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Fort Lewis College Official Seal

Policy identification number: To come...

File: Academic Policies > Curriculum Policies

Development of an Undergraduate Certificate Program 

Policy Summary

 This policy provides a framework for the specification of the courses of instruction in an undergraduate certificate program. 

Policy Owner

Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs 

Approval Date

 May 7, 2015 

Effective Date

2016-2017 Academic Year 

Search Terms

 pvpaa, c, certificate 

Scheduled for Review

 Spring 2020 

Policy Statement

  1. An undergraduate certificate program provides a structured set of professionally oriented courses for students seeking a well-defined knowledge base and skill set.

    1. All program proposals must include the U.S. Department of Labor Standard Occupational Classification Code(s) for the professional area that the program prepares student to enter along with links to the U.S. Department of Labor’s O*Net website or its successor website.

    2. All program proposals should include a plan to address the U.S. Department of Education’s gainful employment regulations.

  2. An undergraduate certificate is distinct from a concentration in a major and a minor in a baccalaureate degree program because:

    1. A certificate program’s curriculum aims to develop competence in a well-defined professional area.

      1. A concentration in a major organizes courses for a disciplinary sub-field.

      2. A minor provides a limited survey of a discipline or interdisciplinary area. 

    2. A certificate can be earned independently of a baccalaureate degree program.

      1. A concentration in a major cannot be awarded if the student is not also simultaneously being awarded a baccalaureate degree in the associated major field.

      2. A minor cannot be awarded if the student is not also simultaneously being awarded a baccalaureate degree.

  3. The title of an undergraduate certificate:

    1. Cannot be the same as the title for a concentration in a major.

    2. Cannot be the same title as a minor.

  4. The courses of instruction in an undergraduate certificate program must be organized and labeled in the Catalog of Courses as follows:
    1. Prerequisite courses (if applicable)
      1. All courses prerequisite to the core and elective courses of instruction must be listed as prerequisite courses, excepting:
        1. Comp 150
        2. Math 105 or Math 113
    2. Core courses
      1. All courses must be offered under the auspices of the discipline or interdisciplinary area represented by the title of the undergraduate certificate program.
    3. Certificate electives (if applicable)
    4. Auxiliary courses (if applicable)
      1. Auxiliary courses are those courses of instruction required by an undergraduate certificate program that are offered under the auspices of another discipline or interdisciplinary area:
        1. All courses prerequisite to a course specified as an auxiliary course must be listed as auxiliary courses, excepting:
          1. Comp 150
          2. Math 105 or Math 113.
  5. If the proposed undergraduate certificate is not analogous to that offered by any comparable institutions, a minimum of five (5) and a maximum of eight (8) courses, or a minimum of 15 or a maximum of 24 credits of instruction, may be specified for the certificate, inclusive of prerequisite courses, core courses, certificate elective courses, auxiliary requirements, and prerequisites to any auxiliary requirements.
    1. Courses that fulfill core or auxiliary requirements as well as general education requirements will count toward the minimum of five (5) and maximum of eight (8) courses, or a minimum of 15 or a maximum of 24 credits rule.
  6. At least half of the total courses/credits within an undergraduate certificate must be at the 300- to 400-level.

  7. Any exceptions to policy statement 1-6 must be authorized by the Provost.

  8. Completion of an undergraduate certificate program will be recognized:

    1. On a student’s Fort Lewis College transcript;

    2. On a certificate issued by the Registrar’s Office.

Reason for Policy

This policy establishes a framework for the specification of the courses of instruction in an undergraduate certificate in distinction to a concentration in a major and a minor and in alignment with Fort Lewis College Policy 4-1 Honest Credit Counting Protocols.

 

Responsibilities 

For following the policy:  Faculty and academic administration

For enforcement of policy: Provost

For oversight of policy:  Provost

For procedures:  Faculty Senate, Provost, Registrar

For notification of policy:  Policy Librarian

 

Cross-Referenced Policies 

Development of a Major in a Baccalaureate Degree Program

Development of a Minor in a Baccalaureate Degree Program

4-1 Honest Credit Counting Protocols

Revision History