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New Degree and Certificate Proposal Process

News

  • Existing degree program name/title/degree designation/CIP change form has been added - June 2020

  • New degrees - Feasibility study due to Academic Affairs for distribution to APC (Graduate Council if Graduate degree)

    • For proposed student admission Fall 2020:  by October 15, 2019

  • New certificates - Feasibility study due to Academic Affairs for distribution to APC (Graduate Council if Graduate certificate)

    • For proposed student admission Fall 2020:  by January 5, 2020

  • New minor proposals

    • Proposals due to Academic Affairs for distribution to APC and/or Graduate Council: by February 15, 2020

 New Degree and Certificate Proposal Process

1) Prepare Notice of Intent for Board of Trustees’ Academic and Student Affairs Committee

What’s in a Notice of Intent?  You’ll use this to let the Board of Trustees know that you’re interested in exploring a new certificate or degree offerings.  It will give basic information about anticipates learning outcomes and how you plan to get data on student and post-graduation demand for the program.  It will also give basic information expected expenditures and on how it aligns with UW’s mission.

  • Pro tip: Start thinking of what you think the program will look like five years after it’s approved.  Construct the plan for its roll-out using backward induction.

    From UW Regulation 2-119

  • Notice of Intent. A Notice of Intent is a preliminary, conceptual proposal requesting authorization to plan a new Academic Program.    The Plan should normally be no longer than three (3) pages in length and shall include the following information:

    1. The name of the proposed Academic Program and the mode of delivery;

    2. A description of the new Academic Program that includes an outline of the anticipated curriculum and learning outcomes;

    3. Information about content and how the Academic Program may relate to other offerings;

    4. A plan for obtaining a market analysis of anticipated student demand and enrollment, and a plan for evaluation and analysis of post-graduation employment market demand

    5. Preliminary budget, including potential funding sources, projected expenses and revenues, and potential faculty, academic professionals, lecturers, professors of practice, and staff;

    6. Proposed timeline for staged implementation over five years, including campus and Board review;

    7. Information on other required approvals, such as accreditation bodies and the Higher Learning Commission;

    8. Evidence of how the new Academic Program aligns with the University’s mission, strategic plan, and existing academic degree program array; and

    9. A rationale that clearly defines the need for the new Academic Program. The rationale should include evidence that the Academic Program will not produce unnecessary duplication of existing programs.

  • Pro tips:

    • Board of Trustees’ draft agendas are set approximately 4-6 weeks prior to meetings; realistically they will consider proposals in January, March, May, September, and November.

    • Materials for the NOI should be submitted for review to the Provost’s Office at least three weeks prior to the Board’s meeting.  The Provost and President must review all materials prior to submission.

    • The Academic and Student Affairs Committee of the Board is the designated committee for this step of review.  They will recommend the proposal for an up or down vote to the full board.

2) Prepare Feasibility Study; Prepare Pro Forma Budget

  • Once completed, share feasibility study and pro forma budget with Academic Affairs for review by AVP for Undergraduate Education, AVP of Graduate Education, Vice Provost for Personnel, and Executive Director of Budget and Finance.

3) Campus Review

  • The campus review process includes sharing the study with

    • Faculty Senate (Academic Planning Committee for undergraduate programs, Graduate Council for Graduate Programs),

    • ASUW and Staff Senate,

    • Deans / Directors, and

    • Executive Council.

  • Faculty Senate should be given at least 90 days to review the proposal and should provide feedback.  Simultaneously, Staff Senate and ASUW should be given at least 30 days to review the proposal and may provide feedback.

  • Please recognize that Faculty Senate’s review is substantive.  They may iterate with you and ask for revision and resubmittal of your feasibility study.  They will accept up to three revisions before deferring their decision to the next academic year.  It is wise to let the Faculty Senate’s designated committee know of your plans to develop a feasibility study after the Notice of Intent is approved by the Board of Trustees.

  • After Faculty Senate, Staff Senate, and ASUW have reviewed and provided feedback, Deans and Directors Council and Executive Council should be given the opportunity to review and provide feedback.

4) Prepare Request for Authorization and procure Letter of Commitment from Provost

  • What’s a Request for Authorization?  Your feasibility study and pro forma budget will be coupled with a letter of commitment from the Provost.  This will be the full package of information presented to the Board of Trustees if your proposal gets to this step. 

    From UW Regulation 2-119

    Request for Authorization:  Around 10 pages: “After review and approval of the Notice of Intent, and upon completion of a full feasibility study and campus review, the President shall submit a Request for Authorization to implement the Academic Program, including the purpose and need for the proposed Academic Program; the proposed curriculum; a plan to assess the Academic Program; anticipated enrollment, existing or new resources required to deliver the Academic Program, and timeline for implementation; a plan for accreditation, if applicable; the benefits of the Academic Program to the University; the ability of the University to carry out the Academic Program; and the likely value to, and impact on, students and the residents of Wyoming.  

    Letter of Commitment:  This Request for Authorization should normally be no longer than ten (10) pages in length and shall be accompanied by a Letter of Commitment from the Provost’s Office, affirming the following:

    1. The Academic Program has been designed to meet the University’s standards of quality and will make a meaningful contribution to the University’s mission, strategic plan, overall academic plan, and academic degree program array;

    2. The University community, including but not limited to Executive Team, Deans and Directors, Faculty Senate, Staff Senate, and ASUW,  have been provided the opportunity to review and present feedback;

    3. The necessary financial and human resources are in place and/or have been committed to implement and sustain the Academic Program; and

    4. Program evaluations are in place.

  • The Letter of Commitment shall include a detailed budget for the next four (4) years, including funding sources, projected expenses and revenues, and faculty, academic professionals, lecturers, professors of practice, and staff.

  • The Board of Trustees may review and consider taking appropriate action.  Until Board of Trustees approval of the Request for Authorization, there shall be no further action on the Academic Program.”

  • Pro tips:

    • As above, Board of Trustees’ draft agendas are set approximately 4-6 weeks prior to meetings, with in-person reviews of RFA’s in January, March, May, September, and November.

    • Materials for the RFA and LOC should be submitted for review to the Provost’s Office at least three weeks prior to the Board’s meeting.  The Provost and President must review all materials prior to submission.

    • The Academic and Student Affairs Committee is the designated committee for approval and will recommend an up or down vote to the full Board.  

5) If all reviews are successful and proposal is approved:

  • Work with HLC Accreditation Liaison Officer to submit Substantive Change Request (if required)

  • Send to Curriculum Committee – new CARFS for any new coursework

  • Send to Office of the Registrar – to add to the Master List of Degrees

  • Send to Admissions – to add to the “Pick List” for majors and programs

Contact Us

Office of Academic Affairs

1000 E. University Ave

Dept. 3302

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: 307 766-4286

Fax: 307 766-2606

1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
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