Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Have a question about one of our online master’s degree programs? You’ve come to the right place! Below are answers to questions students frequently ask about cost, financial aid, program commitment, on-site campus requirements, and more. Have a question not answered below? Call us at 1.844.621.0900, or chat with an admissions representative below. We’re here to help!

Prospective Students

What is the duration of SAU Online courses?

Within semester parameters, SAU Online course sections vary in length. Depending on the subject matter and number of credit hours they can range from 6 - 15 weeks. 

How many people are in each class?

Ideally, a class will contain 15 students, but may contain from 7 to 23 students, depending on interest and enrollment. 

How do I know what courses are being offered?

Course offerings are fluid. With the exception of HIS310, which is offered twice every other year, and endorsements, each course is offered a minimum of twice a year. A list of courses available through SAU Online can be found within the program pages. 

Will financial aid be available to me?

Eligible students may receive all federal, state and/or institutional financial aid for SAU Online course charges. *Note: Remember to apply early in order for your financial aid eligibility to be determined before you enroll. Click here for more information regarding financial aid.

Do I have to be a full-time student to take an online course?

No, as part of its flexibility, Spring Arbor University Online offers part-time programming. Also, many courses are open to on-campus students, guest students, and those that are dual-enrolled.

I am a face-to-face student. How many Spring Arbor University Online courses may I take?

Students wishing to take more than six semester hours must enroll in a degree program or be admitted as a part-time enrollee. There are currently no limits to the number of courses a student may take online. Students are encouraged to contact their advisor before registering for an online Christian degree program. 

Where can I find the academic catalogs?

The academic catalogs may be acquired from the Office of Registration and Records and on this website here.

How long will it take to complete my degree?

This depends on the program you are enrolled in. Some master’s level programs, like our MBA, can be completed in as little as one year.

Current Students

How do I get to my classes?

You can access your classes* via Blackboard, which you can access directly at https://mysau.arbor.edu.

How much do the SAU Online courses cost?

Look at our tuition and fees page for the current rate. Campus undergraduate students will be charged according to the current campus tuition rates and policies.

How do I use the library?

The White Library can be accessed through the library link on the MySAU portal, the library tab at SAUonline, or directly at library.arbor.edu/home. We have 100,000 ebooks available through our library and the majority of our journals are available to be searched and accessed via online research databases. If you have questions or need assistance with the library, please contact us. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter.

What are my payment options?

Online students may choose one of the following payment methods: Pay online with Visa, MasterCard or Discover. Pay your bill online here.

Payment by check or money order should be made payable to, ‘Spring Arbor University,’ and mailed/delivered to:

SAU Business Office
106 E. Main St.
Spring Arbor, MI 49283-9799

Payment by phone with credit card can be made by calling 517-750-6477. SAU accepts VISA, MasterCard and Discover; please have your credit card available when you call. Pay in person by cash, check, or credit card at the SAU main campus Business Office or any of the Adult Studies Centers.

How many SAU Online courses may I take?

Students wishing to take more than six semester hours must enroll in a degree program or be admitted as a part-time enrollee. There are currently no limits to the number of courses a student may take online. Students are encouraged to contact their advisor before registering for online courses.

Online Education

What is online learning?

Online learning, also called distance learning, is instruction that takes place using computer technology and the Internet. This can occur between students in the same town or in different countries. Within semester limits, SAU Online courses are completely asynchronous, which means students may sign on and work any time during the day or night. Likewise, the instructor and students need not be logged onto the course at the same time, unless the faculty member has set test dates or chat sessions indicated on the course syllabus.

To learn more about the benefits of online education, check out our Blackboard Intro Video. 

Do employers hold online degrees with the same regard as a traditional degree?

Yes! SAU is well known for its quality programs, and you will find that same reputation in our online programs. Spring Arbor University has been an accredited four-year institution since 1963, and also has a long history of providing real-world education to the adult learner. 

Are online graduate degrees more affordable than traditional degrees?

Typically, you will pay the same amount per credit hour as you would for an on-campus program. (Read more about Spring Arbor University-specific tuition and fees.) However, taking classes online will save you gas money and parking fees, as you won’t have to drive to a campus location to complete your courses. Since you will be at home while taking your courses, you also can save money (and time) on food by not having to prepare or buy food on-the-go.

What options do I have with my online program?

Just like on-campus courses, you will have the ability to choose when you start and the specific program concentrations you want to complete.  We offer various undergraduate and graduate degrees, along with concentrations within the MSN and MBA programs to meet industry need.  To find out more visit our Online Degree Programs page.

What are the technology requirements for online degree programs?

Technology plays a huge role in online learning. As a prospective online student, you should have basic computer skills; Internet access; and the ability to send email, navigate the Internet and install software. Of course, we will help you navigate this technology every step of the way.

Is it good to have an online degree on your resume?

The degree you receive for completing your online degree program is the same degree you would receive had you completed your program on campus. It won’t say “online.” Employers won’t be able to tell where you earned your degree, unless you tell them.

Can online students attend graduation on campus?

Yes! We encourage all online graduates to join us for the graduation ceremony. It’s a great time to reflect on what you’ve accomplished and share your accomplishments with those who matter most in your life.

Are online classes more difficult to pass?

Online classes are unique in that they require self-management. Because you will be learning at your own location and during the times  you prefer, you must be able to attend to online tutorials and complete your assignments without being reminded by your instructor. However, as an online student, you will be assigned your own Student Success Coach who will help you every step of the way.

Nursing Questions

What nursing programs does Spring Arbor University offer online?

Spring Arbor University offers seven CCNE-accredited online nursing programs:

Is there a waiting list for Spring Arbor University Online’s nursing programs?

There isn’t a waiting list for any of Spring Arbor University’s online nursing programs. You can start now by filling out the form on this page.

What are the entrance requirements for the RN-BSN program?

To be accepted in SAU Online’s RN-BSN program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • An associate degree in nursing from an accredited school or a diploma from a National League for Nursing (NLN) accredited school
  • Completion of at least 58 transferable semester hours
  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 for all prior college work
  • Demonstrate computer literacy
  • Unrestricted, unencumbered, current nursing license from the state of employment

What are the entrance requirements for the RN-MSN programs?

To be accepted in SAU Online’s RN-MSN programs, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Associate degree from a regionally accredited institution and nursing program (CCNE or NLN)
  • Official transcripts from all institutions of higher education attended
  • A 3.0 GPA calculated from the most recent 60 academic credits
  • Unrestricted, unencumbered, current nursing license from the state of employment

What are the entrance requirements for the MSN programs?

To be accepted in SAU Online’s RN-MSN programs, you must meet the following requirements:

  • A BSN degree from a regionally accredited institution and nursing program (CCNE or NLN)
  • Official transcripts from all institutions of higher education attended
  • A 3.0 GPA calculated from the most recent 60 academic credits
  • Unrestricted, unencumbered, current nursing license from the state of employment

Are SAU’s online nursing programs accredited?

Yes, SAU’s online nursing programs are all accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) – an autonomous accrediting agency, contributing to the improvement of the public's health.

What is the duration of SAU Online courses?

Courses are 7 weeks in length typically 3 credit hours.

How many people are in each class?

Typically our nursing classes have 20-25 students.

How long does it take to complete an online nursing program?

  • SAU’s online RN-BSN program can be completed in as few as 20 months.
  • SAU’s online RN-MSN/NP programs can be completed in as few as 48 months.
  • SAU’s online RN-MSN/Education program can be completed in as few as 42 months.
  • SAU’s online RN-MSN/MBA program can be completed in as few as 54 months.
  • SAU’s online MSN/NP programs can be completed in as few as 24 months (AGNP 24, FNP 30).
  • SAU’s online MSN/Education program can be completed in as few as 24 months.
  • SAU’s online MSN/MBA program can be completed in as few as 36 months.

What concentrations are offered in an MSN/MBA program?

SAU offers five concentrations in its MSN/MBA program:

  • Healthcare Administration
  • Human Resource Development
  • Management
  • Organizational Consulting
  • Executive Leadership

To find out more, visit our MBA page here

What tracks are offered in an MSN/NP program?

SAU offers two tracks in its MSN/NP program:

  • Family Nurse Practitioner
  • Adult Gerontology, Primary Care

Find more information visit our MSN/NP program page here

What type of support will I receive as an online nursing student at SAU?

As an online nursing student at Spring Arbor University, you will have direct access to dedicated educators who are known for their active involvement in improving nursing care, and you will have your very own Student Success Coach who will walk beside you and offer support throughout your program.

Do I have to be a Christian to participate in a nursing program?

Our online nursing programs emphasize a Christian worldview that will better prepare you to meet the spiritual and physical needs of those for which you care. This does not mean you need to be a Christian to enroll in our programs; all health care professionals – no matter their background or beliefs – will benefit from the recognition of a spiritual component to nursing.

How much will it cost to get my nursing degree?

Nursing education is an investment. To help you see a return on your nursing educational investment sooner, Spring Arbor University offers competitive tuition rates.  You can find more details here.

What do the residencies consist of and are they mandatory?

The residency is a 3-day visit to our main campus during the 2nd year of the program and is tied into the Health Assessment Course (7th course).  It is a practicum that provides students with clinical opportunities to further refine and practice history taking a physical examination. You will meet their professors, fellow classmates and gain a personal sense of community within the program. We offer discounted rates in the nearby hotels in the area.

Here’s what some of our students have to say:

“I was able to schedule in advance with work and family  It's been very convenient and organized…everything has been set up for us to be successful.”

- Angelica Reid

“It’s been so much fun!  We’ve been keeping in touch after meeting doing group work and have become friends since, and now that we’ve meet each other it’s even better!”

- Lynester Williams, Kendall Lange, and Zeinab Harb

“I didn't realize how important this residency was until after it was finished. It is important to humanize this experience, know that your not alone in this struggle, and shine a light on a few things that no longer seem so scary.” 

– Amanda Roberts

To get a further peek at the residency experience, check out this video of one our MSN/MBA students Angelica Reid. She shares what she has learned in the program, as well as, what she experienced while attending the March 2019 Residency: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xk3WHHQIB7k&feature=youtu.be

How do clinicals work? Does Spring Arbor University assist with placement?

Nursing students have the flexibility to choose their preceptors. The clinicals for the FNP and NP begin during their second year. We do not place students, however we offer resources so that the student can feel confident in finding the appropriate individuals. The preceptor needs to be a certified NP or a physician in a primary care setting.

Is it an option to conduct clinicals at different sites with different field experience?

Yes, especially during the FNP program.

Are there scholarships or discounts available for your nursing programs?

At the graduate level there are no scholarships or discounts available. Students will work with our finance team to discuss possible outside resources available to help individualize their plan.

Do you offer graduate scholarships and loans for your nursing programs?

Loans are available for those nurses who qualify.

Can I take more than one nursing class at a time?

Students can only take one course at a time (excluding clinical & residency).  Our programs are uniquely designed for working nurses to be able to advance their education while continuing to work shifts.

How flexible is the nursing program if I work full time?

The flexibility of the program attracts students with all sorts of work schedules. The program is designed for full time working nurses. We follow the flexibility of the 7-1-7 model where students take one class at a time every 7 weeks with a week break in between. There are no set login times and students have access to their classroom any time.

The flexibility of our clinical requirement is also beneficial to the students. You will choose your own preceptor in your home state. Students who work M-F can find clinical experience to complete during the weekend. Some students have the opportunity to reduce their schedule to M-Th while completing the clinicals as well and do their clinicals on Fridays. The faculty are very supportive and work with students to offer this flexibility.

How accessible are the nursing professors and how supportive is the SAU Online staff?

Very accessible and supportive. Typically professors will give out their phone numbers to have students connect. Support staff is here as a liaison for the student at all times.

What is your pass rate for the NP test?

88% first time pass rate / 100% of students who have taken the exam have passed it.

How do transfer credits work from prior graduate courses taken?

We accept a maximum of nine transfer credits from prior graduate courses taken. Transcripts will be evaluated to ensure there is a 100% course for course match. If the courses don’t match we cannot guarantee transfer. We usually ask that the student provides course syllabi in their application process to make the evaluation of credits seamless.

MBA Questions

What are the entrance requirements for SAU’s online MBA program?

To be accepted in SAU’s online MBA program, you will need to have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally-accredited college or university with an overall 3.0 GPA for all undergraduate coursework.

Is SAU’s online MBA program accredited?

SAU’s online MBA program is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

How long does it take to complete an MBA program?

We offer two options in order for you to tailor the MBA program to your needs.

  • Accelerated path allows you to move up quickly, finishing your MBA in as few as 12 months
  • The part-time path fits into a busy schedule, with just one course at a time allowing you to complete in as few as 18 months

What concentrations are offered in SAU’s online MBA program?

SAU offers five MBA concentrations designed to propel you into leadership with integrity in your sphere of influence. Click on a concentration link below to learn more.

Are there any on-site requirements for SAU’s online MBA program?

Although there are no onsite requirements for SAU’s online MBA program, we offer an optional four-day international business summit in New York City where you will be able to network with students and faculty from different geographic locations.

Do I need to take the GMAT or GRE to enroll in SAU’s MBA program?

No, SAU does not require you to take the GMAT or GRE to be accepted by our online MBA program.

What type of support will I receive as an online MBA student at SAU?

In addition to instructors, staff and peers who know exactly what it’s like to be an adult MBA student, you will be assigned your own Student Success Coach who will proactively work to help you find solutions to any challenges you might face in work-life balance, personal and professional development, career goals, technology use and more.

Do I have to be a Christian to participate in SAU’s online MBA program?

No, you do not have to be a Christian to enroll or benefit from SAU’s leadership and faith development activities. Our MBA program is a transformative journey designed for all people – no matter their faith.

How much will it cost to get my MBA degree?

Based on 2019-2019 tuition rates, the cost of the 100% online MBA program is competitive, around $26,000.  

What type of financial aid is available to MBA students?

There’s financial aid available to you as an MBA student. For more detailed information based on your specific situation, please call us directly at 1.844.655.4223.