Our website is intended to give general information about courses, fees, and regulations governing correspondence self-paced study. We reserve the right to change instructors, to discontinue courses, change textbooks, and to adjust fees listed as circumstances warrant.

Who can enroll in a correspondence self-paced course?

Students in academic good standing may register and begin work on a correspondence self-paced course at any time. It is recommended that first time correspondence self-paced course students enroll in only one course at a time. Students who desire to enroll in two correspondence self-paced courses at the same time may petition the Coordinator of the Correspondence Course Division for permission to do so. If a student is enrolled in a class (resident classroom instruction), he/she must drop that class before enrolling in the correspondence self-paced course. A student who has received a D or F in a course may not repeat that course by correspondence self-paced, for the purposes of improving their GPA, unless written permission is obtained from the dean of the respective college or university. Such permission may be granted only under very restricted circumstances.

Enrollment Procedures

Admission requirements are the same for correspondence self-paced courses as for any other Sam Houston State University course. Students must be accepted to SHSU before they are eligible to enroll in a correspondence self-paced course. In order to enroll in a correspondence self-paced course, each individual must submit the following items:

  1. A Registration Form that has been completely filled out and signed.
  2. If you are a non-SHSU student you may submit your application through ApplyTexas.org and there will be an undergraduate application fee of $45.00 or the application fee waiver request
  3. Registration fees can be found here.
  4. You must present your THEA scores or evidence of your THEA exemption. (Refer to TSI update.)
  5. International students registering for a correspondence course for the first time must also submit evidence of a TOEFL Score of at least 550 or 213 (computer-based test).

(Note: Present and former Sam Houston State University students are not required to present a transcript.)

Enrollment Period

A student has a maximum of 12 months (one year) from the date of enrollment to complete a correspondence self-paced course.  A correspondence self-paced course may not be completed in less than 60 days from the date of enrollment.


Payment is due in full upon completion of the registration process. Payment can be made through MySamor in person at the Bursar's Office.

Financial Aid and Veterans Tuition Benefits

Financial Aid

Correspondence self-paced coursework is not calculated into a student’s overall semester credit hours for financial aid purposes. Additionally, financial aid applied to a student’s fee statement will not cover the cost of correspondence self-paced coursework.

Veterans Tuition Benefits

Veteran tuition benefits or assistance cannot be used to pay correspondence self-paced fees.

Refund Policy

Correspondence self-paced coursework has a non-refundable $30.00 administration fee per course. In the event a refund is granted, the following policy will apply:

Before the enrollment is complete  100%
1 week or less*                                    80%
Between 1 and 2 weeks*                   60%
Between 2 and 3 weeks*                   40%
Between 3 and 4 weeks*                   20%
After 4 weeks*                                     No Refund

*From the date of enrollment

Communication with Course Graders

Most communication with course graders will be through email.  You can submit questions or comments with your lessons or you can contact Correspondence Self-Paced Studies to help you make arrangements to communicate more directly with your course grader.

Feedback and Grades from Course Graders

Course graders have 2 weeks from the time a lesson or assignment is submitted to provide a grade and/or feedback. Please take this into consideration when approaching your course expiration date and degree candidate deadlines.

University-Related Communications

It is the student's responsibility to check his/her official SHSU email account for University related communications often.

Testing Procedures

There is a time limit of three (3) hours to complete the final exam, unless otherwise stated in the course.

At the end of the three (3) hour time limit (or time limit stated in the course), the exam will automatically close whether you are finished or not.

Unless your online course indicated, after your exam time begins you must not have anything on your desk.

Students are expected to follow the Academic Honesty Policy (http://bit.ly/2kb81DU).

Some courses require a web camera for proctoring purposes and it is the student's responsibility to obtain one for use during the final exam.

You may drop a Correspondence Self-Paced course at any time before the final exam without academic penalty and the course will not appear on your official transcript. However, once you begin the final exam, you may no longer drop the course and a grade will be assigned.

Students with Disabilities

Correspondence Self-Paced Studies strives to assist students with disabilities achieve their educational goals. Students requesting disability accommodations for correspondence self-paced coursework should contact SHSU's Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) at 936-294-3512 (TDD:  936-294-3786).

If you are approved by the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) Office to receive accommodations please submit a copy of the accommodation form or a letter from SSD to our office prior to taking the final exam.                                                                   

Common Course Numbers

The Texas Common Course Numbering System was developed in part to assist students in identifying which courses at one college will meet specific course requirements at another college.  Learn more.

Writing-Enhanced Courses

Since the 1991 fall semester, all beginning freshman students are required to complete six writing-enhanced courses prior to their graduation. These six courses include ENG 164, ENG 165, two courses in the student's major, and two courses in any discipline.

Do you plan to use a correspondence self-paced course to complete a degree from SHSU?

Students who plan to complete degrees at Sam Houston State University should note the following:

  1. To obtain a bachelor's degree from SHSU, a student must complete at least 25 percent of the semester credit hours in residence, of which 24 semester credit hours must be advanced hours. Semester credit hours earned in a correspondence self-paced course(s) are not considered "resident classroom instruction" hours and are not used in determining the minimum semester hour requirement for academic honors: cum laude, magna cum laude, summa cum laude, the Dean's List, and the President's Honor Roll.  Correspondence coursework is posted, however, to the transfer section of the academic record, and the grade points are calculated into the overall cumulative grade point average and not the Sam Houston grade point average.
  2. A minimum of twelve semester hours of advanced work in a student's major field must be completed in residence at the University.
  3. A minimum of six semester hours of advanced work in the minor must be completed in residence at the University.
  4. Final grades for correspondence self-paced coursework are reported to the Registrar’s Office as transfer work. Transfer of Credit policies, Sam Houston State University accepts 66 academic hours plus four kinesiology hours for a total of 70 semester hours from community colleges.  All academic courses attempted at a four-year regionally accredited U.S. university will be reviewed for transferability. Transferable courses may not be relevant to every degree plan which is reviewed by an academic advisor. Before registering for a correspondence self-paced course, please speak with your academic advisor to ensure the course(s) you wish to register for meet your degree requirements.
  5. A student will not be allowed to complete by extension and correspondence self-paced courses from all sources more than one-fourth (thirty semester hours) of the work required for a bachelor's degree. Of this thirty hours, a maximum of eighteen (18) hours may be completed by correspondence self-paced courses.
  6. Students desiring to obtain a degree from SHSU should ensure that correspondence self-paced courses are carefully integrated with overall degree requirements. It is recommended that each student interested in completing a degree obtain a degree plan through their major academic department at their early convenience.

Business Major? Sociology Major/Minor at SHSU?

Only students who have successfully completed a 50-credit hour minimum will be permitted to take 3000-4000 level business courses by correspondence. Additionally, students majoring in management may not enroll in MGMT 3320 (MGT 381).

Students who are Sociology majors or minors at Sam Houston State University are not allowed to take any Sociology course by correspondence study, except SOC 131. Sociology students may take sociology correspondence courses to complete the requirement for total advanced hours that goes beyond the requirements for the sociology major or minor.