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Majors & Degrees

International Travel: Faculty/Staff Led Programs

Policy 1.20
Approved by: President
Responsible Officer: Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
Responsible Office: Academic Affairs
Originally Issued: 05/19/2010
Last Revision: 03/11/2024
Category: Academics
Related Policy
SDBOR Policy 5.5.4 Tuition and Fees: General Procedures
SDBOR Policy 5.17 Instructional Funding
US Department of State: Bureau of Consular Affairs
US Department of State: International Travel
Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI)
Dakota State University Workload Document
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Travelers' Health


The purpose of this policy is to document the responsibilities of University faculty, staff, and students going abroad representing DSU and often funded by DSU. This policy outlines requirements related to the organization and implementation of DSU Faculty/Staff-Led Programs.


  1. Faculty/Staff-Led Program. Experiences, credit-bearing or non-credit bearing, where all or part of the program is conducted off-campus. Personal travel experiences (e.g., vacations, trips) and DSU-sponsored activities (e.g., presenting at conferences, DSU events) are not faculty-led programs.
  2. IPO. DSU’s International Programs Office.


The following requirements shall apply to all faculty-led international travel programs.

  1. Approved Proposal. All faculty-led international travel programs at DSU shall have an IPO-approved proposal.

  2. Length. A faculty-led program is typically one (1) to four (4) weeks but may be longer with proper planning and approval.

  3. Courses. Courses completed during a Faculty-Led Program shall be regular DSU courses transcribed on the student’s transcript accordingly.

  4. Billing. The University bills participants in the Faculty-Led Program in conjunction with their regular semester bills so financial aid may be applied when applicable.

  5. Faculty Leader Responsibilities. The role of the faculty leader shall include, but is not limited to, the following:

    1. Manages logistical details as they relate to students, travel, flight cancellations, detours, host cultures, and hotel accommodations.

    2. Complies with relevant DSU policies, SDBOR policies, the DSU Student Handbook, and the SDBOR Student Code of Conduct including, but not limited to, health, weather, personal safety, emergency procedures, discrimination, and harassment.

    3. Creates and maintains budgets including, but not limited to, accounting for any cash advances requested.

    4. Recruits students, in collaboration with the IPO, to participate in the faculty-led study-abroad program, using a variety of best practices (e.g., information sessions, classroom visits, promotional strategies).

    5. Complies with state policy in fiscal matters.

    6. Identifies refund policies of all pre-paid /3rd-party providers including, but not limited to, accommodations, tours, and tickets.

  6. IPO Responsibilities. The role of the IPO in international faculty-led travel programs shall include, but is not limited to, the following:

    1. Establishes the program application process.

    2. Approves program proposals.

    3. Monitors the faculty coordination of payment plans for students and entities abroad.

    4. Collaborates with DSU’s Office of Business and Administrative Services for faculty financial reimbursement and reconciliation of cash advances.

    5. Reports any budget deficits or mismanagement to DSU’s Office of Business and Administrative Services.


This policy does not apply to personal travel or DSU-sponsored travel (e.g., presenting at conferences, DSU events).


The President’s Office is responsible for the President’s overseas travel insurance


  1. Faculty/Staff-Led Program Guidelines

    1. Proposal Submission: A faculty-led program proposal must be completed and submitted to the IPO by the deadline established by DSU policy guidelines (see below).

    2. Proposal Meeting: All faculty leaders are required to attend an in-person meeting with the IPO Director. During this meeting, participants shall review the faculty-led program requirements and forms as well as discuss issues such as program implementations, health and safety, orientation of participants, financial aid procedures, marketing, and liability.

    3. Proposal Deadlines:

      1. Spring Break Programs: Proposals due to the IPO by September 1.

      2. May/Summer Programs: Proposals due to the IPO by October 1.

      3. Winter Break Programs: Proposals due to the IPO by June 1.

    4. Notification: The IPO shall send proposal approval or revisions to the faculty leader within three weeks of receipt of the complete proposal.

    5. Employment Status: The faculty leader who will be designated instructor-of-record must be a full-time DSU employee or approved for adjunct teaching status.

    6. Compensation: The tuition generated by the students enrolled in the program must be sufficient to cover the workload costs for the faculty member leading the program. If that is not the case, then the faculty member will not be paid workload for the program. Compensation shall be overload at the Independent Study Rate.

    7. Co-Leader Compensation: The program enrollment must justify covering the expenses of a co-leader.

    8. Age Requirements: Program participants must be 18 years of age or older unless the IPO has granted prior approval for travel by an individual younger than 18.

    9. Tuition Rate: The South Dakota Board of Regents requires that all Faculty-Led Programs are calculated at the self-support tuition rate that has been established by the Board. (See the BOR Policy 5:17.)

    10. Liability Insurance: All third-party entities will be required to provide proof of liability insurance sufficient to meet the requirements of SDBOR Policy 5:3 and DSU policy.

    11. International Insurance: The cost of international insurance shall be included in the fee for all faculty-led programs. This insurance is mandated by the South Dakota Board of Regents. Faculty leaders are also required to purchase this insurance.

    12. Passports and Visas: Faculty leaders are required to purchase and hold a valid passport. They must determine if a visa will be required for entry into the destination country or countries, how to obtain the visa, and the additional cost.

    13. Non-Student Participation: The faculty leader may determine if non-student participation will be permitted. Non-student participants must pay the Program Fee, insurance fees, and a participation charge. The participation charge will be used to off-set the salary and expenses of the faculty leader(s) in the same way as student tuition.

  2. Faculty/Staff-Led International Travel Proposals: Evaluation Criteria

    1. The proposal adheres to all requirements specified in the above-mentioned guidelines.

    2. The program is proposed for a location that will not pose unreasonable threats to participant health and safety as determined by U.S. State Department (International Travel) and the Centers for Disease Control guidelines (Travelers' Health) and the International Programs Office. DSU shall not approve, fund, award credit for, or otherwise sponsor or support any international academic or extracurricular activity in any of the countries for which a travel warning (advising US citizens against all travel to that country) has been issued by the U.S. State Department.

    3. The program provides ample opportunity for participants to engage with local cultures and gain an international or global perspective.

    4. The design of the program (date, length, location, course offerings, cost, etc.) is conducive to DSU student interest, participation, and university-level learning.


Faculty/Staff-Led Program Proposal


Adopted: 05/17/2010

Revised: 03/11/2024