Procedures for Changes in Undergraduate Curricula‌

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Procedures for the review of the undergraduate curriculum, including the curricular content of new programs or certificates, approval of new courses, and the modification of existing courses and program curricula are described below. Petitions for changes in curricula are available in Curriculog.

  1. General Guidelines
    1. The term curricular program is defined as the specific course requirements for any major, minor, or certificate program to be applied toward some degree or certificate granting program offered by the University. The following changes to an existing program are considered to be a modification of a curricular program: 1) changes in the total number of credit hours required to complete a degree program or in the number of credit hours required to complete a particular major ,minor or certificate. 2) changes in the title of the degree or certificate, 3) additions and deletions of any specific courses. 4) adding the offering of a program or certificate in an online format, 5) merging two programs or certificates into one program or certificate, and 6) splitting a program or certificate into multiple programs or certificates, and 7) adding new locations for programs or certificates.

      The following changes are not considered to be petition-requiring modifications: 1) changes in course numbers or titles following course modifications, 2) removal of a deleted course from a list of electives, and 3) changing the timing of specified courses (i.e. from fall semester to spring semester or from sophomore year to junior year).

      • A petition is required to introduce any new undergraduate course or to modify or delete any existing undergraduate course. Changes in the number of credit hours, in course titles, in the distribution of contact hours between lecture and laboratory, in the course content or description, in prerequisites or in delivery format (i.e. online) will be interpreted as modifications of a course.
      • All petitions for academic programs and certificates must be submitted to the UCC by the 3rd Monday in September or the 3rd Monday in January to ensure time for review by NPDC, APC, and the Board of Trustees
      • All petitions for academic programs must be submitted to the provost according to the following schedule:

        Third Friday of October for courses to be offered during the following fall term, Friday before Spring Break for courses to be offered the following spring and summer terms.

        • Petitions are to be prepared in accordance with petition formats available in Curriculog. All petitions must meet the following criteria:
          1. Approval by a majority of the eligible voting faculty members in a department. A department is defined for this purpose as an academic discipline.
          2. Approval by the college curriculum committee.
          3. In the case of interdisciplinary course changes, approval by a majority of faculty members in all relevant departments and their college curriculum committees. Interdisciplinary is defined as any program involving two or more academic disciplines, each of which contributes one third or more of the hours required for a major or minor. In the event of directed electives in any discipline, the same rules apply.
          4. Approval by the dean, or in the case of interdisciplinary courses, by the deans of all affected colleges.
          5. If pertinent, the approval of the Dean of the Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education. Applicable courses or programs are those which are on, or will be placed on, the state approved list of majors, minors, or electives for certification in elementary or secondary education.
        • The chair of the University Curriculum Committee will establish the committee's agenda, meeting time, and meeting place at least one week prior to meeting.
        • All program and certificate curriculum changes at the University are effective at the start of the fall semester each year.
        • All proposed curricular changes may be reviewed by all faculty throughout the approval process in Curriculog.
      • Procedures for Introducing a New Curricular Program/Certificate

        1. The proposal is initiated or prepared at the department or college level as appropriate. A department is defined for this purpose as an academic discipline. Authorization to develop new programs is the responsibility of the Academic Planning Council. The University of Southern Indiana Board of Trustees reviews and approves such programs in light of the Indiana Commission for Higher Education guidelines. New program requests are then submitted to the appropriate state agencies and national agencies. If the new program is not related to a present department or college, the program may be initiated and prepared through the Provost’s Office and shall be prepared by the academic unit requesting the change.

          The ORIGINAL of the petition must be submitted in Curriculog®.

        2. Once the petition is launched, the petition must be approved by a majority of the department’s faculty, the department chair, the college curriculum committee, the college dean before the petition is reviewed by the University Curriculum Committee.
          1. If the petition does involve a program in elementary or secondary education which is on, or will be placed on, the state approved list of majors, minors or electives, the petition must also be approved by the dean of the Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education. The dean may also require information that shows how the new program relates to those already existing. In this event, the course or program must be submitted to the dean in the format requested by the state for evaluation.
        3. In evaluating petitions, the University Curriculum Committee will extend invitations to the originator and concerned faculty members to attend committee meetings and may request additional information that it considers necessary. Petitions are available for review by all faculty and affected parties through Curriculog. Upon approval by the University Curriculum Committee, such petitions will be submitted to the Faculty Senate at the end of each academic year.

          The petition is then reviewed by NPDC, APC, president for the university, Board of Trustees, Indiana Commission for Higher Education and any additional state or national agencies as required. Approvals at each level of review are maintained in Curriculog.

        4. Curricular changes will appear in the next published academic bulletin.
        5. When final state approval to implement a new curricular program is received, all new courses for the program must be approved following the new course procedure.

         

      • Procedures for Initiating New Courses

        1. Approval for initiating new courses is secured through the use of a petition in Curriculog. Each new course proposed must be listed on a separate petition. The proposal is to be prepared as a petition by members of the department, and must be approved by a majority of the department as well as by the college curriculum committee of the discipline concerned. A department is defined for this purpose as an academic discipline. In the case of a cross-listed course the approval must include a majority of eligible voting faculty from each department involved in the course.
        2. The ORIGINAL of the petition must be submitted in Curriculog® . Once the petition is launched, the petition must be approved by a majority of the department’s faculty, the department chair, the college curriculum committee, the college dean before the petition is reviewed by the University Curriculum Committee.

          If the petition does involve a program in elementary or secondary education which is on, or will be placed on, the state approved list of majors, minors or electives, the petition must also be approved by the dean of the Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education. The dean may also require information that shows how the new program relates to those already existing. In this event, the course or program must be submitted to the dean in the format requested by the state for evaluation.

          1. If the course is proposed for core credit, a petition for Core 39 must also be launched in Curriculog® for review by the Core 39 Council. Please refer to section G for more information.

           

        3. In evaluating petitions, the University Curriculum Committee will extend invitations to the originator and concerned faculty members to attend committee meetings and may request additional information which it considers necessary. Petitions are available f or review by all faculty and affected parties through Curriculog®. Upon approval by the University Curriculum Committee, a summary report of all petitions will be submitted to Faculty Senate at the end of each academic year. The petition will be reviewed for final approval by the provost.
        4. Approvals at each level of review are maintained in Curriculog® and curricular changes will appear in the next published academic bulletin.

         

      • Procedures for Modifying and/or Deleting Courses or Programs

        1. Approval for modifications and deletions of existing courses and programs is secured through the use of a petition or memorandum (See Memorandum-required Changes). Each course or program to be modified or deleted must be listed on a separate petition.
        2. The proposal is to be prepared as a petition in Curriculog® by members of the department. A department is defined for this purpose as an academic discipline. Once the petition is launched, the petition must be approved by a majority of the department’s eligible voting faculty, the department chair, the college curriculum committee, the college dean before the petition is reviewed by the University Curriculum Committee. In the event of an interdisciplinary course or program, the approval must include a majority of eligible voting faculty from each department involved in the course of the program. If the petition does involve a program or courses in elementary or secondary education which is on the state approved list of majors, minors or electives, the petition must also be approved by the dean of the Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education.
          1. Memorandum-required modifications for existing courses are described in section b (below). Memorandum-required modifications include changes in grading method (letter grades or Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory), course title, course number in which the course level remains the same, changes in prefix fi the proposed prefix has been officially approved for use, or course description, and changes in prerequisite where the change is necessary because of a change in the title or number of the prerequisite course.

            Changes in course numbers in which the initial digit is changed, or changes prerequisites courses cannot, under any circumstances, be treated as memorandum-required modifications. Similarly, changes in courses offered for core curriculum credit or as part of a teacher education program cannot be treated as memorandum-required modifications.

          2. Request for approval of memorandum-required modifications is submitted through the memorandum form in Curriculog®. A memorandum requesting approval of these modifications may include up to two modifications. For each approval requested the memorandum should state the type of modification proposed, the reason for the modification, and both the existing and proposed course description. After the memorandum is launched by the department chair, the memorandum must be approved by the college dean, the chair of the University Curriculum Committee, and the provost. Approvals at each level of review are maintained in Curriculog® and curricular changes will appear in the next published academic bulletin.
        3. The ORIGINAL of the petition must be submitted in Curriculog®. Once the petition is launched, the petition must be approved by a majority of the department’s faculty, the department chair, the college curriculum committee, the college dean before the petition is reviewed by the University Curriculum Committee.
          1. If the petition does not involve a program in elementary or secondary education which is on, or will be placed on, the state approved list of majors, minors or electives, the petition must also be approved by the dean of the Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education. The dean may also require information that shows how the new program relates to those already existing. In this event, the course or program must be submitted to the dean in the format requested by the state for evaluation.
          2. If the course is proposed for core credit, a petition for Core 39 must also be launched in Curriculog® for review by the Core 39 Council. Please refer to section G for more information.
        4. In evaluating petitions, the University Curriculum Committee will extend invitations to the originator and concerned faculty members to attend committee meetings and may request additional information which it considers necessary. Petitions are available for review by all faculty and affected parties through Curriculog®. Upon approval by the University Curriculum Committee, such petitions will be submitted to the Faculty Senate at the end of each academic year.
        5. The petition will be reviewed for final approval by the provost. Approvals at each level of review are maintained in Curriculog® and curricular changes will appear in the next published academic bulletin.

         

      • Experimental Courses

        In maintaining an up-to-date curriculum, it is sometimes necessary to introduce non-traditional and special credit courses on an experimental basis. These include courses of a topical or contemporary nature, the content of which may have widespread but only short-term appeal (for example, courses developed for the Bicentennial). Also included are courses which may require initial experimentation and development before inclusion as a regular part of the curriculum.

        1. The Provost’s Office serves as the administrative vehicle for experimental courses. An experimental course must be approved by the college dean, the chair of the University Curriculum Committee, and the provost. Approvals at each level of review are maintained in Curriculog®. For courses which logically do not fall under any of the established colleges, the Associate Provost for Outreach and Engagement will serve as college dean. Procedural steps to be followed in approving an experimental or special course include the following:
          1. The proposal for an experimental course is launched as a petition through Curriculog®. . The petition format is the same as for introducing new courses as a regular part of the curriculum and should include:
            1. Name of department and college.
            2. Suggested course number, title, and credit hours.
            3. Course description.
            4. Semester and year when course will first be offered.
            5. Instructional resources required to implement course.
              1. Faculty and staff.
              2. General texts.
              3. Periodicals.
              4. References.
              5. Technology, software and equipment.
            6. Analysis of existing instructional resources and needs.
            7. Syllabus.
            8. Purpose of the course and justification for inclusion in the curriculum.
            9. Description of how the course will be evaluated and criteria to be used in determining if the course achieved the objectives set for it.
          2. If the dean approves of the course, the department chair in consultation with the dean and the registrar’s office will assign a new or unused course number. The course number is to be followed by the letter "X" to signify an experimental course. If the dean approves of the course, the department chair in consultation with the dean and the registrar’s office will assign a new or unused course number. The course number is to be followed by the letter "X" to signify an experimental course.
          3. Approval for continuation of experimental courses may be granted for one consecutive academic semester only.
          4. After completion of the course and the review of the evaluation results, the department may recommend inclusion of the course in the formal curriculum. If this recommendation is made, the department will complete a new course petition following the procedures outlined “Procedures for Initiating New Courses”.
          5. A department may initiate a new course petition before completion of the course and evaluation. Formal application must be made no later than the curriculum deadlines of the semester when the course is offered an “X” for the second semester.
          6. Except under unusual circumstances, experimental courses will not be used to satisfy Core 39 requirements. If an exception to this policy is requested, the director of Core 39 must serve on the committee to approve the course.

         

      • An undergraduate certificate is a programmatic or topically-linked series of courses, either from a single filed or across disciplinary boundaries. The certificate provides a focused, structure, and interrelated set of courses that enhances the undergraduate experience. Creating relevant and academically rigorous undergraduate certificates presents an opportunity to respond to the evolving environmental conditions in higher education and concurrent shifts in student needs. Interested students should contact the academic department for more information.

        Guidelines

        1. Any student admitted to the University is eligible to pursue an undergraduate certificate. However, some certificate programs may have specific admission and/or prerequisite requirements. .
        2. All interested students must declare a certificate as a part of their curricular record by contacting the appropriate academic department.
          1. Students may declare a certificate before completing degree requirements.
          2. Certificates may be declared as stand-alone programs.
        3. The total number of credit hours required for an undergraduate certificate may vary by academic discipline but must require a minimum of nine (9) credit hours. At least six (6) must be upper division units (300/400—level) of USI course work.
        4. All University policies apply, including academic, grading admission, retention, contact hours, and faculty eligibility to teach.
        5. Credit hours earned for a certificate may be applied toward another degree program. However, a student cannot earn a certificate that is fully embedded (or subsumed) with the requirements of his/her majors or minor, but must include at least three (3) unique credit hours.
        6. Academic departments may determine whether coursework taken to complete the certificate may also be applied to a degree program. However, a minimum of six (6) credit hours used to satisfy certificate requirements must be taken in residence at USI.
        7. Coursework taken more than four (4) years before the certificate is awarded may not be applied.
        8. Certificates may be structured as either discipline-specific or cross-disciplinary. Academic departments applying for certificates must consult with and/or obtain support for related programs and departments who insure the availability of courses required for the certificate.
        9. Separate concentration may not be offered under an approved certificate.
        10. Certificates may be stand-alone or linked to an existing degree program.
        11. Courses applied to a certificate must be legitimate academic courses approved by the University Curriculum Committee.
        12. All certificates (including post-baccalaureate) must be approved through the University’s curricular review process as a new program.
        13. Certificates should enhance existing programs. Sufficient resources must exist to support the certificate without penalizing existing academic programs, including minors and concentrations.
        14. Officially approved certificates will be posted to University of Southern Indiana transcripts and will be issued by the Registrar’s Office. A formal Application for Graduations must be completed for certificate programs.

         

        For information about proposing a new undergraduate certificate-application procedures and approval process- as well as procedures for managing approved certificates can be found in the University Handbook under Procedures for Changes in Undergraduate Curricula.

      • Undergraduate Concentration Definition and Guidelines

        An undergraduate concentration is a coordinated grouping of courses that represent a sub-specialization within a major field of study. The number of credit hours for a concentration varies but must be contained with the credit hours for the major. Generally students will complete the required courses for a core area of study (the major) and a designated set of directed electives to complete the concentration. Declared concentrations are designated on university transcripts when the degrees are awarded.

        Terms such as track, emphasis, and specialization will not appear on transcripts but refer to course listings used for academic advising and marketing purposes.

        Guidelines

        1. All concentrations that will appear on transcripts must be approved through the University’s curricular review process as additions (modifications) to existing programs.
        2. If a degree program includes different concentrations, students must declare a specific concentration to be part of their curricular record by contacting the appropriate academic department and submitting the Change of Academic Program form to the Registrar’s Office for processing.
        3. The total number of credit hours required for an undergraduate concentration may vary by academic discipline but must require a minimum of 12 credit hours. At least six (6) credit hours of the concentration must be coursework taken at the 300/400-level.
        4. Credit hours earned for a concentration may be applied toward another concentration. However, each concentration must include six (6) unique credit hours.

         

         

        Procedures for Modifying the University Core Curriculum

         

         

        1. General Policies

           

          1. The University Core Curriculum director has the responsibility for coordinating issues related to the University Core Curriculum. The director must convene a council consisting of an elected representative from each College, plus one additional elected representative each from the College of Liberal Arts and the Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education.

            A student member will be selected each spring to serve a renewable one-year term beginning the following fall. (He must be enrolled full-time and must have earned at least 60 semester hours by the time his/her term of office begins. The Student Government Association will nominate three candidates to the provost, who will make the final selection. Preference will be given to students in good academic standing who have completed a substantial number of University Core hours at USI.) This council will review all proposals regarding the University Core prior to their being submitted to other University bodies.

          2. The College offering a course holds the authority to recommend whether a course will or will not carry University Core Curriculum credit.
          3. Colleges may stipulate requirements in general education in addition to, but not in lieu of, the University Core Curriculum requirements.

           

        2. Procedures for Adding Courses

           

          1. Departments wishing to recommend courses for the University Core Curriculum (UCC) must prepare a petition designed for this purpose and available from the director. In the case of new or revised courses, this petition will be in addition to the new or modified course petition required as part of the regular approval process.
          2. If the course is a new or modified offering, the University Core Council will receive the petition package from the dean of the college offering the course. It will then make its recommendations on the course's appropriateness for the UCC, and forward these recommendations to the University Curriculum Committee as part of the regular course approval process.
          3. If the course is already part of the University's curriculum, the University Core Council will receive the petition from the department offering the course, announce such receipt, and allow the faculty ten instructional days to submit comments to the coordinator. After such period has elapsed, the council will formulate its recommendations on the course's UCC status and forward these to the provost, who will announce courses approved for the program.
          4. If a petition is denied by the University Core Council, it may be revised and resubmitted to the same council one time. If it is rejected a second time, the decision may be appealed to the University Curriculum Committee. If the course's position in the University Core Curriculum is denied by the University Curriculum Committee, the decision may be appealed to the Faculty Senate.

           

        3. Procedures for Deleting Courses

          Removal of courses from the University Core Curriculum may occur in any of the following ways:

          1. At the request of the department offering the course. The department will submit a petition to be prepared for this purpose that will include the following information:

             

            1. Course number, title, and catalog description;
            2. UCC categories from which removal is requested;
            3. Rationale for removal.

             

            The petition will be submitted to the UCC director, who will advertise its receipt and invite faculty response for at least ten working days. The UCC Council will then endorse the petition after negotiating an appropriate time for actual removal of the course. The council’s recommendation, which may be appealed by any member of the faculty to the Curriculum Committee and, if necessary, the Faculty Senate, will be forwarded to the provost.

          2. Because the course has not been offered in a reasonable period of time. If a UCC course has not been offered during three consecutive calendar years, the director will inform the department involved that removal of the course from the UCC is pending. The department will have one year in which to offer the course or provide the council with an acceptable justification for its remaining on the UCC list despite not being offered. If the matter is not resolved in one of these two ways during the stipulated one year, the course will be removed from the UCC.
          3. As a result of the UCC assessment process. If, as a result of the regularly scheduled UCC assessment process, the council cannot determine that a UCC course is meeting its intended objectives, the following steps will be taken. These policies will be communicated to the faculty and will be made explicit at the beginning of every new assessment process. They will be applied judiciously and diplomatically, with actual removal a rare and final resort.

            • The director will inform the department involved, which will have six months to respond. During this period, the council will work with the department to develop an acceptable plan to remedy the situation. Responsibility for developing the plan will rest with the department.
            • If at the end of six months the council has not accepted a plan of remedy, the course will be removed from the UCC effective the following semester.

             

            Council decisions to remove courses as a result of assessment may be appealed by any member of the faculty to the University Curriculum Committee and, if necessary, the Faculty Senate.

           

        4. Procedures for Modifying the Program

          1. Petitions to modify the policies or guidelines of the University Core Curriculum should be submitted to the University Core Council.
          2. The University Core Council will submit its recommendations to the University Curriculum Committee.
          3. The University Curriculum Committee will submit its recommendations to the Faculty Senate.
          4. The Faculty Senate will submit its recommendations to the provost for final action.

           

          NOTE: In February 1998 the Faculty Senate reconfirmed the principle that “all changes in policy for the UCC will be recommended by the University Core Council to the Curriculum Committee and then forwarded to the Faculty Senate.”

         

      • Course Removal/Irregularly Offered Course Policy

        Courses that appear in the Bulletin but are not offered within four calendar years will either be removed or designated irregularly offered in subsequent issues of the Bulletin by action of the provost in consultation with deans. Once removed, courses must be introduced via the curricular procedures for the addition of new courses. The first four year period commences fall, 1988.

      • Course Numbering System

        The following information should be kept in mind when assigning course numbers. Course numbers between 001 and 099 are available for credit but do not apply to the 120 hours required for graduation. Such courses are typically of a developmental nature. Generally, the following numbers are used for courses at the 100 level and above:

        Course Number Level
        100 - 199 Freshman
        200 - 299 Sophomore
        300 - 399 Junior
        400 - 499 Senior
        500 - 599 Graduate
        600 - 699 Graduate Only
        700 - 800 Doctoral Only

        Assignment of these numbers should not be construed as an indication that the course is restricted to members of the particular year noted. Additional notation is required to restrict a course if that is deemed advisable and appropriate. Courses bearing the catalog number 500 or above carry graduate credit. Courses numbered in the 500 series usually have 400 counterparts which are open to undergraduate students. Five specific courses numbered 501 in the College of Business do not have 400 counterparts and do not count toward the M.B.A. degree. Courses numbered in the 600 series and above are open only to graduate students. Courses numbered in the 700 series and above are open only to doctoral students.

        Course numbers ending in either a 0 or 99 indicate that the class can be repeated for credit up to the maximum hours specified.‌