Dakota State University students walking around campus

Preparation + opportunity = success

That's the DSU equation. We're a four-year university with nationally recognized programs, cutting-edge facilities, and the brightest thinkers. But we're also a tight-knit, inclusive community. Small class sizes mean hands-on training and individualized attention. All this with an affordable, public school price that's among the best values in the region.

Majors & Degrees

For Existing Students

Research and Scholarship opportunities

Students wishing to apply for off-campus summer funded research opportunities need to meet with an interested faculty member or the Honors Director in the early fall to identify appropriate application targets. Most Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REUs) funded by the National Science Foundation run for 8-12 weeks, provide travel and living expenses, and include a substantial stipend.  Application deadlines vary but usually begin in the late fall or early winter. Most students apply for the summer following their sophomore or junior years. They require extensive faculty letters of recommendation and previous demonstration of research capacity. Not all REUs are funded by the NSF, but NSF opportunities are found here:

Search National Science Foundation Opportunities


Research conducted as part of the honors thesis as well as opportunities such as REUs prepare and qualify honors students to apply for nationally competitive awards and scholarships. Scholarships can fund a student's senior undergraduate year or graduate school. They are often funded through notable endowments or foundations and include (with application deadlines), but are not limited to:

  • The Truman Scholarship (early February)

    • Funding graduate study for any student intending a career in public service

  • The Goldwater Scholarship (last Friday in January)

    • Funding final undergraduate years in STEM fields

  • The Fulbright Scholarship (early October)

    • Funding research and service abroad for recent graduates

  • The Udall Scholarship (early March)

    • Funding undergraduate work for those committed to environmental/tribal issues

  • The Marshall Scholarship (early October)

    • Funds UK graduate work in any field bringing relationships between US & UK

  • The Boren Scholarship (March 1)

    • Funds undergraduate study abroad in critical languages in support of US interests

  • The Soros Fellowship (November 1)

    • Funds graduate study for 1st and 2nd generation immigrants

  • The Churchill Scholarship (November 1)

    • Funds graduate study at Cambridge in STEM fields

  • The Pickering Fellowship (mid-September)

    • Funds graduate study for those interested in the foreign service

  • The Beinecke Scholarship (early January)

    • Funds graduate study in any aspect of the arts, humanities, and social sciences

  • Foreign Affairs IT Fellowship (early fall)

    • Funds undergraduate study and overseas travel for those interested in foreign service and with an IT application

  • The Rangel Fellowship (November 1)

    • Funds graduate study in the foreign service for those committed to diversity

These events involve rigorous application and interview processes. Honors faculty work diligently with students to prepare applications and individualized recommendations. They also prepare students for interviews and social events.

Honors Senior Thesis

All graduating honors students are required to produce a significant piece of academic work in their major field demonstrating intellectual rigor, original examination of academic material in their major, and next-level skills in the manipulation, comprehension and/or examination of that material.  Part of the thesis process requires the submission of an honors thesis prospectus in the semester prior to completing the honors thesis. 

Students completing the thesis prospectus must register for HON 392, a one-credit course designed solely to direct students in the process of developing and completing their thesis prospectus. The prospectus identifies the nature and scope, as well as intellectual or professional benefit or significance, of the senior honors project. 

What should the prospectus include?

Your prospectus should follow discipline-specific style guides and standard practices for proposing research. It should include a synopsis or abstract of the proposed project; a survey, review, or acknowledgement of existing or related scholarship or creative works that inform your project; a discussion of proposed methodologies to be pursued or questions to be considered; and a discussion of possible outcomes or significances. It also must include a completed Thesis Application form.

Thesis Application Form


Your prospectus is due November 1 if you take HON 392 in the fall or April 1 if you take HON 392 in the spring. It must be reviewed and approved by your thesis advisor prior to submission.


Students are required to enroll in HON 492 in the semester they complete their senior thesis.  Completed honors theses are due by November 1 if taking HON 492 in the fall or April 1 if taking HON 492 in the spring. Theses must be reviewed and approved by your thesis advisor and must include the Thesis Application Form first utilized in the Prospectus process.