Sep 20, 2019  
NSU Catalog 2017-2018 
    
NSU Catalog 2017-2018 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Graduate Studies


Graduate Office

Spafford Hall, Room 204A
(605) 626-2558

Contact Graduate Studies Office

Master of Music Education

Northern State University awards a Master of Music Education degree.

Master of Science

Northern State University awards a Master of Science degree in the following programs:

Banking and Financial Services

Master of Science in Education

Northern State University awards a Master of Science in Education degree in the following programs:

Instructional Design in E-learning
Counseling
  (School and Clinical Mental Health)
Educational Studies
Leadership and Administration
Sport Performance and Leadership
Teaching and Learning

General Information

Descriptions of graduate programs are included in the program section of the catalog. Descriptions of graduate courses are included in the course description section of the catalog. 

The mission of NSU’s graduate program is to:

  • provide a climate in which candidates in graduate programs can expand their knowledge;
  • encourage development of critical and independent thinking skills;
  • enhance graduate students’ abilities to analyze problems objectively;
  • promote the investigation and interpretation current research;
  • provide a wide range of courses that will prepare graduate students for the demands of their professions; and
  • maintain flexible program guidelines to prepare graduate students for a wide range of employment opportunities.

Program Outcomes

Candidates in a graduate program will demonstrate:

  • an understanding of the formulation and application of research;
  • knowledge and application of theoretical concepts in the program area;
  • skills appropriate to the program area;
  • competency written, oral, and digital communication skills; and
  • evidence of the ability to reflect, synthesis, and apply theory to practice.

Governance

The Graduate Council develops policy, procedures, and programming for all graduate programs. Graduate Council is led by the Director of Graduate Studies, who presides over meetings of the Graduate Council. Each academic area offering a master’s degree has one representative on the Graduate Council. These representatives are appointed to the position by the dean of their respective schools/college for staggered three-year terms. In addition, one faculty representative from schools/college not offering graduate programs is appointed by the respective dean. A graduate student representative is elected by the Graduate Student Association. The Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs, the deans, and the registrar serve as ex-officio members.

Admission to Graduate Studies

Candidates wishing to enroll in course work for graduate credit, regardless of whether they intend to complete a degree program, must apply for admission to graduate study.

Non-degree Seeking Candidates

Non-degree seeking candidates must submit the following information to the Office of Graduate Studies:

  1. An application form for admission to graduate study.

  2. An official transcript of all college or university credits including both undergraduate and graduate credit (if applicable). Students who attended a South Dakota regental university (BHSU, DSU, NSU, SDSM&T, SDSU, USD) do not have to provide a transcript from that university.

  3. All candidates born after 1956 who receive instruction on-campus must document their immune status for measles, mumps, and rubella. Proof of two doses of measles, mumps and rubella vaccine or of separate vaccinations against all three diseases or of the presence of immune antibody titers against measles, mumps and rubella is required.

Degree Seeking Candidates

Degree seeking candidates must submit the following information to the Office of Graduate Studies:

  1. An application form for admission to graduate study.

  2. An official transcript of all college or university credits including both undergraduate and graduate credit (if applicable). Students who attended a South Dakota regental university (BHSU, DSU, NSU, SDSM&T, SDSU, USD) do not have to provide a transcript from that university.

  3. A $35.00 application fee. (Fee assessed on all applications to graduate school. Students will pay the fee multiple times if applying to multiple graduate schools. A student who switches institutions and/or drops out for more than three terms must reapply and pay the application fee.)

  4. Two letters of reference addressing the student’s potential for success in graduate study.

  5. All candidates born after 1956 who receive instruction on-campus must document their immune status for measles, mumps, and rubella. Proof of two doses of measles, mumps and rubella vaccine or of separate vaccinations against all three diseases or of the presence of immune antibody titers against measles, mumps and rubella is required.

Students must be admitted as candidates for the master’s degree as follows:

  • The minimum grade point average for admission to a master’s degree program is an overall 2.75 for bachelor’s degree work.

  • Students who do not meet the minimum GPA may be admitted if they have earned a GPA of 3.00 during the last 64 semester hours of bachelor’s degree work or a GPA of 3.25 in their major field of study.

  • Students who do not qualify on the basis of the baccalaureate grade point average may take the General Test of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). A minimum combined score of 800 is required for the verbal and quantitative sections of the GRE, and a 2.5 or greater is required for the analytical writing section to be admitted to a degree program. Information regarding the GRE is available from the Office of Graduate Studies.

  • Admission to the school administration program requires one year of full-time K-12 teaching experience in an accredited school.

*For additional program-specific admission requirements, please contact the Office of Graduate Studies.

Candidates wishing to pursue a master’s degree at Northern State University should indicate their intent upon admission to graduate study. The minimum grade point average for admission to a master’s degree program is an overall 2.75 for baccalaureate degree work. Candidates who do not meet the minimum GPA may be admitted if they have earned 1) a GPA of 3.0 during the last 64 semester hours of undergraduate credits or 2) a GPA of 3.25 in their undergraduate major or 3) a GPA of 3.25 in their last 12 credits of graduate work from a program leading to a degree at an accredited institution.

International Student Admission

In addition to the above requirements for admission to graduate study, international students must provide evidence of a minimum score of 550 on the paper-based of the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language); or a minimum score of 79 on the Internet-based TOEFL test; or a minimum score of 6 on the IELTS test (International English Language Testing System); or evidence of satisfactory completion of the Northern State University Advanced Intensive English Program (IEP) for TOEFL score of 71-78 or IELTS score of 5.5.

Academically eligible students enrolling in the Northern State University Intensive English Program (IEP) will be granted provisional admittance into a Northern State University graduate program. The Graduate Council and/or the Director of Graduate Studies may approve international student admittance without the Northern State University English language requirement on a case by case basis.

International students must provide evidence of their ability to finance a program of study without assistance from Northern State University. International students are also required to purchase a South Dakota Board of Regents  medical insurance policy, proof of which must be provided before registering. The insurance requirement applies to the student, her or his spouse and any other accompanying dependents.

Provisional Admission

Candidates unable to meet the requirements for admission to a degree program may apply for provisional admission. Candidates completing a minimum of six graduate credit hours at Northern State University, with a minimum GPA of 3.00, may request a change in status to a degree program. However, only nine credits may be applied toward a degree program at a later date.

Non-Degree Admission

Candidates who intend to complete graduate credit for professional growth or certification purposes may be admitted on a non-degree basis. They may later request a change in status to a degree program. Non-degree students may transfer a maximum of nine credit hours to the degree program.

Undergraduate Students

Undergraduate students who have completed a minimum of 96 credit hours may request permission from the Office of the Registrar to enroll in 500-  and 600-level courses for graduate credit. To enroll in graduate credit, undergraduates must have a grade point average of 2.75 or higher. Course work taken for graduate credit will not apply toward the baccalaureate degree.

Former Students

As per Board of Regents Policy 5:5:4, a student who switches institutions and/or drops out for more than three terms must reapply and pay the application fee. The student will be assigned to the catalog in effect for the student’s program at the time of readmission.

Immunization Policy

All students born after 1956 who receive instruction on one of the residential campuses must document their immune status for measles, mumps, and rubella. Proof of two doses of measles, mumps and rubella vaccine or of separate vaccinations against all three diseases or of the presence of immune antibody titers against measles, mumps and rubella is required.

Application for Candidacy

Candidates intending to complete a degree program must apply for candidacy, and in the School of Education, a graduate committee must also be identified. A graduate committee consists of a committee chair, a second and a third committee member.

Candidacy Review

It is the responsibility of the candidate and his or her committee chair to discuss the projected plan of study, as well as the request for transfer credits, during their first term of enrollment. A maximum of nine semester hours of graduate credit may be transferred from other approved colleges or universities (see Transfer of Credit). The appropriate College/School Dean will review the request for transfer credits and, upon approval, the forms will be placed on file in the Office of Graduates Studies.

Candidates must complete the course requirements indicated on the projected plan of study within a six year period (see Validation of Credit). Any changes to the projected plan of study must be approved by the candidate’s committee chair and the appropriate College/School Dean.

Application for Graduation

Candidates should apply for graduation no later than eight weeks before the end of their final semester. Candidates will receive their diplomas after all requirements have been met.

Academic Requirements

All graduate candidates are required to maintain good academic standing with a cumulative 3.00 grade point average, as well as a 3.00 grade point average in their approved plan of study. If a candidate’s cumulative grade point average falls below 3.00 in any academic term (i.e., fall, spring, summer), the candidate will be placed on academic probation the following term. While on academic probation, the candidate must earn a term grade point average of 3.00 or higher. When the candidate on academic probation achieves a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 or higher, the candidate returns to good academic standing. Candidates must be in good academic standing to enroll in a practicum, internship, or culminating experience.

A candidate on academic probation who fails to maintain a term grade point average of 3.00 will be placed on academic suspension for a minimum of two academic terms. Following the two term suspension, candidates may apply for reinstatement by seeking the approval of the appropriate school/college dean. If approval is granted, the candidate must complete a re-entry form in the Office of Graduate Studies.

Grade Point Average

The graduate grade point average (GPA) is computed by dividing the total number of grade points earned by the total number of credit hours that a candidate has taken. Candidates must maintain a cumulative minimum grade point average of 3.00 as well as a 3.00 grade point average in their approved plan of study. Grades below “C” will not count toward graduation.

Incomplete Grades

The deadline for removal of a grade of “Incomplete” or “I” for course work is one calendar year from the end of the semester in which the incomplete was issued.

Course Numbering

500-599   Entry level graduate (may be dual listed with a 400-level undergraduate course)

600-699   Graduate level (undergraduate enrollment only by exception)

700-799   Graduate level (graduate candidates only)

800-899   Doctoral and post-doctoral level (Doctoral and post-doctoral candidates only)

700-Level Course Requirement

A minimum of one-half of the credit hours in any graduate program must be at the 700 level. Exceptions must be approved by the appropriate College/School Dean.

Graduate Grades

Graduate grades will be assigned to the Graduate Academic Level and to all courses and sections with course numbers of 500 or greater. Plus and minus grades are not used.

A Exceptional 4.00 grade points per semester hour
B Good 3.00 grade points per semester hour
C Average 2.00 grade points per semester hour
D Unsatisfactory 1.00 grade points per semester hour
F Failure 0.00 grade points per semester hour
S Satisfactory Does not calculate into any gpa
U Unsatisfactory Does not calculate into any gpa
W Withdrawal Does not calculate into any gpa, no credit granted
AU Audit Does not calculate into any gpa
I Incomplete Does not calculate into any gpa
IP In Progress Does not calculate into any gpa
NG No Grade 0 credit tracking course
NP Normal Progress Does not calculate into any gpa
NR Grade not Reported by Instructor Does not calculate into any gpa
EX Credit by Exam Does not calculate into any gpa
CR Credit Does not calculate into any gpa
TR Note for NSE/MEDT Does not calculate into any gpa, no credit granted
LR Lab grade linked to Recitation Grade 0 credit course

An audit (AU) grade may be granted only when the student has elected the AU option on or prior to the census date of the term.

A credit (CR) grade may be granted only for non-course credit that is not related to an examination or to equating transfer grades to the BOR grading system. This grade is not used for any Regental university course.

An examination for credit (EX) grade may be granted only for non-course credit validation obtained through a validation process. This grade is not used for any Regental university course.

An incomplete (I) grade may be granted only when all of the following conditions apply:

  1. A student has encountered extenuating circumstances that do not permit him/her to complete the course.

  2. The student must be earning a passing grade at the time the Incomplete is necessitated. Anticipated course failure is not a justification for an incomplete.

  3. The student does not have to repeat the course to meet the requirements.

  4. The instructor must agree to grant an incomplete grade.

  5. The instructor and student must agree on a plan to complete the coursework.

  6. The coursework must be completed within one calendar year; extensions may be granted by the Director of Graduate Studies.

  7. If the student completes the course within the specified time, the grades that may be assigned are A, B, C, D, F, S, or U.

  8. If the student does not complete the course within the specified time, the Incomplete grades remains on the transcript.

An in progress (IP) grade may be granted only when all of the following conditions apply:

  1. The requirements for the course (for every student enrolled in the course) extend beyond the current term.

  2. The extension beyond the current term must be defined before class begins.

  3. The instructor must request permission to award IP grades for a course from their Department Head and Dean, and then approval must be obtained from the Vice President for Academic Affairs.

  4. A definite date for completion of the course must be established in the course syllabus.

A grade of NG will be used only with those course sections that are designated as Tracking/Program Sustaining (Q) and those that are assigned the code for Master’s Research Problems/Projects Sustaining, Thesis Sustaining, or Dissertation Sustaining (U).

A normal progress (NP) grade may be granted by an instructor when the instructor determines that a graduate student is making normal progress in a graduate Thesis/Dissertation course. If a graduate student does not enroll for a period of one calendar year, the NP grade may change to I (Incomplete) upon approval by the Director of Graduate Studies. The NP grade calculates into attempted credits but does not calculate into completed credits or grade point averages.

A Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U) grade may be granted only when the entire course requires the S/U grade or the student has elected the S/U option on or prior to the census date of the term.

NSU must record the last date of academic activity whenever reporting a final grade of F, U, or RU.  Academically related activities include but are not limited to:

  • physically attending a class where there is an opportunity for direct interaction between the instructor and students;
  • submitting an academic assignment;
  • taking an exam, an interactive tutorial or computer-assisted instruction;
  • attending a study group that is assigned by the school;
  • participating in an online discussion about academic matters; or
  • initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a question about the academic subject studied in the course.

Time Limits

All degree work must be completed within a period of six years (e.g., course work completed during 2011 is valid until December 31, 2017).

Transfer of Credit

A maximum of nine (9) hours of graduate credit may be transferred from other approved colleges or universities; programs requiring more than 48 credit hours may allow a maximum of 12 transfer credits. All transfer credit must carry a minimum grade of “B” and must meet the same criteria as graduate credit issued by Northern State University.

To receive consideration for graduate work completed elsewhere, candidates must submit official transcripts verifying the credits. A maximum of three workshop credits may be transferred into a graduate program; these workshop credits count toward the maximum number of credits allowed for transfer.

Acceptance of transfer credit is contingent upon the approval of the graduate committee and the appropriate College/School Dean. The request for transfer credits must be made during the first term of enrollment.

Validation of Credit

Course work taken more than six years prior to the completion of the degree is considered outdated. A maximum of six credits of outdated course work may be applied to the master’s degree if the course is repeated or if the credits are validated.

Approval to validate credit must be obtained from the candidate’s graduate committee and the appropriate College/School Dean. Course work may be validated by an oral or written examination, or the equivalent; the graduate committee and the appropriate College/School Dean will appoint a faculty member qualified to administer the exam.

Upon successful completion of the exam, a validation form must be signed by the faculty member administering the exam, the committee chair, and the appropriate College/School Dean. In the event the candidate’s committee chair is administering the exam, another committee member will sign the validation form. The validation form must be filed in the Office of Graduate Studies; a $20.00 fee is assessed for each course validation.

Credit Load

The maximum credit load during one semester is twelve (12) credit hours. The maximum graduate credit load during a five-week summer term is six credit hours; no more than 12 credit hours may be completed during an ten-week summer term. Any exceptions must be approved by the appropriate College/School Dean.

Graduate candidates enrolled in nine (9) credit hours are considered to be full-time students; graduate candidates enrolled in 4.5 credit hours are considered to be half-time students; graduate candidates enrolled in one to three credit hours are considered to be part-time students. Graduate candidates must be enrolled in a minimum of six (6) graduate credits to be eligible for graduate assistantships; graduate assistants may enroll in no more than 12 credits each semester.

Workshop Credit

No more than three (3) graduate credit hours in any graduate program can be workshop credits. Workshop courses at the graduate level are numbered 593, 693, 793, or 893.

Course Retakes/Repeated Enrollment in the Same Course

Candidates are allowed one retake for graduate courses; credit is counted toward graduation only once. Candidates must petition the appropriate College/School Dean for permission to take a graduate course more than two times. When a student repeats a course, only the latter grade, even if it is a lower grade, is used in the computation of the grade point average. If the last grade is a failing grade, earlier will be lost as well. All grades remain on the transcript.

Candidates are allowed unlimited takes for a graduate course for which credit toward graduation may be received more than once (e.g., independent study). All takes count in grade point average calculations. Programs may limit the number of credits allowed toward graduation in certain courses.

The audit (AU) grade is the only grade that will not be counted as a take of a course. All other grades, including Withdraw (W), will count as takes; transfer courses and non-courses (e.g., CLEP, credit by exam) also count as takes.

Second Master’s Degree

Individuals who have earned a master’s degree may seek a master’s degree in another program area. If the first degree was not awarded by Northern State University, the student should apply as stated under Admission to Graduate Studies. If Northern State University awarded the first master’s degree, the student should contact the Office of Graduate Studies.

A second master’s degree in Counseling, Leadership and Administration, Sport Performance and Leadership, Teaching and Learning, Educational Studies or E-learning requires appointment of a graduate committee and application for candidacy. No more than nine (9) credit hours can be applied from the first master’s degree toward a second master’s degree.

Financial Assistance

Students must be accepted fro admission and enrolled at least half-time in a graduate degree program in order to qualify for federal financial assistance.

Perkins Loans, Direct Stafford Loans, Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loans, TEACH Grants and Federal Work-Study are available for qualified graduate candidates. Work-study positions are paid on an hourly basis and do not include tuition remission.

For detailed information regarding financial aid programs, application procedures, and deadlines, contact the Office of Financial Aid at finaid@northern.edu or phone (605) 626-2640.

Scholarships

Five scholarships in the amount of $1,000 are awarded annually to new and continuing graduate candidates. The Bob Lehr Scholarship is also available to Leadership and Administration graduate candidates. While the priority application deadline is July 1, applications for graduate scholarships are accepted until all available scholarships are awarded. Scholarship applications are available on the NSU Graduate Studies website (www.northern.edu/graduate/Documents/scholarshipapp.pdf). For further information, contact the Office of Graduate Studies.

Graduate Assistantships

A limited number of graduate assistantships are awarded annually. Graduate assistants receive a stipend plus reduced tuition, which includes waiver of non-resident tuition. Both the reduced tuition and non-resident tuition waiver are effective throughout the academic year (i.e., fall, spring, summer) provided the candidate maintains a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or higher.

Graduate assistants have a work load of approximately 20 hours per week. Individuals employed as graduate assistants may not hold other employment on campus.

While the priority application deadline is March 1, applications for graduate assistantships are accepted until all positions are filled. For additional information or to apply for a graduate assistantship, contact the Office of Graduate Studies.

Appeal Process

Graduate candidates who feel they have been aggrieved by a decision or an action of a Northern State University graduate faculty member relating to class absences, grades, alleged academic dishonesty, plagiarism, or classroom behavior disorders, shall follow the procedure outlined below if they wish to bring their grievances to a resolution.

  1. The candidate shall first attempt an informal resolution between the candidate and graduate faculty member. Failing resolution at this level, the student should file a written complaint to include the desired outcome with the faculty member involved within ten (10) school days after the alleged grievance. The faculty member must respond in writing within ten (10) school days after the written grievance has been filed. Copies of both the written complaint and the faculty response should be filed in the Office of Graduate Studies.

  2. If the grievance is not resolved at step A, the Director of Graduate Studies will meet with the graduate candidate and graduate faculty member to attempt a resolution. Failing resolution at this step, the graduate candidate may submit a written complaint and request for resolution to the Graduate Council. A meeting of Graduate Council will be called. The candidate and the member of graduate faculty will be allocated time to speak to Graduate Council. Each may provide written material if desired. Members of Graduate Council may ask relevant questions of the faculty member and the candidate. Upon completion of the discussion, the Graduate Council will meet to determine the resolution of the complaint. Copies of the decision will be given in writing to the faculty member and the graduate candidate.

  3. A graduate candidate not satisfied with the resolution at step B of the above procedure may initiate an appeal to the Academic Grievance Committee as outlined in the student handbook beginning on step C.

Commencement

Commencement is a ceremonial exercise. Commencement gives candidates the opportunity to be recognized for their accomplishments by their families, friends, and the university community. The conferring of academic degrees is a tradition that dates back to the 12th century and is regarded as an important rite of passage for candidates and their families. While commencement is a time for celebration, please remember this long and respected tradition and approach the ceremony with the proper decorum and respect. In the spirit of this long tradition, candidates will be expected to march in the proper academic attire.

The apparel worn by candidates receiving a master’s degree is different that the apparel worn by students receiving a bachelor’s degree. Candidates may obtain the proper academic regalia at the NSU Wolf Shoppe.

For additional information, contact
Office of Graduate Studies
Northern State University
Aberdeen, South Dakota 57401
(605) 626-2558; FAX (605) 626-7190