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Grand Valley State University    
2009-2010 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog 
  Mar 19, 2019
2009-2010 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

About Grand Valley

About Grand Valley State University

A strong liberal education serves as the foundation for Grand Valley’s wide array of undergraduate and graduate programs, fostering critical thinking, creative problem solving, and cultural understanding preparing students for responsibility as local, national, and global citizens. Through personalized learning enhanced by active scholarship, we accomplish our mission of educating students to shape their lives, their professions, and their societies.

Academic Excellence

The university’s highest priority is to offer outstanding teaching grounded in the liberal tradition in all of its undergraduate and graduate programs and vigorous engagement of students in the classroom and other learning environments. Grand Valley is known for excellence in student-centered teaching and learning. Eighty-three percent of the faculty have earned doctoral degrees or other appropriate terminal degrees. They are supported by a high quality non-teaching professional staff and Grand Valley’s exceptionally fine teaching facilities. The quality of instruction is enhanced further by small class size, individual student advising, and career counseling.

Our instructional offerings encompass more than 200 areas of study including 77 undergraduate and 28 graduate programs that include 78 graduate emphases and certificate programs.


Grand Valley is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission; Member - North Central Association, 30 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 2400, Chicago, IL 60602-2504; telephone: (312) 263-0456; Web: Other accreditations include: Member - National Association of Schools of Music (NASM); Associate member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD); Seidman College of Business by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International); Accounting and Taxation programs by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International); Clinical Laboratory Sciences/Medical Technologist Program: National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS); Chemistry Department by the Committee on Professional Training of the American Chemical Society; College of Education by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE); Bachelor of science in engineering program by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET); Bachelor of science and bachelor of arts programs in computer science and in information systems by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET. Nursing program by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE); Occupational Therapy program by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE); Physical Therapy program by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE); Athletic Training: Joint Review Committee on Educational Programs in Athletic Training (JRC-AT); The Athletic Training Program in the Department of Movement Science by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP); Physician Assistant Studies program by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA); School of Public and Nonprofit Administration by the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA); School of Social Work by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE); Michigan SBDC (MiSBDC): Association of Small Business Development Centers (ASBDC).

University Facts

Visit for facts about Grand Valley State University.


Grand Valley State University educates students to shape their lives, their professions, and their societies. The university contributes to the enrichment of society through excellent teaching, active scholarship, and public service.


Grand Valley State University is a public institution with a local, regional, and state commitment, and a global perspective. We are dedicated to providing our students with the highest quality undergraduate and graduate education.

Teaching in the liberal tradition, whether in general arts and sciences or the professional degree programs, has always been at the heart of Grand Valley’s educational mission. A liberal education acquaints students with the tradition of humane values and the heritage, problems, and perspectives of their own and other cultures. It transcends the acquisition of information and rests on scholarship and the open exchange of ideas. Students learn to think for themselves as they develop the skills of inquiry, reflection, critical analysis, dialogue, and expression. At Grand Valley State University, the values of liberal education permeate all programs and areas of study.

A broad education rooted in the arts and sciences provides students with the general knowledge and skills necessary to participate intelligently in public discourse. Grand Valley State University is also dedicated to educating students to become competent professionals in their chosen fields. These ideals co-exist within our institution, and together they inspire graduates not only to pursue their own success and well-being but also to positively influence their communities, their professions, and their world.

Grand Valley State University is characterized by and known for superior student-centered teaching and learning. Our diverse environment promotes the development of intellect and creativity through teaching, scholarship, service, and a vibrant campus culture. Realizing this vision will result in a broad national reputation for excellence.


At Grand Valley State University, we value:

Effective Teaching
Our highest priority is to offer outstanding teaching in all of our undergraduate and graduate programs. The teaching culture of Grand Valley State University is characterized by the continual development of excellence in the classroom, the recognition of multiple ways of learning, and the accessibility of faculty to students. In order to nurture the habits of intellectual growth, we seek to instill in our students curiosity as well as the love of learning. Students acquire new knowledge and explore its application through research, artistic expression, and scholarly activity. We value the vigorous engagement of students in the classroom and other learning environments.

Liberal Education
Grand Valley State University is committed to providing each student a broad educational experience that integrates liberal learning with preparation for career or profession. Liberal education begins with encountering the great ideas of diverse traditions in the humanities, the creative and performing arts, the natural and social sciences, and mathematics, and is an essential part of all of our professional programs. We value the liberal ideals of critical thinking and preparing students for lifelong learning. The practice of liberal learning develops the skills of inquiry and reflection, which guide students to think for themselves, gain self-knowledge, and make ethical judgments. Such learning can inform individual and collective actions and prepare students for the responsibility of local, national, and global citizenship.

Scholarship is an essential component of the university’s mission as an institution of higher learning and community service. Excellence in teaching at the university level depends upon active scholarship by faculty members. Through basic and applied research, artistic expression and performance, and other forms of scholarship, faculty members contribute to the development and application of knowledge, and create a dynamic environment for learning. Active scholarship may include collaboration of faculty and staff with students, business and labor, government, and community organizations. In this way, the benefits of a liberal education can extend beyond classroom walls to lifelong learning and partnerships between the university and its diverse communities.

Diversity and Community

A range of thoughtful perspectives is necessary for open inquiry, liberal education, and a healthy community. Recognizing this, we seek and welcome a diverse group of students, faculty, and staff. We value a multiplicity of opinions and backgrounds and seek ways to incorporate the voices and experiences of all into our university. We value our local community and embrace the participation of individuals and groups from Michigan, the nation, and the world. We also encourage participation in educational opportunities abroad. In order to foster a healthy and diverse environment, we will act with integrity, communicate respectfully, and accept responsibility for our words and actions.


We at Grand Valley State University value the collaboration of faculty, staff, and students with external partners in addressing mutual interests and regional needs. The university offers the communities it serves resources and inspiration in their own lifelong pursuit of knowledge. Faculty and staff are encouraged to contribute their expertise and service to the university, their disciplines’ professional organizations, and the community. Students are encouraged to be active citizens, to become active service providers, and to take part in various service learning and volunteer opportunities in the community and abroad.

The Campuses

The Allendale Campus
The 1,280 acre Allendale campus, is located 12 miles west of Grand Rapids and is home to state-of-the-art facilities that include: 118 classrooms, 144 research laboratories, 20 lab prep rooms, 21 computer labs, and the Zumberge Library. The university currently has 5,464 beds, the majority being on the Allendale campus
For detailed information regarding these locations, please see the Campuses section of the online catalog,

The Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus
The 33-acre Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus is comprised of two separate sites with a total of 11 buildings and three leased spaces in downtown Grand Rapids. The principal buildings are the Richard M. DeVos Center, the L.V. Eberhard Center, and the Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences. These state-of-the-art facilities include 57 classrooms, 78 research laboratories, 23 lab prep rooms, 11 computer labs, and the Steelcase library.

For detailed information regarding these locations, please see the section of the online catalog.

The Meijer Campus in Holland

The Meijer Campus in Holland, located at 515 Waverly Road, has 16 classrooms and labs, including a science lab, two computer labs, and an interactive television room. The state-of–the-art facility offers full services, including registration, advising, and library access, and is completely integrated into the university’s computer network. In 2008 Grand Valley partnered with Grand Rapids Community College to expand program offerings in Holland. Classes offered in Holland include those necessary to fulfill the basic skills and general education requirements, as well as courses in business administration, education, and public administration.

For detailed information regarding these locations, please see the section of the online catalog.

Regional Centers

Through facilities at the Stevenson Center for Higher Education on the campus of Muskegon Community College and the Regional Center in Traverse City located at Northwestern Michigan College University Center, Grand Valley offers graduate and undergraduate programs and provides on-site student services. Admission and registration information, academic advising, bookstore services, tuition payment, library resources, and computer technology are all available in each of the Grand Valley centers.

For further information, please contact our Muskegon office at 221 S. Quarterline Road; telephone (231) 777-0505. The Traverse City office is located at 2200 Dendrinos Drive; telephone (231) 995-1785

Grand Valley Equals Grand Value
At Grand Valley State University we recognize that the more quickly students complete their degrees the less their educations will cost. Grand Valley has a long-standing practice of supporting and helping students make regular progress toward graduation, making the excellent education they receive at Grand Valley also a “Grand Value.”

Nearly all of Grand Valley’s undergraduate degrees can be completed in four years of full time study.* Full time students who select a degree program requiring completion of 120 credit hours will be able to count on a four-year graduation when they:

  • Tell their advisor that they plan to study full time and intend to graduate in four years
  • Obtain a list of prerequisites and required classes and fulfill it
  • Visit regularly with their advisor to ensure their course selections are timely and correct
  • Maintain the same major and minor
  • Successfully complete at least 30 credit hours of course work every academic year without repeating courses

*Some undergraduate programs, primarily in education and select professional fields require more than 120 hours for the baccalaureate degree, usually to meet state or national accreditation requirements. Please consult this catalog for degree requirements, which are listed by department in the Academic Programs section of the catalog.

Visiting the Campuses

Prospective students are always welcome to visit the campus and talk with staff in Admissions or Financial Aid. The Admissions Office is happy to make arrangements for you to tour the campus and meet with an admissions counselor.

The Admissions Office is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Fridays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. from September through April. Appointments are available on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. during Grand Valley’s academic year. Summer hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Prospective students should make an appointment with the Admissions Office, especially for Saturday visits, by contacting:

300 Student Services Building
Grand Valley State University
Allendale, Michigan 49401-9403
Telephone: (616) 331-2025 or
Toll free: (800) 748-0246 (for Admissions, Financial Aid, Housing, and Records) or