Jul 01, 2022  
2009-2010 Graduate Catalog 
2009-2010 Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

About USD

President - James W. Abbott
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs - Chuck Staben
Dean of Graduate Education - Laurie Becvar

The University of South Dakota is the “flagship” university in the state’s higher education system and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools to offer Master’s, Specialist, and Doctoral degree programs. The University of South Dakota has the largest graduate school in the state and is classified nationally in the “Doctoral/Research Universities” category by the Carnegie Foundation. The University is governed by the South Dakota Board of Regents and is supported by appropriations from the state government, student fees, research grants, gifts from alumni and friends, corporations, and federal assistance.

Having received its authorization from the first territorial legislature in 1862, The University of South Dakota is the oldest public institution of higher learning in the Dakotas. Approximately 9,300 students enroll each semester with The University. The home campus is located in the city of Vermillion in the southeastern corner of the state, a short distance from the Missouri River. Vermillion is a community with a population of about 10,000 and is reasonably close to larger cities such as Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Sioux City, Iowa, both of which are served by major airlines.

The University is divided into the following colleges and schools: College of Arts and Sciences, Beacom School of Business, School of Education, College of Fine Arts, School of Health Science, Graduate School, School of Law, and the Sanford School of Medicine. Off-campus courses and programs are offered through the Division of Continuing and Distance Education. The University academic year is divided into two semesters of approximately sixteen weeks each and summer sessions of varying lengths. Some graduate programs may be completed by attending summer sessions and many graduate programs are available online and off-campus.


As the flagship university in the South Dakota system of public higher education, The University of South Dakota’s mission is to provide undergraduate and graduate education in the liberal arts and sciences; professional education in business, education, fine arts, law, and medicine; and research and service to the state, region, and nation. The University promotes excellence in teaching and learning, research and creative scholarship, and engagement.*

*South Dakota Board of Regents Policy 1:10:1 legally defines the mission of the University

University and Program Accreditations

The University of South Dakota has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools since 1913(www.ncahigherlearningcommission.org). The University is an active member of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the Council of Graduate Schools, and many other educational organizations.

Individual schools, departments, and programs have received additional accreditations from their appropriate professional organizations. These school/departments, their accrediting agencies, and dates of their initial accreditation are shared below: (Note: not all of these are graduate programs)

The University of South Dakota
  Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (HLC) 1913 (www.ncahigherlearningcommission.org)
School of Business
  Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB) 1949
School of Education
  National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) 1956
School of Law
  Council on the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar of the American Bar Association (ABA) 1923
School of Medicine
  Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) 1929
Office of Human Subjects Protection
  Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs (AAHRPP) 2005
Alcohol and Drug Abuse Studies
  International Coalition of Addiction Studies Educators (INCASE) 2006
  National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) 1979
Center for Disabilities
  Administration for Developmental Disabilities (ADD) 1971
  American Chemical Society (ACS) 1941
Communications Disorders
  Council on Academic Accreditation of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) 1974
Counseling and Psychology in Education
  Council for Accreditation of Counseling & Related Educational Programs (CACREP) 1993
  National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) 2000
  Commission on Accreditation of Counseling
Dental Hygiene
  Dental Auxiliary Educational Programs of the American Dental Association (ADA) 1969
Health Services Administration
  Association of University Programs in Health Administration (AUPHA) 1998
Contemporary Media and Journalism
  Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism & Mass Communication (ACEJMC) 1997
  National Association of School of Music (NASM) 1956
National Music Museum
  American Association of Museums (AAM) 1980
  National League of Nursing (NLN) 1976
Occupational Therapy
  Accrediting Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) 1993
Physical Therapy
  Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE) 1993
Physician Assistant Studies
  Accreditation Review Commission on Education for Physician Assistants (ARC-PA) 1995
Clinical Psychology
  American Psychological Association (APA) 1971
Public Administration
  National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) 1983
Social Work
  Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) 1974
  National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST) 1991