Apr 18, 2024  
2015-16 NSU Undergraduate Catalog 
2015-16 NSU Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

About NSU


Northeastern State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (http://www.ncahlc.org) and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools located at 230 North LaSalle Street. Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1411.  The HLC can be contacted at:  800-621-7440, 312-263-0456, or by email at info@hlcommission.org.   All programs offered by the University are approved by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education (655 Research Parkway, Suite 200, Oklahoma City, OK 73104, 405-225-9100) and by the Board of Regents of the Regional University System of Oklahoma (4900 Richmond Square, Suite 200, Oklahoma City, OK 73118, 405-848-3373).

In addition, NSU’s educator preparation programs at the baccalaureate and master’s levels are accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Education Preparation (CAEP), www.caepnet.org, formally National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), (2010 Massachusetts Ave. N.W., Suite 500, Washington, D.C. 20036-1023, 202-223-0077), and the Oklahoma Office of Educational Quality and Accountability (840 Research Parkway, Suite 455, Oklahoma City, OK 73104, (405) 522-5399), http://www.ok.gov/oeqa/

Northeastern State University’s Oklahoma College of Optometry Professional Doctoral Degree (O.D.) Program has full accreditation by the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE), 243 N. Lindberg Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63141, 314-991-4100. http://www.aoa.org/

The NSU baccalaureate and masters nursing programs are fully accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), formally National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission  Inc. (NLNAC), 3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850, Atlanta, Georgia, 404.975.5000, URL:  http://www.nlnac.org

The Bachelor of Business Administration and Master of Business Administration programs offered through the College of Business and Technology are fully accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (11520 West 119th Street, Overland Park, KS 66213, 913-339-9356). http://www.acbsp.org

The Northeastern State University Didactic Program in Dietetics (Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Science: Dietetics) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the American Dietetic Association (120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000, Chicago, IL 60606-6995, 312-899-5400); FAX 312-899-4817; Email:  ACEND@eatright.org; URL:  www.eatright.org/acend.

The Bachelor of Social Work program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (1600 Duke St., Alexandria, VA 22314-3421, 703-683-8080).  http://www.cswe.org/Accreditation.aspx

The Master of Science program in Speech-Language Pathology is accredited by the Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, 2200 Research Boulevard #310, Rockville, MD   20850-3289, 800-498-2071 or 301-296-5700. http://www.asha.org

The Bachelor of Arts in Music and Bachelor of Music Education degrees are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (http://nasm.arts-accredit.org/) located at 11250 Roger Bacon Drive, Suite 21, Reston, VA 20190, 703-437-0700.

The Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science program is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences, 5600 North River Road, Suite 720, Rosemont, IL 60018, 773-714-8880; FAX: 773-714-8886; Email: info@naacls.org; URL:  http://www.naacls.org.


Boards of Control

The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education  (OSRHE) is a constitutional board of nine members appointed by the Governor and approved by the Senate, with one member’s term expiring each year. This board issues all degrees earned, determines the curricula and courses of study, prescribes academic standards, establishes student fees, and allocates funds to each institution for operation and maintenance from the legislative appropriations which are made to the board.  http://www.okhighered.org/

The Regional University System of Oklahoma (RUSO) is a constitutional board of nine members, eight of whom are appointed by the governor by and with the consent of the Senate. The ninth member is the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. Members of the Board serve a nine-year staggered terms.  The duties and powers of this Board are to make rules and regulations governing Northeastern State University and its sister schools, employ all persons in the service of these universities, construct all buildings, and authorize the purchase of equipment and supplies. http://www.ruso.edu/

Locally,  the President is the chief executive officer and is responsible for the administration of the university. The President may delegate authority to selected administrators to facilitate management of the university while retaining the responsibility and accountability vested in the President. The President reports directly to the governing boards and is responsible for the determination and administration of all University policies.


Degrees Conferred

Doctor of Optometry
Master of Arts
Master of Business Administration
Master of Education
Master of Science
Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Arts in Education
Bachelor of Business Administration
Bachelor of Fine Arts
Bachelor of General Studies
Bachelor of Music Education
Bachelor of Science
Bachelor of Science in Education
Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Bachelor of Science in Science Education
Bachelor of Social Work
Bachelor of Technology


Educational Outreach & Continuing Education

Northeastern State University is committed to providing learning opportunities for the entire community through its Continuing Education office which arranges non-traditional or specialized offerings to meet constituents’ needs.  With flexible scheduling and customized approaches, NSU’s Continuing Education offers continuing education opportunities in areas ranging from accounting and financial planning to creative art to music lessons  to software packages to summer camps. Training can be rapidly developed and tailored to areas not yet been fully developed into the academic mainstream.  For information on enrollment or course information, call (800) 722-9614 or (918) 456-5511, Ext. 4610.



Tahlequah - Main Campus

Northeastern State University’s main campus is located in a place like no other, where the Ozark Mountains roll gently across the land, offering a panorama of natural scenery filled with pines, oaks, dogwoods and redbuds that blossom each spring. Nearby the main campus runs the Illinois River, cool and clear, feeding into Lake Tenkiller, a deep, crystal lake with a shoreline of beautiful forest and spectacular rock bluffs. The countryside, river and lake create an ideal area for a wide variety of favorite outdoor activities including backpacking, camping, horseback riding, fishing, boating, scuba diving, water skiing and many others. 

Within this natural setting is the city of Tahlequah, capital of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, where the tribe’s western migration ended in 1839. Rebuilding their civilization after relocation, the Cherokees established a progressive system of tribal government and public education. This unique history results in a rich and active heritage celebrated through Native American art and crafts, the Cherokee Village and Cherokee Heritage Center.  NSU, with its 200-acre campus of beautiful lawns and large shade trees, rests in the midst of this city and surrounding countryside. NSU, founded in 1909 on the grounds of the Cherokee National Female Seminary, offers students and the community not only a tradition of excellent teaching, but also Broadway productions, concerts and guest lecturers of international fame. NSU, Tahlequah and the Tulsa metroplex, just an hour away, offer a little bit of paradise west of the Mississippi.

Broken Arrow - Branch Campus

NSU-Broken Arrow (NSU-BA) is located in Broken Arrow, a southeastern suburb within the Tulsa metroplex. Broken Arrow is a dynamic, growing community of over 105,000 people. The consummate “family town,” Broken Arrow prides itself on providing residents with an outstanding quality of life, including a reinvigorated downtown, performing arts facilities, sports complexes, and museums. The community has been featured in Money Magazine’s 100 best places to live, and featured in Family Circle Magazine as one of the best towns for families.  NSU-Broken Arrow (NSU-BA) reflects the main campus in setting and architectural details.  From the clock tower to the arched windows that resemble features of Seminary Hall on the main campus, NSU-BA provides an access point for students matriculating from area community colleges and returning students seeking programs that accommodate non-traditional schedules. 

Nearly 50 baccalaureate and masters’ degree programs and multiple certification options are currently available at NSU-BA which is only an hour’s drive from Tahlequah and 40 minutes from the Muskogee campuses. The fast-growing NSU-Broken Arrow campus is comprised of six academic buildings and a maintenance facility.  It features modern classroom buildings,  a new science building, and a state-of-the-art library, all complemented by a beautifully landscaped mall and fountain area. Learning spaces include eight computer labs, twelve science labs, seven interactive videoconference classrooms/conference rooms, and a variety of technology-enhanced classroom accommodations. In addition, a full-service bookstore, academic/advisement and enrollment service offices, business office and administrative services, reading / math clinics, state-of-the-art College of Optometry low vision clinical offices, dining hall/conference facility, 375-seat lecture hall/auditorium, and cafe are available.

Muskogee - Branch Campus

In March 1993, NSU opened a 22-acre campus for upper division and graduate level course work in Muskogee. Muskogee is an economic center for eastern Oklahoma and operates the Port of Muskogee on the Arkansas River which is accessible from the Gulf of Mexico. After the passage of the Indian Removal Act of 1830, the Creek Indians settled in Muskogee, which was the site for meetings among the leaders of the Five Civilized Tribes. Muskogee offers its diverse citizens a historic business district, several museums including the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame, and Honor Heights Park where the annual Azalea Festival is held each April.

The NSU-Muskogee facility houses traditional and weekend academic programs, as well as NSU’s growing health professions programming. Seminars, conferences and continuing education courses are also provided on an ongoing basis. The 27,000 square foot building contains 12 classrooms, houses a Speech Pathology Clinic in partnership with the McAlester Scottish Rite, library/media center, a computer lab, faculty/administrative offices, vending lounge, a beautiful commons area and a 155+ seat conference center.

The Mike Synar Center, a 40,000 square foot facility, was opened in August 2001. This state-of-the-art building consists of classrooms, conference rooms, vending and exhibit areas. The Rotunda Commons features an exhibit commemorating the life and achievements of the late United States Congressman Mike Synar. In addition to the Rotunda, there is a gathering place for students and visitors in the spacious two-level lounge. 

NSU Muskogee Campus Conference Center is a bridge between professional education and the professional world. The Conference Center seats 155+ and is the ideal facility to promote professional activity and stimulate economic growth in the community. The campus provides a pleasant and attractive setting that offers all the elements for a conference, retreat or working meeting. For additional information on meeting room rates and availability, call (918) 683-0040.



Northeastern State University had its beginning in 1846 when the Cherokee National Council authorized establishment of a National Male Seminary and National Female Seminary to fulfill the stipulation in the Treaty of 1835 between the United States and the Cherokee Nation that public and higher education be provided for the Cherokees. Erection of the buildings for the two seminaries began in 1847 and the Cherokee National Male Seminary opened on May 6, 1851. The Cherokee National Female Seminary opened the following day. With the exception of a period between the end of the fall semester 1856 and the beginning of the fall semester 1871, these institutions were in continuous operation until 1909.

On March 6, 1909, the State Legislature of Oklahoma passed an act providing for the creation and location of Northeastern State Normal School at Tahlequah, Oklahoma, and for the purchase from the Cherokee Tribal Government of the building, land, and equipment of the Cherokee Female Seminary. The educational program of the normal school consisted of four years of high school and two years of college level study.

As previously authorized by an act of the Legislature, the State Board of Education, then the governing board of the college, took action in 1919 to change the normal school to Northeastern State Teachers College and to provide for a four-year curriculum leading to the bachelor’s degree. In 1939 the Oklahoma Legislature authorized that the name of the institution be changed to Northeastern State College.

A constitutional amendment adopted in 1941 created The Oklahoma State System of Higher Education, which includes Northeastern State University and all other state-supported institutions of higher education. The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education coordinates the system’s curriculum and academic programming. NSU’s governing board is the Board of Regents of the Regional  University System of Oklahoma which oversees all personnel, facilities, and financial matters.

In the 1950s Northeastern emerged as a comprehensive state college, broadening its curriculum at the baccalaureate level to encompass liberal arts subjects and adding a fifth-year program designed to prepare master teachers for elementary and secondary schools. By the early 1970s the functions of the institution had been broadened to include degree programs in liberal arts, business, and selected service areas. The approval of several new certificate and degree programs in non-teaching areas added a significant dimension to the role of Northeastern. In 1974, the Oklahoma Legislature authorized that the name of the institution be changed to Northeastern Oklahoma State University. The Northeastern State University College of Optometry opened in 1979 and made history when its first doctoral graduates received their degree in the spring of 1983.

The official name of the University was changed by act of the Oklahoma Legislature in 1985 to Northeastern State University.

NSU Mission, Vision, Values


Mission - Founded on the rich educational heritage of the Cherokee Nation, the campuses of Northeastern State University provide its diverse communities with lifelong learning through a broad array of undergraduate, graduate, and professional doctoral degree programs. With high expectations for student success, the University provides quality teaching, challenging curricula, research and scholarly activities, immersive learning opportunities, and service to local and professional communities. The institution’s dedicated faculty and staff offer a service-oriented, supportive learning environment where students prepare to achieve professional and personal success in a multicultural and global society.

Focused Mission - We empower students, faculty, staff and the community to reach their full intellectual and human potential by creating and expanding a culture of learning, discovery, and diversity.

VisionNortheastern State University shapes the future of its region as the educational partner of choice, setting a standard of excellence by serving the intellectual, cultural, social and economic needs of the University’s diverse communities.


Integrity - NSU models integrity through ethical and intellectual behaviors and practices by advancing honesty, human dignity, and accountability.

Collaboration - NSU engages in collaboration through partnerships to create learning opportunities and promote educational and economic success.

Creativity - NSU advances creativity through exploration, innovation, critical inquiry, and intellectual freedom.

Leadership - NSU inspires leadership through its commitment to prepare and serve others.

Excellence - NSU pursues excellence by continually improving individually and as a community.

Communication - NSU advocates communication through the free flow of information and ideas.

Diversity - NSU values diversity and empowerment by promoting the rights of individuals and equal access to educational and enrichment experiences, respecting cultural differences, and ensuring equal opportunity.

Programs at Broken Arrow


The NSU-BA campus provides course work, complete programs, and certificate programs to approximately 3,000 students annually, and nearly 100 faculty office at this campus.  The College of Extended Learning is based at the Broken Arrow campus and each of the undergraduate colleges and the Graduate College have offices and personnel available to assist students in meeting their educational goals. 

Degree programs available at the Broken Arrow campus include:

  • College of Business and Technology: Accounting, Business Administration, Finance, Information Systems, International Business, Marketing, Supply Chain Management, Environmental, Health and Safety Management, Technology, Master of Business Administration (MBA), MS Accounting and Financial Analysis, and MS Environmental, Health and Safety Management.
  • College of Education: Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education, Special Education - Mild Moderate Disorders, and Psychology.  Masters programs include Counseling (Addiction and School Counseling), Early Childhood Education, Higher Education Leadership, Library Media and Information Technology, Reading, School Administration, and Teaching. Certification-only programs are also available in many education content areas.
  • College of Liberal Arts:  English, English Education, General Studies, Criminal Justice, Criminal Justice: Homeland Security, Criminal Justice: Legal Studies and Social Work.  Masters programs include American Studies, English: Literature, English: Rhetoric / Composition.
  • College of Science and Health Professions: Biology: Molecular, Biology: Organismic, Chemistry: Environmental Science, Chemistry: Professional, Computer Science, Mathematics, Medical Laboratory Science (2+2 completion), Mathematics Education, Science Education (biology, chemistry, earth/space science), Nursing for Registered Nurses, along with masters programs in Mathematics Education and Science Education

Programs at Muskogee

The NSU-Muskogee campus provides course work, complete programs, and certificate programs to approximately700 students annually, and approximately 20 faculty and staff are officed at this campus. The facility houses traditional and weekend academic programs, as well as an offices for the NSU Small Business Development Center and a speech pathology clinic. 

The following academic units of Northeastern State University offer programs and courses at the Muskogee Campus:

  • College of Business and Technology: Bachelor of Science in Organizational Leadership (ReachHigher Program) http://www.okhighered.org/reachhigher/,  and Masters of Business Administration.
  • College of Education: Masters in School Administration,  Visually Impaired (graduate certificate), professional education courses (graduate level)
  • College of Science and Health Professions: Bachelor of Science in Nursing (for registered nurses), Medical Laboratory Science (2+2 completion), along with masters programs in Nursing Education and Occupational Therapy.