Curricular Review and Approval Processes for the Larner College of Medicine
This page outlines the submission and approval process for the Larner College of Medicine’s course and program curriculum proposals.
The first step for new, or significant changes to, courses or programs is to obtain Chair approval. The second step is to submit an LCOM proposal form. Completed forms are to be emailed to program coordinator Jessica Akey.
Depending upon the nature of the proposal, the form will be distributed to either the Non-Doctoral Curriculum Committee, the Graduate Education Curriculum Committee, or the Larner College of Medicine Entrepreneurship Office (COMEO). The appropriate curriculum committee will then review and approval will go through the Dean’s office. Non-credit proposals need no further approval. Curriculum committee members have 30 days following distribution of the form to submit feedback to the proposers.
New or Revised Course
Once a new or revised course proposal has received LCOM Curricular Committee approval, proposers should follow the steps outlined in UVM’s CourseLeaf system.
Course Action forms are required for the following:
- inauguration of a new course (including cataloguing a course that has been taught as a special topics offering)
- change to an existing course
- deletion of a course that has been previously offered
- deactivation of a course that has been previously offered
- reactivation of a course
- request for General Education credit approval for a new or existing course
*All Course Action Forms are due in the Provost’s Office by February 15th annually.
New or Revised Program
Once a new or revised program proposal has received LCOM Curricular Committee approval, proposers should follow the guidelines posted on the Faculty Senate website. There one can find the templates of information required for review of a new program, major change to an existing program, and other curricular actions.
The process for initiation and approval has many steps before the new program is brought to the Educational Policy and Institutional Resources (EPIR) Committee of the Board of Trustees. An outline of the process follows. At each level of review, active discussion results in revisions to meet the expectations of that level of review.
1. Individual or group begins the process of developing a new program.
a. Consultation occurs with likely participants in the program and with those who may be impacted by the program.
b. Often an initial query is made at the level of the provost to discuss the concept.
2. For a proposed new program the initiating individual/group develops a formal proposal according Guidelines for Proposals for New Academic, Research, or Service Endeavors.
3. The proposal must first be reviewed and approved at the program, department, and college levels. Those levels include:
a. The chair of each department and/or program involved in the new program
b. School or college curriculum committee of each of the schools or colleges with department(s) and/or program(s) involved in the proposed program
c. Executive Committee of the Graduate College (for graduate programs only)
d. The dean of each school or college with department(s) and/or program(s) involved in the proposed program
e. The dean of Graduate College (graduate programs only)
4. The proposal with endorsements is then submitted to the Provost’s Office for review and consideration. The Provost’s Office may request clarifications or additional information on issues such as the concept, fit with mission, feasibility, financial viability, quality controls, and any outstanding concerns. At the Provost’s discretion, the proposal is forwarded to the Faculty Senate with request for review and recommendation.
5. The proposal is assigned a routing number and forwarded according to the routing diagram available here.
6. The Curricular Affairs Committee (CAC) of the Faculty Senate undertakes a review of the proposal.
a. The Chair of the CAC notifies the campus community that the proposal is being reviewed. An abstract is included in the notification and the full proposal is available to anyone that requests it. Feedback from each of these constituents is welcomed and considered in the CAC review process.
b. A subcommittee of the CAC reviews the proposal and meets with the initiating group/individual for information as needed. Modifications may be required and are shared with endorsees as appropriate.
c. The CAC Subcommittee presents the proposal and their evaluation of it to the full CAC for review and approval or disapproval.
7. The CAC presents the result of their deliberation to the Faculty Senate Executive Council for placement of the item on the Senate agenda and then to the Full Senate for endorsement.
8. If the decision of the CAC is to disapprove the proposal, and the Executive Council agrees, that recommendation is sent to the Provost with rationale.
9. If the decision of the CAC is to approve the proposal, and the Executive Council agrees to place it on the agenda, the Chair of the CAC presents the proposal to the Full Senate for approval.
10. If the proposal is approved by the Faculty Senate, it is forwarded to the Provost and President with recommendation for approval.
11. At their discretion the Provost and President will forward the proposal to the Board of Trustees for final review and approval.
12. Proposals approved by the Board of Trustees are added to the array of Curricula, Academic Programs, Research or Service Endeavors of the University of Vermont.
- The timeline outlined in the Timeline for Policy & Proposal Review Process is a “best-case scenario;” be aware that delays can occur for various reasons.
- Abstracts must be circulated to the faculty and Deans for comment a minimum of 30 days prior to discussion by the CAC.
- It takes time for the proposal to be cataloged and given a tracking number by the Provost’s office before it reaches the Faculty Senate office.
- CAC review subcommittees often have questions for proposers; quick responses by proposers can help prevent delays in the approval process.
- To be included in the next year’s Catalog, programs must be approved by the Board of Trustees at the February meeting.
- Proposals approved by the Board of Trustees at the May meeting may be included in the Catalog addendum; the Unit’s Dean’s office should communicate with the Registrar’s office to ensure it happens.
- New courses that will be part of the proposed program should be submitted in Course Leaf; contact the CAC Chair if a new course prefix is required.
- Letters of support from any potentially affected Units/Departments/Programs must accompany the proposal.
- Proposals must be sent from the Dean’s office to the Provost’s office for submission.
- Proposers do not attend the CAC meetings where their proposals are discussed.
- The proposers (or an appropriate representative) SHOULD attend the Faculty Senate meeting where their proposal is brought to the floor for a vote.
- If changes are made to a proposal in discussions with the CAC review subcommittee, the proposal should be revised and an updated version sent to the chair of the CAC subcommittee.
- The policy clarification document, Substantial Revisions to Existing Academic, Scholarly, and Service Endeavors: Approval Process and Definition, posted on the Faculty Senate website provides examples and guidelines for determining if curricular changes should be reviewed by the CAC.
- New concentration proposals may be in the form of a memo that addresses all relevant components of the Guidelines for Proposals to Substantially Revise an Academic, Scholarly, or Service Endeavor.
- Proposals should be sent from the Dean’s office to the CAC Chair.
- Depending on the nature of the changes, proposals may or may not require review by a CAC subcommittee.
- Changes may be publicized AFTER they are approved by the CAC.
- Special Topics courses CANNOT be a required course for any program.
Note – Special Topics courses can be listed as options for fulfilling program requirements. However, students must be able to complete the program without taking a Special Topics course. If it is not possible to complete the program requirements without taking a Special Topics course, then the Special Topics Course(s) are, by default, required.
- Minors and undergraduate certificates must meet the credit hour requirements (see standards documents).
- Minors: 15 to 20 credit hours, at least nine at the 100-level or above; does NOT need to include 200-level courses; no more than three prerequisites (9 to 12 credits) that are not part of the minor.
- Undergraduate certificates: ≥12 credit hours, at least six at the 100-level or higher, plus a significant credit bearing integrative learning component.
- Signed letters of support from all necessary parties must be submitted with the proposal.
- Unit curriculum committees, department chairs, and deans of all departments that offer courses for the program.
- Department chairs and deans of all potentially affected departments/units.
- Graduate College Executive Committee and Graduate College Dean (graduate programs only).
*Don’t hesitate to contact the CAC Chair if you have questions.