General Student Information
The Division of Student Affairs is committed to the healthy growth and development of the individual student in and out of the traditional classroom setting and to advancing the academic mission of the university. The division seeks to stimulate thoughtful development of a personal value system, leadership skills and life goals, and an awareness and appreciation of diversity. It also seeks to foster a learning community culminating in students emerging from university life as mature, responsible, successful leaders and contributing members of an ever-changing global society.
Student Rights and Responsibilities
The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities strives to inspire students to achieve their personal and educational goals, embrace intuitional values, and display respect for all members and guests of the university. The OSRR adheres to an efficient, fair, and ethical student conduct process. It also helps students better understand university policies and procedures, and promotes a campus atmosphere of progressive personal, social and educational growth. Students are expected to be familiar with these campus policies. Please consult the Student Handbook to find this information.
Questions or comments about policies at Northern State University may be discussed with the Dean of Students or the Director of Student Rights and Responsibilities.
Residence Hall Living
Costs for the resident halls are listed the admission website.
Northern State University and the Office of Residence Life are committed to serving you by creating a safe, healthy, and culturally sensitive living environment conducive to learning. The professional staff, resident assistants, along with our talented student leaders want to provide each resident with a dynamic experience to life on campus!
Whether you are a new or returning student our staff is confident that you will establish more interpersonal interactions with other students while living on campus. These opportunities will assist you with enhancing your overall social and academic experience.
Students are able to sign up for a wide variety of on-campus living accommodations to suit the need of every person. The Office of Residence Life boasts its ability to create fun and impactful experiences for their residents and communities.
NSU offer seven residence halls, each one offering a unique and exciting living opportunity for residents:
- Briscoe Hall is our three-story co-ed traditional hall. The women are housed on the first and second floor with men being housed on the third floor. Each bedroom features two (2) bunked beds, two (2) desks, a large closet and dressers. The third floor is also home to the music room, featuring two (2) keyboards, three (3) computers and a table with chairs for residents to work together. The first floor houses a kitchen, and the second floor houses the popular lounge where residents are often found relaxing, watching movies, or playing video games.
- Great Plains East, opening August 2018, is Northern’s first pod-style living arrangements. Each pod provides a living space, community bathroom and private bathroom for residents. Inside each bedroom comes with beds, desks, and wardrobes. Each pod is single-sex and holds up to 16 residents for optimal living and learning arrangements. Great Plains East houses a TRiO-Pod and the Honors-Pod. Inside of Great Plains East is open lounges with fireplaces and the P.O.D. Store featuring Papa John’s.
- Great Plains West, opening August 2018, is a suite-style hall featuring full suites and semi-suites. Full suites come furnished with seating in the living room. Each room has a wardrobe, two (2) desks, and bunkable beds. Residents can enjoy also enjoy Northern’s only game-cleaning room for hunting enthusiasts. Each floor houses lounges with study rooms and community gathering lounges.
- Kramer Hall is a three story suite-style hall offering full suites and semi-suites to fit the needs of all residents. Rooms come with beds, desks and wardrobes. Kramer has a lounge on each floor including a sitting area, TV area, and a kitchen. All Kramer residents also receive a microfridge. Kramer was renovated in 2010 and features earth-tone painted walls, creating a comfortable and cozy atmosphere for anyone to enjoy.
- McArthur-Welsh Hall, frequently referred to as McWelsh, is a four-story co-ed traditional style hall. The men are housed on the first and third floor, with women housed on the second and fourth floor. Each room has two (2) bunked beds, two (2) dressers, two (2) desks, and a large closet. Each floor has a lounge with seating areas and a TV; with a kitchen on the second, third, and fourth floor. Each floor shares a community bathroom. The first floor has a pool table that is frequently enjoyed by residents. McWelsh hosts the Education-LLC and special LLC lounge.
- Steele Hall, named after Dr. N.E. Steele, a lifelong educator in the State of South Dakota, is a three story suite-style hall offering full suites. Full suites come furnished with a couch, chairs and a table in the living room. Rooms have two (2) beds, a wardrobe and two (2) desks. Steele suites also offer microfridges for residents. The first and second floor hold a lounge with a kitchen and TV for viewing. Steele is located on the corner of Washington and 15th Avenue, putting in a prime spot to get to the library or Student Center at any time.
- Wolves Memorial Suites, opened August 2017, is a three story full suite and semi-suite building. Full suites are furnished with a couch and chair and each room’s furniture can be moved around the room to fit the resident’s wants. Furniture included in rooms is a wardrobe, desks, and bunkable beds. Each floor has an open lounge with oversized windows, giving the optimal amount of natural light to residents. Each floor also has a kitchen, TV, a laundry room, and quiet coves for studying.
All students required to live in a residence hall must purchase a meal plan. Students who live in a residence hall by choice are not required to choose a meal plan. Should a student want a meal plan exemption a student must secure a meal plan exemption form from the Residence Life Office and present the completed form to the Housing and Food Service Exemption Committee. A formal appeal process to the Director of Residence Life is available if a student is denied.
Students may purchase their meals at the Wolves Den, Einstein Bros Bagels or the Northern Express C-store on a cash, flex dollar or meal plan basis. All meal plans are paid for in advance.
Student Health Services
The Health Services Office is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday when classes are in session. Staffed by Physician Assistants, it is open to students who have paid the General Activities Fee. Please note, the office is not open in the summer. Health Services is for the assessment and treatment of acute or sudden illnesses or injuries. The Health Services Office is located in the Avera Student Center, Room 230. Phone: (605) 626-7694.
Disability Services provides support and advocacy for students with disabilities, and is committed to a program of accessibility. A wide range of services are provided for students with learning disabilities, visual impairments, hearing impairments, traumatic brain injuries, mobility issues, and other disabilities. Disability Services in located in the Avera Student Center, Room 240.
The Avera Student Center is the community center for Northern State University students, faculty, administration and guests. It offers a variety of services, conveniences and amenities and provides a place for activities outside the classroom. The Avera Student Center is open Monday through Friday until 11 p.m. and 10 p.m. on weekends during the regular academic year except during holidays and extended breaks. For more information call (605) 626-3007.
NSU Wolf Shoppe and Post Office
Located at the west end of the Avera Student Center, the NSU Wolf Shoppe carries leisure and recreational items, clothing and sundries, instructional supplies as well as books for extracurricular reading. Phone: (605) 626-2655.
The post office is also located in the NSU Student Center, near the NSU Wolf Shoppe. It offers many, but not all, postal services. All students living on campus are required to have a campus post office box. Boxes are located in Northern State University Post Office. Cost of this service is included in the regular fees. Phone: (605) 626-2656.
The Northern State University Counseling Center is staffed by trained counselors and graduate assistants who can help students with a variety of concerns. Students may schedule appointments or drop in. All conversations are held in strict confidence. Services include personal counseling, chemical dependency counseling and group counseling. Group session topics include: test anxiety, holistic health, assertiveness, relationships, eating disorders, sexual assault, chemical health issues, adult children of alcoholics and other requested topics. All services are offered to students free of charge. Phone: (605) 626-2371.
Multicultural Student Affairs
Multicultural Student Affairs provides leadership and direction for the development of education, cultural, and social programs that enhance intercultural understanding. The office partners with student organizations, academic departments, administrative offices, and community groups to educate the Northern community on the importance of diversity within the context of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, physical and mental ability, religion, culture, and age. Phone: (605) 626-3007
International Student Services
The Office of International Student Affairs is located in Lincoln Hall, Room 206. The staff is available to help international students with admissions, adapting to the United States culture, academic adjustments; visa questions and work related concerns.
Northern State University has an active International Student Club that provides academic and social support to international students attending the university. Lincoln Hall, Room 206. Phone: (605) 626-7802
Northern State University offers a wide variety of events, programs and activities sponsored by the Campus Activities Board (CAB) and other student groups and organizations. There are over 45 active student clubs and organizations.
CAB sponsors social, cultural, educational and recreational activities including dances, entertainers, films, forums, and special events. Most activities are free with a student ID.
Northern State University’s annual Homecoming Committee works year-around to plan what has become a highlight for students, faculty, staff, alumni and area residents. NSU Student Center. Phone: (605) 626-3007
Orientation. New Student Orientation provides programming prior to and during the fall and spring semesters to facilitate students’ successful transition to college life at Northern State University. Programs include HOWL and Wolf Pack Welcome. They are designed to address academic, social, and wellness issues of college students. Students have the opportunity to meet and interact with faculty, staff, orientation leaders, and other incoming students.
Publications. Student publications include the Exponent, the campus newspaper, which reports activities and student opinion. The Student Handbook provides information about services, policies, procedures and regulations. The monthly activities calendars highlight student activities and events throughout the fall semester.
Speech Communication. Northern State University offers forensic opportunities including competition on local, state and national levels in debate, extemporaneous speaking, oratory, and oral interpretation. Students may gain experience in tournament administration and judging at Northern State University-sponsored high school forensic meets.
Theater. Students gain practical experience in acting, costuming, make-up, scenery construction and lighting at Northern State University’s Johnson Fine Arts Center, the most complete theater facility in the region. A typical season includes three major productions, including a musical and student-directed productions. Students in every major field of study may become involved in theater as part of their academic program or as a special interest.
Music. Performing ensembles are open to every Northern State University student, whatever her or his major field of study. Ensembles include the Concert Choir, Chamber Singers, Orchestra, Marching Band, Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble, Vocal Jazz Ensemble and small vocal and instrumental ensembles. They may be taken for academic credit. Some of these performance ensembles tour in- and out-of-state.
Intramural Sports and Wellness Center. Northern State University has a comprehensive intramural program that offers team and individual activities during the evening in the fall, winter and spring. Students may participate in men-only, women-only, and coeducational activities. The Center is accessible with a student ID seven days a week.
Service Opportunities. Students can participate in service opportunities through the classroom, organizations, residence halls, Alternative Breaks, Pack Gives Back, and the MLK Jr. Day of Service and Leadership. Students serve alongside community agencies and learn about issues locally, regionally, nationally, and globally.
Cheer Team. Football cheer team tryouts are held in the spring of the year preceding the fall of the competition year. Basketball tryouts are held in the fall before winter competition. Women and men students may participate.
Intercollegiate Athletics. Northern State University has a proud athletic tradition that emphasizes a strong competitive effort along with recognition of the educational value of the experience. Northern offers a broad-based athletics program, sponsoring 15 NCAA Division II intercollegiate varsity sports that compete in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC). For more information, visit athletics website. Northern competes in 15 varsity sports. A scholarship program supports both men’s and women’s programs. Awards are made to deserving athletes by the coaches of the sport.
Degree seeking Northern State University students may study abroad through arrangements entered into by the University including exchange agreements, consortium, and service providers. There are 150 destinations for Short Term, Summer, Semester and Yearlong opportunities. Although Northern State University recommends that students study abroad for a semester or an academic year, it is possible to enroll for a shorter period of time. There are also opportunities for students to study abroad with Northern faculty as part of short-term faculty-led trips. Northern credit can be earned during these experiences. To participate in a global education program, a student must meet the following requirements:
- A cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher
- Completed at least 30 credit hours at NSU
- A history of good conduct at the university
Faculty-led programs have individual requirements. Please check with program faculty or the Director of International Programs.
For more information go to study abroad programs or email.
Northern State University students and faculty may participate in the following programs for credit through exchange partnerships and consortium agreements.
Northern State University has articulation agreements or memorandums of understanding with the following institutions:
Co-curricular activities may be taken for credit toward graduation or for enjoyment. The usual tuition will be charged for those taken for credit. The number of credits granted for a particular activity is listed in sections of this catalog relating to the various college/schools.
As custodians of student records in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, Northern State University assumes the obligation to ensure full protection of student records. Student records maintained by Northern State University include directory information and educational records. Student records are identified and accessed by student identification number.
Directory information is information not generally considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if disclosed. NSU follows BOR policy regarding the release of directory information. The following has been defined as directory information at NSU and can be released without the student’s written permission:
- Grade level (undergraduate or graduate)
- Academic honors/achievements
A student may request that directory information not be made public by completing a non-disclosure form in the Registrar’s Office asking that directory information be treated the same as educational records. While such a signed form is in effect, NSU will verify only whether or not a student is currently enrolled. This request remains in effect until negated in writing to the Registrar.
Educational records are those records, files, documents, and other materials which contain information directly related to a student’s academic progress, financial status, medical condition, etc. Educational records may not be released to any third party, except those included under FERPA, without the written consent of the student.
The University discloses education records without a student’s prior written consent under the FERPA exception for disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff); a person or company with whom the University has contracted as its agent to provide a service instead of using University employees or officials (such as an attorney, auditor, or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Trustees; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks.
Students may change information on their record if they can prove it is inaccurate. Grade changes are made at the request of the faculty member who gave the original grade and with the approval of the faculty chair.
Student records, including admission records, are maintained under the supervision of the Vice President for Student Affairs. Academic records are maintained under the supervision of the Registrar. A complete copy of the NSU Privacy Act Policies and Procedures is available on the NSU website.
Standards of Conduct
- Failure to respect orderliness, morality, integrity and the rights of others, or insubordination toward university officials in the execution of their duties will be regarded as cause for disciplinary probation or expulsion from the institution.
- A Northern State University student who is arrested and convicted of a law violation may be subject to disciplinary action.
- A student who fails to pay a fee owed to the institution may be suspended until payment is made. A student who leaves Northern State University without paying debts in full will be denied a transcript of grades and/or refused future registration.
- A student who furnishes false or misleading information on admission, registration, personnel, or any other form, or who alters institution records, is subject to disciplinary action.
- The use or possession of intoxicating liquors, other alcoholic beverages or alcoholic beverage containers is prohibited on university-owned or university-controlled property as well as in institution-owned or institution controlled buildings. Being in an area where alcoholic beverages or alcohol beverage containers are present is also a violation of policy.
- Dishonesty in class, laboratory work, or tests is a serious offense, subject to disciplinary action by the instructor and/ or authorized representative of the institution.
- Plagiarism is presenting as your own the facts, theories, or language, either quoted or paraphrased, of another. Instructors at Northern State University expect any writing by students to be their own work. Other writers’ facts, theories, or language incorporated into student work must be properly acknowledged or documented according to a standard guide to documentation; otherwise, the student is guilty of plagiarism. Penalty for submitting plagiarized work will be determined by the faculty member involved and may be dismissal from the institution, a failing grade in a course, or a failing grade on an assignment.
- Violation of any residence hall rule or regulation which endangers or seriously threatens the life or physical safety of others, leads to destructive group action, or results in difficulties with law enforcement authorities will result in disciplinary action. Other situations that will result in disciplinary action include not obeying the laws of the community, state and/or nation, participation in illegal possession or use of any drug or narcotic, committing a sexual offense, lack of respect for public and private property, refusal to cooperate with efforts made to help a student adjust to college responsibilities and behavior which discredits the school.
- Registration at Northern State University implies acceptance by the students of standards set by the institution and the laws and ordinances established by the city of Aberdeen and state of South Dakota.
A more complete listing of rules and regulations may be found in the Student Handbook and Residence Life Guide.
Northern State University authorities have the right to regulate the use of the institutional facilities and to set standards of conduct and scholarship for its students. When disciplinary proceedings must be used, safeguards will be observed to protect the student from unfair penalties, as stated in the Student Handbook and Residence Life Guide.