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Colleges / Dakota State University

Dakota State University

Madison, SD 4-Year Public
Acceptance Rate83%
Acceptance Rate83%

About Dakota State University

Dakota State University Overview

Dakota State University is a public, state school in a rural setting in Madison, South Dakota. Dakota State University was founded in 1881 and presently has around 3,186 students a year, which includes 2,740 undergrad students. Dakota State University ensures on-campus housing for up to 795 students. Most students live in off campus housing, and 35% of students spend their weekends on campus.

Student Activities at Dakota State University

Love music or performing? Sing in a chorus or perform with one of Dakota State University's theater groups.

Are you interested in journalism and communications? Dakota State University students can write for the campus newspaper, host a radio show or be a producer for the student-run television channel.

There are no fraternities or sororities at Dakota State University, so it might be a good choice if you're not interested in Greek life.

Planning to play sports? Dakota State University has many options for athletes. See them all and learn more about life at Dakota State University on the Student Life page.

2022 Dakota State University Facts At-A-Glance
Academic Calendar Semester
Overall Acceptance Rate 83%
Early Decision Acceptance Rate ED not offered
Early Action Acceptance Rate EA not offered
Average GPA 3.3
Applicants Submitting SAT scores 11%
In-State Tuition $9,580
Out-of-State $11,937
Percent of Need Met 57.7%
Average First-Year Financial Aid Package $7,639

Is Dakota State University a Good School?

The definition of a "good school" varies. Admissions difficulty, admitted student statistics, tuition, and financial aid can provide a sense of how selective a college is.

Let's take a closer look at these factors to get a clearer sense of what Dakota State University offers and if it might be a good choice for you.

Dakota State University Acceptance Rate 2022

Dakota State University is moderately difficult to get into. Around 83% of applicants get into Dakota State University each year. Out of 706 applications received in 2022, 589 students were offered admission.

Retention and Graduation Rates at Dakota State University

Retention refers to the number of students that stay enrolled at a school over time. Retention measures how satisfied students are with their school experience, and if they have the support necessary to succeed in college.

Approximately 71% of students who start at Dakota State University return the next year. Dakota State University's six-year graduation rate for undergrads is 47%. Compare this to the average six-year graduation rate for colleges and universities in the U.S., which is around 61% for public schools and 67% for private.

Job Outlook Dakota State University Graduates

Job placement statistics for recent graduates can give you a sense of the return on investment a school offers. Within six months of graduating, 96% of graduates receive at least one full-time job offer.

The average starting salary for recent Dakota State University grads is $47,494 a year. Average starting salaries vary by discipline, but the average starting salary for all 2021 graduates was around $60,000 a year.

Dakota State University's Endowment

An endowment is the total value of a school's investments, donations, and assets. Endowment is not necessarily an indicator of the quality of a school, but it can give you a sense of how much money a college can afford to invest in expanding programs, improving facilities, and support students.

As of 2022, the total market value of Dakota State University's endowment was $16.2 million. The average college endowment was $905 million in 2021. For each full-time student, Dakota State University spends about $7,412 a year.

Tuition and Financial Aid at Dakota State University

Cost is another important factor when choose a college. Some colleges may have high tuition, but do a better job at meeting students' financial need.

Dakota State University meets 57.7% of the demonstrated financial need for undergraduates. First-year students that attend Dakota State University full-time are awarded $7,639 a year in financial aid, on average.

In 2020, students graduated with an average of $25,896 in student loans for each student with debt. For context, compare this number with the average national debt, which is around $36,000 per borrower.

The 2023-2024 FAFSA Opened on October 1st, 2022

Some financial aid is available on a first-come, first-served basis, so fill out the FAFSA as soon as you can. Visit the FAFSA website to apply for student aid. Remember, the first F in FAFSA stands for FREE! No one should ever pay to fill out the FREE Application for Federal Student Aid, (FAFSA), so be very wary of anyone asking you for money.

Learn more about Tuition and Financial Aid at Dakota State University.

Based on this information, is Dakota State University the school for you? Remember, a school that is perfect for one person may not be the right school for another! So ask yourself: Is Dakota State University a good school for you?

If Dakota State University seems like a school you want to apply to, click the heart button to save it to your college list.

Still Looking for Schools?

Choose one of the options below to learn more about Dakota State University:


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Tuition & Aid

Dakota State University Community Forums

Then use the college admissions predictor to take a data science look at your chances of getting accepted at some of the top colleges and universities in the U.S.

Where is Dakota State University?

Dakota State University is located in the rural setting of Madison, South Dakota, in the suburbs of Sioux Falls.

If you want to see Dakota State University for yourself, be sure to plan a visit! The best way to reach campus is to take Interstate 29 to Madison, or book a flight to the nearest airport, Sioux Falls Regional.

You can also take a virtual campus tour to get a sense of what Dakota State University and Madison are like without leaving home.

Considering Colleges and Universities in South Dakota?

See a full list of colleges in South Dakota and save your favorites to your college list.

College Info

820 North Washington Madison, SD 57042-1799

Campus Setting: Rural

Dakota State University Application Deadline

First-Year Applications are Due

Continuous processing

Transfer Applications are Due

Continuous processing

The deadline for Fall first-year applications to Dakota State University is Continuous processing.

The deadline for Fall transfer applications to Dakota State University is Continuous processing.

Check the school website for more information about deadlines for specific programs or special admissions programs

Dakota State University ACT Scores


ACT Range

19 - 26

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by ACT Score

ACT Score

Estimated Chance

26 and Above


19 to 26


19 and Less


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ACT Scores Needed to Get Accepted

The median ACT score of an admitted student to Dakota State University is 23. Students with an ACT score of 26 and above have a good chance of getting into Dakota State University. Students with an ACT score that falls between 19 and 26 have an average chance of getting admitted, and students with an ACT score of 19 or below have a low chance of being offered admission.

Dakota State University SAT Scores


Composite SAT Range

1010 - 1200


Math SAT Range

510 - 580


Reading SAT Range

500 - 610

Estimated Chance of Acceptance by SAT Score

SAT Score

Estimated Chance

1200 and Above


1010 to 1200


1010 and Less


SAT Scores Needed to Get Accepted

The median SAT score for Dakota State University students is 1103. Applicants with SAT scores of 1200 and above have a good chance of being admitted to Dakota State University, while applicants with SAT scores between 1010 to 1200 have an average chance of admittance, and prospective students with an SAT score below 1010 have a low chance of being offered a spot at Dakota State University.

Dakota State University Tuition & Fees

Tuition & Fees


In State


Cost Breakdown
In State
State Tuition

Student Life

Wondering what life at Dakota State University is like? There are approximately 3,186 students enrolled at Dakota State University, including 2,740 undergraduate students and 446 graduate students. 55% percent of students attend school full-time, 59% percent are from SD and 41% percent of students are from other states.


Full Time


Part Time


In State



Data Source: IPEDs and Peterson's Databases © 2022 Peterson's LLC All rights reserved

Quick Facts

Total Enrollment


Campus Setting


Acceptance Rate


Tuition and Fees

In State




Fall Freshmen
Application Deadline

Continuous processing
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