The concept paper for a new degree program is prepared in advance of the investment of college resources for preparing a program proposal. The concept paper provides information for the Office of Academic Affairs and governance committees to review the major areas, but will not have full detail, as additional program research and engagement with the faculty and functional offices will be conducted during the proposal development stage. Concept papers should generally be 4-5 pages.
The proposed title (or titles if several in research) and proposed degree award
Overall guiding vision/goals of the program
The rationale and need for the program (which should include preliminary market research)
The intended student population
Any anticipated impacts on other academic programs of the college
The anticipated major topics/areas for curriculum development
The major admission requirements (e.g. graduate enrollment requires proof of a bachelor’s degree)
SUNY Requirements for Advanced Certificate Proposals
The Advanced Certificate, known informally as the Graduate Certificate, may be proposed for any post-baccalaureate curriculum that does not lead to a degree (i.e., a master’s or doctorate). …
Because the courses are part of registered graduate programs and the faculty is affiliated with such programs, advanced certificate proposals typically follow an abbreviated review process. In general, advanced certificate proposals are not required to go through the Letter of Intent or external review stages. The proposal for an advanced certificate will normally include the following components:
Elements of the Abbreviated Proposal
Rationale for the certificate, which also identifies the registered graduate programs to which the courses apply
Curriculum, with course descriptions drawn from the campus graduate catalog (for each new course proposed, a syllabus is required)
Faculty credentials and course responsibilities—include vitae for faculty who are not part of a currently existing graduate program.
Students: information on admission and advisement.
Resources and support programs
While the Letter of Intent is not an explicit requirement for Advanced Certificate proposals, the [SUNY] Provost’s Office may occasionally solicit reactions from other campuses if issues of competition have particular importance...
From SUNY’s 2005Guidelines for the Submission of Graduate Program Proposals
The SUNY requirements for advanced (graduate) certificates are limited and the college requires additional information to review and approve these certificates. For context, SUNY requirements for an advanced certificate proposal are on the right.
ESC proposals follow the SUNY structure, but require additional detail about learning outcomes and comparability to other programs. Use the SUNY cover sheet (found in appendix A on p. 16 of the SUNY’s 2005Guidelines for the Submission of Graduate Program Proposals).
The rationale summarizes the certificate program’s educational and career objectives; explains the need for the program and the likely sources of students; estimates the size of the potential audience and identifies similar programs.
The description of the curriculum includes goals and objectives for the program, including a list of the learning outcomes students should demonstrate upon completing the program. In the body of the curriculum description, include course descriptions drawn from the graduate catalog. If the courses are new, include the syllabi as appendices. Finally, map the curriculum to the student learning objectives, showing how course activities support learning objectives. Also, compare the proposed certificate requirements to similar programs or professional standards.
Present the faculty credentials and course responsibilities in the table included in the template. Include vitae for faculty who are not part of a currently existing graduate program as appendices.
Identify student information by defining admission criteria and the advisor or coordinator for the program. At the minimum, students seeking admission into advanced certificates need an official transcript containing evidence of successful completion of a baccalaureate degree and a completed application. Further, while the certificate credits are fully applicable to a degree program, candidates for the degree meet admission requirements for the degree and complete the degree program admission process.
Identify the resources and support for the program. Normally, certificate programs fill excess capacity in existing courses. Include enrollment projections and explain mechanisms for managing growth as well as the impact of not achieving expected enrollments.
Advanced Certificate Template
Title of Advanced Certificate:
Applicable Degree Program Chair:
Summarize the certificate program’s educational and career objectives.
Explain the need for the program and the likely sources of students.
Estimate the size of the potential audience and identifies similar programs.
Briefly describe the structure of the program including delivery modes.
Define the goals and objectives for the program and list of the learning outcomes students should demonstrate upon completing the program.
Provide the course descriptions drawn from the graduate catalog. Indicate if the courses are new or existing. If the courses are new, include the syllabi as appendices.
Format the entries as follows:
Course Title (# credts) New/Existing
Description from catalog
Map the curriculum to the student learning objectives, showing how course activities support learning objectives. If using professional standards as a basis for the program outcomes identify the professional association and include the reference. Explain how the program outcomes connect to the professional competencies.
Insert rows or columns into the table as needed.
Programmatic Learning Objective
Learning Activities (sampling)
Compare the proposed certificate requirements and outcomes to similar programs. If the proposed ESC program is significantly different, explain why.