MSU Billings Catalog

Admissions and Registration

City College Tech Building, Jacket Student Central, First Floor

(406) 247-3000 or 1-800-565-MSUB ext.3000

www.citycollege.msubillings.edu

City College at Montana State University Billings believes that every student who is academically capable of successfully completing a course of study available through City College should be given the opportunity of enrolling in the University without regard to age, creed, handicap, national origin, race or sex.

City College at Montana State University Billings reaches out to encourage minority students to attend the institution.  Staff representatives of the Office of New Student Services make frequent visits to middle schools, high schools, community colleges, and tribal colleges to provide guidance to students as they consider and explore their educational future.

Admissions

New Students:  How to Apply

NOTE:  Students making application to attend City College at Montana State University Billings should be aware that the Admission Requirements may have changed since the publication of this document.  Please contact the Office of Admissions (406) 247-3012, 1-800-565-MSUB; or write to:

Admissions
City College at Montana State University Billings
3803 Central Avenue
Billings, MT 59102

For additional information regarding admissions or to obtain an application for admissions, please:

Jacket Student Central
City College at Montana State University Billings
3803 Central Avenue
Billings, MT 59102

  1. Complete and submit an application for admission.  Applications can be completed online at www.citycollege.msubillings.edu.  Applications will be processed only for the term that the applicant indicates on the application.
  2. Montana residents can apply for free. Out of state students submit a $30.00 nonrefundable application fee (credit/debit card, check or money order) with the application for admission.
    1. If you have not previously attended an accredited college or university, request an official transcript from your high school that includes the graduation date, final class rank, and grade point average and have it sent to:
                                    Jacket Student Central
                                    City College at Montana State University Billings
                                    3803 Central Avenue
                                    Billings, MT 59102
  3. Before enrolling for an initial term, all post-secondary students must comply with immunization requirements of ARM 37.114.701-721:
    1. Students born in 1957 or later must provide evidence that they have received two measles and two rubella immunizations, with dose one administered at 12 months of age or later and dose two administered at least 28 days after dose one.  No measles vaccination before 1967 is valid.  No rubella vaccination before 1969 is valid.  As an alternative, a student may supply a laboratory report from a CLIA approved laboratory indicating that the student is immune to measles and/or rubella.
    2. Under ARM 37.114.711, the prospective pupil must receive a second dose of live measles and rubella vaccine before the beginning of the succeeding school term and no earlier than 28 days after administration of the first dose of measles and rubella vaccine.
    3. A student may be exempt from the above requirements for medical reasons (ARM 37.114.715) providing the student supplies a statement from a physician (MD or DO) holding a license to practice in the United States or Canada stating:
      1. The specific immunization that is contraindicated;
      2. The time period the immunization is contraindicated; and
      3. The reasons for the contraindication.
    4. A student may be exempt from the above requirements for religious reasons providing the student supplies Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services Form HES-113 that immunizations are contrary to the student’s religious beliefs.  This document must be submitted annually by any student claiming a religious exemption (ARM 37.114.716).

When to Apply

Students wishing to attend City College at Montana State University Billings should apply for admission as early as possible prior to the term in which enrollment is desired.

New First-Time Students:  Admission Requirements

City College at MSU Billings requires first-time students to have earned either a high school diploma from an accredited institution, a GED, or HiSET.  In an effort to meet individual needs, City College has established special admission procedures for students seeking admission to certain programs.  Contact City College at MSU Billings for this information at (406) 247-3007.  The Admission application fee is $30.00.

Transfer Students

How to Apply

NOTE:  Students making application to attend City College at Montana State University Billings should be aware that Admission Requirements may have changed since the publication of this document.  Please contact Jacket Student Central (406) 247-3012 or 1-800-565-MSUB ext. 3012; or  email ccadmission@msubillings.edu or write to
Jacket Student Central
City College at Montana State University Billings
3803 Central Avenue
Billings, MT 59102

Applicants who have attempted 12 or more GPA credits at another regionally accredited college or university are considered transfer students.  To be admitted to City College at Montana State University Billings, transfer students must do the following:

  1. Complete and submit an application for admission.  Applications for admission may be obtained online at www.msubillings.edu/citycollege or from
    Jacket Student Central Admissions
    City College at Montana State University Billings
    3803 Central Avenue
    Billings, MT 59102. 
    If you have questions please call (406) 247-3012 or 1-800-565-MSUB, ext. 3012 or email ccadmissions@msubillings.edu.  Applications will be processed only for the term the applicant indicates on the application.
  2. Montana residents can apply for free. Out of state students submit a $30.00 nonrefundable application fee (credit/debit card, check or money order) with the application for admission.
  3. Transfer students must request official and complete transcripts from each college attended or a transcript which indicates that a baccalaureate degree has been earned and transcripts from any colleges attended after the degree was earned.  Transcripts must be sent directly to Jacket Student Central, City College at Montana State University Billings, 3803 Central Avenue, Billings, MT 59102
  4. Before enrolling for an initial term, all post-secondary students must comply with immunization requirements of ARM 37.114.701-721:
    1. Students born in 1957 or later must provide evidence that they have received two measles and two rubella immunizations, with dose one administered at 12 months of age or later and dose two administered at least 28 days after dose one.  No measles vaccination before 1967 is valid.  No rubella vaccination before 1969 is valid.  As an alternative, a student may supply a laboratory report from a CLIA approved laboratory indicating that the student is immune to measles and/or rubella.
    2. Under ARM 37.114.711, the prospective pupil must receive a second dose of live measles and rubella vaccine before the beginning of the succeeding school term and no earlier than 28 days after administration of the first dose of measles and rubella vaccine.
    3. A student may be exempt from the above requirements for medical reasons (ARM 37.114.715) providing the student supplies a statement from a physician (MD or DO) holding a license to practice in the United States or Canada stating:
      1. The specific immunization that is contraindicated;
      2. The time period the immunization is contraindicated; and
      3. The reasons for the contraindication.
    4. A student may be exempt from the above requirements for religious reasons providing the student supplies Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services Form HES-113 that immunizations are contrary to the student’s religious beliefs.  This document must be submitted annually by any student claiming a religious exemption (ARM 37.114.716).

Montana Resident Transfer Students will be admitted upon receipt of an official and complete transcript from each college or university attended.  A resident transfer student applicant must meet the criteria for “good academic standing” as defined by City College at Montana State University Billings.

Non-Montana Resident Transfer Students must meet the in-state student requirements and must also have a 2.00 cumulative grade point average for all college level work before his/her admission is approved.

When to Apply

Transfer applicants should apply for admission as early as possible prior to the term in which enrollment is desired.

Former MSU Billings Student Re-Admission

A former student of Montana State University Billings or City College at Montana State University Billings who is in good standing and who was not in attendance the preceding term will be eligible for registration after completing the following:

  1. Complete and file a former student application with the City College Office of Admissions, or re-admit online at www.msubillings.edu or via myinfo/myMSUB.  A $40 non-refundable fee is assessed to new graduate students.
  2. Request that transcripts from institutions attended, if any, since last attending Montana State University Billings be sent to the City College Office of Admissions.

When to Apply

Returning students should apply for re-admission as early as possible prior to the semester in which enrollment is desired.

Special Admission Procedures

In an effort to meet individual needs, City College at MSU Billings has established special admission procedures for undergraduate students which pertain to non-high school graduates, home-schooled students, high school students, and non-degree applicants.

Note:  Students making application to attend City College at Montana State University Billings should be aware that admission requirements may change at any time.  Please contact the Office of Admissions (406) 247-3012; or write to the
Office of Admissions
City College at Montana State University Billings
3803 Central Avenue
Billings, MT 59102

Students in these categories would also complete the process of application outlined in the “All New Students:  How to Apply” section as it is appropriate to their circumstances.  However, the following information also applies:

Non-High School Graduates

Non-high school graduates may be admitted on the basis of the General Educational Development (GED) test, or High School Equivalency Test (HiSET).  Various boards establish minimum scores for these tests or groups and students can visit with the Advising Center (406-657-2240/406-247-3019) for current minimums.  Students in this group who wish to enroll part-time may do so without restriction.

High School Connections

High School Connections is a program that gives high school students the opportunity to earn high school and college credits simultaneously—the same class earns credits for both.  The High School Connections dual enrollment program at MSUB is part of a statewide initiative to increase the number of students pursuing post-secondary education by smoothing the transition between secondary and post-secondary education and to help reduce college debt.  High school Connections is an opportunity for high school students to complete a college class within their high school schedule, with a familiar teacher, and in a familiar classroom.

Credits earned are fully transferable in the Montana University System and transfer widely to other accredited colleges and universities, but please verify degree requirements and acceptance of credits.

University Connections

University Connections is a dual credit program available to all high school and home school students across Montana.  The University Connections program allows high school students to take college-level classes directly through MSUB & City College, both on-campus and online. The cost for this program is approximately $50.00 per credit.  Tuition and fees are subject to change by the Montana Board of Regents of Higher Education.  Additional course fees may apply.  For questions regarding current tuition and fees, please contact the Business Office at (406) 657-2301.  There is no limit on the number of credits enrolled for each semester.  High school seniors are still eligible for the University Connection program the summer following graduation.  Enroll in an Online University Connection course, and the technology fee will be waived.

Non-Degree Applicants

An applicant who wishes to pursue studies for personal growth and who does not wish to work toward a formal degree at City College at Montana State University Billings may apply as an undergraduate non-degree student.  Acceptance into this category does not constitute acceptance into a degree-granting program.  All applicants should have sufficient educational background to qualify for the course or courses in which enrollment is sought and must certify on the application form that they have graduated from high school or appropriate Ability-to-Benefit test.  A maximum of 32 semester hour credits earned as a non-degree student may be applied to an undergraduate degree at City College at Montana State University Billings if the applicant applies and is accepted into a degree program.  Financial aid is not available to students in this category, nor may they qualify for the WUE (Western Undergraduate Exchange) program.

This category is not open to students currently on academic suspension from City College at Montana State University Billings or on academic suspension from any other college or university.

No academic credentials or transcripts are required in support of the application; however, non-degree students who later wish to change to a degree program must furnish required supporting credentials and must meet all the regular admission requirements.  Financial aid is not available to students in this category.

Falsification of Information

Each student is responsible for knowing and for complying with all regulations regarding the admission procedures.  Failure to be informed or to comply does not excuse a student from responsibility or from any penalty or difficulty which may be encountered.  Misrepresentation or falsification of a student’s enrollment status or application for admission will be sufficient grounds to cancel a student’s current registration and to suspend the student for two semesters.  It is the student’s responsibility to know his/her enrollment status at his/ her former institution(s).

Denial of Admission

Under Board of Regents’ policy (301), MSU Billings “may deny or condition admission, readmission, or continuing enrollment of any individual who, in the judgment of the campus, presents an unreasonable risk to the safety and welfare of the campus and persons thereon. In making such judgment, the campus may, among other things, take into account the individual’s history and experience relative

  1. to violence and destructive tendencies,
  2. to behavior on other educational institutions, and
  3. to any rehabilitative therapy the individual may have undergone.”

Based on this policy and completion of the application for admission and other application materials (which may include but not be limited to the Safety Questionnaire, counselor input, advising or other student affairs interview and input), a student may be denied admission or may be given provisional admission at part-time or full-time status under the guidance of an advisor.

Reasons for denial shall be communicated to the individual in writing.  Applicants may appeal their denial to the Vice Chancellor for Student Access and Success.

Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE)

City College at Montana State University Billings participates in the Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE), a program of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education and other western states.  Through WUE, undergraduate students who are not residents of Montana may enroll at City College at Montana State University Billings and pay reduced nonresident tuition and fees.  This WUE tuition rate is in-state tuition plus 50 percent of that amount.  Because City College at Montana State University Billings participates, residents of Montana may enroll under the same terms in designated institutions and programs in other participating states.

Resident students from the following may participate if they meet eligibility requirements:  Alaska, Arizona, Montana, California, Oregon, Colorado, Nevada, South Dakota, Hawaii, New Mexico, Utah, Idaho, North Dakota, Washington, Wyoming, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI).

All degrees and programs are offered to undergraduates in WUE.  This program may be subject to enrollment limits established by the Montana Board of Regents.  Application forms for WUE are available at the Office of Admission (406) 657-2888 or 1-800-565-MSUB.

International Students

International applicants must meet the out-of-state admission requirements in addition to the following:

  1. Certified copies of all certificates, degrees, and diplomas with a certified translation of the records.
    If you have any post-secondary level course(s) completed outside of the U.S. or in non-English-speaking Canada to transfer to Montana State University Billings, we need a course-by-course evaluation completed by one of the services highlighted below:
    • SpanTran
    • ​ECE
    Evaluations from all other services/agencies are subject to prior approval and acceptance for transfer.  Please verify with the Office of Admissions prior to requesting a credential evaluation from any other agency or service.
    Note:  There is a substantial variation in grading scales used in secondary and post-secondary educational institutions in other countries.  Conversion of any grading scale to the most common U.S. grading scale (A-to-F, four passing grades, and one failing grade) is to use primary grades or grade ranges only.  For this reason, plus and/or minus designations will not be used when transcribing foreign transfer credits.
  2. Completed MSU Billings Financial Statement and must present evidence of sufficient funds to cover the estimated cost of tuition and fees as well as living expenses for one academic year at MSUB from a reliable financial institution, bank, or U.S. citizen who will accept responsibility for the student’s financial obligations.
  3. Students from non-English speaking countries must provide evidence of proficiency in English. A list of approved programs and examinations for undergraduate admission can be found at www.msubillings.edu/internationalstudies/admissions/englishproficiency. A minimum required score for the following tests must be achieved: TOEFL - 79, IELTS - 6.5, Duolingo - 100, iTEP - 3.5-3.9, PTE - 58  
  4. Appropriate immunization records.  These records must be submitted with an English translation.
  5. Proof of health insurance is required each semester.  Student health insurance is available for purchase through the University.  Health insurance charges will be automatically assessed to the student account if proof of personal health insurance is not provided.
  6. If a student is currently attending another U.S. school and wishes to have his/her I-20 transferred to MSUB, an I-20 Transfer Form must be completed by the student as well as the current international academic advisor.
  7. A copy of the student’s passport ID page as well as copies of any current US visas. 

When to Apply

Application Deadlines:

Fall Semester:  June 1
Spring Semester:  October 1
Summer Semester:  February 1

Deferral Deadlines:

Fall Semester:  July 15
Spring Semester:  November 15
Summer Semester:  March 15

For more information on international student, admission call the International Studies Office at (406) 657-1705 or email internationaladmissions@msubillings.edu

International Students Enrollment and Academic Progress

International students must maintain academic status according to US immigration law and MSUB policies.

  1. To maintain an F1 visa, a student must make normal academic progress as well as abide by state and federal laws.  Normal academic progress is defined as enrolling in and passing a minimum of 12 credits and achieving a minimum semester GPA of 2.0.  International students must be enrolled at all times for at least 12 credits (and at least 9 in class/not online).
  2. An Incomplete or Withdraw will not count towards credits passed within a semester.
  3. It is the student’s responsibility to manage his/her enrollment and abide by the rules of his/her visa.  This includes updating personal information records via the myInfo, completing the MSUB Immigration Registration Form each semester, registering for classes in a timely manner, and adhering to all deadlines on the Academic Calendar (in particular late registration, withdrawal from classes, payment of fees, and monitoring academic standing).
  4. Students who are deemed “out of status” for the second semester or for failure to attend class will have their I-20 form terminated immediately and must either request reinstatement with a different university or leave the United States.  There is no grace period.
  5. Being dropped for non-payment of tuition and fees is a violation of student visa status and may result in the cancellation of a student’s I-20.

Agreements with International Institutions

MSU Billings has signed formal agreements for International Study Abroad.  Please see the Office of International Studies for additional information on Study Abroad.

Registrar's Office

City College Tech Building, Jacket Student Central, First Floor

(406) 247-3000 or 1-800-565-MSUB ext.3000
www.msubillings.edu/citycollege

Transfer of College-Level Credits

Transfers from Montana University System Units, Montana Community Colleges and Montana Tribal Colleges

By Board of Regents policy, Montana State University Billings is committed to facilitating undergraduate transfer for students transferring from units of the Montana University System and the three publicly supported community colleges and the seven tribal colleges in Montana.

Block Transfer

Undergraduate students  who have completed, with a cumulative grade-point average of 2.0 (C) on a four-point scale, an approved general education program at one of the institutions noted above, will be deemed to have met the lower division General Education requirements of Montana State University Billings.

Special attention should be paid to Board of Regents Policy 301.5.3 on Minimum Course Grades which also applies to acceptance of transfer credit.  Before Montana State University Billings will accept the courses as applicable for meeting General Education, a student will have to earn a grade of “C-” or better in each of the classes.

Depending on the major program the student selects, there may be additional lower division courses required to meet published major program prerequisites.  A student may be required to take additional coursework at the upper division level that is part of the approved General Education program at Montana State University Billings.

Associate of Arts and Associate of Science Degrees

A student who has completed an Associate of Arts or an Associate of Science degree with an approved general education component package at another unit of the Montana University System has satisfied the requirements of this policy.

Note:  Students should be aware that Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degrees ordinarily do not have a designated field of study in their title.

Special attention should be paid to Board of Regents Policy 301.5.3 on Minimum Course Grades which also applies to acceptance of transfer credit.  Before Montana State University Billings will accept the courses as applicable for meeting General Education, a student will have to earn a grade of “C-” or better in each of the classes.

Montana University System (MUS) Core Curriculum

The Montana Transferable Core Curriculum represents an agreement among community, tribal, and publicly funded colleges and universities in the State of Montana.  It ensures the transfer of up to 30 semester credits for those students enrolled in courses prescribed within each of six discipline areas at a participating host institution.  The six discipline areas are:

Natural Sciences (at least one with a laboratory experience)6
Social Sciences/History6
Mathematics3
Communication - written & oral6
Humanities/Fine Arts6
Cultural Diversity3
Total Minimum Credits30

Transfer students and student advisors should also be familiar with the additional guidelines that have been adopted by the Montana Board of Regents for students who use the Montana University System Core to satisfy their lower division general education requirement. Those guidelines are entitled Operational Rules for the Montana University System Core, and can be found at www.mus.edu/transfer/GenEd.html.  They include the following:

  • In order to satisfy the MUS core, students must successfully complete at least one course that includes significant content related to the cultural heritage of American Indians.  (See an academic advisor for assistance in determining which transfer courses satisfy this requirement.)
  • Students must earn the minimum number of credits in each of the six (6) categories of coursework.  Students can only use credit-bearing competency tests or coursework to satisfy the MUS core.
  • Coursework can only be used once to satisfy the requirements of the MUS Core.  It cannot be “double counted” to satisfy the requirements of more than one category.
  • In order to satisfy the requirements of the Communications area, students must successfully complete a combination of courses that includes significant content in both written and oral communications.
  • Students must satisfy the “minimum grade” requirements established by Board of Regents’ Policy 301.5.3, along with any exceptions to that policy that may have been established by their program of study.

The Montana University System is committed to facilitating the ease of undergraduate student transfer to its campuses.  Therefore, all campuses of the Montana University System will recognize the integrity of general education programs offered by units of the Montana University System and the three publicly supported community colleges and the seven tribal colleges in Montana. 

An undergraduate student who has completed courses identified as part of the Montana University System (MUS) Core courses will have general education coursework reviewed for transferability to Montana State University Billings as follows:

  1. If a student has completed less than 20 general education credits, that student will be required to complete the approved General Education program at Montana State University Billings.  All general education transfer credits that are part of the MUS Core will be reviewed for possible application in the approved General Education program.
  2. If a student has completed 20 or more MUS core credits, but does not satisfy the block transfer policy described in the preceding section, that student may choose to complete either the MUS core or the approved General Education program at Montana State University Billings.  The student should make that decision in consultation with an advisor.
  3. An undergraduate student who completes postsecondary coursework in the Montana University System that does not fall within the MUS Core will have his/her classes analyzed on a course-by-course basis to determine how those classes might satisfy the General Education program requirements at Montana State University Billings.

Course by Course Evaluation

Students who have not completed an approved general education program will have their transcript evaluated for transfer purposes using the Statewide Core Curriculum and Community College Transfer Guide.  Note:  College-level courses shall be defined as those that are applicable to an associate of arts, associate of science or baccalaureate degree.  In advance of a student’s enrollment, Montana State University Billings will determine which courses within an associate of applied science degree program will be credited toward a given associates or baccalaureate degree.  In all cases, such courses shall not include remedial or developmental courses.

Depending upon the major program the student selects, there may still be additional lower division courses required to meet published major program prerequisites.

Minimum Course Grades

Effective Fall Semester 2005, Board of Regents policy 301.5.3 on minimum grades will apply to all students who enter or are re-admitted to the Montana University System or the three (3) community colleges that semester or subsequent semesters.

All students in the Montana University System and the three (3) community colleges must earn the following minimum grades in order to demonstrate their competency and preparation:

  1. a “D-” or better in all classes that are used to satisfy so-called free or elective credits in an associate or baccalaureate degree program;
  2. a “C-” or better in all classes that are used to satisfy a general education program;
  3. a “C-” or better in all classes that are used to satisfy the pre-requisites or required courses in a major, minor, option or certificate.

Individual programs may establish grade standards that are higher than the minimums set out in paragraph A above, for some or all of the courses that are used to satisfy the pre-requisites or requirements for a major, minor, option, certificate or general education.  Students will be notified of that expectation.  Please refer to page 51 of this catalog for details on grade requirements for AAS, CAS, and ASN degrees.

All Transfers

Note:  By action of the Academic Senate of MSU Billings, City College at MSU Billings will accept transfer students with completed AA or AS degrees from other regionally accredited institutions as having fulfilled their City College at MSU Billings General Education requirements if the general education package is comparable in total credits and content. (10/7/04 memo #446 p. 1654)

All college-level courses from regionally accredited institutions of higher education will be received and applied towards the free elective requirements of associate or baccalaureate degrees as applicable.

The Advisors within Jacket Student Central at City College (247-3019) and/or Advising Office at the University campus (657-2240) will do an evaluation of transcripts upon receiving all transcripts for the student.  The student will be informed as to what transfer courses can be accepted toward the major and what courses must yet be completed for the degree.  This evaluation will be processed only after an application, the admission fee, and official college transcripts are on file with the Office of Admissions.

Students who transfer credit from foreign institutions or from institutions that do not have regional accreditation will have their courses evaluated on an individual basis.  Policy and procedure information may be obtained in the Office of Admissions and Records.

Students transferring from institutions with candidacy status in a regional accrediting association must earn at least 20 credits at MSU Billings with a minimum 2.00 GPA before their credits from the former institution will be considered for acceptance.

Students transferring from community colleges or other two-year colleges may not use the credit transferred in lieu of upper division credits required for graduation at Montana State University Billings.

Students transferring to Montana State University Billings who have previously earned a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education are considered to have their General Education requirements completed.  Only information pertaining to the degree, date, and institution conferring will be noted on the transcript, individual coursework is not transcripted.

Acceptance of credits from other institutions of higher learning does not preclude the necessity of meeting all curricular requirements of a specific program.  Students transferring to MSU Billings may have their credits evaluated on the basis of the current catalog at the time when they first entered Montana State University Billings, or they may elect to enter under the catalog for the year in which they entered any accredited institution of higher education in the United States provided they have maintained continuous, full-time enrollment (excluding summers) in good standing.

Transfer students will begin a new grade point average at MSU Billings, but for graduation with honors all previous transfer work will be calculated into GPA.

Course Equivalency Guides

Annually, Montana State University Billings updates equivalency agreements with regional community colleges in Wyoming, North Dakota, and Montana; Montana's tribally controlled colleges; and Montana's four-year (public and private) institutions. Students who attend any of these colleges and who plan to transfer to MSU Billings are encouraged to visit the MSUB website (www.msubillings.edu).  This information will assist students in understanding how specific courses will transfer to MSU Billings and what courses individual degree programs require.

Registration

First-Time Students

  1. All first-time students at City College at MSU Billings need to apply to the College and be accepted before they can register
  2. After being admitted, students should check for the beginning dates for registration (see the University Calendar), after which students may register at any time.
  3. Arrange to take the required placement testing, possibly in a group session or by individual appointment.  Call Jacket Student Central to confirm options for testing.
  4. Attend a New Student Orientation Session prior to the term of desired attendance.  Attendance at the Registration and Orientation Sessions is expected.  Course registration, processing of student identification cards, and other information necessary for a successful first semester at City College at MSU Billings is accomplished through these sessions.
  5. First-time students at City College at MSU Billings are required to visit with an academic advisor prior to registering for classes.  Academic advising is provided as part of the Orientation or Registration Session.  A student’s course schedule must be approved by an academic advisor before actual registration can take place.  The Advising Center, within Jacket Student Central, is located on first floor of the Tech Building at the City College Campus, (406) 247-3019 and McMullen Hall First Floor, (406) 657-2240 on the University campus.
  6. In order to complete the 60-72 credits required to complete an associates degree, students are encouraged to enroll in 15 or more credits each semester.  However, to assist students to complete their degree in a timely fashion, the tuition for students taking 12 credits or more will remain the same.  Thus, whether one registers for 12, 15, or 18 credits, the same tuition applies.  It is clearly to students’ advantage to register for 15 credits or more a semester.  Please note that The MSU Billings Financial Aid Office defines the academic year as 30 weeks and 24 credits.  Therefore, the financial aid definition of fulltime enrollment is 12 credits per semester for undergraduate students.
  7. Once the course schedule has been approved, the student should follow registration instructions found on the web at www.msubillings.edu or from the advising office.
  8. Some classes may be restricted or closed and need departmental approval.  Student should see the department or Jacket Student Central for assistance in registering for these courses.
  9. Students may add courses during the first seven instructional days of the semester before permission of the instructor or department chairperson is required.  Dropping a course with a partial refund is permissible through the 15th instructional day, and a course may be dropped without a grade penalty up through the 13th week of the semester.  With instructor and advisor approval, a course may be dropped up until 10 class days (not including finals) from semester’s end.  Once a course grade is submitted, the course may no longer be dropped without instructor and advisor approval.
  10. Students who have not paid their bills by the close of business on the 3rd day of classes may be dropped from their classes.
  11. If a student registers after the third day of the semester, a late fee will be added to the registration charge.

Registration Regulations

Late Registration

Students are expected to complete registration within the dates stated.  For any delay beyond that period, unless such delay is caused by University officials, a late registration fee will be charged.  Students permitted to register late must pay the full fees.  Students who fail to pay or do not have their fees arranged before the final fee payment day will have their classes deleted for that semester.

Transcript(s) from Former School(s) and College(s)

All official records (transcripts) of former college study must be filed in the Jacket Student Central by new students (and by former students if they have attended other colleges since last attending MSU Billings) before their registration is considered complete.  (See Non-Degree Policy and Procedures under Admissions Section.)  Failure to file transcripts with Jacket Student Central within a reasonable time will result in the cancellation of a student’s registration.  Responsibility for securing transcripts rests with the student.

Adding Courses

Students may add courses during the first seven instructional days of each semester.  Students may add courses after the seventh instructional day and through the 15th instructional day only with the instructor's and department chairperson’s approvals.

Repeated Courses

When a course which a student has previously attempted is repeated, only the most recent course credit and grade is calculated into the student’s grade point average, even if the most recent grade is lower.  (Note:  the original course and the grade remain on the official transcript in addition to the more recent course and grade).  In order to inform the Registrar's Office of a repeated course, the student must file with the Registrar's Office a Repeat Form that identifies the proper course numbers.

No prerequisite course may be repeated if the more advanced course has been completed with a grade of “C” or better.  Exception may be considered upon appeal to the chairperson of the department in which the course is offered.

Veterans’ Credits (Credit for Military Service)

Credit may be granted for military service and for completed military service schools based upon the recommendations of “A Guide to the Evaluation of Educational Experiences in the Armed Forces.”  Application for such credits should be made at the Registrar's Office.  The University accepts many forms of Professional Military Education (non-academic experience and training) that have been evaluated by the American Council on Education (ACE) as academic credit.  Veterans are encouraged to get transcripts to the Advising Center for evaluation.  Please refer to the following website for directions on requesting military transcripts:  www.msubillings.edu/reg/MilitaryTranscripts.htm

Credit Recommended by the National Guide to Education Credit for Training Programs

Credit may be granted to students based on the recommendation of the National Guide to Education Credit for Training Programs and the National Program on Collegiate Sponsored Instruction.

Academic Regulations

Flat Spot

As students wishing to earn an associate’s degree are expected to complete 60-72 credits over a four-semester period of time to graduate in two years, a minimum of 15 or more credits must be taken each semester.  To encourage students to take a full load of 15 or more credits, a “Flat Spot” in the tuition has been created allowing students to register for 12 or more credits for the same tuition as 12 credits.  Thus, whether one registers for 12, 15, or 18 credits, the same tuition applies.  It is clearly to students’ advantage to register for 15 credits or more a semester.  Please note that The MSU Billings Financial Aid Office defines the academic year as 30 weeks and 24 credits.  Therefore, the financial aid definition of full time enrollment is 12 credits per semester for undergraduate students.

Credit Overload

Any student not on probation may register for up to 18 credits per term.  However, individual students who have a 3.00 grade point average (GPA) may register for up to 20 credits per semester without consent.  Students who wish to register for a credit load in excess of 18 hours, but who have less than a 3.00 GPA must have approval of the chairperson of the department in which they are majoring.  Students who have a 3.00 GPA and wish to register for a credit load in excess of 20 credits per semester must have the approval of the chairperson of the department in which they are majoring, complete a Request for Overload form, and return the form to Jacket Student Central or the Registrar's Office.

Change of Major

A student who considers such a change is warned that the requirements of the new curriculum may make necessary the completion of additional credits if the student is to fulfill requirements for graduation.  Students need to visit the Advising Center within Jacket Student Central (City College Tech Building First Floor/McMullen Hall First Floor) to obtain assistance with a change of major.

Final Examinations

Final examinations are scheduled during the last week of each semester.  A final examination schedule is available at Jacket Student Central and on the web at www.msubillings.edu.

Accelerated Coursework

Students are encouraged to decrease the time required to complete a degree by gaining credit for knowledge they have obtained which duplicates that which is taught in specific courses.  Students should initiate requests for such academic credit by consulting first with their advisor or department chairperson.  The following provisions indicate ways accelerated credit may be awarded.

Applicants who have taken Advanced Placement (AP) Exams, and/or International Baccalaureate (IB) Exams should request that the official scores be sent directly to the Office of Admissions. AP scores of 3 or higher and IB Exams with scores of 4 or higher will be granted college credit with a Pass (P) grade for the equivalent courses.  After students successfully complete a semester at MSU Billings, the credits will be placed on their college transcripts with the indication of AP for Advanced Placement, or IB for International Baccalaureate.

Course Substitution

Students may request a substitution for any stated course if they have previously completed a college course in which the subject matter closely parallels that of the course for which they request the substitution.  All substitutions must be approved by the academic department chairperson.  In no instance will a reduction be made in the number of credits required for any academic program.

Challenging Courses

Each department or unit determines the courses which may be challenged.  A course may not be challenged when the course is a prerequisite to a more advanced course already completed.  Students are advised to check with individual departments for detailed procedures to be followed.

Procedure for Challenging a Course

The student should obtain a recommendation from the instructor of the course being challenged and the approval of the chairperson of the department in which the course is listed.  The following conditions apply to the challenging of courses for college credit:

  1. The student must be currently enrolled in City College at MSU Billings.
  2. Approval of the challenge request must be made by the chairperson of the department in which the course is listed, who will decide whether the challenge shall be by a comprehensive examination and/or by some other evidence of competence in the subject matter of the course.
  3. Challenge credit may be granted only if the grade received is “C” or higher.
  4. A course previously taken as an audit course or as a credit course may not be challenged for credit.
  5. By action of the University’s Academic Senate, AP, CLEP and DANTES credits are awarded with a “P” grade.  Departmental challenges may carry a letter or “P” grade.
    The Board of Regents has authorized the American Council on Education’s Guide to Educational Credit by Examination and National CCRS (National College Credit Recommendation Service) for use to establish minimum scores and credit.
  6. Currently enrolled students may receive credit on their transcript for successfully completed Advanced Placement (AP) exams, DANTES exams, College Level Examination Program (CLEP) exams or challenge exams prepared by the Academic Department.  For the credit to be applied to an City College at MSU Billings transcript, the following procedure must be followed:  Students or departments must turn in challenge documentation to the Jacket Student Central Office after the successful challenge has been completed. AP and CLEP credits are added to student transcripts after the 15th class day each term.

Independent Study

Well-qualified students may undertake academic work in the form of independent study.  The number of credits will be determined by the instructor and approved by the department chairperson.  Courses listed in the Catalog as regularly offered courses may not be taken under the designation of Independent Study.

Advanced Placement

Advanced placement in certain academic areas with sequential or prerequisite courses is available to students with a high degree of competency.  Normally, advanced placement is made on the basis of standardized tests and other evidence of competency in the area.  Should students demonstrate sufficient competency as determined by the appropriate department, they are placed at a level in the course sequence commensurate with their abilities.  Satisfactory results of the advanced placement procedure are reported to the Registrar's Office by the responsible department with a grade report. AP for High School Students and College Level Examination (CLEP) are two types of Advance Placement examinations that the college accepts.  For more information please refer to the MSU Billings General Bulletin, contact the Office of Admissions at (406) 657-2888.

Prior Learning Assessment Policies and Procedures

At City College at Montana State University Billings, students may earn credit through a variety of methods including work experience and challenge tests.  The University will work with the student to determine which type of experience can be translated into credit.

Note:  Prior Learning Assessment guidelines and policies are subject to change.

Several options are as follows:

  1. Challenge tests, such as CLEP and DANTES, allow the student to study for and test out of equivalent college-level courses.  Tests can be scheduled through the Registrar's Office 406-657-2158.
  2. Students may have already earned credit through work-site training or government-sponsored workshops or military experience.  If students have certificates or documentation which state that the American Council on Education (ACE) or the National CCRS (National College Credit Recommendation Service) assesses that training, credit may be available for coursework for which there are equivalencies in MSU Billings’ curriculum.  Military credit is assessed from the military transcript.  Students must complete a request in the JST official transcript ordering system to request an official military transcript be sent to MSU Billings.  Questions about this type of training or military credit may be directed to the University campus Advising Center at (406) 657-2240.
  3. In addition to the methods listed above, the University also offers students the opportunity to earn credit through Prior Learning Assessment.  This assessment will take into account work experience or other learning experiences, which do not fall into the categories described above, but which can be assessed through the development of a portfolio.  Up to 15 credits can be earned through Prior Learning Assessment, and this type of credit will be graded with “P” if credit is earned.  The University offers individual instruction for students throughout the process of preparing this portfolio.  For more information on Prior Learning Assessment, please call the Registrar's Office at (406) 657-2158.
  4. Implementation of these policies needs to be consistent with existing departmental policies and consistent with accreditation policies and practices already in place in the various colleges (AACSB, CAEP, etc.).

Prior Learning Assessment Guidelines

  1. Prior to enrolling in this course, students must have successfully completed 12 credits of college-level coursework with a 2.50 GPA from an accredited institution within the past five years.  Prior credit must also include completion of WRIT 101 or its equivalent.
  2. The student will first select the MSU Billings course the student wishes to complete through Prior Learning Assessment.  Second, the student will contact the on-campus instructor for that course to determine whether the student can meet the course objectives through this method of assessment.  If the student receives a positive recommendation from the instructor or department chair or dean, the student may proceed with the portfolio process for that course; however, a positive recommendation does not guarantee the award of credit.
  3. The student’s completed portfolio is examined first by the Registrar's Office for approval or returned to the student for additional documentation.  If approved, the portfolio is forwarded to the chair of the department in which the student seeks to receive credit and to faculty member from whom the student received the recommendation.  If approved by both the chair and the faculty member of record, the portfolio goes to the Academic Standards and Scholastic Standing Committee.  Final action on the awarding of credit takes place in this committee.  Credit awarded may not be the same as the number of credits requested by the student’s portfolio.
  4. Credit recommendation and documentation for the coursework is forwarded to the Registrar if the assessment is successful.  Coursework is posted on student’s transcript using the course equivalent assigned by the portfolio assessment process.
  5. Up to 15 credits may be earned through this procedure and coursework will be graded Pass/ No Pass.  Students may submit subsequent requests to earn credit through prior learning assessment after initial completion of the seminar course.  Registration and program guidelines shall be those in force at the time of the subsequent request.

Auditing Coursework

(No credit awarded)

Any person enrolled for audit will be certified as such by the Registrar's Office and will not receive credit for the course nor be required to take examinations.  An audit must be declared during the first seven instructional days of a semester.  A student who registers to audit a class will not be permitted in any City College at MSU Billings class which requires
any laboratory or clinical work.  Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by the appropriate department chair and dean.

Currently enrolled students who elect to audit a class pay the normal credit hour fee as outlined in the student fee schedule.  Any person not otherwise enrolled or registered in a course for college credit may, with instructor approval, audit the course at the cost of $5 per credit hour.  These fees are nonrefundable.

An audit is at the discretion of the course instructor.  In order to audit, the student must obtain instructor’s permission and instructor’s signature on an audit card.   This card is available from Jacket Student Central (Tech Building First Floor).  When the student has completed the audit card with the faculty signature and cashier payment, the card is returned Jacket Student Central.

A student may not later establish credit in a course that was taken under the audit option by taking a special examination.  In all cases, students who register for regular credit and pay regular fees will have priority for enrollment in a class over those students who audit the class.

Class Attendance and Student Absences

Members of the faculty determine the attendance policy for their classes.  Absences for official University activities are permissible providing the instructor is notified in advance of such an absence.  An official University activity is an activity where a student officially represents the University through an academic department, sponsored University program, or an officially registered student organization.  In all absences, the student is responsible for all requirements of the course.

Requests for absence for special events shall be submitted to the Vice Chancellor for Student Access and Success on the Student Travel Authorization form.  This form should be obtained from the Office of the Vice Chancellor, room 201, McMullen Hall, at least one week in advance of the expected absence.  This procedure will ensure students the opportunity to make up examinations given when official University activities are scheduled.

Class Enrollment Lists

Faculty may obtain class lists each term online.  Only students who are regularly registered for a course may attend class.  No grade or credit will be given to students for any course in which they are not properly registered.

Extent of Official Absence

When issued, an official absence is an excuse for time only and does not mean that a student is excused from the study assignment for that period.  Each student is responsible for making up all work missed, as required by the instructor.

Drops and Withdrawals

Dropping a Course

Dropping a course is permitted through the seventh week, 35th day of the semester.  There is no penalty for failing work through the drop period.  Dropping a course is also permitted through the 13th week and up until 10 class days from the official end of the semester (not including final) with the approval of the student’s academic advisor and course instructor.  Once a course grade is submitted, the course may no longer be dropped without instructor and advisor approval.  After the 13th week, students may not drop courses, and the instructor will assign a letter grade.  The mark “W” is assigned to any course dropped after the 15th day of class.

After the 15th class day and before the 13th week, all drops must be formal and must be recorded by the student with the Registrar's Office.

In all courses in which a student fails to complete all requirements and for which no formal withdrawal has been filed in the Registrar's Office, the final grade for the course shall be an “F.”

Withdrawal from College

Students who withdraw from City College at MSU Billings during a semester are required to fill out a withdrawal form and complete an exit interview with an advisor in the Advising Center located in Jacket Student Central on the first floor of City College Tech Building.

Students who officially withdraw during the first fifteen days of an academic term will not have the coursework reflected on the transcript.  Students who withdraw after the third week will receive a grade of “W” (Withdrew) in all classes.

Students who do not officially withdraw from classes will receive a letter grade (i.e., other than a “W” grade) to be determined by the instructor of each class.

Veterans Certifying Official

Military and Veteran Student Success Center

College of Education Room 106, (406) 657-2968

To activate your VA Educational Benefits contact:

VA Certifying Official
College of Education 106
(406) 657-2968

MSU Billings recommends all service members speak with their Educational Services Officer (ESO) or counselor prior to enrolling.   Many ESOs can assist with obtaining the Notice of Basic Eligibility (NOBE).

For assistance on the posting of your VA Educational benefits please contact the Business Services Office in McMullen Hall.
Renee Haefer
(406) 657-1707
renee.haefer@msubillings.edu
McMullen Ground Level West

For more detailed information about your benefits, please refer to www.va.gov.