Program Approvals

Program proposals must follow Curricular Processes 11.99.99.M0.01. The following resources serve to assist administrators, faculty and staff with this process and the procedures related to undergraduate, graduate and professional proposals submitted for approval/review.

Please reference our list of SACSCOC approved instructional locations when preparing program proposals for approval.

Preparing a proposal

Reference the information below to assist in creating a program proposal.

All new degree program proposals will require both internal and external approval/review as defined by Curricular Processes 11.99.99.M0.01 .  Depending on the proposal type, the internal process may take at least one month at each level.  The external approval timeline varies depending on the external due dates and deadlines so please take this into consideration when proposing the implementation date for your proposed new program.

Please be sure to:
  • Attach a cover memo as deemed appropriate.
  • Include letters of support with your proposal.
  • Resolve any concerns about your proposed program (within or outside your college) before submitting for approval/review.
  • Attach Word / Excel documents as appropriate.
  • For new degrees, include the New Degree Planning Notification Memo (approved/signed).

Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):


Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):

Additional resources for the development of doctoral programs can be found at the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board website.

Reference the Distance Education Programs if you intend on offering 4 or more graduate courses via distance education for your non-distance PhD program.

Texas A&M University offers distance education (DE) degree and certificate programs. Learn more about distance education at Texas A&M University.

Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):

  • All forms indicated on the TAMUS website will need to be completed and submitted through workflow so that your program can be approved to be offered via distance education.
  • If a non-distance doctoral program wishes to allow > 4 distance education courses, the department must submit a request through CARS and include the following:
    • A memo addressed to the Provost from the Department Head requesting that there be a notification forwarded to the THECB allowing more than four courses, but less than 50% of the courses via distance, excluding research courses, within the specific degree program.
      • The memo should be addressed to the Provost, through the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, through the Dean of the College from the Department Head.
      • The memo should include the specific number of courses requested with the numbers and names of the courses that can appear on the degree plan.
      • The memo must indicate a plan of how the number of distance courses for the program will be monitored so as not to have an inadvertent online degree situation occur.
    • Under the Catalog Program Requirements on the CARS form, the Degree Plan section needs to state the exact number of courses the program will allow to be taken distance.
    • The proposal will follow the abbreviated approval path for minor changes as outlined in the University SAP 11.99.99.M0.01. Once approved, the Provost’s Office will forward the notification to the THECB.

Certificate Program Procedures 

Certificate Tracking and Awarding                                                 
 

Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):

  • New Program Request Form for Certificate Programs - Complete and submit
  • Certification Form for New Academic Certificates - This form is only required for the following certificate types:
    • Upper-level undergraduate certificates of 21-36 hours in disciplinary areas where the institution already offers an undergraduate degree program
    • Graduate-level and professional certificates of 16 – 29 hours in disciplinary areas where the institution already offers a graduate program at the same level as the certificate
  • For new Distance Education Certificate Programs, you will need to complete these forms, choosing the Existing Bachelor's/Master's option. 

Departments requesting changes to their program requirements (degrees, minors, certificates) must submit a proposal.


Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):
  • Copy of the current degree evaluation with edits (from Howdy)*
    • In Howdy, you can use DEGEVAL (in all caps) for the student ID
    • If you are creating a new concentration, use an existing degree evaluation with edits or use the Degree Evaluation Template
  • Letters of support (as needed)
  • If degree program hours are increasing or decreasing, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Semester Credit Hour Change Form must also be submitted.

*NOTE: The degree evaluation edits and catalog edits must match.  If they do not match, please make the appropriate changes to the proposed curriculum before submitting changes through CARS for approval. Master's and Doctoral programs will not have degree evaluation edits.

Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):
  • Depending on the circumstance, additional documentation may be required.
SACSCOS Substantive Change Policy - Refer to page 21 of the Substantive Change for SACSCOC Accredited Institutions document on this webpage.

Departments requesting a new interdisciplinary degree program should submit the documents required for the new degree program indicated above.

The University Studies degree is an innovative interdisciplinary degree with an area of
concentration and two minors.

Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):

  • University Studies Proposed Area of Concentration Form (PDF | Word)
  • Degree Evaluation Template (Word)

Proposals must be submitted through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):

Guidelines for the Establishment of Combined Master's Programs at the Masters Level (PDF).

Departments requesting the combination of existing degree programs which allow students the opportunity to receive their baccalaureate and master’s degrees at the same time must submit a proposal.
 
Combination programs must be a minimum of 150 hours.
 
Even though the undergraduate and graduate programs are combined, students must satisfy the required hours of both programs. Hours in excess of 150 hours can be used to double count courses. For example, an undergraduate program with 120 hours and a graduate program with 48 hours can use up to 18 hours to double count.

The proposal for the undergraduate degree and graduate degree program requirements must show the plan of study grid/table (ex., First Year-Fall, Spring, Second Year-Fall, Spring,etc.) for both programs which will include the double counted hours.
 
Departments prepare and submit the combination proposal through the curricular approval process. The proposal must be approved by both the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee (undergraduate program) and Graduate Council (graduate program) because this affects both undergraduate and graduate levels.
 
The proposed degrees are existing TAMU degrees, therefore, require internal approval only.

Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):

  • Degree Evaluation Template (UG Program) (Word)

Includes program title changes, CIP code changes, semester credit hour changes.

Documents to submit through the Curricular Approval Request System (CARS):

  • Complete the THECB form for your required administrative change.


The curriculum proposal will be added to Howdy after it has received full approval. Departments have the opportunity to review a program’s degree evaluation one time per year for accuracy. If updates are needed, departments can submit a Degree Evaluation Revision Request Form, when they are made available. The revision period only applies to undergraduate, first professional and all certificate programs. Curricular Services aims to have all revision requests processed by the first summer new student conference.
Date Event
March 30, 2020 2020-2021 Degree Evaluations active in Howdy
March 31 - April 26, 2020 College/Department review period
April 27, 2020 Revision forms due to Curricular Services
April 28 - May 20, 2020 Revision processing time
May 21 - 22, 2020 Transfer New Student Conference
May 27 - 28, 2020 Freshman New Student Conference #1


Depending on the type of proposal, you may consider referencing the Guide to Degree Program Tracking and Credentials.  This shows the different programs and how they are reflected on a transcript.
 
If your program seeks to be eligible for Financial Aid, please complete the GE Program Determination form. For additional information, please contact Delisa Falks at delisaf@tamu.edu.