Office of the Provost

Academic Planning Proposals
Frequently Asked Questions

1. Where should Academic Planning Proposals be submitted to?

2. Should the Academic Planning Proposal be submitted in electronic or hard-copy format?

3. Who can be contacted for assistance with Graduate Academic Planning Proposals?

4. Who can be contacted for assistance with Undergraduate Academic Planning Proposals?

5. Who can be contacted for assistance with Planning Proposals regarding Centers?

6. What is the review and approval process for Academic Planning Proposals after they are submitted to the Provost’s Office?

7. When do the Councils convene to review Academic Planning Proposals?

8. When must Academic Planning Proposals be submitted to make it on the agenda for the upcoming meeting of Council?

9. What are the general guidelines on Academic Planning Proposals?

10. What are the financial analysis guidelines for new Academic Planning Proposals?

11. What are the guidelines for Off-Campus and Distance Education Programs?

12. What are the guidelines for new Graduate Certificates?

13. What is the new assessment requirement for Academic Planning Proposals?

14. Where do I find the University Regulations Governing Graduate Study?

15. Where do I find the University Regulations Governing Undergraduate Study?

16. What must Academic Planning Proposals for New or Substantially Modified Majors, Degree Programs, Academic Departments, or Schools minimally include?

17. What must Academic Planning Proposals for the Termination of Majors, Degree Programs, Academic Departments, or Schools minimally include?

18. What must Academic Planning Proposals for Areas of Concentration or Minors minimally include?

19. What must Academic Planning Proposals for New Certificate Programs minimally include?

20. What must Academic Planning Proposals for the Termination of Certificate Programs, Areas of Concentration, or Minors minimally include?

21. What must Academic Planning Proposals for Name Changes minimally include?

22. What must Academic Planning Proposals for New Off-Campus Programs and Distance Education Programs Currently or Not Currently Offered on Campus minimally include?

23. What are the most common reasons Academic Planning Proposals are sent back to the school for modification?

24. What types of Academic Planning Proposals are reviewed by Council?

 

1. Where should Academic Planning Proposals be submitted to?

All Academic Planning Proposals and Planning Proposals for Centers should be directed to Provost Patricia E. Beeson in 801 Cathedral of Learning.

 

2. Should the Academic Planning Proposal be submitted in electronic or hard-copy format?

Completed proposals should be submitted in hard-copy only unless requested otherwise.

 

3. Who can be contacted for assistance with Graduate Academic Planning Proposals?

For questions regarding graduate Academic Planning Proposals, contact Jennifer Walker at jlwst88@pitt.edu.

 

4. Who can be contacted for assistance with Undergraduate Academic Planning Proposals?

For questions regarding undergraduate Academic Planning Proposals, contact Paula Janikowski at plj5@pitt.edu.

 

5. Who can be contacted for assistance with Planning Proposals regarding Centers?

For questions regarding proposals for centers, contact the Vice Provost for Research, Mark Redfern at mredfern@pitt.edu.

 

6. What is the review and approval process for Academic Planning Proposals after they are submitted to the Provost’s Office?

All graduate and undergraduate proposals are carefully reviewed by the Vice Provost for Graduate Studies and the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies and their staff. Proposals for new centers are reviewed by the Vice Provost for Research. If all portions of the proposal are in order, it is forwarded to the Provost’s Senior Staff for further review. Thereafter, the majority of proposals are reviewed by either the University Council on Graduate Study or the Provost’s Advisory Committee for Undergraduate Programs. Proposals endorsed by either of these Councils are then forwarded to the Provost who will conduct the final review and approval. Some Academic Planning Proposals are also reviewed and approved by the Senior Vice Chancellor of the Health Sciences, the Chancellor, and/or the Board of Trustees.

 

7. When do the Councils convene to review Academic Planning Proposals?

The University Council on Graduate Study (UCGS) and the Provost Advisory Committee for Undergraduate Programs (PACUP) meet once a month during the fall and spring terms. They do not convene during the summer. For specific dates and times, see the Web sites http://www.pitt.edu/~graduate/ucgs.html and http://www.provost.pitt.edu/pacup/.

 

8. When must Academic Planning Proposals be submitted to make it on the agenda for the upcoming meeting of Council?

A completed Academic Planning Proposal can, generally speaking, be forwarded to the appropriate Council if it is received at least four full weeks before the upcoming meeting. Occasionally unforeseen circumstances may arise, which could postpone the forwarding of the proposal. Incomplete, inaccurate, or problematic proposals will be sent back to the school for correction prior to being forwarded to Council.

 

9. What are the general guidelines on Academic Planning Proposals?

The Guidelines for the Review of Academic Planning Proposals are located online at http://www.academic.pitt.edu/pb/proposal-guidelines.htm.

 

10. What are the financial analysis guidelines for new Academic Planning Proposals?

The Financial Analysis Guidelines are located online at http://www.academic.pitt.edu/pb/proposal-guidelines.htm#FINANCIAL ANALYSIS GUIDELINES

 

11. What are the guidelines for Off-Campus and Distance Education Programs?

The Guidelines for Off-Campus/Distance Education are located online at www.pitt.edu/~provost/offcampused.html.

 

12. What are the guidelines for new Graduate Certificates?

The Guidelines for Graduate Certificates are located online at http://www.pitt.edu/~graduate/ucgsgradcert.html.

 

13. What is the new assessment requirement for Academic Planning Proposals?

All new proposals for certificate and degree granting programs should document how the student learning outcomes will be assessed in accordance with the Assessment Requirements passed by the Council of Deans on November 9, 2006.  All new proposals must include a copy of the Assessment Plan Matrix with the first three columns completed. The matrix is located online at http://www.pitt.edu/~provost/matrix.pdf. Programs may request permission to substitute a professional accreditation process as the assessment protocol by showing how that professional accreditation process maps onto the institutional framework for assessment.

Upon approval of the new certificate or degree granting program, the Assessment Plan Matrix will become integrated with the existing assessment process implemented by the program and school.  For complete guidelines, resources, and examples, please see the Assessment Web site located at http://www.provost.pitt.edu/assessment/assessment.html.

14. Where do I find the University Regulations Governing Graduate Study?

Regulations Governing Graduate Study at the University of Pittsburgh is located online at http://www.pitt.edu/~graduate/regtoc.html

 

15. Where do I find the University Regulations Governing Undergraduate Study?

Regulations Governing Undergraduate Study is currently being assembled and will be posted online shortly. In the interim, view the policies and procedures Web site, Student Affairs Section http://www.bc.pitt.edu/policies/index.html#stu1 and the Undergraduate Bulletin http://www.bulletins.pitt.edu/undergrad/.

 

16. What must Academic Planning Proposals for New or Substantially Modified Majors, Degree Programs, Academic Departments, or Schools minimally include?

(1) The names of:
(a) the individual initiating the proposal;
(b) the responsibility center wherein the change is to occur;
(c) the program to be developed or expanded;
(d) the department affected by the proposed change(s); and
(e) the date of the proposal.
(2) The rationale for the proposed new or expanded program, specifically explaining either the relation of the proposed change(s) to the current mission and goals articulated in the long-range plans of the University, the responsibility center, and/or the department, or the external and internal environmental influences or trends justifying the proposed change(s) if the change is not a specific part of current long-range plan.
(3) A detailed description of the proposed new or expanded program, its specific components, and a detailed chronology of steps to be taken to implement the change over time. Items listed under #9 should be included for a new major, expanded degree program, or a new degree program.
(4) The short- and long-term effects that the proposed change(s) will have on other University programs. This should include an analysis of the impact that the proposed change(s) will have on programs and services such as increased or decreased demands for courses, loss or addition of students, the need for additional student aid, Library, or computing resources, etc. An analysis of the impact on space resources, including office, laboratory, and classroom space, must be included.
(5) A description of a quantitative and qualitative evaluation procedure to assess the attainment of the objectives of the proposed change(s) including outcome criteria and a time frame for completion.
(6) A detailed analysis of the impact of the proposed change(s) on staff and faculty personnel for the first three years of its operation, including information about the hiring of new staff and faculty and/or reassignments of existing personnel.
(7) A three-year budget (see the Financial Analysis Guidelines) showing the impact of the proposed change(s) on the budget of the units affected by the change, including:
(a) A budget for each of the affected budget units.
(b) Sources of funding available to support proposed expanded or new programs.
(c) A summary of financial increases, savings, or reallocations anticipated as a result of the proposed change(s).
(d) Non-financial requirements or savings in areas such as space, facilities, or equipment that are anticipated as a result of the proposed change(s).
(8) A list of the faculty groups and relevant administrators who were consulted, and a summary of their comments on the proposed change(s), including a statement from the Planning and Budgeting committees of the relevant department (if applicable) and responsibility center.
(9) Additional information which should be included in item #3 when dealing with new or expanded educational programs.
(a) Requirements for admission to the program, and a projection of the availability of qualified students for the program.
(b) Rationale for and description of the proposed curriculum, including special characteristics of the program, type and level of instruction, new courses to be developed or syllabi of existing courses, sequencing of courses, areas of specialization, multi-disciplinary aspects if any, and other requirements for completing a degree or certificate in the program.
(c) Availability and qualification of faculty to support the program. Additionally, for a new or expanded research master's or Ph.D. degree program the following should be supplied: examples of ongoing research and mentoring, evidence of investigators/co-investigators on grants or non-grant research proposals, faculty resumes including citations of articles by faculty in peer-reviewed/competitive journals over the last five years, and when relevant, evidence of interdisciplinary research/teaching collaboration.
(d) Impact on students enrolled in existing programs. If students will be transferred to new programs, how will their prior work be credited?
(e) Tuition and student support.
(f) Projected enrollments, student credit hours, and degrees to be granted over each of the first five years of the program.
(g) Documented employment opportunities for graduates of the program.
(h) Student and faculty affirmative action plans for the new or expanded programs.
(i) The aspirations of excellence for the program, and a discussion of how this would be achieved and measured.
(10) An assessment matrix http://www.pitt.edu/~provost/matrix.pdf with the first three columns completed for each proposed degree granting program.

 

17. What must Academic Planning Proposals for the Termination of Majors, Degree Programs, Academic Departments, or Schools minimally include?

(1) The names of:
(a) the individual initiating the proposal;
(b) the responsibility center wherein the change is to occur;
(c) the program or unit to be terminated;
(d) the department affected by the change; and
(e) the date of the proposal.
(2) The rationale for the proposed change(s), specifically explaining either its relation to the current mission and goals articulated in the long-range plans of the University, the responsibility center, and/or the department, or the external and internal environmental influences or trends justifying the change if not a specific part of current long-range plans.
(3) A detailed description of the proposed change(s), its specific components, and a detailed chronology of steps to be taken to implement the change over time. For termination of educational programs, items listed under #8 below should be included, when appropriate.
(4) The effects that the proposed change(s) will have on other University programs in both the short- and long-term. This should include an analysis of the impact that the proposed change(s) will have on other academic programs or service units of the University, such as increased or decreased demand for courses, loss or addition of students, and effect on student aid. An analysis of the impact on space resources, including office laboratory and classroom space, must be included.
(5) A detailed analysis of the impact of the proposed change(s) on staff and faculty personnel over the period required to implement the change including information about affirmative action, reassignments, retirements, or terminations of existing faculty and staff.
(6) A budget presenting the anticipated effects of the proposed change(s) on the budget(s) of the unit(s) affected by the change (see the Financial Analysis Guidelines). This should include:
(a) A projected budget for each of the affected units during the phase-out period.
(b) A summary of financial savings anticipated as a result of the proposed change(s).
(c) Non-financial savings in areas such as space, facilities, or equipment that are anticipated as a result of the proposed change(s).
(7) A list of the faculty groups and relevant administrators who were consulted, and a summary of their comments on the proposed change(s), including a statement from the Planning and Budgeting committees of the relevant department (if applicable) and responsibility center.
(8) Additional information which should be included in item #3 above when dealing with termination of an educational program.
(a) Projected changes in enrollments, student credit hour production, and number of degrees or certificates to be granted over the period required to implement the termination.
(b) Description of how students and applicants for admission have been informed of the proposed termination.
(c) If students will be transferred to existing programs, a detailed statement of how their work in the program will be credited and how they will be informed of this.
(d) If students are expected to complete their degrees in the terminated department, an inventory of the academic needs of each student and a plan for meeting these needs. Academic needs include, but are not limited to, courses, advisors, and financial aid.


18. What must Academic Planning Proposals for Areas of Concentration or Minors minimally include?

(1) The names of:
(a) the individual initiating the proposal;
(b) the responsibility center wherein the change is to occur;
(c) the programs to be developed;
(d) the department affected by the change; and
(e) the date of the proposal.
(2) A description of the academic requirements of the new program, a comparison with requirements of similar programs offered by the unit, and a discussion of new courses, internships, research experiences, etc., which must be introduced to offer the program.
(3) The effects, if any, that the proposed program will have on other units of the University.
(4) A discussion of the budget impact of the program, including both new income and new costs (see the Financial Analysis Guidelines).
(5) A list of faculty groups and administrators that have been consulted and a summary of their comments on the proposed program.

 

19. What must Academic Planning Proposals for New Certificate Programs minimally include?

(1) The names of:
(a) the individual initiating the proposal;
(b) the responsibility center wherein the change is to occur;
(c) the programs to be developed;
(d) the department affected by the change; and
(e) the date of the proposal.
(2) A description of the academic requirements of the new program, a comparison with requirements of similar programs offered by the unit, and a discussion of new courses, internships, research experiences, etc., which must be introduced to offer the program.
(3) The effects, if any, that the proposed program will have on other units of the University.
(4) A discussion of the budget impact of the program, including both new income and new costs (see the Financial Analysis Guidelines).
(5) A list of faculty groups and administrators that have been consulted and a summary of their comments on the proposed certificate program.
(6)     The type of certificate proposed (undergraduate, post-baccalaureate, graduate, post-professional). For definitions and guidelines see Graduate Certificates at the University of Pittsburgh (www.pitt.edu/~graduate/ucgsgradcert.html) for new graduate certificates. For information on undergraduate certificates see the Undergraduate Bulletin (http://www.bulletins.pitt.edu/undergrad/).
(7) The rationale for the proposed new certificate program, specifically explaining either the relation of the proposed change(s) to the current mission and goals articulated in the long-range plans of the University, the responsibility center, and/or the department, or the external and internal environmental influences or trends justifying the proposed change(s), if the change is not a specific part of the current long-range plan.
(8) Projected enrollments, student credit hours, and certificates awarded.
(9) A description of an evaluation procedure to assess attainment of the objectives of the proposed certificate program.
(10)An assessment matrix http://www.pitt.edu/~provost/matrix.pdf with the first three columns completed for each proposed certificate granting program.

 

20. What must Academic Planning Proposals for the Termination of Certificate Programs, Areas of Concentration, or Minors minimally include?

(1) The names of:
(a) the individual initiating the proposal;
(b) the responsibility center wherein the change is to occur;
(c) the program or unit to be terminated;
(d) the department affected by the change; and
(e) the date of the proposal.
(2) The rationale for the proposed termination of the program, specifically explaining either the relation of the proposed change(s) to the current mission and goals articulated in the long-range plans of the University, the responsibility center, and/or the department, or the external and internal environmental influences or trends justifying the proposed change(s) if not a specific part of current long-range plan of the University.
(3) Description of how students and applicants for admission will be informed of the termination.
(4) A list of faculty groups and administrators who have been consulted, and a summary of their comments on the termination.
(5) A plan for enabling students enrolled in certificate programs to complete their programs.

 

21. What must Academic Planning Proposals for Name Changes minimally include?

(1) The names of:
(a) the individual initiating the proposal;
(b) the responsibility center wherein the change is to occur;
(c) the program or unit to be renamed;
(d) the department affected by the change; and
(e) the date of the proposal.
(2) The rationale for the proposed name change of the program, specifically explaining either the relation of the proposed change(s) to the current mission and goals articulated in the long-range plans of the University, the responsibility center, and/or the department, or the external and internal environmental influences or trends justifying the proposed change(s) if not a specific part of current long-range plan of the University.
(4)    A description of the any impact the name change may have on other academic units.
(5) A list of faculty groups and administrators who have been consulted, and a summary of their comments on the name change.
(6) A description of how students and applicants for admission will be informed of the name change.
(7) A plan for enabling students enrolled in the current program to complete their program under the original name if they so choose.

 

22. What must Academic Planning Proposals for New Off-Campus Programs and Distance Education Programs Currently or Not Currently Offered on Campus minimally include?

A proposal must be submitted for any off-campus or distance education program (even when the program is currently offered on campus) if it establishes instruction constituting at least 50% of a degree program in a significantly different format or method of delivery and/or establishes instruction constituting at least 50% of a degree program at a new geographic location. Proposals should follow the Guidelines for Off-Campus/Distance Education (www.pitt.edu/~provost/offcampused.html) and must also include as a minimum all items noted below:

(1) The names of:
(a) the individual initiating the proposal;
(b) the responsibility center wherein the change is to occur;
(c) the program to be developed or expanded;
(d) the department affected by the proposed change(s); and
(e) the date of the proposal.
(2) The rationale for the proposed new or expanded program, specifically explaining either the relation of the proposed change(s) to the current mission and goals articulated in the long-range plans of the University, the responsibility center, and/or the department, or the external and internal environmental influences or trends justifying the proposed change(s) if the change is not a specific part of current long-range plan.
(3) A detailed description of the proposed new or expanded program, its specific components, and a detailed chronology of steps to be taken to implement the change over time. Items listed under #9 should be included for a new major, expanded degree program, or a new degree program.
(4) The short- and long-term effects that the proposed change(s) will have on other University programs. This should include an analysis of the impact that the proposed change(s) will have on programs and services such as increased or decreased demands for courses, loss or addition of students, the need for additional student aid, Library, or computing resources, etc. An analysis of the impact on space resources, including office, laboratory, and classroom space, must be included.
(5) A description of a quantitative and qualitative evaluation procedure to assess the attainment of the objectives of the proposed change(s) including outcome criteria and a time frame for completion.
(6) A detailed analysis of the impact of the proposed change(s) on staff and faculty personnel for the first three years of its operation, including information about the hiring of new staff and faculty and/or reassignments of existing personnel.
(7) A three-year budget (see the Financial Analysis Guidelines) showing the impact of the proposed change(s) on the budget of the units affected by the change, including:
(a) A budget for each of the affected budget units.
(b) Sources of funding available to support proposed expanded or new programs.
(c) A summary of financial increases, savings, or reallocations anticipated as a result of the proposed change(s).
(d) Non-financial requirements or savings in areas such as space, facilities, or equipment that are anticipated as a result of the proposed change(s).
(8) A list of the faculty groups and relevant administrators who were consulted, and a summary of their comments on the proposed change(s), including a statement from the Planning and Budgeting committees of the relevant department (if applicable) and responsibility center.
(9) Additional information which should be included in item #3 when dealing with new or expanded educational programs.
(a) Requirements for admission to the program, and a projection of the availability of qualified students for the program.
(b) Rationale for and description of the proposed curriculum, including special characteristics of the program, type and level of instruction, new courses to be developed or syllabi of existing courses, sequencing of courses, areas of specialization, multi-disciplinary aspects if any, and other requirements for completing a degree or certificate in the program.
(c) Availability and qualification of faculty to support the program. Additionally, for a new or expanded research master's or Ph.D. degree program the following should be supplied: examples of ongoing research and mentoring, evidence of investigators/co-investigators on grants or non-grant research proposals, faculty resumes including citations of articles by faculty in peer-reviewed/competitive journals over the last five years, and when relevant, evidence of interdisciplinary research/teaching collaboration.
(d) Impact on students enrolled in existing programs. If students will be transferred to new programs, how will their prior work be credited?
(e) Tuition and student support.
(f) Projected enrollments, student credit hours, and degrees to be granted over each of the first five years of the program.
(g) Documented employment opportunities for graduates of the program.
(h) Student and faculty affirmative action plans for the new or expanded programs.
(i) The aspirations of excellence for the program, and a discussion of how this would be achieved and measured.
(10) An assessment matrix http://www.pitt.edu/~provost/matrix.pdf with the first three columns completed for each proposed degree granting program.

 

23. What are the most common reasons Academic Planning Proposals are sent back to the school for modification?

24. What types of Academic Planning Proposals are reviewed by Council?

Council reviews Academic Planning Proposals for new (or the termination of) certificate and degree granting programs, significant modifications of degree granting programs, new degree types or altering the name of degree types, new off-campus academic programs, and anything having a direct impact on a degree granting program.

about the photo