Handbook for the review and Approval of new academic Programs


New Undergraduate Certificate Programs



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New Undergraduate Certificate Programs



Undergraduate Certificate Program Proposals

Concept Proposal


  1. The design team develops a concept proposal following the college’s template for certificate concept proposals and the “Guidelines for Developing Certificate Programs.”

  2. The design team consults with the relevant Area of Study (AOS) or program faculty to ensure that the certificate offerings are appropriate to the AOS or the degree program into which the offerings are applicable.

  3. The AVP reviews the concept paper to ensure that it is ready for further review and gathers additional information that may be needed. Once the concept proposal is complete, the AVP also makes a recommendation to the Provost, while at the same time submitting the concept proposal to CUSP.

  4. After considering the proposal, recommendations, and the feedback from CUSP, the Provost approves (or not) the concept for a certificate. If the concept is approved, the design team begins developing a full program proposal.

Program Proposal


  1. The design team develops the program proposal using “Appendix B-- Undergraduate Program Proposal Form” from the SUNY’s 2003 Handbook for the Submission of Undergraduate Program Proposals outline, available at the SUNY Campus Resource Center and following the college’s “Guidelines for Developing Certificate Programs.” SUNY does not generally require external review for undergraduate certificates, but does require a program announcement. The design team should be working with the Assistant Vice President for Academic Programs office, as the AVP is responsible for the business plan in the proposal.

  2. The design team consults with the relevant Area of Study (AOS) or program faculty to ensure that the certificate offerings are appropriate to the AOS or the degree program into which the offerings are applicable.

  3. The design team submits the certificate proposal to the Office of Academic Affairs and begins work on the program announcement required by SUNY.

  4. The AVP finalizes the business plan, reviews the proposal to ensure that it is ready for further review, and gathers additional information that may be needed.

  5. Once the proposal is complete, the AVP posts the proposal for a 30-day comment period, and submits concept proposal to CUSP.

  6. Once the comment period is over, CUSP reviews the feedback and considers the proposal. CUSP communicates its recommendation to the initiators, AVP for Academic Programs and the Senate. If CUSP recommends that the proposal go forward, the CUSP chair also submits it to the Senate for consideration.




  1. In parallel with submission of the program announcement and the SUNY review and comment period, the Senate considers the proposal. The Senate communicates its recommendation to the initiators, the AVP for Academic Programs, Provost and President.

Program Announcment


  1. Upon CUSP recommendation to approve the proposal, the AVP for Academic Programs finalizes the program announcement, gathers the appropriate signatures, and submits the program announcement and a request for waiver of external review to SUNY

  2. SUNY posts the program announcement for 30 days to allow other SUNY institutions the opportunity to comment and provide feedback.

  3. SUNY approves the development of the new program and notifies the college President.

  4. The AVP for Academic Programs, in consultation with the design team incorporates feedback from SUNY program announcement process.




  1. With the Senate recommendation and the SUNY approval, the AVP for Academic Programs prepares the SUNY submission, gathers the relevant signatures and submits the proposal to SUNY. The president’s signature serves as the college’s approval of the proposal.

  2. SUNY staff review the proposal and if approved, submit it to the New York State Education Department (SED).

  3. SED staff review the proposal and if approved, register the certificate program. The notice of registration is forwarded to the SUNY Provost and then to the ESC President.

New Undergraduate Degree Programs



Undergraduate Degree Program Proposals (includes new AOS)

Concept Proposal


  1. The design team develops a concept proposal following the college’s template for degree program concept proposals and this handbook.

  2. The design team consults with appropriate faculty experts to shape the general focus and anticipated design.

  3. The AVP reviews the concept proposal to ensure that it is ready for further review and gathers additional information that may be needed. Once the concept proposal is complete, the AVP also makes a recommendation to the Provost, while at the same time submitting the concept proposal to CUSP.

  4. After considering the proposal, recommendations, and the feedback from CUSP, the Provost approves (or not) the concept for the new degree program. If the concept is approved, the design team begins developing a full program proposal.

Program Proposal


  1. The design team develops the program proposal using “Appendix B-- Undergraduate Program Proposal Form” from the SUNY’s 2003 Handbook for the Submission of Undergraduate Program Proposals outline, available at the SUNY Campus Resource Center. The design team should be working with the Assistant Vice President for Academic Programs office, as the AVP is responsible for the business plan in the proposal.

  2. The design team consults with the relevant faculty experts and appropriate experts outside the college who can help to define and shape the program and expectations.

  3. The design team submits the program proposal to the Office of Academic Affairs, begins work on the program announcement required by SUNY, identifies several external reviewers, who may be called upon to conduct the formal review required by SUNY, and collects their CVs.

  4. The AVP finalizes the business plan, reviews the proposal to ensure that it is ready for further review, and gathers additional information that may be needed.

  5. Once the proposal is complete, the AVP posts the proposal for a 30-day comment period, and submits concept proposal to CUSP.

  6. Once the comment period is over, CUSP reviews the feedback and considers the proposal. CUSP communicates its recommendation to the initiators, AVP for Academic Programs and the Senate. If CUSP recommends that the proposal go forward, the CUSP chair also submits it to the Senate for consideration.

  7. In parallel with submission of the program announcement, the SUNY review and comment period, and the external review, the Senate considers the proposal. The Senate communicates its recommendation to the initiators, the AVP for Academic Programs, Provost and President.

Program Announcment


  1. Upon CUSP recommendation to approve the proposal, the AVP for Academic Programs finalizes the program announcement, gathers the appropriate signatures and submits the program announcement and a list of potential external reviewers and CVs to SUNY.

  2. SUNY posts the program announcement for 30 days to allow other SUNY institutions the opportunity to comment and provide feedback.

  3. SUNY approves potential reviewers and notifies the AVP for Academic Programs

  4. SUNY approves the development of the new program and notifies the President.

  5. The AVP for Academic Programs, in consultation with the design team incorporates feedback from SUNY program announcement process.



External Review


  1. The AVP for Academic Programs submits the list of potential reviewers to SUNY for approval along with the program announcement.

  2. Upon SUNY approval of external reviewers, the AVP for Academic Programs coordinates the external review that includes a site visit.

  3. The AVP for Academic Programs, in consultation with the design team incorporates feedback from external review process.




  1. With the Senate recommendation and the SUNY approval, the AVP for Academic Programs prepares the proposal for submission to SUNY, gathers the relevant signatures and submits the proposal to SUNY. The president’s signature serves as the college’s approval of the proposal.

  2. SUNY staff review the proposal and if approved submit it to the New York State Education Department (SED).

  3. SED staff review the proposal and if approved, register the degree program. The notice of registration is forwarded to the SUNY Provost and then to the ESC President.





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