Northern State University - [NSU], South Dakota, Aberdeen

    Aberdeen, South DakotaLocation
    UniversitySchool type
    Estd 1901established year

    Northern State University: Rankings, Courses, Admissions, Tuition Fee, Cost of Attendance & Scholarships

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    Bhavya Rawal

    Study Abroad Expert

    Founded in 1901, Northern State University is located in Aberdeen, South Dakota. It has been named as one of the best public regional bachelor’s college in the Midwest for 8 consecutive years as per the ranking of the U.S. News and World Report. Currently, the university is offering 59 majors, 46 minors and 6 pre-professional programs to nearly 3500 students. The NSU’s Wolf PACT scholarship is the largest scholarship offered in the Midwest. The NSU campus is one of the most beautiful in the region.


    U.S. News Rank 2020:

    • #84 in Regional Universities Midwest
    • #88 in Top Performers on Social Mobility
    • #18 in Top Public School


    • The NSU campus comprises historic buildings, modern facilities, green space which makes it one of the most beautiful region. It is also a small and safe campus with a very low crime rate.
    • There are more than 50 active clubs and organizations of the students on campus.
    • There are several opportunities for students on campus like art galleries, Student Center, library, Barnett Center for work out etc.
    • The Barnett Center is an 8000 seat facility for athletics with an arena, pool, indoor track, volleyball, handball, etc.
    • The Dacotah Hall houses various administrative offices like Registrar’s office, financial aid office, academic support service, student center, etc.
    • There is a technology center on campus that comprises 3 computer labs, 2 smart classrooms, fully equipped TV studio, media center, conference room and office of the Technology staff and arts and science faculty.


    • There are 2 styles of residence halls on the Northern State University – traditional halls and suite-style halls.
    • New residence halls equipped with modern amenities that have been opened in the last few years are Wolves Memorial Suites, Great Plains West and Great Plains East. Other residence halls are McArthur-Welsh hall, Kramer hall and Briscoe hall.
    • Traditional halls provide accommodation on a single and double sharing basis.
    • Suite-style halls have spaces for 2-4 students sharing. Common amenities include a bathroom with a shower, mini-fridge, and microwave.


    • The Northern State University offers 50+ undergraduate, graduate, associate, certificate, pre-professional and online degrees to students through various schools and colleges.
    • The various schools and colleges of NSU are College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business, School of Education and School of Fine Arts.
    • Classes are conducted in a student-faculty ratio of 20:1 which comprises 80% faculty with Ph. D. Programs are designed to provide students real-world experiences through internship opportunities.
    • The University offers programs in Art, Business, music, and teacher education are nationally accredited.
    • The Confucius Institute is a part of NSU that helps students in South Dakota to learn Mandarin Chinese.

    Application Process

    • Application Portal: Online application portal
    • Application Fee: 20 USD (non-refundable)
    • Student Class profile:
    • Total enrollment – 3500
    • International students from 42 countries
    • Standardized test scores of SAT/ ACT are required for evaluation of the admission application. Average SAT score – 970 or above (School code – 6487); Average ACT score – 18 or above (School code – 3169)
    • High school GPA – 2.6 on 4.0; College GPA – 2.75 on 4.0
    • English proficiency test scores – International students must take English proficiency tests and get their scores sent to the university from the testing center itself. The minimum requirements of these test scores are:
    Exam Undergraduate Graduate
    TOEFL IBT 61-70 79
    TOEFL PBT - 550
    IELTS 5.5 6
    • Supporting Documents to be submitted with the admission application for evaluation include official high school transcript indicating class rank and cumulative GPA or GED, test scores of English proficiency tests like TOEFL/IELTS/ACT/ SAT scores and compliance with student visa eligibility requirements.

    Cost of Attendance

    Undergraduate students

    Expense Estimated Cost 2019-20
    Tuition 10,611 USD
    Fees 1211 USD
    Room 3787 USD
    Meal Plan 3924 USD

    Graduate students

    Expense Estimated Cost 2019-20
    Tuition (18 credit hour) 11088 USD
    Fees 726 USD
    Total 11,814 USD

    Financial Aid for International Students

    • 82% of the students receive financial aid in the form of scholarships, grants, loans, and work-study programs.
    • The university spends 16.2 million USD annually to provide financial aid to students. Most of the scholarships are awarded on the basis of need.
    • Students must complete FAFSA by March 1 to be considered for financial aid.
    • The following table presents some scholarships awarded by the University:
    Name of scholarship Eligibility Amount awarded
    Wolf Pact Scholarship Freshman students enrolled full-time.
    Minimum 3.0 GPA
    Up to 12000 USD
    Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship Must be in top 4 of the class with an average GPA of B++ Up to 7500 USD
    Freeman Foundation Fellowship Minimum 2.8 GPA
    Completed FAFSA
    3000-7000 USD
    Gilman Scholarship Must receive a Federal Pell Grant.
    Must be studying abroad for 4 weeks.
    5000 USD
    Hollings Scholarship Must be in 2nd year or 4-year institution.
    Minimum 3.0 GPA
    8000 USD


    • Notable alumni of the University are Bryan DeBates – Vice President Education for Space Foundation, Carolyn Thompson – public speaker, Dr. Rochelle Nolte – a physician with U.S. Public Health Service, Christopher Maunu – Director of Choral Activities at Arvada West High School and many others.


    • The NSU Career Services Center is dedicated to helping students explore their career options and employment opportunities.
    • Wolf Work is NSU’s online job posting database which is available to all students as well as alumni.
    • 96% of the graduates of NSU were employed within 6 months of graduation within 6 months.
    • Statistics also show that 47% of the students were hired even before graduation.
    • In the previous years, more than 150 employers visited campus for recruiting students.
    $101st YEAR

    4 years

    Course Duration

    $101st YEAR

    4 years

    Course Duration

    4 years

    Course Duration

    $101st YEAR

    4 years

    Course Duration

    4 years

    Course Duration

    Northern State University Overview

    Insitution type
    Student Population
    FAFSA Code
    Application Cost
    Average Cost of Attendance
    $10 / Year
    Student : Faculty Ratio
    3 : 1

    Admission & dates

    Early Action Deadlines

    November 1

    Application deadline

    April 1

    Application results

    Regular Decision Deadlines

    January 15

    Application deadline

    April 1

    Application results

    Test Scores For International Applicants

    ExamsAvg. ScoreMin ScoreMax. Score%Submitted
    Language Proficiency
    SAT Check Detailed Score104595011406
    Evidence-Based Reading and Writing515470560-
    ACT Check Detailed Score22192492

    Northern State University Acceptance Rate

    87.8 %

    acceptance rate


    total applicants


    total enrolled






    Undergraduate Programs
    Total Applicants
    Total Enrolled
    Graduate Programs
    Total Applicants
    Total Enrolled

    Northern State University enrollment

    Northern State University Enrollment
    Undergraduate Enrollment
    Graduate Enrollment
    Graduation Rate
    Average Graduation Rate

    Attendance Cost


    attendance cost

    The table shows average yearly cost of attendance for international students. Amount may vary with the course opted, nature of accommodation, and personal spending habits of a candidate. Check Program wise Fees

    Tuition fees
    Undergraduate Programs
    $10 / Year
    Post Graduate Program
    $18,480 / Year
    On Campus
    Books & Supplies
    $1,200 / Year
    On campus, Room & Board
    $7,844 / Year
    On Campus, Other Expenses
    $4,000 / Year
    Off Campus
    Off campus (not with family), Room & Board
    $7,850 / Year
    Off campus (not with family), Other Expenses
    $4,000 / Year
    Off campus (with family), Room & Board
    $3,900 / Year
    Off campus (with family), Other Expenses
    $4,000 / Year

    Top Accreditations [Institutional & Program Wise]

    Institutional accreditations
    North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
    Program wise accreditation
    Music Programs
    National Association of Schools of Music


    total facultyfull timepart timegraduate assistants

    College Rating

    Based on 5 Students Rating

    8.0 out of 10
    8.0/10Social Life


    7.7 /10

    I was searching for an affordable college for study abroad and NSU was among the topmost colleges where is easy to receive financial aid and scholarships. So, I applied online for my program and submitted my test scores along with my high school transcripts, declaration of finances form, and an application fee of £20 to get enrolled at NSU.

    Course Curriculum :

    My program was a fashion bathing combination of genetics, molecular biology, cell biology, microbiology and biochemistry. Thus, it can be applied in many fields including chemical engineering, information technology, biogeography, etc. and can be used to improve agriculture crops, information in genetics and pharmaceuticals. I had to complete 16-17 credits per semester.

    8 /10 academic/food
    10 /10 faculty
    10 /10 infrastructure
    9 /10 accomodation
    9 /10 placement
    7.3 /10

    Choosing NSU was one of the best decisions of my life as it has been recognised as the best public baccalaureate colleges in the Midwest by US news and World Report for more than a decade. So, I submitted an online application with a $20 application fee, my test scores, high-school transcripts and financial declaration to get selected for my program.

    Course Curriculum :

    The plan of study for my program included 15-17 credits per semester for 8 semesters in a variety of areas including accounting, finance, business ethics, business communication, entrepreneurship, leadership, human resource management, etc. that prepared me for the competitive international market.

    9 /10 academic/food
    8 /10 faculty
    9 /10 infrastructure
    9 /10 accomodation
    9 /10 placement
    8.5 /10

    I had a few reasons to join this particular college. I was getting my desired combination of subjects here. I had a relative who was kind-hearted enough to offer me a place to stay for free. My rent and food cost was next to nothing. Plus this college has a very good ranking and low acceptance rate. When I heard back from the university, I was on cloud 9. I applied online and paid $20 as an application fee.

    Course Curriculum :

    Our course demanded us to be very focused on our course. I had subjects like Human Behaviour, Abnormality of Human Mind, Adolescent Psychology. We had a vast array of topics to choose from and work on our assignment. Plus we were taught to have emotional stability and empathy towards an age group ranging from kids to adults.

    9 /10 academic/food
    9 /10 faculty
    8 /10 infrastructure
    8 /10 accomodation
    9 /10 placement
    8 /10 extracurricular
    8.3 /10

    I had joined this university because I had my relatives there who had suggested it to me. I also liked the academic program it had offered. They had offered an online admission procedure. I had applied to the university for admission through their official website. I had paid a fee of $35.

    Course Curriculum :

    The program was really good, it had a lot of courses to learn from. This had included practical training which is really helpful for a successful career. I had developed effective communication skills through this program.

    9 /10 academic/food
    9 /10 faculty
    8 /10 infrastructure
    8 /10 accomodation
    8 /10 placement
    8 /10 extracurricular
    8.2 /10

    I took admission to this college because it had offered small classes and a safe campus which I really wanted. I had found this college on the internet. I had not applied to any other college. I had filled an online admission form through the official website of the university. The application fee paid by me was $35.

    Course Curriculum :

    My program had focused on accounting analytics, technical and big data skills. It had delivered by the best faculty. It had also improved my communication and presentation skills. Courses included in my program were Foundations of Financial Accounting, Foundations of Analytics, Big Data Statistics, and Accounting Analytics etc.

    8 /10 academic/food
    9 /10 faculty
    8 /10 infrastructure
    8 /10 accomodation
    8 /10 placement
    8 /10 extracurricular
    1200 S Jay St, Aberdeen, SD 57401

    Nearby This Campus

    • Book Store
    • Pharmacy
    • Shopping Mall
    • Hospital
    • Airport
    • Bus Station

    Book Store

    Anchors of Faith0.99 km
    Corner Book Shoppe1.07 km
    Red Rooster Coffee House1.28 km
    Flashbax1.81 km

    Shopping Mall

    Dakota Crossing1.23 km
    Moccasin Creek Plaza1.94 km
    Super City Shopping Center2.31 km
    Lafayette Mall3.22 km
    Show More


    Sanford Aberdeen Helipad3.28 km
    Runway 13/315.20 km
    Aberdeen Regional Airport5.23 km


    Jones Drug Prescription Center1.07 km
    Kessler's1.10 km
    Kessler's Pharmacy1.10 km
    Jerry Drees, PharmD1.23 km
    Show More


    Avera Health1.23 km
    Avera St. Luke's Hospital: Emergency Room1.26 km
    Avera Breast Center1.30 km
    Avera Medical Group Pediatrics Aberdeen1.47 km
    Show More

    Bus Station

    Aberdeen134.99 km

    *All distance are measured radially. Actual distance may vary

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