Program Overview

The Pathway Program is a collaborative agreement between North Dakota State University and the North Dakota State College of Science that helps prepare students for the academic rigors of college-level coursework.

Applicants who do not meet general admission guidelines at NDSU may be eligible to participate in the program. If you apply for admission to NDSU and are identified as someone who would benefit from the Pathway Program, you will receive additional information included with your decision letter, along with instructions to indicate your interest in participation.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have been admitted to the Pathway Program or think you may be eligible, choose a topic below for answers to common questions about the program. 

Campus Services

This sounds a little confusing. Which school do I belong to?

While students are in the Pathway Program, NDSCS serves as their “home” campus, and NDSU serves as their “host” campus. Basically, NDSU is hosting or promoting the success of a future NDSU student who is a student in the Pathway Program at NDSCS.

What services can I use on each campus?

Pathway students are eligible to use services and resources on both campuses. These include tutoring services, use of the NDSU Wallman Wellness Center and Student Health Services, admission to athletic and fine arts events, participation in student organizations, and much more.

Pathway students typically live on campus at NDSU, and are subject to the same codes of conduct as full-time NDSU and NDSCS students.

When can I transition to being a full-time student at NDSU?

Pathway students typically participate in the program for two or three semesters. To successfully transition full time to NDSU, Pathway students must pass all applicable academic readiness courses, and must complete at least 24 college-level credits, earning a minimum NDSU and cumulative grade point average of 2.0.

Course Placement

How long will I be in the Pathway Program? 

Pathway students are typically enrolled in the program for two or three semesters. 


What courses will I take as a Pathway student?

Pathway students may take a combination of academic readiness courses and general education classes through NDSCS-Fargo, located adjacent to the NDSU campus, along with a limited number of general education classes at NDSU.


How do you determine what courses will prepare me best?

Course placement is based on ACT or SAT sub-scores. Prior to orientation, students take the COMPASS Placement Exam at NDSCS-Fargo in an attempt to increase their placement scores.

Billing and Financial Aid

How am I billed and who do I pay?

Pathway students pay NDSCS tuition and fees for all classes taken through NDSCS, and NDSU tuition and fees for all classes taken through NDSU. All costs, including tuition, fees, room and board, and the like, are combined and administered through NDSCS.  


Where do I submit my FAFSA? 

Students applying for financial aid will do so through NDSCS, by indicating their school code (002996) on the FAFSA, which can be completed at


Learn about NDSCS costs

Learn more about NDSU costs