System Highlight: Collaboration

November 17, 2016

Hundreds of collaborative agreements in place between, and among, campuses


Collaboration has long been a watchword in the world of higher education, from hearing extensive philosophies of thought to creating teams of diverse skillset. The past few years in the North Dakota University System have given new importance to it though, as collaboration has become an over-arching philosophy.

Currently, a wealth of articulation agreements exists throughout the system. Those agreements lay out formal arrangements between two or more institutions, giving students an opportunity to apply credits at one institution toward programs at another. Other arrangements, such as memos of understanding, program agreements and course equivalencies, allow students to move forward steadily in their academic career even if they switch majors.

This System Highlight serves to provide one example from each school (listed alphabetically) where a collaborative program has proven successful. A listing of the articulation agreements can be found at the NDUS page here.


Bismarck State College

Bismarck State College is helping to address a shortage of pharmacy techs thanks to a partnership with North Dakota State College of Science. This joint agreement will help the two schools deliver the NDSCS Pharmacy Technician program to central and western North Dakota with the first classes already underway. Students enroll through NDSCS, but can take coursework through either institution. According to program descriptions, general education classes will be provided by BSC, while the technical components of the program will be taught by Wahpeton-based NDSCS Pharmacy Technician faculty through Interactive Video Network and online classes. Students will be able to earn either a 2-year A.A.S. degree or 1-year Certificate from NDSCS.


Dakota College at Bottineau

Dakota College at Bottineau and Williston State College will being offering a medical assistant program next spring. Any students who are interested will be able to earn an Associate of Applied Science degree in courses offered at either campus. The application must go through WSC, and through a collaborative model complete at least 15 credit through DCB, which will confer the degree. The program is built with flexibility in mind and will be delivered through online and IVN courses. The diploma option will take students one year, while the AAS will take about two years to complete.


Dickinson State University

A Memorandum of Understanding between Dickinson State University and Minot State University allows students in DSU’s Graduate Studies program to transfer 15 credits of their graduate coursework to MiSU in order to meet about half of the requirements for an M.Ed. degree. The rest of the degree requirements are completed through MiSU but delivered via distance education, allowing PreK-12 school teachers in this region to earn a master’s degree without having to travel. So the M.Ed. degree comes from MiSU but relies for about half of its coursework on the graduate courses currently offered by DSU.


Lake Region State College

LAUNCH! is a partnership between Lake Region State College and the University of North Dakota located on the UND campus in Grand Forks. The program is designed to serve students who are not yet eligible for admission to UND but meet eligibility requirements for LRSC.

Students who choose to participate in the LAUNCH! Program will enroll as full time LRSC students, but will also take a limited number of prescribed UND classes. Students who successfully complete 24 transferable credits and earn a 2.0 grade point average may be considered for admission as a degree-seeking transfer student to UND.


Mayville State University

Mayville State University collaborates with Dickinson State University through a Bachelor of Science – Education degree for the major of Early Childhood Education. The agreement also allows for BSC students with general education courses to transfer into MaSU’s Early Childhood Education program. This three-tiered approach to collaboration is common within the system, and ensures that students can begin their education closer to home before progressing through their coursework elsewhere in the university system.


Minot State University

Minot State University’s dual degree program with NDSU involves the student earning two degrees, a BA or BS degree in Human Development and Family Science and a BSW (Bachelor in Social Work) from MiSU in five years. Through collaborative work between the MiSU Social Work dept. and NDSU Human Development and Family Science dept., can earn the two degrees with only 133 credits.


North Dakota State College of Science

While NDSCS has many collaborative programs within the university system, it also has numerous program partners throughout North Dakota, especially the Red River Valley. Like a few other schools, NDSCS has taken great strides in partnering with private business to help deliver real-world training and other program needs such as academic correspondence, materials, supplies, personnel and equipment. Among the many partners are Trail King Industries, Bell State Bank & Trust, Butler, and Caterpillar.


North Dakota State University

North Dakota State University has been working with MiSU and Valley City State University through partnerships that advanced elementary education and social work. Through these partnerships, students receive an NDSU Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Human Development and Family Science major. They also receive a degree from the other respective institution. A collaborative registration process facilitates course registration.


North Dakota University System

Implemented in 2004 to meet the growing demand for highly-trained nurses, the Dakota Nursing Program is offered through a consortium of four colleges: Bismarck State College, Dakota College at Bottineau, Lake Region State College and Williston State College. The DNP delivers a practical nurse certificate program and associate degree nurse program. Delivery methods include hands-on practical lab and clinical experiences along with classroom instruction delivered over Interactive Video Network and online formats. Additional information can be found at the DNP site.


University of North Dakota

University of North Dakota partnered recently with the other research university in North Dakota, NDSU, to deliver joint graduate programs in biomedical engineering. The approval for the joint offering came during the State Board of Higher Education’s October meeting, and sets the stage for on-campus and distance delivery starting next fall. This interdisciplinary offering will provide graduate students with the opportunity to research modern challenges and goals of devices and electronic systems in the medical field. A two-year Master of Science and a four-year Doctor of Philosophy will be offered.


Valley City State University

Valley City State University’s agreement with BSC is allowing students to receive a degree in Professional Communication through work that furthers educational opportunities for students at both schools. BSC Students who’ve completed an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree can enroll in the online VCSU program and pursue30 hours of upper level classes


Williston State College

Williston State College and MaSU have partnered on at least six different programs regarding Business Administration, Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education and General Ed coursework. Through these collaborative efforts, students at WSC can enroll in courses and earn credit in business or education while at WSC. Both Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees are offered.