Academic Support Services

Academic Success Center

The Academic Success Center offers a variety of academic support programs for SHSU students. These services include CRLA-certified peer tutoring programs for writing and math, online tutoring for writing and math, and a supplemental instruction program. The ASC’s services are available for all undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled in SHSU.

The ASC’s writing tutoring program offers one-on-one tutoring sessions and small group instruction designed to help individuals become more successful, more confident writers. Students may seek assistance for any type of writing, ranging from freshman essays and research papers to theses, dissertations, and resumes. The ASC also features online writing tutoring and workshops designed to improve college-level reading strategies. Additionally, the ASC’s math tutoring program provides one-on-one and small-group assistance for students seeking help in math, statistics, and math-based science courses such as chemistry and physics. The ASC offers a full schedule of workshops and seminars for academic success or academic recovery. Academic Success Peer Mentors are available for one-on-one assistance for students seeking improvement in study habits.

On the main campus, the Academic Success Center is located in the Farrington Building 111. The ASC also offers services online, at the Newton Gresham Library, and at The Woodlands Center, Room 101.  The ASC can be contacted by calling (936) 294-3680.

The ASC@TWC offers writing, reading, BANA and STAT statistics tutoring sessions as well as review sessions for Texas teacher certification (TExES) exams.  The ASC@TWC works closely with the School of Nursing, the College of Education, and the Graduate Studies' A.S.P.I.R.E. Bridge Program and the Dissertation Support Group.  For further ASC@TWC support, contact us by calling (936) 202-5102 or emailing us at asc_twc@shsu.edu 

Advising (Student Advising and Mentoring Center)

At the Student Advising and Mentoring Center (SAM Center), we value the whole student.

As academic advisors, we assist students in making the best decisions choosing majors and defining their academic path while valuing their individual needs. We are committed to helping students navigate the university, clarifying their own personal career goals, and enriching their academic journey. We help students learn about campus processes, direct students to beneficial resources, and work with students to build the best university experience possible. At the SAM Center, we view students as both individuals and members of our Bearkat community.

The SAM Center is housed in Huntsville on the first floor (Suites 170 & 190) of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHSS) Building.  We also offer advising for select majors at The Woodlands Center (Student Services Center, TWC 141).  SAM Center personnel can be contacted by e-mail at samcenter@shsu.edu for academic advising or by calling either of the following telephone numbers: (936) 294-4444 or toll free at (866) 364-5211.  

Please visit the SAM Center website for more information, including answers to questions such as “Who Is My Advisor?” and “How Do I Get Advised?”

English Language Institute

The mission of the English Language Institute (ELI) is to provide the necessary English language skills for international students to be successful in academic courses.  Students who complete Level 4 and Level 5 successfully, qualify for a TOEFL waiver that satisfies SHSU's English proficiency requirement for undergraduate studies.  The ELI offers five eight-week sessions a year- two in the fall, two in the spring, and one in the summer.   The ELI's intensive 8-week format, paired with quality instruction, enables students to move into their academic classes as quickly as possible.  Throughout the academic year, the ELI offers extra-curricular activities that give students the opportunity to learn about American culture. For more information, visit the English Language Institute.

Institutional Effectiveness

The Office of Institutional Effectiveness (IE) is a Sam Houston State University administrative service and support unit, incorporating Institutional Research, Administrative Program Review, and Legislative Research, aligned under the Division of Enrollment Management.

Institutional Research

It is the mission of the Institutional Research function to collect, analyze, appraise, report and disseminate data on behalf of the University, its executive administration and its educational leaders for the purpose of promoting evidence-based reflection, planning, and action. The IE office provides information and conducts research studies to comply with federal, state and other reporting mandates, and to assess policy, programs and special initiatives.

To request assistance with obtaining data, access to existing reports, and information about external data resources, SHSU employees with network access may submit a work order request/request a report.  A data dictionary, Data Cookbook, is available to individuals with SHSU network log in credentials to review descriptions of existing reports (specifications) and data terms (definitions).  SHSU uses Cognos as the reporting tool, and links to the Cognos reports are included in Data Cookbook.  Various reports require prior training and/or approval, and SHSU Cognos users are encouraged to read about these details in Data Cookbook.  A Data Cookbook introductory tutorial is available for additional assistance.  Questions about Cognos and Data Cookbook can be directed to IE or to SHSU Information Resources Service Desk personnel.

Administrative Program Review

Administrative Program Review consists of the review and evaluation of non-academic programs/departments for the purpose of identifying, planning and documenting continuous improvement.

Legislative Research

Legislative Research activity includes coordination of state and federal legislative and policy matters along the University's administrative structure, horizontally and vertically.  Application of state and federal laws, preparation of fiscal notes, and potential legislative impact analysis are examples of the nature of these matters.  IE relies on Governmental Relations staff in the office of the Texas State University System for communication with legislators and for guidance in coordinating system-wide legislative initiatives.

IT@SAM

Within the Division of Information Technology (known as IT@Sam), there are five (5) departments supporting the campus: Client Services, Enterprise Services, Infrastructure and Support Services, Information Security Office, and Project Management Office.

Support of Teaching/Learning Environments

IT@Sam provides support and maintenance of instructional environments including computer labs and classrooms. In support of the University’s academic programs, computer labs provide modern productivity tools. They are equipped with Windows workstations, DVD-RW drives, USB ports, web cameras, printers and scanners. All IT@Sam labs have the same software installed to ensure a consistent experience for students as they move from lab to lab.  A few labs will have additional specialized, course-specific software titles available. Macintosh workstations are available in designated computer labs, with similar functionality.

Some resources, including software such as Microsoft Office 365, are available for off campus use. The Technology Benefits website will have up-to-date resources listed.

Accessing SHSU Student Network & E-mail

Upon acceptance, students activate their computer accounts on the SHSU website and then have access to SHSU’s academic and administrative resources including, but not limited to, computer labs, wireless network, e-mail, and registration.

The SamNet wireless network is available from any non-residential campus building and designated residence halls with SHSU credentials. All University residence halls have wired port connections available to connect to the Residence Hall Network.

To ensure prompt communications, the University will send official statements and documents to student’s SHSU e-mail address. The assigned e-mail address will have the following format: username@shsu.edu. Former students who have completed at least 15 hours of course work at SHSU will be eligible to opt-in to keep their SHSU e-mail account.

SHSU’s Acceptable Use Policy as well as other IT Practices and Policies govern the use of University e-mail and all computing resources.

Passwords & Personal Identification Number (PIN)

During the application process, an assigned PIN will allow prospective students to monitor the progress of their application.  Once accepted and a computer account is created, the PIN will be disabled.

Passwords for SHSU computer accounts will expire every six months. SHSU will never ask students to share their passwords.  The Service Desk is available to help with computer accounts, passwords, and general SHSU technology questions.

Student Employment Opportunities

IT@SAM employs students in a variety of positions.  Students are encouraged to apply for part-time employment through Jobs4Kats.

Contact Info

For more information, visit Division of Information Technology. The Service Desk can answer any questions students and parents may have regarding SHSU’s computing resources: servicedesk@shsu.edu or (936) 294-1950.

Newton Gresham Library

The Library contains more than 1.3 million books, bound periodicals, and government documents in a variety of formats, including multimedia, microforms, microfiche, recordings, streaming video,  videotape, and newspapers. The library provides access to over 50,000 journals and magazines online and over 3000,000 electronic books. As a depository for selected federal and state government publications, the Library provides a separate collection of over 230,000 print and non-print documents; the Library also serves the citizens of five adjacent counties. The Library’s Thomason Room houses over 20,000 rare books and other materials on Texas, the Southwest, Mark Twain, Gertrude Stein, the Civil War, Library Science, Criminal Justice, and other topics. Other groups of materials housed in the Newton Gresham Library include paperbacks for recreational reading, current periodical issues, new books, and a children’s literature collection. The music listening room, study carrels, a small lounge area furnished with vending machines, and a copy center, including a public fax machine are provided for the convenience of students and faculty. Library resources may be electronically accessed 24x7 from the Library's webpage, as well as remotely via the Internet.  The library maintains database licenses to over 250 online databases such as Web of Science, ERIC, Education Source, SocioIndex, PsycINFO, CJ Abstracts, NCJRS, Academic Search Complete, Business Source, West Law Campus, Biological Abstracts and ScienceDirect, Eighteenth Century Online, U. S. Congressional Serial Set and World Cat. TexShare, the statewide resource-sharing program, provides access to a variety of electronic databases, thousands of full-text journal articles and print material. A complete list of the electronic databases and electronic journals can be viewed from the Library’s webpage. Books, articles, documents, and other items which are not available locally may be requested Interlibrary Loan.

Twenty librarians, twenty-nine support staff, and a number of student assistants provide reference, interlibrary loan, circulation, acquisitions, and other library services to the faculty, staff, and students of the University as well as to visiting scholars and off-campus users. Distance Learners will find librarians embedded in their online classes.  A full-time librarian provides assistance to students at The Woodlands Center. University Archives, located on the 4th floor of the Library, preserves the history of the campus. A computer lab, staffed by Computer Services department, is available during regular library hours. The seventy plus networked workstations in this lab may be used to access the students’ personal computer space as well as the library’s resources. To assist library users in utilizing library materials and services, librarians developed online guides available on the Library’s website. An online instruction series demonstrating how to use databases and find information is available to all students from the Library’s homepage. Librarians also provide access to information and help in using the library’s resources and services to students on- and off-campus with online chat (see Ask A Librarian on the Library’s homepage), e-mail, and by phone.

SHSU Online

Within SHSU Online, there are three units that provide a wide-range of services for SHSU faculty, student, and staff. These include Online Operations, Creative Services, and Online Promotions.

  • Online Operations provides the SHSU Online Support Desk, Online Faculty Development, Online Course Development & Instructional Design, as well as Online System Management & Online Data Reporting services.
  • Creative Services provides Educational Video Production, Digitization of media, Guest Lecture Recordings, Video Hosting, Marketing and field video production, Live Streaming events, and Video technology consulting.
  • Online Promotions provide support for the SHSU Online webpages and social media sites, and manage SHSU Online events, including tailgating, special departmental events, and the SHSU Online annual conference. 

Support of Teaching/Learning Environments

SHSU Online engages in ongoing strategies for delivering quality online education and promoting online student success.

  • In support of a successful online learning experience, SHSU provides the best in class troubleshooting and technical support through the SHSU Online Support Desk, open 24/5, plus weekend hours.
  • In support of the development and ongoing care of the University’s digital course infrastructure designed to foster the academic transformation of its students, SHSU Online provides Instructional Design Services via appointed instructional designers in every College and some Departments.
  • In support of a successful online learning environment, SHSU Online provides access to relevant and robust tools for learning and academic development, including Blackboard Learn, Kaltura, Blackboard Mobile, Blackboard Collaborate, Blackboard Student, and numerous others. In partnership with the NGL, SHSU Online offers a wide range of library resources from within Blackboard, including Embedded Librarians, Library Guides, and OER.
  • In support of an engaging and relevant student learning experience within the Learning Management System, SHSU Online supports the development of dynamic, multimedia course content, including Video Lectures & Video Demonstrations, Graphic Design, Course Photography, Animations, and Simulations.
  • In support of academic integrity, SHSU Online provides a fully-funded exam proctoring solution for all SHSU students.
  • In support of accessibility, SHSU Online provides ongoing ADA Compliance support through responsible Instructional Design as well as by funding captioning of video in online courses.
  • In support of quality standards in online education, SHSU Online provides online course review services through the Technical Evaluation process and the use of the SHSU Online Rubric for Online Course Design.
  • SHSU Online provides Faculty Development for Online Teaching, via a variety of formats, including face-to-face, online, webinar, one-on-one, faculty lunch-and-learns, and on-demand training sessions.
  • SHSU Online also hosts an annual Conference (Digital Education Summit) designed to bring together faculty, higher education practitioners, and university leaders from the region and across the State, to network and exchange discussion on best practices for delivering online education.
  • In support of the University's enduring traditions, SHSU Online provides year-round video production and live streaming services for campus events, including athletic games, tree-lighting ceremony, ring ceremony, commencement, graduation, and others.
  • In partnership with Enrollment Management, SHSU Online participates in all Orientation Events, including Freshmen Orientation, Transfer Orientation, Graduate Orientation, and Online Orientation.
  • SHSU Online actively promotes success beyond the classroom by providing SHSU students with opportunities to develop marketable skills. SHSU Online hires, trains and prepares student workers with on-the-job training and market experience in the fields of academic technology, online education, data analytics, GIS, recruitment, video production, graphic design and more, effectively improving Texans’ marketable skills for gainful employment. In partnership with SHSU Athletics and the College of Fine Arts and Mass Communication, SHSU Online provides internship opportunities in various positions, including Audio Techs, Graphics Operators, Camera Operators, Production Assistants, Sports Anchors, Teleprompter Operators, Floor Directors and Digital Media Assistants.

Testing Center

The Testing Center provides institutional and national testing opportunities to students and non-students in an atmosphere which enables examinees to perform to the best of their abilities. This atmosphere relies on test administration practices which (1) adhere to nationally recognized professional testing standards and government regulations, (2) maintain the integrity of the testing process by incorporating ethical standards and security measures, and (3) treat all examinees in a professional yet personable manner. The Sam Houston State University Testing Center adheres to the Standards and Guidelines of the National College Testing Association.

College Entrance Exams

ACT: The ACT test is a college entrance exam accepted by Sam Houston State University for admittance into the university.  A student may receive college credit for a high score received on the English section of the ACT exam (see Credit by Examination section). Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or by visiting ACT.

SAT: The SAT test is a college entrance exam accepted by Sam Houston State University for admittance into the university. A student may receive college credit for a high score received on the  Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section of the SAT exam (see Credit By Examination section). Additional information may be obtained by visiting  the Testing Center or by visiting SAT.

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) may be required of international students for admittance into the university. The TOEFL exam measures an individual’s ability to use and understand English at the university level.  For more information, visit the Testing Center or TOEFL. Additional information may also be obtained by contacting Admissions.

Graduate School Entrance Exams

Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT): The GMAT exam is designed to test skills that are highly important to business and management programs. It assesses analytical writing and problem-solving abilities, along with the data sufficiency, logic, and critical reasoning skills that are vital to real-world business and management success. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or by visiting GMAT.

Graduate Record Examination (GRE): The GRE is used by graduate schools as one assessment indicator for comparing the qualifications of applicants who come from a variety of colleges and universities.  The GRE measures verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical writing skills.  Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or by visiting GRE.

Millers Analogies Test (MAT): The MAT is a high-level mental ability test requiring the solution of problems stated as analogies. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or by visiting MAT.

Placement Exams

ACCUPLACER. The ACCUPLACER test is a placement exam offered at SHSU for evaluating a student’s performance in reading, writing, and mathematics. It is a internet-based test with results available immediately following completion of the test. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or by visiting ACCUPLACER.

ACCUPLACER-ESL: The ACCUPLACER-ESL test is a placement exam used by the English Language Institute for assessing a student’s performance in the English language. It is a internet-based test with results available immediately following completion of the test. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing CenterACCUPLACER, or English Language Institute (ELI) Office

TSI ASSESSMENT: The Texas Success Initiative (TSI) Assessment test is a placement exam offered at this institution for evaluating a student’s performance in reading, writing, and mathematics. It is a internet-based test with results available immediately following completion of the test. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or by visiting TSI Assessment.

Professional Entrance and Certification Exams

CASTLE WORLDWIDE: Castle offers tests for the certification or licensure of professionals, to assess the knowledge and skills of employees for training purposes or as a pre-employment check for potential hires. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or CASTLE.

LSAT: The Law School Admission Test (LSAT) is an integral part of the law school admission process in the United States, Canada, and a growing number of other countries. It provides a standard measure of acquired reading and verbal reasoning skills that law schools can use as one of several factors in assessing applicants.  Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or LSAT.

MPRE: The purpose of the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) is to measure an examinee’s knowledge and understanding of established standards related to a lawyer’s professional conduct.  Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or MPRE.

NCAA - Recruiting (Certification) Test for Coaches: Pursuant to NCAA Bylaw 11.5.1, only those coaches who have been certified may contact or evaluate prospective student-athletes off-campus. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center, Athletics Compliance Office, or NCAA.

NCE: The National Counselor Examination (NCE) is a requirement for counselor licensure in many states and for the National Certified Counselor (NCC) certification.   Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or NCE.

TCEQ: The Testing Center is a testing site for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Occupational Licensing examinations.  Additional information about TCEQ exams can be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or TCEQ.

TEAS: The Test of Essential and Academic Skills (TEAS) is used as part of the admissions process by Nursing and Allied Health schools nationwide.  Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or TEAS.

TExES: The Texas Examinations of Educator Standards (TExES) are criterion-referenced examinations designed to measure a candidate's knowledge in relation to an established criterion.  Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or TExES.

Practice Exams

Representative Tests: Sam Houston State University Testing Center administers the practice teacher certification exam (Representative TExES) for the College of Education. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or College of Education.

Distance Learning Exams

Sam Houston State University Testing Center administers several distance learning exams. Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center.

Other Exams

The Counselor Preparation Comprehensive Examination (CPCE) is an evaluation tool that assesses students' competence of foundational, counseling-related knowledge.  The CPCE is designed to assess students who have completed graduate-level courses.  Additional information may be obtained by visiting the Testing Center or the Department of Counselor Education.

Credit By Exam

ACT/SAT English Credit: Sam Houston State University has a policy of accepting high scores from the ACT or SAT test for credit in freshman English courses. The current policy is as follows:

ACT: A score of 33 or above on the English section of the ACT test qualifies a student for exemption from both ENGL 1301 and ENGL 1302. A score of 27-32 qualifies a student for enrollment in ENGL 1301H (Honors Class), an accelerated class for students with superior skills in English. Students earning an A or B in ENGL 1301H will automatically receive credit for ENGL 1302 and become eligible for sophomore English. If the student does not make a grade of A or B in the ENGL 1301H class, he/she will be required to take ENGL 1302.

SAT: A score of 700 or above on the Evidence-Based Reading and Writing section of the SAT test qualifies a student for exemption from both ENGL 1301 and ENGL 1302. A score of 600-690 qualifies a student for enrollment in ENGL 1301H  (Honors Class), an accelerated class for students with superior skills in English. Students earning an A or B in ENGL 1301H will automatically receive credit for ENGL 1302  and become eligible for sophomore English. If the student does not make a grade of A or B in the ENGL 1301H class, he/she will be required to take ENGL 1302.

Advanced Placement Program (AP): Sam Houston State University may award college credit for the Advanced Placement Examinations based on the score(s) received. Advanced Placement exams are given at the high-school level. Sam Houston State University has a policy of accepting up to a maximum of thirty semester hours of credit through a combination of national standardized examinations and/or locally designed and administered departmental tests. More than thirty semester hours of credit by examination will be considered on an individual appeal basis. Please visit the Testing Center for more information or AP Program.

College Level Examination Program (CLEP): Sam Houston State University is an open national testing center for the College Level Examination Program (CLEP). All CLEP exams may be taken at SHSU, but only the CLEP Subject Exams listed on the Testing Center website will be accepted for credit at SHSU. Sam Houston State University has a policy of accepting up to a maximum of thirty semester hours of credit through a combination of national standardized examinations and/or locally designed and administered departmental tests. More than thirty semester hours of credit by examination will be considered on an individual appeal basis. For more information, visit the Testing Center or CLEP

DSST: Sam Houston State University is an open national testing center for the DSST exams. All DSST exams may be taken at SHSU, but only the DSST exams listed on the Testing Center website will be accepted for credit at Sam Houston State University. Sam Houston State University has a policy of accepting up to a maximum of thirty semester hours of credit through a combination of national standardized examinations and/or locally designed and administered departmental tests. More than thirty semester hours of credit by examination will be considered on an individual appeal basis. For more information, please visit the Testing Center or DSST.

International Baccalaureate Program (IB): Sam Houston State University recognizes the International Baccalaureate program for those students who earn the IB diploma. Although Sam Houston typically accepts a maximum of thirty (30) semester hours of credit through a combination of national standardized examinations and/or locally designed and administered departmental tests, students earning the IB diploma are capable of earning in excess of those 30 hours. Information on the International Baccalaureate Program may be obtained from high school counselors or by visiting the Testing Center or International Baccalaureate.

SAT Subject Exams: Sam Houston State University is an open national testing center for the SAT Subject examinations. All SAT Subject exams may be taken at SHSU. Only the SAT Subject exams listed on the Testing Center website will be accepted for credit at SHSU. Sam Houston State University has a policy of accepting up to a maximum of thirty (30) hours of credit through a combination of national standardized examinations and/or locally designed and administered departmental tests. More than thirty (30) hours of credit by examination will be considered on an individual appeal basis. For more information, please visit the Testing Center or SAT Subject