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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 2018-2019

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 Advancement

Approval Date

March 14, 2018

Effective Date

2018-2019 Academic Year

Search Terms

pvpaa, d, u

Scheduled for Review

Spring 2019

I. 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 that will allow students to use federal or state financial aid 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. If students receive federal financial aid for a certificate program, gainful employment reporting requirements must be followed. Program faculty will be responsible for tracking gainful employment data. All program proposals that will allow students to use state or federal financial aid must 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 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 three (3) classes, or a minimum of 9 credits of instruction, may be specified for the certificate (based on National Center for Education Statistics: Integrated Post-Secondary Education Data System guidelines).
  6. Any exceptions to policy statement 1-6 must be authorized by the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.
  7. 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.

References
Sykes, A (2012). Defining and Reporting Subbaccalaureate Certificates in IPEDS, National Postsecondary Education Cooperative.

II. 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.

III. Responsibilities 

For following the policy: Faculty and Academic Administration

For enforcement of the policy: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

For oversight of the policy: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

For notification of policy: Policy Librarian

For procedures implementing the policy: Faculty Senate, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Registrar

IV. 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