Criteria for Evaluation of New Academic Programs

All new programs will be evaluated at each level by the following criteria:

Program Description:

  • The level of the program is specified, as well as any tracks/specializations, or for graduate programs, concentrations.
  • For baccalaureate degree programs, the total number of credit hours does not exceed 120, other wise a rationale is provided for an exception.
  • For Ph.D. Programs there should be at least 90 credit hours beyond the baccalaureate degree.
  • The academic rationale for the program is well-articulated and provides evidence of building upon areas of institutional strength.

Assessment of Need (by public), Demand (by students), Institutional Priority:

  • The proposal builds on core academic strengths at the University of Florida or it is sufficiently innovative and sought by the state or private sector that this program ought to be added to the curriculum
  • The estimates of headcount and FTE students who will major in the proposed program are reasonable.
  • Actions are outlined for attempting to achieve a diverse student body, the signature of the EEO officer is provided.
  • The proposed program relates to specific institutional strengths (such as programs of emphasis, other academic programs and/or institutes and centers) or priorities articulated in the Strategic Work Plan.
  • If there have been program reviews or accreditation activities in the discipline pertinent to the proposed program, or in related disciplines, the proposal provides evidence that progress has been made in addressing the recommendations from those reviews.
  • A plan for excellence is included, including comparisons where appropriate to national peer programs.

Planning Process and Timetable

  • The proposed program is referenced in the University's Strategic Work Plan and the goals of the proposed program relate to the institutional mission statement as contained in the Strategic Work Plan.
  • There is evidence that planning for the proposed program has been a collaborative process involving academic units, relevant administrators, and appropriate constituencies.
  • The proposal provides a reasonable timetable of events leading to the implementation of the proposed program. (Note that the Board of Governors considers new program requests twice a year, in spring and fall.)
  • There is an indication that accreditation is appropriate for the proposed program and an appropriate timetable for seeking accreditation is provided or a rationale for not seeking accreditation is provided.
  • The proposal provides evidence that the institution has analyzed the feasibility of providing all or a portion of the proposed program through distance learning and/or collaboration with other universities.

Curriculum and Articulation

  • The proposal illustrates an appropriate, sequenced, and well-described course of study.
  • Learning outcomes are well articulated and are reasonable for the level of the proposed degree.
  • Specialized accreditation or state certification/licensure requirements have been addressed.
  • For bachelor degree programs the plan for articulation with the Community Colleges is well defined.

Institutional Resources

  • Based on estimated enrollment, the proposal provides
    • Evidence that there is a critical mass of faculty available to initiate the program;
    • There is a commitment, if appropriate, to hire additional faculty in later years.
  • The proposal provides evidence that the faculty in aggregate have the necessary experience and research activity to sustain the program, particularly for graduate programs.
  • The proposal provides evidence that library resources are sufficient to initiate the program as verified by a letter from the Head of Collections Management or other appropriate Library staff describing the materials available to support this proposed new degree program.
  • The proposal provides evidence that classroom, teaching laboratory, research laboratory, office, and any other type of space that is necessary for the proposed program is sufficient to initiate the program.
  • The proposal provides evidence that necessary and sufficient equipment to initiate the program is available.
  • The proposal provides evidence that, if appropriate, fellowships, scholarships, and graduate assistantships are sufficient to initiate the program. This criterion is pertinent mainly to graduate programs.
  • The proposal provides evidence that, if appropriate, clinical and internship sites have been arranged.
  • The proposal provides a complete and reasonable budget for the program that is supported in the text of the proposal.
  • The proposal provides evidence that the academic unit(s) associated with this new degree have been productive in teaching, research, and service.