transfer if equivalent to Regental courses and the scores are consistent with Regental policies. Such credits are only valid if transcripted by a university within five years of the student taking the examination. Regental institutions shall honor credits from nationally recognized examinations transcripted to meet degree requirements at a non-Regental institution.
      1. If credit received through validation is applied as elective credit, it may only be applied at the 100 or 200 level.
      2. Credit received through validation may apply to System General Education Requirements and Institutional Graduation Requirements.
    3. When validation credits are accepted, equivalent courses are recorded on the transcript but are not calculated into the grade point averages.
    4. In any subsequent evaluation, equivalencies for system common courses and system general education courses will not be changed. Equivalencies for unique courses may be changed, re-evaluated, or inactivated. Additional equivalencies may be added and evaluated.
    5. The university-specific degree requirements determine if the validation credits accepted also are applicable to the student’s degree program at that university.

Policy of Transfer for International Credit

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A Course-by-Course evaluation is required if one wishes to have international coursework considered for transfer. College level courses taken at international institutions must be evaluated by one of two independent credential evaluation services. Students who have been accepted to USD will provide USD with a Course-by-Course evaluation from World Educations Services, Inc. www.wes.org or Educational Credential Evaluators www.ece.org. The course-by-course evaluation will be used by USD officials to determine transferability.

Undergraduate credit from a non-regionally accredited institution outside of the United States may transfer in as equivalent to a specific USD course or as a transfer elective.  Students may petition to determine course equivalency by filling out the Transfer Equivalency Request form and attaching the course-by-course evaluation and other appropriate course materials (syllabus, e.g.), in English. Academic Advisors can help determine which courses may fit into intended programs at USD.

Transfer credit from international institutions transfers as S/U (pass/fail) and does not calculate into the GPA. At the discretion of the institution’s chief academic officer, grades may be recorded and used to determine the transfer and cumulative GPAs.

The only exception to the above-stated policy will be if the student earns credit through participation in programs sponsored by universities and member organizations with which USD has a South Dakota board of Regents-approved agreement, Study Abroad.

 
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Notice of Nondiscriminatory Policy

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Equal Opportunity

In accordance with the South Dakota Board of Regents Policy 1.4.4, 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 on any other status that may become protected under law against discrimination.

Non-Discrimination, Civil Rights and Affirmative Action

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 SDBOR Policy 1.4.3.

For additional information, please contact the Director, Equal Opportunity and Chief Title IX Coordinator, Jean Merkle, 205 Slagle Hall, Vermillion, SD 57069. Phone: 605-658-3665  Jean.Merkle@usd.edu​

Responsibilities of Chief Executive Officers

The chief executive officers of the respective institutions shall be responsible for assuring that the Board’s equal opportunity policies are communicated effectively to members of the institutional community and the public at large. The means for such communication may include seminars and other forms of public service or instructional programming and shall include notices to be posted or otherwise incorporated into institutional promotional materials. Such notices should clearly identify persons who are responsible for the implementation of equal opportunity policies and should advise readers or listeners of how they might contact the responsible institutional officials to obtain further information or to express their concerns about implementation of institutional policies.

Disability Services

Admission decisions are made without regard to disabilities. All prospective students are expected to present academic credentials at or above the minimum standards for admission and meet any technical standards that may be required for admission to a specific program. If you are a prospective student with a disability and need assistance or accommodations during the admission/application process, please contact the Director of Disability Services, Karen Gerety, The Commons, Room 116, USD, Vermillion, SD 57069.  Phone: 605-658-3745  Fax: 605-677-3172  E-Mail: disabilityservices@usd.edu.

Federal Law prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability (Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990), and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment Act of 2009. The University has designated Cheryl Tiahrt, Chief Information Officer, as the Coordinator to monitor compliance with these statutes. This obligates USD and Ms. Tiahrt to provide equal access for all persons with disabilities.     

Pre-Admission Immunization Requirements

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SDBOR Policy 2.2.1, Section 11.4

Any student entering a public or private postsecondary education institution in this state for the first time after July 1, 2008, shall, within forty-five (45) days after the start of classes, present to the appropriate institution certification from a licensed physician that the student has received or is in the process of receiving the required two doses of immunization against measles, rubella, and mumps. 

  1. Students born after 1956 must demonstrate immunity; those born prior to this date are excused.
  2. Students who are enrolled in a course that meets face-to-face at least once per week to receive instruction - are obliged to comply. This includes participation at all campuses, centers (including USD-Sioux Falls campus and Black Hills State University-Rapid City, formerly University Center-Rapid City), and miscellaneous off-campus sites.
  3. Students who have completed prior collegiate course work in the state of South Dakota (initiated prior to July 1, 2008) are excused from compliance. Note: distance course work, dual credit, and credit by exam/validation do not qualify.

As an alternative to the requirement for a physician’s certification, the student may present:

  1. Certification from a licensed physician stating the physical condition of the student would be such that immunization would endanger the student’s life or health 
  2. Certification from a licensed physician stating the student has experienced the natural disease against which the immunization protects 
  3. Confirmation from a laboratory of the presence of adequate immunity; or a written statement signed by the student that the student is an adherent to a religious doctrine whose teachings are opposed to such immunizations. If the student is under the age of eighteen, the written statement shall be signed by one parent or guardian.  

In the event of an outbreak, students who are granted waivers and exemptions will be excluded from campus. Exclusion procedures will be determined at the point of the outbreak and will adhere to the advice of the South Dakota State Department of Health.

Vaccination for hepatitis B, TDAP, Varicella, Influenza and Tuberculin testing is required for students before they can be admitted to certain health care programs.  Health Affairs Immunization policies can be found at https://www.usd.edu/shs under Immunizations. Additional information is located on page 2 of the Required Immunization Health History Form. This policy is also available on the SDBOR Policy 2.2.1, Section 11.4.

Immunization for tetanus, diphtheria, poliomyelitis, varicella, and meningitis is recommended, as is a tuberculin test. Vaccination for hepatitis B is also recommended, and an annual influenza vaccination is recommended for students living in residence halls to minimize disruption of routine activities during influenza outbreaks. 

A student allowed to register while completing the round of required vaccinations who fails to provide satisfactory documentation of his or her immune status or of a acceptable medical excuse shall not be permitted to attend classes after the forty-fifth (45th) day or, in the case of classes delivered in less than forty-five (45) days, to register for or to attend classes beginning in a subsequent term. 

Email usd.immunizations@sanfordhealth.org with any questions.

Housing

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During the first two years from the time they were or would have been graduated from high school, all unmarried students who enroll in six credit hours or more are required to enter into a housing agreement and designated meal plan for the specific living environment with the institution unless special permission to room or dine elsewhere is received from the institution. Permission ordinarily shall be granted to students with dependent children, to students who reside full time during the academic year with parents or legal guardians within 60 miles of the main campus, or students enrolled primarily at off campus locations. Students who have enrolled for twelve or more credits for four (4) semesters may be exempted from this agreement at the discretion of the institution. Institutions may also grant exemptions for students when residence hall occupancy exceeds manageable capacity.

Residence Halls and On-Campus Apartments

The University offers housing accommodations for 2,128 students in six residence halls and two apartment complexes. Each residence hall and apartment complex is under the supervision of a residence hall director and a staff of student resident assistants whose primary duty is to provide a community environment conducive to academic success and personal growth of students.

Room Applications

Applicants must be accepted to the University and have submitted their $100 housing deposit before they may apply for housing on campus. Room assignments are based on receipt of applications; applicants with the earliest contract signed dates will be assigned first.

Special lifestyle options are available to students who request them. Specific room and lifestyle assignments are arranged by date of application. Some of the special lifestyle options include coed and single-gender floors, living-learning communities (Honors, Global Leadership, Wiyuskinyan Unpi Tipi, Leaders of Social Change, and Sustainability, and ROTC.), gender inclusive options, and returning student floors. All residence halls and apartments are smoke-free. Students with specific medical needs should alert University Housing; accommodations can be made. All undergraduate students living in the residence halls are required to select a University meal plan, with the exception of students more than two years beyond their high school graduation date living in Coyote Village or McFadden.

The residence halls and apartments provide students with laundry facilities, and depending on the complex, a centralized desk area that is open for students who have questions or need assistance with their mail or any service that is provided during the day or night. In student rooms, wired and wireless internet are provided. Opportunities for employment are also available in the residence halls and apartments. Each complex and floor has a governing structure, and programmatic and policy recommendations are made by the Residence Hall Association, comprised of students living on-campus.