3.5 Academic Program Planning Approval

  1. New Program Approval
    1. No action shall be taken by the institution on any proposed programs until the new program is approved by the Board of Regents.  This includes hiring new faculty, securing facilities, developing curriculum, or advertising the program.
       
    2. The Board Office shall maintain a program planning list that includes the name and educational level of proposed programs that are currently undergoing an institutional review and are likely to be submitted for program approval by the Board of Regents within the year.  Proposed programs shall be on the program planning list for at least six months prior to the submission of Form A (PDF) to the Board Office.
       
    3. The Council of Provosts shall review the proposed program planning list at each meeting.
       
    4. An institution planning a new or expanded academic program shall first submit the program proposal to the Board Office using the format developed by the Board Office (Form A (PDF)), including accreditation requirements and viability; and verified practicum, internship, or similar sites.
       
    5. Following review of Form A (PDF) by the Board Office, an institution planning a new or expanded academic program shall submit the appropriate information to the Iowa Coordinating Council for Post High School Education (ICCPHSE) using the prescribed format. All proposals submitted to the Board Office shall include the action taken by the ICCPHSE.
       
    6. The Board Office will ensure that the program proposal is on the agenda for the next appropriate meeting of the Council of Provosts. The proposal shall be reviewed by the Council of Provosts considering the following key criteria:
      1. Need/demand in Iowa for the proposed offering;
      2. Duplication/unnecessary duplication resulting from implementing the proposed offering;
      3. Costs, reallocations, long-term resource needs of the proposed offering;
      4. Appropriate facilities and equipment;
      5. Projected sustainability;
      6. Quality of the proposed offering; and
      7. Alignment with the university’s mission and the Board’s and the institution’s strategic plans of the proposed offering.
    7. After reviewing the program proposal, the Council of Provosts shall take action regarding the program proposal.
       
    8. With a favorable recommendation from the Board Office and the Council of Provosts, the Board Office will place the program proposal on the agenda for the next appropriate meeting of the Board of Regents’ Academic and Student Affairs Committee. The Committee shall review the proposal and recommend action by the Board of Regents or take other action as it deems appropriate.
       
    9. The institution will implement the proposed program consistent with the approved authorization.
       
  2. Principles and Standards for Program Duplication
    1. The Board of Regents, State of Iowa, recognizes that program overlap or duplication cannot be evaluated in absolute terms. Some duplication is desirable, appropriate, and essential.  Other duplication is inappropriate.
       
    2. Policy decisions concerning the appropriateness of new programs or the expansion of existing programs that appear to duplicate activities in other institutions shall be based on such considerations as the following:
      1. Personnel, facilities, and equipment adequate to establish and maintain a high-quality program;
      2. Current and future student demand;
      3. Adequate employment opportunities for graduates;
      4. Evidence of collaboration with another Regent university already offering the same program;
      5. Enhancement of other programs already in place at the university;
      6. Consistency with the institutional mission;’
      7. Location/delivery mode of proposed program;
      8. Similar offering(s) at other colleges in Iowa.
         
  3. Academic Program and Academic Department Name Change

    Requests to change the name of an academic program or an academic department shall be submitted to the Board Office for review (Form G (PDF)). The request shall include justification for the proposed change, including information relating to similar programs or departments and the effect of change on existing students. Following review by the Board Office and approval by the Council of Provosts of a university's request to change the name of an academic program or an academic department, the Board Office shall place the request on the agenda for the next appropriate meeting of the Board of Regents’ Academic and Student Affairs Committee. The Committee shall review the request and recommend action by the Board of Regents or take other action as it deems appropriate. The institution shall not announce the name change until it has been approved by the Board of Regents.
     
  4. Academic Program Reduced Admissions and Termination

    ​Requests to limit[2], suspend, substantially reduce admission, or terminate a program shall be submitted to the Board Office with justification for such a request before any action is implemented at the institution (Form J (PDF)). Information submitted on Form J (PDF) shall include a teach-out plan that covers existing students. Following review by the Board Office and approval by the Council of Provosts, the request shall be placed on the agenda for the next appropriate meeting of the Board of Regents’ Academic and Student Affairs Committee by the Board Office. The Committee shall review the proposal and recommend action by the Board of Regents or take other action as it deems appropriate. The program shall not be terminated until after the last student has completed the requirements of the program. Requests to reopen admissions shall be submitted on Form A (PDF). Board approval shall be required to reopen admissions.

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[2] The term "limit" in this policy refers to the formal restriction of admission to a program of a Regent university by establishing a numerical enrollment maximum.   It does not include limits placed on admissions to graduate programs, the routine reduction in the number of classes or sections offered due to staffing problems, other changes in curriculum, prerequisite changes, or changes in grade point requirements for retention or graduation.