Montana State University

NTEN FAQs

See also MSU distance learning FAQs and the Web quiz, Is online learning right for me?

About NTEN courses

Registering for NTEN

After Enrolling

I still have questions. Contact the friendly NTEN staff.

Is NTEN an accredited program?

NTEN is a program of Montana State University, which has been accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU) since 1932.

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When do courses begin and end?

In general, NTEN courses follow a schedule similar to Montana State University's regular academic calendar, with new courses starting in fall, spring and summer. NTEN courses vary in length. Some last nearly a full semester, although most run over shorter periods--7 to 12 weeks. The shorter accelerated courses still cover the equivalent of a full semester of content, so the weekly workload is increased accordingly.

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How much time will I spend on each NTEN course?

NTEN courses are graduate courses, soexpect to spend from 6 to 20 hours per week or more depending on the number of credits, the length of the course and your prior familiarity with the subject, as well as your individual study habits. See the detailed descriptions for each course, where the instructor has indicated how much time s/he estimates the time commitment per week.

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Can I access the course at any time?

Like a traditional college course, NTEN courses begin and end on pre-established days. You will have assignments that are posted and due at a specified time on a weekly basis. However, you can log on and access the assignments and lessons any time, day or night.

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How many NTEN courses can I take per semester?

Because NTEN courses are graduate level and can be quite rigorous, we recommend taking just one course per semester unless you have a lot of extra time on you hands.

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How can I earn a master's degree?

NTEN is not a degree program, but rather offers a wide selection of graduate-level courses. Because NTEN courses are from Montana State University, these credits can be transferred to a degree program at MSU or elsewhere at the discretion of individual institutional programs and policies. MSU offers a Master of Science in Science Education (MSSE) degree program that is of interest to many teachers taking NTEN courses.

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Can I transfer my credits to another university?

NTEN courses offer graduate-level credits from Montana State University, one of the country's top 100 research universities, and these credits can be transferred to degree programs at MSU or elsewhere at the discretion of individual institutional programs and policies. Before taking an NTEN course, always check with your educational institution to see if it will pertain to your program.

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Will my school district accept credits from NTEN courses?

Rules vary by state and by school district. Talk to your district first about whether the academic credits from MSU's NTEN courses will count in your district. All of the NTEN online science courses are fully approved for academic credit by Montana State University and are fully accredited by the Northwest Commission of Schools and Colleges, which is one of the six regional accrediting agencies approved by the US Department of Education for accreditation of postsecondary institutions. All credits for the NTEN courses are recorded on an official MSU transcript and may be used toward a degree program at the discretion of individual institutional programs and policies.

How do I register for an NTEN course?

See the list of all our courses.

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Do I have to enroll as an MSU student?

No. To take an NTEN course, you do not have to register as either a degree-seeking or non-degree-seeking MSU student through the formal Admissions process. Instead, you are considered an MSU Extended University student and can enroll directly in the course and receive MSU academic credits upon its completion.

However, if you wish to apply these academic credits toward a graduate degree program at MSU, you will need to enroll as an MSU graduate student. See more information about graduate programs.

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Can anyone take NTEN graduate-level courses?

NTEN's graduate-level courses (those numbered 500 and above) are designed for teachers who have completed a bachelor's degree. If you have not completed a bachelor's degree but wish to enroll in an NTEN graduate-level course, you must contact MSU's Division of Graduate Education BEFORE enrolling in the course. A teacher failing to follow these requirements will not receive credit for the course. However, if you have completed a bachelor's degree and thus are eligible to take MSU graduate-level courses, you can enroll directly in the NTEN course. You do not need to apply to MSU through the formal Admissions process as a degree-seeking or non-degree seeking student--unless you wish to pursue a degree.

Most of NTEN's courses are designed specifically for practicing teachers. If you are not a practicing teacher, please contact the course instructor or NTEN staff before enrolling.

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Do I have to take the GRE before taking an NTEN course?

No. However, if you wish to apply the credits from your NTEN coursework toward a degree program, you will likely have to take the GRE before enrolling as a graduate student. Individual program requirements vary, so always check with your degree program advisor first at your home institution.

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Do I have to be a practicing teacher to take an NTEN course?

Nearly all NTEN courses are designed for practicing teachers. However, if you are a working professional and are interested in taking an NTEN course, first read the course description to see if the course is open to all. Non-teachers should check directly with the instructor or NTEN staff to get permission to enroll in an NTEN course.

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Do I need to have a specific bachelor's degree in order to take NTEN courses?

Any NTEN course that is 500-level or higher (e.g., BIOL 580) is a graduate-level course, and participants must have earned a bachelor's degree before enrollng. It does not matter what subject your degree is in, although some courses have very specific prerequisites that must be met.

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If I am taking an NTEN course, do I have to show proof of vaccinations or health insurance?

Only teachers who go through the formal MSU Admissions process and are accepted into a degree program are required to show proof of vaccinations. Teachers who are taking NTEN courses for credit, but are not formally enrolled in a MSU degree program, are considered Extended University students and do not need to show proof of vaccinations or health insurance.

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How do I pay for my NTEN course?

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How do I use third-party billing?

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When will I be officially registered?

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What is a hold and how does it affect my registration?

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Are NTEN teachers eligible for financial aid?

NTEN courses are offered through Montana State University's Extended University.

What is the Deferred Fee Payment Plan?

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Can I use the Montana State University library?

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How do I get my login information for the Learning Management System?

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When can I log in to my NTEN course?

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What if I lose my password?

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What is the difference between dropping and withdrawing from a course?

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How do I drop or withdraw from a course?

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How are the credits from NTEN courses listed on my transcript?

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How do I access grades or get a transcript?

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