SD Public Colleges & Majors

South Dakota’s state public technical colleges and universities are known for a great value, quality education and successful student outcomes.


South Dakota offers 10 state public technical colleges and universities that span the state. From Vermillion to Mitchell to Spearfish, these educational institutions offer a multitude of courses and majors to prepare you for your future career. Students considering college in South Dakota can choose between two-year and four-year schools, with majors ranging from robotic welding to healthcare.

Two-Year Technical College Options

Two-year schools offer Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degrees in technical careers. They may also offer diploma and certificate programs. Students enrolled in two-year colleges complete their program of study in one to two years and spend the majority of their college time applying lessons learned in the classroom to hands-on training. Many two-year AAS graduates move on to four-year colleges where credits earned are applied toward a bachelor’s degree.

Lake Area Technical College - Watertown, SD
Mitchell Technical College - Mitchell, SD
Southeast Technical College - Sioux Falls, SD
Western Dakota Technical College - Rapid City, SD

Four-Year University Options

Four-year schools offer both a two-year Associate Degree (AS) and a four-year bachelor’s degree. Students spend much of their time in the classroom and, in some programs, apply skills in laboratories, field experiences, service learning and education/study abroad. Most four-year colleges also offer higher levels of learning including master’s and doctorate degrees. Graduates of four-year colleges may also apply credits earned during their course of study to two-year colleges.

Black Hills State University - Spearfish, SD
Black Hills State University - Rapid City, SD
Dakota State University - Madison, SD
Northern State University - Aberdeen, SD
South Dakota Mines - Rapid City, SD
South Dakota State University - Brookings, SD
University of South Dakota - Vermillion, SD
University of South Dakota - Sioux Falls, SD

Recommended Resources


SDMyLife is a free tool for South Dakota 6-12 grade students to explore colleges and majors. Log in to discover your career interest and find colleges that offer programs that fit you. Students can log in with their school email (K12) credentials or request their username from an educator or school counselor at their school.

Mapping Your Future

Mapping Your Future’s tool called College Explorer will give you a better understanding of South Dakota’s state public colleges, financial requirements, popular majors, starting salaries of graduates and more.

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