Aug 06, 2020  
2012-2013 SDSM&T Academic Catalog 
2012-2013 SDSM&T Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Admission to the Graduate School

 Admission to the Graduate School

The graduate office encourages applications from qualified students holding bachelor’s degrees in engineering or science from accredited four-year colleges and universities. A student desiring admission should obtain an application form from the graduate office or via the website at: The completed form and a non-refundable application fee of $35 (for all applicants) are required to be submitted to the graduate office. Required supporting documents are specified on the application and on the web site. Application materials from domestic applicants should be received by June 1 for fall semester admission or by October 1 for spring semester admission. International applicants must submit all of their materials by March 15 for fall semester admission or by August 1 for spring semester admission. Applicant files will not be considered for acceptance until all of the application items are received.

If the applicant has not completed an undergraduate program, evidence of graduation must be submitted prior to enrollment.

When an application for admission to a graduate program is received, the faculty of the program in which the applicant expects to major will evaluate the applicant’s academic qualifications. The head/coordinator, on behalf of the faculty, will recommend whether or not the applicant should be accepted into the graduate program and whether the admission should be as an unconditional, conditional, probationary, or special student. The Dean of Graduate Education will review this recommendation and provide a letter of decision to the applicant.

Additional information about requirements for specific graduate programs can be found in the program description section of the catalog.

Admission to the Graduate school for study toward a master’s degree does not imply that the student will be allowed to work toward a doctorate. A separate application and evaluation of the student’s qualifications are necessary before acceptance into a doctoral program. Admission to the graduate school for study toward a Ph.D. degree does not constitute admission to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree. Refer to a later section for information on admission to candidacy.

A student who is admitted to the Graduate School but is unable to attend in the semester in which he/she was accepted may request a deferment for up to two years. The request must be made in writing to the Office of Graduate Education and must specify the revised start date Deferments must be approved by the Dean of Graduate Education. Students must reapply if the anticipated start date is more than two years after the acceptance date.

Students who are denied admission are not eligible to reapply to the same program for one year.

International Student Admissions 

English Proficiency

All international applicants must provide evidence of English proficiency, with the exception of applicants from countries where English is the native language.

Applicants who have a prior degree from a college or university in the U.S. may also be exempted, based on English courses taken and grades received in those courses.

The School of Mines has established minimum scores for admission for TOEFL, IELTS and the Pearson Test of English- Academic, listed below. We recognize a variety of valid English proficiency tests which will be evaluated on an individual basis. English proficiency test results must be sent to the graduate office. Please use school code 6652 for TOEFL results to be sent to the School of Mines.

Detailed information about the English requirement is available on the web site at

English Proficiency Conditional Admission

Applicants who are planning to attend an intensive English as a Second Language (ESL) program in the US prior to attending the School of Mines may be eligible for conditional admission. Conditional admission may be granted if the applicant meets admission requirements with the exception of the minimum English score as indicated above. The School of Mines also recognizes the difficulty for ESL students in taking standardized exams that are offered only in English, such as the SAT, ACT and GRE. Students in ESL programs may be required to take such tests after they have advanced to a certain level in ESL. Requirements will be specified in a conditional admission letter sent to the graduate applicant. Once the student has completed the ESL program with satisfactory grades and meets any additional requirements, the student may be eligible for unconditional admission.

Transcript Evaluation

Effective August 15, 2012, SDSM&T will require a third party foreign transcript evaluation for all incoming international graduate students. Exceptions can be granted by the Dean of Graduate Education for exemplary students who are recommended for a waiver by the department. The two primary evaluation companies in the U.S. are World Education Services (WES) and Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE). SDSM&T will require a course-by course evaluation report sent directly to us from the evaluating institution.

Visa Requirements

An international applicant will not be issued the U.S. Department of Justice Form I-20, Certificate of Eligibility for Non-immigrant (F-1) student status, until admission to graduate school for study toward a specific advanced degree has been granted. Form I-20 is usually necessary for admission to the United States for college attendance. Conditions of issuance of this form include documented evidence of financial ability to cover the projected annual costs of education at this university including living allowance. This institution will issue a DS-2019 Form only when appropriate.

International students are advised that full- time status at this university is necessary in order to satisfy F-1 status requirements.

As a result of the regulations that became effective on January 1, 2003, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is waived for F and J students with respect to reporting requirements specific to student status. The regulations will be strictly enforced by the appropriate bureau(s) within the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and information will be reported electronically to DHS via Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). The consequences to students for non-compliance with the new regulations are severe. For more information, e-mail the Ivanhoe International Center at or go to

Application Fees and Medical Insurance

All applicants are required to submit the $35 application fee with the application. In addition, a $75 international student enrollment fee will be assessed each semester. Both charges are non-refundable.

Each international student (and any dependents accompanying him/her to the United States) is REQUIRED to enroll in the Major Medical Hospitalization/Surgical Insurance Plan provided through South Dakota School of Mines and Technology. No outside policies will be accepted as substitutes. The only exception to this rule is if the student is sponsored by his/her home country government (documentation of thisApplication Fees and Medical Insurance