Glossary of Terms
Articulation Agreement - An articulation agreement is an agreement between M State and a four-year college or university. The agreement specifies that all or some credits from a particular technical diploma or degree will be accepted toward a specified four-year degree program/major of study.
Course Substitutions - In certain circumstances, flexibility in meeting program requirements may be needed. A course substitution allows the student to fulfill a specific course requirement with a substitute course. Course substitutions may be requested at the discretion of the program faculty and are subject to approval by the appropriate dean of academic affairs. A minimum of 75 percent of the course goals/outcomes must be shared between the substituted course and the required course.
Credit for Prior Learning - Students may earn academic credit in certain college courses if they have gained skills and/or knowledge from previous education, job training, self-study, occupational experiences or other experiences. Academic credit may be earned through credit by evaluation assessed by college faculty, national standardized exams such as CLEP and AP, or third-party agencies providing transcripts such as the American Council on Education.
DARS - M State utilizes the Degree Audit Reporting System (DARS) for students to monitor progress toward degree requirements. Interactive DARS reports are available for students via their E-Services account. The report includes a listing of courses transferred from other institution and whether each course was transferred as directly equivalent to an M State course. The DARS audit also will list all requirements for the student's declared major(s) and the student's status toward completing each requirement, whether fulfilled by M State courses or transfer courses. Students should consult their DARS audit regularly to make sure they are on track to complete their degree requirements. For more information about how to interpret your DARS audit, view the How to Read a DARS Audit presentation.
eTranscript - All institutions that are part of the Minnesota State system are able to access an electronic transcript (eTranscript) from any other Minnesota State institution the student attended, provided the student does not have an outstanding financial obligation on his/her account at the institution where courses were taken.
Minnesota State - The Minnesota State system is comprised of 30 colleges and seven universities with 54 campuses in 47 communities throughout the state. The Minnesota State system is the largest single provider of higher education in Minnesota.
Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) - The MnTC is the basis for the general education requirements for institutions that are part of the Minnesota State system. Completion of the MnTC requires at least 40 credits and a specified number of courses or credits taken from each of the 10 MnTC goal areas. The MnTC must be completed with a minimum 2.0 GPA.
Technical Courses - Technical courses are part of technical programs and are not part of the MnTC. Technical courses are subject to M State's Recency Policy (found under Educational Policies), which states that technical courses have a life span of five years from the date the course was completed. Program-specific exceptions may be granted.
Official Transcript - An official transcript must be received in a sealed envelope addressed from the student's previous institution. Official transcripts must be mailed directly to M State; they cannot be hand-delivered by the student.
Regional Accreditation - Regional accreditation involves a process that ensures institutions follow the same guidelines regarding curriculum and instructors who teach the courses. There are six regional accrediting agencies in the United States.