2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog 
    Sep 24, 2023  
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Online, Off-Campus, Distance & Non-Credit Programs

South Dakota State University is committed to providing access to rich academic experiences which enhance the quality of life in South Dakota, the region, the nation, and the world.  With that SDSU has a long tradition, and responsibility for, delivering education to citizens near and far through credit courses, non-credit professional development, short courses, and workshops at off-campus locations and online. 

The Office of Continuing and Distance Education works to broaden the reach of SDSU, with a commitment to providing quality education no matter where students reside. The office serves students on campus and across the globe through a variety of fully online courses and programs. In addition to online education, the Office of Continuing and Distance Education coordinates the program offerings at off-campus locations in Aberdeen, Pierre, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls.

Academic Credit Programs

Academic standards and policies governing off-campus and online courses are identical to the on-campus instructional program. Hence, credit course offerings, instruction and academic standards are the responsibilities of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, College Deans, Department Heads, and School Directors. There are outreach locations throughout South Dakota where credit courses are presented each semester and many courses are available through online education. Additional locations are added as needed.

Off-Campus Centers

SDSU, in partnership with the other SD Board of Regents institutions, offers advising and support services, courses and programs at two off-campus centers across South Dakota: Black Hills State University – Rapid City and Community College for Sioux Falls.  SDSU’s College of Nursing provides academic programming in Aberdeen, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls and the College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions provides academic offerings in Rapid City and Sioux Falls. For more information regarding offerings at the off-campus centers and locations, please visit the Continuing and Distance Education website.

Online Education

South Dakota State University offers undergraduate and graduate courses and programs online. SDSU offers Internet-based courses and programs for students needing a more flexible schedule, yet a rigorous and quality educational experience. Online courses are taught by the same SDSU faculty and are similar to on-campus courses in quality and rigor. Students receive the same credit for completing an online course as they would for an on-campus course. Based upon more than 80 years of effective off-campus education, SDSU is committed to serving:

  • Working adults
  • Part-time students
  • Time- and place-bound individuals
  • K-12 students, teachers and administrators
  • Employees seeking career development skills
  • Government and military personnel
  • Persons with disabilities

For more information regarding SDSU’s online education opportunities call toll free at 866-827-3198, or go to the Continuing and Distance Education website.

Students enrolling in online courses may incur additional costs associated with online learning; such as, but not limited to, test proctoring and technology (software/hardware).

Summer Term

SDSU offers a wide range of courses on and off-campus to continue your studies during the summer months as well as numerous special workshops, short courses, distance education classes, evening offerings and non-credit programs. Summer programming is offered May through August and is characterized by innovation and responsiveness to your needs. Classes are comfortably sized, and time is available for individual attention from the faculty member. Participants need not be regularly matriculated at SDSU but may be admitted as non-degree seeking students.

High School Dual Credit

Dual credit is an opportunity for high school students to enroll in college courses at South Dakota State University and earn credits toward their high school diploma while starting on their requirements for a degree from SDSU. Students are able to choose from a number of on-campus and online general education courses.


  • accelerate your SDSU education
  • lower tuition cost
  • simplify the transition from high school

Students bringing in substantial credits may complete their degree in a condensed timeframe or may benefit in other ways as well. Students may find that with college credits already completed, their schedules will allow them to explore a variety of opportunities to enhance their college experience and academic career.

Dual credit students can more easily:

  • add a second major
  • add minors
  • participate in a study abroad program
  • complete undergraduate research
  • complete an internship
  • serve in a leadership role in student clubs/ organizations

These options can provide students with a well-rounded educational experience and a valuable advantage in succeeding in their future career.

**A large number of incoming credits does not in itself guarantee a shorter path to a degree!

State Authorization

Colleges and universities who market to, recruit and offer educational activities to out-of-state students must understand and follow the laws and regulations set forth in those states.  Authorization may be required for SDSU to serve and reach students in states outside of South Dakota. SDSU is determined to comply with all state regulations and will apply for authorization, when necessary, from those states where it conducts activities such as delivery of online courses, placement for field experiences (internships, clinicals, practicums, etc.) academic and athletic recruiting, marketing, etc.

SDSU participates in the National Council of State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (NC-SARA).  South Dakota became a SARA state in November, 2014 and SDSU became a SARA member institution in March, 2015.  This membership provides SDSU the authorization to provide educational activities within other SARA states without further authorization. Activities that are beyond the scope allowed through SARA may require individual state authorization. For further state authorization and complaint process information, please visit the Continuing and Distance Education website.

Professional Licensure & Certification

South Dakota State University offers a variety of courses and programs online and is committed to providing a quality education to help you reach your professional goals. Some professions require certification or licensure to practice/work in the field; for instance, a student must hold a teacher certification to teach or a nurse must be licensed to work in a hospital. The curriculum for a number of degree programs at South Dakota State University have been designed to meet the licensure/certification requirements in South Dakota, and prepare students to sit for licensure exams in South Dakota. The various licensure boards in each state are responsible for setting requirements for licensure/certification in their state and distance students with intent of returning or moving to any state other than South Dakota should be aware of the unique requirements for that state.

Students seeking to establish licensure outside the state of South Dakota can find information pertaining to the licensure requirements in their state on the Continuing and Distance Education Professional Licensure and Certification website. You are encouraged to engage with an academic advisor prior to beginning any online academic program that would lead to licensure, to best understand the licensure program in your intended state of residence. Assistance will be provided to candidates by contacting the appropriate program advisor.

Non-Credit Programs

The Office of Continuing and Distance Education provides opportunities for individuals to participate in professional development and personal enrichment activities throughout the year. The Office of Continuing and Distance Education provides opportunities for individuals to participate in professional development and personal enrichment activities throughout the year. Continuing and Distance Education can authorize Continuing Education Units (CEUs) and coordinate professional development workshops.

Continuing Education Units

Today’s workforce needs constant and current information to keep up-to-date with industry and association certifications. Continuing Education Units (CEUs) offer flexibility in delivery and fulfilling certification requirements. Contact the Office of Continuing and Distance Education at 605-688-4154 or e-mail to learn more about offering CEUs for your next workshop, short course, or conference.

Professional & Continuing Education

SDSU Professional and Continuing Education is dedicated to building the workforce skill-sets needed for businesses to thrive in our evolving world. Our team of SDSU experts are committed to providing workshops and training programs for employees of businesses, non-profit organizations, and government agencies that center around relevant and essential skills that will increase the value of your employees to your business. Contact the Office of Continuing and Distance Education at 605-688-4154 or e-mail to learn more.