Frequently Asked Questions
Please select one of the categories below for answers to your questions. If you cannot find an answer to your question, please contact us.
- About Online Programs
- Is Buena Vista University accredited?
- Does BVU offer online undergraduate degree programs?
- I am enrolled at one of the BVU Graduate & Professional Studies locations. Can I take online courses?
- How long are the courses or on what schedule do they run?
- When do the terms start?
- Will my diploma be different or specify that it's from an online program?
- Admissions/Financial Aid
- What are the admission requirements?
- How much is tuition?
- What is the admissions deadline?
- Where do I submit my application?
- Where do I submit my transcript(s)?
- How much is the application fee?
- What is the estimated cost of books?
- When will I be notified of my acceptance?
- How many credit hours will transfer from my previous college?
- How do I file for Financial Aid?
- What is the deadline to file for Financial Aid?
- What is the federal school code for Financial Aid?
- General Program/Course
- How do I register for online courses?
- Can I start at anytime during the year?
- Do I complete the courses at my own pace?
- Do I need to be online at certain times for class/group discussions etc.?
- How much time will I spend each week on class work?
- Will I be able to complete my program within two years?
- Is there a spring or fall break during my course?
- How do I order my textbooks?
- Bachelor of Applied Studies
- Business Administration
- Business Economics
- Criminology and Criminal Justice
- Distributive Major: Health Services Leadership
- Distributive Major: Human Services
- Finance and Banking
- Organizational Leadership
- Public Administration
I am enrolled at one of the BVU Graduate & Professional Studies locations. Can I take online courses?
Yes. Students enrolled at a BVU Graduate & Professional Studies location may enroll in any online undergraduate course to supplement their face-to-face program. Contact your advisor to discuss online course options.
How long are the courses or on what schedule do they run?
BVU Graduate & Professional Studies programs run by terms, not semesters. Each term is eight weeks long. All terms begin on a Monday and run through the last Sunday of the eight-week period.
When do the terms start?
Term 1: August; Term 2: October; Term 3: January; Term 4: March; Term 5: May; Term 6: July
The terms follow the academic year, not the calendar year. See the term schedule for specific dates.
Will my diploma be different or specify that it's from an online program?
No. Your degree will be from Buena Vista University, and as a BVU student you will receive the same diploma whether you get your degree online, at one of the Graduate & Professional Studies locations, or at the residential campus in Storm Lake.
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How much is tuition?
For the most current tuition costs, please see the Tuition & Costs page.
What is the admissions deadline?
Admissions to our online undergraduate programs are reviewed on a rolling basis. To ensure acceptance, be sure to have a completed application and transcript(s) submitted at least two weeks prior to a term start.
Where do I submit my application?
You can apply online.
What is the estimated cost of books?
The estimated cost of each text book is between $100.00 and $200.00. Books are available to order online through the BVU bookstore and can be delivered directly to your home.
How many credit hours will transfer from my previous college?
Students are required to complete a minimum of 60 credits from a four-year (baccalaureate) institution and a minimum of 30 credits from BVU, therefore, a maximum of 98 credits will be applied toward the degree, of which no more than 68 may be from a two-year college.
How do I file for Financial Aid?
Eligibility for financial assistance in the form of loans and grants is determined by the Financial Assistance Office after completing the online Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
What is the deadline to file for financial aid?
Financial Aid information should be completed as soon as possible. Please indicate that your SAR (Student Aid Report) should be sent to Buena Vista University.
What is the federal school code for financial aid?
BVU's SAR code is 001847.
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Can I start at anytime during the year?
Yes. Students may begin a program during any of the 6 terms each year. Check the Term Schedule.
Do I complete the courses at my own pace?
No. Each course is divided up into 8-weekly workshops. The workshops begin on Monday and end on Sunday. Within each workshop there will be due dates to keep you on track.
The courses are group-paced: you can work ahead a little bit, but not so much that you'll lose the rest of the class.
Do I need to be online at certain times for class/group discussions etc.?
No. There are no set times that you will need to be online. However, your instructor may have optional chat times and within your group, you may set times to be online.
How much time will I spend each week on class work?
Students should expect to spend between 12-15 hours a week per class.
These time-on-task estimates will vary from student to student, but they are based on the amount of time you would typically spend in class and work on assignments outside of class for a traditional, face-to-face semester course.
Will I be able to complete my program within two years?
Yes. The course schedule is set up so that students may enter the program during any term and should be able to complete within two years as long as they maintain an appropriate load. When you enroll in the program, your advisor will develop a plan of study based on your needs and the schedule to keep you on track for achieving your goals in the desired time frame.
Is there a spring or fall break during my course?
No. There are not breaks during the term. There will be a three-week holiday break after Term 2, at the end of the calendar year. There will also be a one-week break after Term 4.
How do I order my textbooks?
All books for online courses can be ordered online through Buena Vista University's Lehnus Campus Bookstore operated by Follett, Inc. Books ordered from the BVU Lehnus Campus Bookstore are kept in stock for all BVU courses, and they ship the same business day if orders are received before 3 PM CST. You usually will get your books within 2-3 business days of placing an order. (If you choose to order from other online bookstores, you may not get your books on time. Remember, online book sellers do not necessarily keep books in stock, especially textbooks, so you may have to wait more than a week to get your books.)
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