Academic Program Coordination and Degree Program Approval
Academic Program Planning and Coordination
Each university must have in place formal processes to identify new programs they plan to explore over the period covered by their strategic plan and work plans. A rolling three-year list of programs under consideration is provided to the Board Office as part of the university’s annual work plan.
Board of Governors Regulation 8.004 includes a provision for Board staff to work with the Council of Academic Vice Presidents to review the current array of degree programs and proposed programs to facilitate coordination of program offerings across the SUS and avoid unnecessary duplication.
New Degree Program Approval
Board of Governors Regulation 8.011 establishes criteria for new degree approval that address the overarching goals of the State University System relative to program quality, operational efficiency, accountability, degree production, and research. The regulation also establishes a broad policy addressing the process by which programs are approved for implementation at the university and system level, and requires each university to adopt program approval policies that are aligned with the Regulation.
Authority to implement new programs is a collaborative two-step process that devolves primary responsibility for academic and readiness review to the University Board of Trustees for all degree levels. Implementation authorization for bachelor’s, master’s, and specialist degrees is the responsibility of the university board of trustees. Implementation authorization of doctorates is retained at the Board level.
Board of Governors staff reviews proposals for bachelor’s, master’s and specialist degrees for alignment with state-level requirements before adding the new program to the official State University System Academic Degree Program Inventory . Board staff also provide technical assistance to university academic staff to ensure that baccalaureate programs meet the requirements for hours-to-degree, common prerequisites, general education, and articulation, as appropriate.
Academic Program Termination and Other Program Activity
Academic degree program termination follows the same process as new degree program approval. Board of Governors Regulation 8.012 establishes the criteria and process for degree program termination. Temporary suspension of enrollments in a degree program is completely under the purview of the university, with notification to the Board office.
Other state-level approval activity for baccalaureate degree programs includes Limited Access Status in accordance with Board of Governors Regulation 8.013 and Exception to 120 Credit Hours to Degree in accordance with Regulation 8.014.