Curriculum Guidelines


Submission Deadlines

Submissions are due by the first day of each month to the Graduate Council Curriculum Committee (GCCC).  Proposals must have college and departmental level approval (as appropriate) prior to submission to the GCCC.


The GCCC meets monthly (January through November).  Submissions received after the November deadline and before January 1st are scheduled for review in January.

Recommended Submission Deadlines for Proposals Requiring Off-Campus Approval

Degree Programs

Implementation date (proposed):           Fall 2018

Submission deadline (recommended): February 1, 2017

Graduate Certificates

Implementation date (proposed):           Fall 2018

Submission deadline (recommended): February 1, 2017

What Needs Off-Campus Approval?

Alabama Commission on Higher Education

Categories of Instructional Items—Public Senior Institutions

  1. The list is provided and to be used only as a general guideline.
  2. There may be exceptions to the information provided below.
  3. The list does not encompass all possible types of instructional items or instructional circumstances.
  4. The listing should not be used in lieu of consultation with ACHE Staff.

Items subject to approval by the Commission:

1. New instructional programs.
2. New off-campus sites outside of the institution’s recognized service area.
3. New off-campus courses at sites outside the institution’s service area.
4. New off-campus programs regardless of the location of the off-campus site.
5. New branch campuses.
6. New administrative units larger or more prominent than a department.
7. Mergers or consolidations of existing institutions.
8. Division of one institution into two institutions (one would be a new unit of instruction).
9. New units of instruction (colleges, centers, institutes, etc.) which offer coursework for academic credit.
10. New reasonable extensions and alterations of existing instructional programs (tracks, concentrations, options, etc.). Significant alteration of a curriculum of an existing academic program—even if no option, etc., is added—is also subject to Commission review and approval.
11. Mergers or consolidations of existing academic programs.
12. Change in degree nomenclature at the doctoral level (examples: EdD to PhD) of an existing program.

Items to be submitted to the Commission as information items prior to implementation:

1. Non-degree programs (pre-baccalaureate, post-baccalaureate, and post master’s certificates). These are not listed in the Commission’s Academic Program Inventory.
2. New off-campus sites in the institution’s service area approved by the Commission.
3. Distance education programs.
4. The deletion of instructional programs from the Commission’s Academic Program Inventory.
5. The change in name of an instructional program, the degree nomenclature (except for the doctoral level), or the CIP code by which it is listed in the Commission’s Academic Program Inventory, if the objectives and content of the program remain the same.
6. The placing of a program on inactive status.
7. New administrative units at the department level.
8. New centers, institutes, etc., which do not offer courses for academic credit.

Matters handled in house, administratively, by the Commission staff:

1. Changes in names of options, tracks, etc., when there is no change in content or objective of
the option or program. There is no requirement that such changes be submitted; however, we
maintain a list of submitted changes in case of authorization questions.
2. Deletion of non-degree programs at senior institutions.
3. The change in the name of administrative units when neither the focus nor the scope of the
unit changes.

Items that do not have to be submitted to the Commission:

1. The addition of new courses on the main campuses and instructional sites of institutions
(including pre-1960 off-campus sites that are exempted by statute).
2. New courses offered through distance education delivery.
3. Off-campus instruction on military bases.
4. Off-campus instruction delivered at business or industrial sites for employees.
5. The addition of minors.
6. The deletion of courses, minors, concentrations.
7. The discontinuation of courses and programs on off-campus sites.
8. Mark- ups of catalogs showing changes.
9. Minor changes in the curriculum of a program if there is no change to the objective or overall
program requirements.

ACHE Instruction web page:
Additional information regarding Commission responsibilities:

Process for Off-Campus Approval

Proposals requiring approval by the Alabama Commission on Higher Education (ACHE) must first be approved by the Auburn University Board of Trustees.

Scheduling Proposals for Off-Campus Approval

Proposals approved by the Graduate Council that require off-campus (ACHE) approval are submitted by the Graduate School to the Provost’s Office for inclusion on the Board of Trustees’ agenda.  Materials must be received by the Board’s deadline for receipt of materials to be included on the next available meeting date.

The Graduate School and the Provost’s Office coordinate submission of proposals approved by the Board of Trustees to the Alabama Commission of Higher Education (ACHE) and the Alabama Council of Graduate Deans (ACGD).

For new graduate degree programs, ACHE requires first a Notification of Intention to Submit a Proposal (NISP) that is reviewed by the Alabama Council of Graduate Deans and ACHE.  Submission of the full proposal to the ACGD and ACHE follows the review of the NISP and a required two-month waiting period.

Last modified: July 17, 2018