Academic Affairs Policies & Procedures
2.01 Constitutional Authority
The Constitution of 1974 vests in the Board of Regents the responsibility to approve, disapprove or modify all existing and proposed degree programs and administrative units in Louisiana’s public colleges and universities. Additionally, existing degree programs, departments of instruction, divisions, or similar subdivisions may also be revised or eliminated by the Regents.
2.02 Adequacy of Information in Campus/System Requests
Adequacy of Information in Campus/System Requests
The Board of Regents will return without action any request which fails to satisfy the Board’s or its staff’s needs for relevant information. Specific categories of inadequacy will be cited when a request is returned for lack of information. Such action is not to be considered disapproval, and any requests so returned may be resubmitted in accordance with the regulations governing them.
2.03 Staff Information to Institutions
Staff Information to Institutions
The Board of Regents will keep institutions fully apprised of decisions pertaining to programs or requests they have submitted. Institutional representatives will be invited to participate in the meetings of the Academic and Student Affairs Committee and the Board of Regents when their proposals are considered. Actions of the Regents are electronically reported to the various management boards of higher education, who are responsible for relaying this information to all affected campuses.
2.04 Academic Planning and Degree Program Proposals
Academic Planning and Degree Program Proposals
(Revised January 2022)
The Louisiana Constitution of 1974 gives the Board of Regents the responsibility to approve, disapprove, or modify all existing and proposed degree programs and administrative units of Louisiana’s public colleges and universities. Institutional academic plans and individual degree program proposals are designed to ensure the Board has adequate information to make decisions regarding the inventory of academic programs among the state’s public postsecondary institutions. An institution’s degree program inventory, and all requested changes to the inventory including the addition of new programs, must fit within the role, scope, and mission of the institution and align with the needs of students and the state.
All new degree programs at the associate’s level and above require Board of Regents approval. New programs undergo the following two approval processes:
- Institutions first indicate an intention to propose a new degree program through the annual academic planning process.
- Institutions must then submit a detailed program proposal for each new program that is included in the Board approved academic plan.
Both the annual academic plan and each individual program proposal submitted after approval of the plan will undergo rigorous review by Regents staff and will be circulated to Chief Academic Officers statewide for review and comment.
The purpose of institutional academic planning is to facilitate the efficient statewide coordination of academic degree program offerings. The annual academic planning process provides the opportunity for collaboration among institutions, encourages innovation in program design to meet employer and student needs, and minimizes unnecessary program duplication.
Each year, institutions must submit an updated three-year academic plan using the Regents template. Plans will include:
- An executive summary that describes recent and future efforts to meet statewide attainment goals through student support, engagement with business and industry, collaboration with other institutions, efforts to close equity gaps, and other activities aligned to the goals of the current Board of Regents Master Plan for Higher Education.
- A comprehensive list of intended degree program and academic unit additions, terminations, reconfigurations, and consolidations, with relevant details for each. Intended new degree programs must be designed to support the wellbeing of the state by meeting the needs of students, industry, and academia and must fall within the existing role, scope, and mission of the institution.
Academic plans shall be submitted to Regents after appropriate review and approval at the system level.
Plans will then be circulated to Chief Academic Officers and labor market representatives statewide for review and comment. Feedback from the statewide review may include support, recommendations, or substantive feedback to the proposed program based on need, mission, or duplication. Staff will attempt to resolve challenges through discussion among interested parties; unresolved issues will be presented to the Board for a final decision.
Changes to academic plans outside the annual academic planning process must be submitted to Regents for review according to the procedures outlined in academic planning guidelines. Changes to plans for the current year must undergo review by Chief Academic Officers statewide and receive Regents’ approval.
Degree Program Proposals
A full program proposal may be submitted to Regents any time after the program concept has been approved, as part of the academic planning process or through the off-cycle approval process as described in academic planning guidelines.
All new degree programs at the associate’s level and above – including certificate programs – require Board of Regents approval. Proposals for new programs must be submitted using the appropriate Board of Regents proposal forms and must include all information required in the form. Before submission to Regents, proposals should be reviewed by other institutions within the system and approved by the management board according to system policy. Approved new degree programs are required to submit regular progress reports until the program demonstrates sustainability and meets accreditation requirements.
Program proposals for non-certificate programs including at the associate’s, nexus, baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral levels, will be circulated to Chief Academic Officers statewide for review and comment. The proposing institution is responsible for addressing issues and concerns raised during the Chief Academic Officer review and identified by Regents staff before consideration for approval by the Board of Regents.
Proposals for all graduate degrees (master’s and doctoral) and for highly technical and/or selective baccalaureate degrees require review by an external consultant. External reviewers are selected by Regents staff according to external review guidelines. External evaluations will be conducted as desk reviews and do not require on-site visits. The cost associated with an external review of proposed programs will be paid by the proposing system and/or institution. Regents staff will manage the external review process and coordinate with campus staff for the reviewer’s payment and final submission of the report.
Templates and Guidelines for Program Proposals
2.05 Academic Research Units
Proposals for New Academic Programs/Units
(Revised January 2022)
Proposed Academic Administration or Research Unit
Proposals for new centers, institutes, and other similar academic/research units (both intra- and inter- institutional) that are organized and structured around a broad-ranging, interdisciplinary research effort should follow the Guidelines and Forms for the (Re)Authorization of an Academic/Research unit (Centers and Institutes) noted below. Additionally, units that are seeking re-authorization for continued approval should follow the guidelines for such a request which are also noted below.
Proposed units which are projected to serve a purely administrative service function unrelated to any academic or research purpose do not need to seek Board of Regents’ approval. Questions as to whether a proposed unit is or is not considered academic/research in function should be discussed with the Staff of the Board of Regents/Academic Affairs.
The following definitions apply:
The primary purpose of a Center is to conduct research, but closely related academic or public service activities may also be included. A center typically resides within an existing academic unit (college, department) and reports to the head of that unit, but may cross college lines and report to a senior academic officer. A center is not directly involved in the offering of courses for credit or degree programs. A center may also serve as a formalized link between the academic community and the professional community. A center should also facilitate efforts of the institution to attract external funding for related research.
The primary purpose of an Institute is to conduct research and offer associated instruction, but closely related academic or public service activities may also be included. An institute is typically an autonomous unit which reports directly to an academic dean or chief academic/research officer. An institute may serve as a formalized link between the academic community and the professional community. An institute may independently offer courses for credit and/or degree programs. An institute should also facilitate efforts of the institution to attract external funding for related research.
Guidelines and Forms for the (Re)Authorization of an Academic/Research Unit (Centers and Institutes)
♦ Budget Form: Word Doc
2.05A Proposals for Centers of Excellence
Centers of Excellence
(Approved 26 June 2013)
A Center of Excellence is uniquely focused and specific in its designation. It may consist of a unit, program, or functional area that, as a Center, is accountable to higher expectation of performance and productivity, including contributions to the body of knowledge and to economic development, placement of graduates, generation of external interest and support, formation of joint ventures and partnerships, and positive recognition of the area and its faculty and students. If not the sole provider of education and research in the focus area, the designated Center is recognized as a leader in the field and a concentration of expertise.
A Center of Excellence must demonstrate that it is a statewide leader in the area of designation and must address how it does so in a proposal to the Board of Regents. With designation as a Center of Excellence comes the responsibility for leadership within the state and, if applicable, beyond. Implied in the designation is a commitment to concentrate and build on this strength by advancing knowledge and skills, thereby creating better opportunities for the citizens of the State. The Center will be expected to serve as a resource to support similar programs offered by other institutions.
A Center of Excellence should have the following attributes:
- The Center has a strong performance record and advances the strategic goals of the institution.
- The Center is designated by and focused on an area of education, training or research relevant to the State’s needs. This area is clearly and finitely defined, avoiding overly broad descriptions or goals.
- The Center provides a range of academic, training and/or research opportunities in its area of expertise. The programs should be nationally accredited, when applicable.
- The Center is engaged with the greater community; its programs focus on addressing current issues and provide opportunities to improve the quality of life of Louisiana citizens.
- The Center is a hallmark of the institution. Though not necessarily the only source of education, training, research, and/or economic development in the topical area, the Center is recognized as uniquely strong in its focal area.
There are three types of statewide Centers of Excellence to emphasize: workforce training, academic programming, or research and innovation. Where legislation allows, differential tuition may be charged for programs offered by the Center. For example, RS 17:1875 (Act 555 of 2010) provides for Centers of Excellence within LCTCS to be established in collaboration with and subject to approval of the Board of Regents, with private sector support, including funding or the donation of land or equipment, to offer programs run on a business model conducive to real-time market responsiveness and flexibility, for which the LCTCS Board of Supervisors may establish a differential tuition and fee structure for programs offered through the Center. In addition, designated Centers of Excellence may attract special state investment commensurate with their contributions to state workforce, academic, research and/or economic development goals. The provisions of this Policy shall govern the criteria and process for obtaining the Board of Regents’ designation as a Center of Excellence under R.S. 17:1875 as well as under R.S. 17:3139.2.
Centers for Workforce Excellence provide opportunities for education and training programs to meet areas of need as identified and supported through partnerships with business and industry across the State. They are established with private sector support to be responsive to real-time market needs; their operation provides for a leveraged return on the institution’s and community’s investment. A Center for Workforce Excellence provides significant opportunities to establish greater efficiencies for the postsecondary education system and the individual institution and its partners by focusing investment and state-of-the-art training around a workforce theme in a centralized location. Centers for Workforce Excellence should be consistent with the institution’s role, scope, and mission and its focal areas should be addressed in the Master Plan for Public Postsecondary Education as a special program/feature of the institution. A Center for Workforce Excellencefocuses on an area of workforce training in which a public postsecondary institution, in partnership with business and industry, excels or has the clear potential to become a statewide center of training excellence. It entails a commitment to concentrate and build on this strength to create better opportunities for the citizens of the State. Centers for Workforce Excellence are important economic drivers, generating public and private investment, attracting talent, and creating an energized, entrepreneurial environment that prepares students to enter or advance in the workforce.
Centers of Academic Excellence not only have an established record as a foundation of excellence in teaching, research and service, but also show potential for future growth and increasing quality. They encourage cross-collaboration, creativity, and vision with a singular, unique focus within Louisiana’s public postsecondary education system that is aligned with current and strategic regional or statewide workforce needs. A Center of Academic Excellence represents a focal area of the institution, as evidenced by reputation, enrollments and productivity of its component programs along with investments in resources and facilities by both the institution and the regional community. Its ability to generate support and recognition from external sources attests to its ability to maintain a highly responsive level of research and scholarly productivity. Based on distinctive and successful undergraduate and/or graduate programs, the degree programs, and resources that undergird the area are healthy and strong, able to demonstrate the quality of its graduates and projections of growth over the next five years. The Center of Academic Excellence has established partnerships between the institution and business and industry, the community, area economic entities, and/or other postsecondary institutions. Disciplines associated with the Center of Academic Excellence align with key industry or academic sectors identified by regional/local economic development entities and with statewide goals for economic development.
Centers of Research Excellence are campus or multi-campus hubs which develop new knowledge, enhance the research productivity of faculty, integrate education and research, and positively impact economic development in the state. They are structured around a highly specialized research effort, usually of a trans-disciplinary nature, which is unique in the State or which demonstrates unique assets and resources. Centers of Research Excellence are well supported through external funding partnerships with both federal agencies and with industry, at higher levels than the institutional average. Research Centers of Excellence attract from the federal government and industry the significant investments for discovery and innovation which make possible sustained growth in the university itself, its surrounding communities, and the State’s economy. A key indicator of the quality of and strength of many (but not all) Research Centers is the degree to which the centers contribute to doctoral and post-doctoral research, scholarship, and education.
Proposals for Center of Excellence Designation
The process for the designation as a Center of Excellence is meant to be rigorous and include a demonstration of the proposed center’s qualification for the distinction. The initial (conditional) Center of Excellence designation will be for a one-year term, based on the nominee’s demonstration of excellence in both program productivity and private/external recognition, which may include financial support. Subsequently, based on its record of impact and performance, an institution may request continued (full) designation for a period of up to five years. Proposal templates are in Appendices I and II. In exceptional circumstances, an applicant for Center status may have a strong proposal based on other components but cannot demonstrate corresponding productivity because the academic/training program creation (e.g., within a unique state-of-the-art training center) is a critical component of the Center concept. In such cases, an applicant may be granted conditional Center status on a year-to-year basis until it can provide evidence of program strength (enrollment) and viability (completers, certifications, licensure) on its component programs. The new Center must submit an annual self-review/assessment until awarded full approval, which may be granted for a period of up to five years. In addition to the regular renewal process, to be maintained as a Board of Regents’ designated Center of Excellence, its component academic programs must meet Board of Regents’ viability standards as measured during periodic program reviews:
Average Completers Program Level 8 Bachelor and Associate Degree; Diploma; Certificate 5 Master, Specialist, Graduate Certificate 2 Doctorate and Professional Degree
Designation as a Center of Excellence is an honor as well as a commitment. Recommendations for maintaining at-risk academic programs and for maintaining Center status will be made separately during the program review process.
Proposals for Center designation must address all of the elements listed in the proposal templates and be vetted and endorsed by the management board prior to submission to the Board of Regents. [See separate links, below.] Except in extraordinary circumstances, proposals will be reviewed and considered during a single period in the academic year, normally in the Fall semester, with a submission date to be announced by the Board of Regents.
Senior Staff will review proposals and make recommendations to the Academic Affairs Committee during a regular Board meeting. To ensure that the applicant is fully and best qualified for the designation, staff may seek input from Chief Academic Officers and/or call together a team of consultants from system offices, institutions, or relevant agencies to review proposals and conduct interviews with campus teams, as applicable. At the agency’s discretion, additional recommendations may be sought from external reviewers.
Proposal – Continued Designation
2.06 Board of Regents Reviews of Existing Academic Programs/Units
Board of Regents Review of Existing Academic Programs / Units
The Board of Regents will periodically review and evaluate program quality and productivity at all levels of higher education. Affected institutions will be required to participate in these reviews and evaluations. Interested persons will be given an opportunity to appear before the Board of Regents prior to decisions in each particular case.
2.07 Responses from Institutions to Consultants Reports
Responses from Institutions to Consultants’ Reports
In accordance with timetables established by the Division of Academic Affairs, Institutions and Systems shall submit formal responses to reports of consultants who review existing academic programs. These responses shall concisely state reactions to each of the weaknesses and problematic areas consultants identify in their reports. The Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs shall monitor consultants’ reports and responses from institutions and systems to ensure that the intent of this policy is fulfilled. When incomplete responses are received, the Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs shall direct institutions either to prepare appropriate addenda or submit revised responses.
2.08 Institutional Requests for Revision or Elimination of Existing Academic Programs and Administrative Units
Institutional Requests for Revision or Elimination of Existing Academic Programs and Administrative Units
The Board of Regents encourages campuses and their management boards to initiate self-evaluation leading to the revision or elimination of existing academic programs and administrative units which are under productive or of marginal quality.
Requests for termination of existing academic programs and administrative/research units should be submitted using the attached form. Institutions should obtain approval of their management board prior to submission of the request to terminate to the Board of Regents. Requests may be submitted at any time, and a response will be given within ninety (90) days of receipt.
Requests for revision of existing academic programs and/or administrative units should be submitted in writing to the Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs and should outline the specifics of the change(s) along with an appropriate rationale. The Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs may, without Board review, approve those requests for revisions of existing academic programs and administrative units which would not affect the nature of the program or the degree being offered.
2.09 Re-Submission of Disapproved Letters of Intent, Proposals or Requests
Re-Submission of Disapproved Letters of Intent, Proposals or Requests
If the Board of Regents disapproves a Letter of Intent, a proposal for a new academic program, or a request to revise or eliminate an existing academic program or an administrative unit, an institution should carefully weigh reasons for the disapproval prior to resubmitting the same or modified versions of the proposal or request. Since extended periods of preparation and study are required to correct deficiencies in proposals or requests found initially wanting, the Board of Regents requires the expiration of one (1) year prior to reconsidering disapproved programs or requests.
2.10 Reconsideration of Terminated Academic Programs
Reconsideration of Terminated Academic Programs
Any academic program which the Board of Regents terminates may be reconsidered under the following conditions:
- The Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs must receive a request for reconsideration from the appropriate management board within ninety (90) days of the day on which the Board of Regents votes to terminate the program.
- The Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs will inform the management board and the institution at least thirty (30) days prior to the date on which the Academic Affairs Committee will review the request. Relevant written materials, which the affected institution and/or management board wishes the Board of Regents to consider, must be submitted to the Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs at least fifteen (15) days prior to the date for the Academic Affairs Committee’s review.
- The Board of Regents will reconsider the status of a terminated academic programs only once. If the Board then reaffirms is decision to terminate the program, the affected institution and management board may reapply for the program in accordance with policies of the Board of Regents pertaining to the request for a new academic programs.
2.11 Approved Academic Terms and Degree Designations
Approved Academic Terms and Degree Designations Use of Standardized Academic Terms
The Board of Regents requires colleges, universities, and professional schools to use academic terms and degree designations that are consistent with the Curriculum Inventory of Degree and Certificate Programs (CRIN).
For the purpose of identifying, advertising, and awarding of both undergraduate and graduate credentials, the following terms shall be used for diplomas, transcripts, catalogs, and all publications by public campuses and systems. A degree, technical diploma or certificate is an award conferred on a student by a college, university or professional school upon completion of a unified program of study including a grouping of campus-approved courses and requirements (e.g., minimum GPA). All levels of award are referenced in the aggregate as ‘Degrees’ in the CRIN.
- A Degree Title is the complete label of a Degree Program, consisting of a Degree Designation (e.g., Associate of Science) and the Degree Subject Area (e.g., Biology). It is listed in the Regents’ Inventory under the categories “Degree Level” and “Degree Description/Option” (e.g., Associate of Science in Biology).
- The Degree Designation for each authorized program at public institutions of higher education is listed in the Board of Regents’ Inventory of Degree and Certificate Programs. Some professional programs include the name of the general subject area as part of the Degree Designation (e.g., Bachelor of Architecture, Master of Social Work) and are listed on the CRIN as approved by the Board of Regents. (A list of authorized designations is attached.)
- A Degree Subject Area is the primary discipline which constitutes the focus of a program of study listed in the Board of Regents’ Curriculum Inventory. The Degree Subject Area is the same as the Major (e.g., Biology; History; Sociology).
A Curriculum is a listing of requirements for a degree or credential: required and elective courses, required program activities, and assessments. For the purpose of identifying, advertising, and awarding of undergraduate degrees, the following terms shall be used for diplomas, transcripts, catalogs, and other publications by public campuses and systems.
- A Major is that part of a Degree Program which consists of a specified group of courses in a particular discipline(s) or field(s). The name of the Major is consistent with the Degree Subject Area on the CRIN. A Major usually consists of 25% or more of total hours required in an undergraduate curriculum. Establishment of a Major requires prior approval by the Board of Regents.
- A Minor is that part of a Degree Program which consists of a specified group of courses in a particular discipline or field, consisting usually of 15% or more of total hours required in an undergraduate curriculum. Minors may be instituted without prior approval by the Board of Regents.
- A Concentration is an alternative track of courses within a Major or Option, accounting for at least 30% of the Major requirements. Concentrations may be instituted without prior approval by the Board of Regents. Example: a concentration in molecular biology within a biology major.
- An Option is an alternative track of courses within a Major, accounting for 50% to 80% of the Major requirements. Establishment of an Option requires prior approval by the Board of Regents; options are listed on the CRIN.
For consistency and clarity the terms “Emphasis,” “Track,” “Specialization,” or any word other than those listed above describing the sub-unit of an undergraduate Major may not be used on diplomas, transcripts, or in catalogs.
Wording of Catalogs, Diplomas, Commencement Programs, Transcripts and Other Official Documents
- University/College Catalogs or Bulletins shall list and advertise only Degree Titles of academic programs approved by the Board of Regents. Separate curricula may be given only for approved degree titles; minors, concentrations, etc. not listed in the Board of Regents’ Curriculum Inventory (CRIN) may be described in the text or footnote. These limitations shall also apply to any official advertisements for academic programs.
- Higher education Diplomas for earned degrees shall list and advertise the BoR-approved Degree Designation, as listed on the CRIN. Diplomas may include the name of the approved Degree Subject Area (Major) below the designation, and they may indicate superior academic achievement for outstanding grade point average and/or completion of an approved honors curriculum. Diplomas shall not include the name of the Minor, the Option, the Concentration, or any other descriptive term, except when such terms are included in the CRIN.
- Certificate and Technical Diploma programs, both undergraduate and graduate, may include the full Degree Title (designation and subject) on the diploma or certificate of award.
- For undergraduate degrees, all higher education Commencement Programs shall list the appropriate Degree Designation and may indicate the approved Degree Subject Area (Major), superior academic achievement for outstanding grade point average and/or completion of an approved honors curriculum. Commencement Programs shall not include the name of the Minor, the Option, the Concentration, or any other descriptive term, except when such terms are included in the
- For graduate degrees, Commencement Programs may also include the Degree Subject Area, the title of the approved thesis and/or dissertation, the name of the major professor, and the name of the awarding department.
- Student Transcripts may also list Degree Titles, Majors, Minors, Options, and/or Concentrations. These terms shall not be used to suggest augmentation of a given academic program distinct from the approved Degree Title.
Degree (and Non-Degree) Designations
Public colleges and universities shall identify degree programs on diplomas and commencement programs by the approved Degree Designation. Additional program information (e.g., degree titles, major, minor, concentration) is included on the student transcript.
The standard Degree (and Non-Degree) Designations found on the Curriculum Inventory (CRIN) include:
- AA – Associate of Arts
- AAS — Associate of Applied Science
- AS – Associate of Science
- BA – Bachelor of Arts
- BAS – Bachelor of Applied Science
- BS – Bachelor of Science
- CAS – Certificate of Applied Science
- CTC – Career and Technical Certificate
- CTS – Certificate of Technical Studies
- EdD – Doctor of Education
- GC – Graduate Certificate
- MA – Master of Arts
- MS – Master of Science
- NX – Nexus
- PAC – Post-Associate Certificate
- PBC – Post-Baccalaureate Certificate
- PhD – Doctor of Philosophy
- PMC – Post-Master’s Certificate
- PPC – Post-Professional Certificate
- TD – Technical Diploma
- UC – Undergraduate Certificate
More specific Degree Designations are primarily related to the Classification of the Instructional Program (CIP) Code of the program and are driven by such considerations as program design, common practice, and professional accreditation. The CIP and Designation are assigned to a program as part of the program/proposal review process and are posted on the CRIN.
- A Degree Title is the complete label of a Degree Program, consisting of a Degree Designation (e.g., Associate of Science) and the Degree Subject Area (e.g., Biology). It is listed in the Regents’ Inventory under the categories “Degree Level” and “Degree Description/Option” (e.g., Associate of Science in Biology).
2.12 Delivery of Degree Programs Through Distance Learning Technology
Delivery of Degree Programs Through Distance Learning Technology
- Philosophy and Principles
The Louisiana Board of Regents supports and applauds efforts to offer distance education for the purpose of increasing instructional access for Louisiana citizens to courses and programs offered by Louisiana public higher education institutions. All credit offerings delivered through distance education must be appropriate to the role, scope, and mission of the institution as defined by Board of Regents. Criteria for approval of academic programs are based on qualitative consideration of the highest order. All state institutions of higher education offering distance education must either meet requirements or be accepted for candidacy by the Commission on Colleges (COC) of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools or the Commission on Occupational Education (COE). All institutions should be guided by the Western Interstate Commission on Higher Education Principles.
The purpose of this policy is to increase access to educational opportunities and to ensure quality of instruction through distance education to place- and time-bound students; enhance the ability of campuses to respond to learner needs; increase educational opportunities and encourage linkages between Louisiana educational institutions and other sectors including business, government, and the surrounding community; provide cost-effective service through cooperative development; invest in and support the development of a telecommunications infrastructure; and minimize and streamline policies for reviewing and approving flexible degree programs offered through distance education technology.
- Definition of Terms
The term Degree Program is defined in Academic Affairs Policy 2.11. Additional terminology relevant to this policy are defined below:
Distance Education is the formal education process in which the majority of the instruction occurs when student and instructor are not in the same place. Instruction may be synchronous or asynchronous. Distance Education technology is generally synonymous with mediated instruction (such as compressed video, videotape, CD-ROM, Internet, audio, audiographics, satellite, microwave, or ITFS). This policy does not regulate computer and electronically augmented traditional campus instruction or print media.
Branch Campus is defined by federal regulations as:
- a location of an institution that is geographically apart and independent of the main campus of the institution. A location is independent of the main campus if the location is (1) permanent in nature, (2) offers courses in educational programs leading to a degree, certificate, or other recognized educational credential, (3) had its own faculty and administrative or supervisory organization, (4) has its own budgetary and hiring authority; or
- any location of an institution other than the main campus, at which the institution offers at least 50% of an educational program.
Campuses are advised to also seek further clarification of this term as prescribed by either COC or COE accreditation regulations.
Off-Campus Learning Centers are similar to branch campuses in that they are geographically apart and independent of the main campus of the institution, permanent in nature, and offer courses in educational programs leading to a degree, certificate, or other recognized educational credential. One or more institutions may participate in these offerings through contractual or consortial arrangements.
This policy applies to Louisiana institutions authorized by the Louisiana Board of Regents to offer post-secondary degree or certification programs. While off-campus credit courses offered through distance education must be reported to the Board of Regents as required for data collection, coordination of program, and informational purposes, Regents approval is not required for courses to be delivered via distance education technologies. The Board of Regents reserves the right to mediate in instances where distance education coursework becomes unnecessarily duplicative.
Specifically, the policy applies to all degree or certification programs that are offered primarily through distance education technology. Only COC and COE accredited institutions will be considered for approval to offer distance education programs. Those institutions which have been accepted for candidacy by either COC or COE may be considered for approval to offer distance education coursework.
Regents approval is required to electronically extend existing campus-based academic programs if 1) courses are offered in such a manner or at a location that an individual student can take 50 percent or more of the courses for the degree, or 2) the program is advertised as available in distance education technologies.
If the Degree Program is Currently Approved by the Board of Regents: If the degree program is currently approved by the Board of Regents and if 50% or more of required coursework of a degree program will be delivered through distance education technology, the institution must request approval to deliver the program from the Board of Regents and follow COC or COE policies and standards pertaining to distance education. Required procedures for this type of request are given below:
- First, the affected college or university shall submit through its management board to the Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs a completed Request for Authority to Offer an Existing Academic Program Through Distance Education Technologies. Institutions shall not apply for COC or COE approval until the Board of Regents or its staff has rendered a decision whether the Request meets concerns and requirements of the Regents.
- If the Board of Regents or its staff grants approval for the Request, the affected college or university must then seek approval for a substantive change from either COC or COE, as appropriate.
- Upon receipt of COC’s or COE’s judgment, copies of all COC or COE correspondence regarding its decision must then be sent to the Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs. If COC or COE grants approval, the college/university is automatically authorized to begin program implementation. If COC or COE does not grant approval, the program may not be implemented and a new request must be submitted to the Regents before reconsideration.
For the purposes of authorizing distance education arrangements for existing degree programs, the Board of Regents will consider program duplication as a critical factor.
- If the Degree Program Is Not Currently Approved by the Board of Regents: If the degree program is not currently approved by the Board of Regents, then existing Regents policies and procedures for developing new academic programs must be followed (see Academic Affairs Policies and Procedures 2.4, 2.5, and 2.11).
- Institutions must report students enrolling in courses and programs delivered via distance education technologies.
- Institutions shall ensure compliance with all applicable copyright laws concerning the use and transmission of films, videotapes, recording, or other protected works.
- Institutions shall ensure compliance with all applicable policies regulating intellectual property.
- The Board of Regents supports the position that institutions should be able to establish separate fees to cover the costs associated with electronic delivery of credit and non-credit instruction. Fees should be consistent with management board policies and state legislation. The Board of Regents will provide guidance for the establishment of fees for electronic delivery of instruction, and reserves the right to review established fee structures, and policies governing establishment of such fees.
- All courses and programs offered through distance education will not be subject to service area limitations, with the exception of specific Regents mandates (e.g., duplicated programs, programs provided by the desegregation Settlement Agreement, etc.)
- Each institution will have a single point of contact for reporting and responding to Distance Education issues and activities. It is the responsibility of each institution to make sure that the Board of Regents is notified of this point of contact.
- Upon approval, this policy supersedes any and all pre-existing Board of Regents policies, procedures, guidelines, and/or regulations governing the delivery of instruction through distance education technologies. This includes, but is not limited to Board of Regents Policy On Telecommunications, section 4.04.01-4.04.04, Board of Regents Policy and Procedures Manual, and applicable sections of the Board of Regents Policy 4.2, Mandatory Guidelines for the Conduct of Off-Campus Activities
2.13 Program Accreditation
1. General Policy on Program Accreditation
The Board of Regents recognizes accrediting agencies that it considers as mandatory, recommended, or optional for eligible programs offered by two- and four-year institutions of higher education and the Louisiana Technical College. A program that is eligible for accreditation by an agency that is considered mandatory must be accredited for continued program approval. The Board of Regents encourages institutions to obtain accreditation of programs that are eligible for accreditation by an agency that it recommends, but the accreditation is not essential for continued program approval. Accrediting agencies that are not considered as mandatory or recommended by the Board of Regents are considered optional, and the Board of Regents encourages institutions with eligible programs to evaluate the importance of those accreditations to its students.
A master listing of approved academic program accrediting agencies and related Regents’ accreditation requirements is available below.
2. Criteria for Mandatory Accreditation of Programs
Unless exempted by the Board of Regents, accreditation of a specific program will be deemed mandatory if it meets one or more of the following criteria:
a) The program prepares students for employment in occupations or professions that Louisiana and/or a significant number of states require licensure by an examination and for which graduation from an accredited program is one of the qualifying criteria to sit for the exam;
b) The program prepares students for employment in occupations or professions that require graduation from an accredited program for employment and/or advancement in the occupation or profession;
c) Accreditation of the program is deemed critical for students to be admitted to a more advanced degree program; and
d) Accreditation is deemed mandatory by the Board of Regents because of the critical nature of the program and its importance to the state and/or because accreditation is important for national credibility and recognition.
3. Unaccredited Programs That Are Eligible for Accreditation by an Agency That Is Classified as Mandatory by the Board of Regents
The Board of Regents will stipulate in its motion of approval for all new degree programs with mandatory accreditation a date certain for achieving accreditation. Typically, accreditation will be required within three to five years from the date of program implementation depending on such factors as program length and specific requirements set forth by the accrediting agency. In arriving at the required date for accreditation, the staff will consult with the affected university or college prior to action by the Board of Regents.
4. Actions of Accreditation Agencies
An institution must report all disciplinary actions, such as warning, probation, or withdrawal of accredited status, and a brief explanation of the conditions and/or deficiencies that resulted in the action to the Board of Regents upon receipt of the official notification of the action by the agency. The institution must submit a copy of the institution’s response to the report regarding disciplinary action of an accrediting agency, along with a copy of the original report of the agency, to the Board of Regents.
5. Exemption from Routine Program Review by the Board of Regents
A program that has a current accreditation status and is not on warning or probation by an agency that is recognized as either mandatory or recommended will ordinarily be exempt from routine Board of Regents program reviews. Special or extenuating circumstances may prompt review of a particular program in a particular institution or a statewide review of a specific program or programs.
6. Reporting of the Accreditation Status of Programs
Each academic program record maintained by the Board of Regents notes the Alast@ and Anext@ review dates for the respective program=s accreditation cycle (if applicable). It is incumbent upon each campus (both two- and four-year institutions) to keep this information current by sending updated copies of accreditation reports to Regents’ Academic Affairs staff. There will be periodic reviews done by staff (every few years or so) requesting updated accreditation status information in those instances where approval has lapsed. Documentation should include actions taken by accrediting agencies since the last review.
7. Removal of Mandatory Classification of an Accrediting Agency
An agency classified as a mandatory on the Board of Regents= list of recognized accrediting agencies will retain that classification unless it is removed by action of the Board on a recommendation from the Academic Affairs staff. Such a recommendation will generally result from a determination, through an appropriate review of the staff and the Council of Chief Academic Officers, that the agency’s policies, practices, and/or actions are inappropriate and/or fail to meet the highest professional standards.
8. Accreditation of Engineering and Engineering Technology Programs
Accreditation of a program is generally considered mandatory for engineering and engineering-related technology programs. The following policies will be used to determine the appropriate accrediting agency for programs in CIP Codes 14 and 15 that are eligible for accreditation:
i. All degree programs in CIP Code 14 Engineering must be accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET);
ii. All Engineering Technology Associate of Science, Bachelor of Applied Science, Bachelor of Science, and Master of Science degree programs in CIP Code 15 must be accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET);
iii. All Technology Associate of Applied Science programs and non-Engineering Technology Bachelor of Science degree programs in CIP Code 15 must be accredited by the Association of Technology, Management, and Applied Engineering (ATMAE – formerly NAIT) or an equivalent appropriate accrediting agency, if available;
iv. Baccalaureate degree programs in Engineering and Engineering Technology are exempt from mandatory ABET accreditation when the institution’s masters degree program in the same discipline has already obtained ABET accreditation; and
v. Associate degree programs in Engineering and Engineering Technology are exempt from mandatory ABET accreditation when the institution’s bachelors degree program in the same discipline has already obtained ABET accreditation.
2.14 Teacher Preparation Education
Teacher Preparation Education
The Board of Regents recognizes as a primary responsibility of Louisiana’s higher education system the preparation of high quality teachers for the State’s elementary and secondary schools. As the needs of society are ever-changing, so must teacher preparation programs respond quickly to meet those needs. To that end, the Regents are committed to long-term improvements to and monitoring of teacher preparation programs.
Accordingly, the Regents shall annually issue Guidelines for Teacher Preparation Programs that mandate/recommend specific actions at state colleges and universities designed to assure that teacher preparation remains at the forefront of institutional concerns. Since teacher preparation is the responsibility of the entire college/university, not just the education program unit, these Guidelines shall consider issues which pertain to the college/university at large. As such, the degree to which individual colleges and universities respond appropriately to these Guidelines shall become a relevant factor in decisions of the Regents to maintain existing programs and/or approve proposed new programs in teacher preparation and closely related discipline areas.
2.15 Definitions of Undergraduate/Graduate Certificates and Undergraduate Degrees
Definitions of Undergraduate Degrees and Undergraduate/Graduate Certificates
The following definitions for undergraduate degrees and undergraduate/graduate certificates are established to:
- provide for the uniform use of degree terminology;
- promote uniform curricular requirements for similar programs;
- effect the ready transfer of course credits earned throughout the higher education system; and
- facilitate the development of appropriate articulation agreements between systems and campuses.
As a general guideline, the number of credit hours (SCH) required for a certificate should not exceed one-half of the SCHs required for the subsequent credential. All required general education coursework must meet SACSCOC requirements. All undergraduate and graduate certifications must be reflected on the Board of Regents Curriculum Inventory (CRIN) before implementation. Certificates #1-5 are limited to two-year institutions.
- Career and Technical Certificate (CTC)– An applied skills program (6-18 SCH) that provides specific, meaningful technical skills relative to employment readiness. The CTC includes a demonstrated alignment with, and a process whereby a student’s competencies are verified against, a set of pre-determined standards which lead to and/or prepare an individual to test for an industry-based certification (IBC), state licensure, or state-recognized certification awarded by an independent, third party that is recognized by business and industry and/or the State of Louisiana. At least half of the CTC requirements should be distinctive from other credentials. The CTC is not designed for transfer to an academic degree program. CTCs may be combined to form a Certificate of Technical Studies (CTS) and/or a Technical Diploma (TD).Approval authority: The approval authority rests with the appropriate management board; however, the establishment of such programs must be immediately reported to the Board of Regents for review (e.g., name, CIP) and verification before being added to the CRIN for implementation.Example: CTC in Emergency Medical Technician (EMT); CTC in Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA).
- Certificate of Technical Studies (CTS) ‑ An applied, technical program (16-33 SCH) to provide a student with a broad technical competency in a specific area or field. The CTS is not designed for transfer into an academic degree program.Approval authority: the appropriate management board, immediately reported to the Board of Regents for review and verification before being added to the CRIN for implementation.Example: CTS in Automotive Engine Technology
- Technical Diploma (TD) ‑ An applied, technical program (45‑60 SCH) usually formed by combining multiple CTSs and/or CTCs. TD programs are not designed for transfer to an academic program.Approval authority: the appropriate management board, immediately reported to the Board of Regents for review and verification before being added to the CRIN for implementation.Example: TD in Automotive Technology (CTS in Automotive Engine Technology, plus CTCs in Automotive Body Repair, Automotive Detailing, etc.)
- Certificate of Applied Science (CAS) ‑ A more academically-oriented offering (usually 25-45 SCH) created by combining a CTS with a limited general education component (at least 9 SCH). At a minimum, the general education component should be fully transferrable into an undergraduate academic program.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: CAS in Medical Billing and Coding
- Certificate of General Studies (CGS) – An academically-oriented offering designed to provide students with a broad foundation of fundamental academic skills, primarily for personal growth or as preparation for further collegiate study. The CGS framework allows students an opportunity to tailor their courses to meet admission or pre-requisite requirements of a transfer institution. The 30-hour curriculum consists of eight general education courses (24 SCH) and two elective courses. CGS programs are strictly limited to two-year institutions.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
- Post-Associate Certificate (PAC) – An academic or technical offering (12-33 SCH) that is earned after a student has already completed a recognized associate’s degree, usually for additional professional or technical certification.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: PAC in Radiation Therapy
- Undergraduate Certificate (UC) – An undergraduate, university offering of at least 18 SCH. At least half must be at the upper level. Prerequisites may be stated or implied. The institution’s General Catalog must specify any general requirements for eligibility to declare a UC.
(a) A series of courses related to a specific topic or skill, particularly in technology or data fields in high market demand, listed on the CRIN by CIP and Subject Area.
(b) A series of courses published in the institution’s General Catalog as a concentration or minor in a major or discipline. This UC will be listed on the CRIN as CIP 24.0199 Concentration/Minor, but may be posted on the student transcript by title of the concentration/minor; it requires an annual report from the campus listing the certificate titles awarded in the previous academic year.
Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: UC in Software Development
- Post-Baccalaureate Certificate (PBC) – An undergraduate, academic offering (12-33 SCH) that is earned after a student has already completed a recognized baccalaureate degree. Commonly used as a path for alternate teacher certification, graduate school admission is usually not required for this undergraduate certificate.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: PBC in Elementary Education Gr 1-5
The standard number of credits required for the Associate Degree will be 60, though in some circumstances (e.g., accreditation or certification requirements) they may exceed the 60-credit limit. Exceptions to the standard number of credits must be approved by the respective Management Board. The Board of Regents will periodically review both the number of credit hours required and approved exceptions to the 60-hour standard.
- Associate of Applied Science (AAS) ‑ An applied degree program, with a limited general education core component, primarily designed to prepare students for immediate employment or career entry. AAS degrees can be formed by combining a TD with 15 SCH of required general education or can be a distinct curriculum. All general education coursework must meet SACSCOC requirements. If technical coursework required of the degree is intended for transfer to a university, this coursework must meet appropriate SACSCOC requirements.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: AAS in Motor Vehicle Technology
- Associate of Arts (AA) ‑ An academic degree program with a significant general education core, designed primarily to serve as preparatory education for transfer to a related baccalaureate program. All coursework must meet SACSCOC requirements.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: AA in Visual and Performing Arts
- Associate of Science (AS) ‑ An academic degree program with a significant general education core, designed primarily to serve as preparatory education for transfer to a related baccalaureate program. All coursework must meet SACSCOC requirements.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: AS in Computer Science
- Associate (A) ‑ An academic degree program with a significant general education core, designed to prepare students for immediate employment or career entry, but which also may serve as preparatory education for transfer to a related baccalaureate program. The use of this degree designation should be limited to cases wherein other associate degree designations (AAS, AA, or AS) have been determined to be inappropriate. All coursework must meet SACSCOC requirements.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: Associate of General Studies
- Louisiana Transfer Associate (AALT or ASLT) – an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree that follows a prescribed curriculum (providing both structure and flexibility) and assures transfer of the 60 SCH in the degree plus credit for completion of the Board of Regents’ required general education block at any public university.
Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
A nexus degree is a degree program that combines specialized academic curricular content in a high demand career field with a significant work-based learning experience. A nexus degree is a stand-alone entry level credential for that high-demand field. A nexus degree may be earned in combination with a traditional bachelor’s degree to create a 21st century academic experience. A nexus degree may also be earned by a student who has already earned an undergraduate degree, but who wishes to return to higher education to either redirect their career path or add to their existing credential portfolio in their field.
The standard number of credits required for a nexus degree is 60. Institutions with compelling reasons (accreditation or certification requirements) for exceeding the 60 credit-hour standard may request an exception to this standard from the Management Board, according to their respective system’s policy. The curriculum should be developed in partnership with the appropriate industry sector.
The nexus degree curriculum consists of 21 hours of specialized subject-based content including required specialized prerequisites plus 27 hours of BOR general education requirements. The remaining 12 hours consists of general electives. A student with a Bachelor’s degree or associate degree who has completed the 27 hours of general education requirements may be awarded a nexus degree by completing only the 21 hour specialized content curriculum.
At least 15 of the 21 hours of the specialized subject-based content must be at the upper division level. At least 9 of the 21 hours of the specialized subject-based content must be work-based learning with at least 3 hours at the upper division level. Work-based learning experiences may include an apprenticeship, clinical placement, coop, industry-based certification, internship, or preceptorship.
Nexus degrees may be awarded at all Louisiana public post-secondary institutions. Two-year institutions approved to offer a nexus degree are permitted to teach only the upper division coursework contained in the approved degrees’ curricula. Faculty who teach that upper division material must hold the appropriate qualifications to satisfy accreditation requirements.
- Nexus Degree (NX) – An academic degree program with a significant general education core. The nexus contains a specialized curriculum that is focused on a high demand career field together with a required work-based learning experience. Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: NX in Network Cybersecurity
The standard number of credits required for baccalaureate degrees is 120. Institutions with compelling reasons (e.g., the academic program is defined as a 5-year baccalaureate program; professional accreditation or certification requirements) for exceeding the 120 credit-hour standard may request an exception to this standard from the Management Board, according to their respective system’s policy. The Board of Regents will periodically review both the number of credit hours required and approved exceptions to the 120-hour standard.
Baccalaureate degrees are limited to four-year institutions.
- Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) ‑ An applied/academic degree program designed to prepare students for technical employment and generally not intended as preparation for graduate study. The BAS routinely combines technical/general education courses gained in an AAS program with additional university requirements. All coursework completed in the BAS program must meet SACSCOC requirements for transferability.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: BAS in Allied Health
- Bachelor of Arts (BA) ‑ An academic degree program with a significant general education core. The BA degree emphasizes breadth and depth of study in a recognized academic discipline, may serve as a career entry degree, and should prepare a student for further graduate study.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: BA in English
- Bachelor of Science (BS) ‑ An academic degree program with a significant general education core. The BS degree emphasizes breadth and depth of study in a recognized academic discipline, may serve as a career entry degree, and should prepare a student for further graduate study.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: BS in Mathematics
- Bachelor (B) ‑ An academic degree program with a significant general education core, designed primarily as a first professional degree, but which also may serve as preparatory education for transfer to a related graduate program. The use of this particular degree designation should be limited to cases wherein other baccalaureate degree designations (BAS, BA, or BS) have been determined to be inappropriate.Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
Example: Bachelor of General Studies
Graduate certificates provide a shortened, condensed and focused course of study that supplements an existing Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Doctoral degree. They frequently lead to licensure or certification, provide needed job-related expertise, or are focused on a timely area of discussion in a discipline, and they usually are offered by or through the Graduate School.
Final approval authority: Board of Regents.
- Graduate Certificate (GC) – a graduate-level academic offering addressing a particular topical area. The number of required courses varies, but the typical range is 12-18 credits.
Example: GC in Communications Systems
- Graduate Certificate (GC) – a graduate-level academic offering addressing a particular topical area. The number of required courses varies, but the typical range is 12-18 credits.
- Post-Masters Certificate (PMC) – an academic offering, usually related to additional licensure or certification that is earned after a student has already completed a recognized Master’s degree.
Example: PMC in Family Nurse Practitioner
- Post-Masters Certificate (PMC) – an academic offering, usually related to additional licensure or certification that is earned after a student has already completed a recognized Master’s degree.
- Post-Doctorate Certificate (PDC) – an academic offering that is earned after a student has already completed a recognized Doctoral degree.
- Post-Professional Certificate (PPC) – an academic offering that is designed for additional training or certification after a student has already completed a recognized Professional degree.
Example: PPC in Endodontics
Degree designation abbreviations for any graduate certificates would be only those specified above.
Exceptions to degree definitions and standard number of credit hours may be considered on a case-by-case basis, in accordance with System policy, for recommendation to and consideration by the Board of Regents.
B. General Education Requirements
Academic Affairs Policy 2.16 addresses statewide general education requirements for undergraduate degree and certificate programs.
C. Proposals for New Degrees or Certificates
Proposals for certificate and associate degree programs may be submitted at any time by a management board for consideration by the Board of Regents. Proposals for any new academic programs should address the elements outlined in the Guidelines for the Proposal of a New Academic Program (in Academic Affairs Policy 2.04)
 There are select circumstances when AAS, AA, AS, and non-designated associate programs may be considered appropriate for a particular four-year institution. In such cases, exceptions provided in the Board of Regents’ 1999 Moratorium on the Approval of New Associate-Level Programs at Four-Year Institutions will apply.
2.16 Statewide General Education Requirements
Statewide General Education Requirements
Approved April 26, 2001; Amended March 25, 2004; Amended May 23, 2012
The Board of Regents recognizes that all undergraduate academic credentials should contain a broad-based common educational experience that enhances students’ ability to describe, interpret, and analyze their world. In addition to building awareness of a wide range of material and enriching the academic experience, general education should promote intellectual inquiry through basic content and methodology and contribute to the graduate’s ability to communicate effectively in oral and written English.
General education courses should provide an introduction to a discipline, as in a survey course that covers a wide range of material within a specific discipline or area of inquiry and acquaints students with a broad section of the information or skills available in that area, or an appreciation course that introduces students to a creative field and leads to a general understanding and appreciation of work by others.
Depending on the level of the academic credential awarded, education in composition, mathematics and analytical reasoning, natural sciences, humanities, social/behavioral sciences and fine arts is required as part of undergraduate degree and certificate curricula at state colleges and universities.
Specific course offerings may vary from one institution to another as the faculty at each campus designates courses that are to be included in the General Education inventory, but such courses share common characteristics essential to the study of academic disciplines.
- English Composition. Effective written communication skills are essential to prepare students to effectively and intelligently communicate in a variety of contexts.
- Mathematics/Analytical Reasoning. As a cornerstone for the liberal arts, engineering, and sciences, mathematical/analytical reasoning skills are an essential component of all disciplines.
- Natural Sciences. Natural sciences study both life and physical sciences in an approach to understanding the universe by studying objects, phenomena, laws of nature and the physical world.
- Humanities. Humanities offer a broad-based study of cultural traditions and the human condition, including everything from language, literature and religion to history, philosophy and communication.
- Social/Behavioral Sciences. Social and Behavioral Sciences study human behavior and the relationship between individuals and their societies.
- Fine Arts. The Fine Arts provide an opportunity to explore and to value aesthetic creation and form as an essential means of conceiving and expressing the human experience.
In addition to specifics of this policy, all applicable general education requirements of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges shall apply.
2.17 Staff Approval of Routine Academic Requests
Staff Approval of Routine Academic Requests
In order to expedite the processing of routine academic matters, the Board of Regents hereby authorizes the Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs to approve routine academic requests, limited to the following:
- Request to Change the Name/Designation of an Existing Academic/Research Program/Unit
- Request to Consolidate Existing Academic/Research Program/Units
- Request for a Deadline Extension for a Required Report/Action
- Assessment of Progress Reports Required of Conditionally Approved Programs and Units
- Request to Offer an Existing Academic Program through Distance Learning Technologies.
Actions taken by authorized staff under the purview of this policy will be reported to the Academic and Student Affairs Committee at the next scheduled Committee meeting immediately following the date of staff approval. The Committee and/or the Regents reserve the right to review and reconsider the appropriateness of staff actions. Authorized staff may also elect at any time to defer its authority under this policy should it determine that a particular request has implications that merit scrutiny by the Committee and/or the Regents.
2.18 Gateway Mathematics and English Course Placement Requirements
Gateway Mathematics and English Course Placement Requirements
This policy establishes uniform guidelines for the placement of students in entry-level, college-level courses in mathematics and English. It is designed to:
- Increase the number of students who can access and successfully complete a gateway mathematics course and/or English course;
- Increase the retention and graduation rates of college students; and
- Remove systemic barriers to equitable access and outcomes for Louisiana’s students.
This policy is effective for mathematics courses beginning in the fall 2023 semester and for English courses beginning in the fall 2024 semester. However, any or all aspects of the policy may be implemented immediately.
Institutions may not offer, or require students to take, a stand-alone mathematics or English course that the Statewide Articulation and Transfer Council (SATC) does not recognize as satisfying the mathematics or English general education requirement. Instead, all remediation should follow the corequisite learning support model. Students with corequisite support requirements as outlined below should be co-enrolled in sections of mathematics or English that satisfy general education requirements utilizing corequisite learning support.
Corequisite Learning Support
Corequisite Learning Support is a strategy wherein students are placed directly into a gateway course accompanied by an aligned academic support course in the same academic term (the corequisite course). Each corequisite course will be a required course that provides a supplementary instruction experience dedicated to tasks that are connected to mastery of the skills and knowledge required for success in the material in the gateway course. The corequisite learning support course should include a curriculum and instruction that positively contribute to a student’s academic mindset and develop non-cognitive skills that improve student learning. Whenever possible the gateway course and corequisite course should be taught by the same instructor. The corequisite support course should be two hours or three hours depending on the student’s academic scores. A student who is eligible to take a two-hour corequisite supported course may take a gateway course with three hours of corequisite support.
Institutions shall annually submit data to the Board of Regents for both mathematics and English general education courses, in the manner prescribed by the Board. The Board shall annually analyze and report on the data to ensure compliance with the policy and inform continuous improvement efforts.
A. Enrollment in Gateway Mathematics
- The first mathematics course each student takes shall be a gateway course aligned to the mathematics pathway for their declared or intended program of study. Students should enroll in their first mathematics course in their first academic year.
- All students who do not meet the minimum standards for placement into a stand-alone gateway mathematics course must enroll in a corequisite support section as defined in this policy.
- All institutions that enroll students with corequisite support requirements must provide sufficient capacity in corequisite gateway mathematics sections needed to meet the educational requirements of their students.
- For students who demonstrate proficiency at a higher level than the gateway mathematics course, institutions may, at their discretion, place students in a course that is higher than the gateway course if that course fulfills the mathematics requirement for general education and their program of study.
- The default placement for all students will be in an entry-level collegiate course with corequisite support UNLESS students meet minimum placement criteria as outlined below.
B. Minimum Placement Requirements for Gateway Mathematics
A student who meets none of the criteria listed in Table 1, or has no mathematics test score, has a corequisite support requirement in mathematics.
- Corequisite Exempt
- A student who meets one or more of the criteria listed in Table 1 is exempt from the corequisite support requirement in mathematics but may still elect to enroll in corequisite support.
- Two-hour Corequisite Requirements
- A Student who meets none of the criteria in Table 1 but meets any of the criteria in Table 2 has a corequisite support requirement in mathematics that may be met using a model with two hours of corequisite support.
- Three-hour Corequisite Requirement
- A student who meets none of the criteria in Table 2 has a corequisite support requirement that must be met using a model with three hours of corequisite support.
- Corequisite Exempt
C. Institutional Responsibilities
- An institution may set exemption criteria that are more stringent than the minimum mathematics placement requirements outlined in this policy.
- An institution must enroll a student who has a mathematics corequisite support requirement in a corequisite section of the appropriate gateway mathematics course.
- The gateway mathematics courses must
- be courses that the Statewide Articulation and Transfer Council (SATC) recognizes as satisfying the mathematics general education requirement; and
- be on the math pathway for the student’s program of study.
A. Enrollment in Gateway English
- The first English course each student takes shall be a gateway course that satisfies general education requirements. Students should enroll in their first English course in their first academic year.
- All students who do not meet the minimum standards for placement into a stand-alone gateway English course must enroll in a corequisite support section as defined in this policy.
- All institutions that enroll students with corequisite support requirements must provide sufficient capacity in corequisite gateway English sections to meet the educational requirements of their students.
- For students who demonstrate proficiency at a higher level than the gateway English course, institutions may, at their discretion, place students in a course that is higher than the gateway course if that course fulfills the English requirement for general education and their program of study.
B. Minimum Placement Requirements for Gateway English
A student who meets none of the criteria listed below, or has no English test score, has a corequisite support requirement in English.
- Corequisite Exempt
- A student who meets one or more of the criteria listed in Table 3 is exempt from the
corequisite support requirement in English but may still elect to enroll in corequisite support.
- A student who meets one or more of the criteria listed in Table 3 is exempt from the
- Two-hour Corequisite Requirements
- A Student who meets none of the criteria in Table 3, but meets any of the criteria in Table 4, has a corequisite support requirement in English that may be met using a model with two hours of corequisite support.
- Three-hour Corequisite Requirements
- A student who meets none of the criteria in Table 4 has a corequisite support requirement that must be met using a model with three hours of corequisite support.
- Corequisite Exempt
C. Institutional Responsibilities
- An institution may set exemption criteria that are more stringent than the minimum English placement requirements outlined in this policy.
- An institution must enroll a student who has an English corequisite support requirement in a corequisite section of the gateway English course.
- The gateway English course must
a. be a course that the Statewide Articulation and Transfer Council (SATC) recognizes as satisfying the English general education requirement; and
b. be appropriate for the student’s program of study.
2.19 Institutional Responsibilities for the Enrollment of Students Across Multiple Institutions
Institutional Responsibilities for the Enrollment of Students Across Multiple Institutions
Increasingly, students are more mobile in their pursuit of secondary and postsecondary education. This mobility should be encouraged and supported by state policies which assist them in the attainment of their educational goals while continuing to guarantee the quality of the experience. Within secondary settings, appropriately qualified students should be provided reasonable opportunities and mechanisms to benefit from postsecondary education and training. Within postsecondary settings, appropriately qualified students should be provided reasonable opportunities and mechanisms to take collegiate-level coursework across multiple settings. Accordingly, both secondary and post-secondary institutions should consider enrollment procedures and accommodations between and among different types of campus settings that encourage student access, progression, and achievement through varied enrollment options. Specifically, such policies should:
1. Help students successfully transition from secondary to postsecondary education;
2. Reduce the necessity for remedial coursework;
3. Create opportunities for students to advance their educational goals more effectively and efficiently; and
4. Provide multiple and varied opportunities for educational advancement, while assuring appropriate levels of academic rigor.
The policy which follows, while referring to secondary institutions, is intended only to be binding upon public postsecondary institutions. The Board of Regents shall work with the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to resolve any secondary institution issues which may occur as a result of this policy.
B. Definition of Terms
Before establishing parameters, it would assist all affected parties to understand the different circumstances of student multiple enrollment that this policy is designed to address:
1. Dual Enrollment – the simultaneous enrollment of a student at both a secondary and a postsecondary institution.
2. Cross Enrollment – the simultaneous enrollment of a student in more than one postsecondary institution wherein one institution serves as the student s home institution.
3. Concurrent Enrollment – the simultaneous enrollment of a student in more than one postsecondary institution wherein the student does not designate a home institution.
C. Institutional Responsibilities
Below is information which defines institutional responsibilities to accommodate the needs of varied multiple student enrollments as defined above.
a. Student Receiving Both Secondary and Postsecondary Course Credits
Student Admission. It is assumed that the secondary admission procedures have already been resolved. It is then incumbent upon the postsecondary institution to ensure that the student meets its admission requirements. Postsecondary institutions shall be guided by requirements of Academic Affairs Policy 2.18 – Minimum Requirements for Placement into Entry- Level, College-Level Mathematics and English. Each postsecondary institution shall establish appropriate age requirements as necessary.
Student Mix. Courses offered via dual enrollment may be comprised of all secondary students or a mix of both secondary and postsecondary students. Both the secondary and postsecondary institutions shall jointly agree upon the appropriate student mix.
Course Content. Both the secondary and postsecondary institutions shall jointly determine the appropriate level of course content. For postsecondary institutions, course content may not be any less than that which is required of a similar course open to postsecondary students only.
Faculty. The faculty assigned to teach the dual enrollment course may be an employee either of the secondary or postsecondary institution. Both the secondary and postsecondary institutions shall jointly agree upon faculty appointment. Postsecondary institutions shall ensure that secondary faculty possess necessary qualifications and meet appropriate regional and program accreditation requirements for instruction. It is assumed that secondary institutions shall also ensure that postsecondary faculty possess necessary qualifications and meet appropriate accreditation requirements for instruction.
Course Setting and Learning Support (Facilities, Equipment, Access to Appropriate Supporting Learning Resources, etc.). Dual enrollment courses may be offered at a secondary institutional setting, a post- secondary institutional setting, or an appropriate neutral setting. This decision shall be a mutual one of both the secondary and postsecondary institution. Both types of institutions shall jointly ensure the appropriateness of the location, access to physical facilities, access to appropriate equipment, and access to appropriate learning resources.
Awarding of Course Credit. Dual enrollment courses of this type shall be accepted for appropriate credit by both types of institutions. No dual enrollment course of this type may be offered without such agreement. It shall be incumbent upon both institutions to fully inform enrolled students of the type and applicability of such credit. The postsecondary institution shall include the college course, credit attempted, credit earned, and course grade on the student’s permanent postsecondary education transcript.
State Oversight. Postsecondary institutions shall annually report to the Board of Regents dual enrollment courses offered, where offered, the numbers of students enrolled in each, and the course credit awarded in each. It is assumed that similar requirements shall be set by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education for secondary institutions.
b. Student Receiving Postsecondary Course Credits Only
Student Admission. The postsecondary institution shall ensure that the student meets its admission requirements. Postsecondary institutions shall be guided by requirements of Academic Affairs Policy 2.18 – Minimum Requirements for Placement into Entry- Level, College-Level Mathematics and English. The postsecondary institution shall establish appropriate age requirements as necessary.
Student Mix. Courses offered via dual enrollment may be comprised of all secondary students or a mix of both secondary and postsecondary students. The postsecondary institution shall make this decision.
Course Content. The postsecondary institutions shall determine the appropriate level of course content. Course content may not be any less than that which is required of a similar course open to postsecondary students only.
Faculty. The faculty assigned to teach the dual enrollment course may be an employee either of the secondary or postsecondary institution. The postsecondary institution shall decide upon faculty appointment. Postsecondary institutions shall ensure that faculty possess necessary qualifications and meet appropriate regional and program accreditation requirements for instruction.
Course Setting and Learning Support (Facilities, Equipment, Access to Appropriate Supporting Learning Resources, etc.). Dual enrollment courses may be offered at a secondary institutional setting, a postsecondary institutional setting, or an appropriate neutral setting. This decision shall be made by the postsecondary institution. The postsecondary institution shall ensure the appropriateness of the location, access to physical facilities, access to appropriate equipment, and access to appropriate learning resources.
Awarding of Course Credit. Dual enrollment courses of this type shall be accepted for appropriate credit by the postsecondary institution. No dual enrollment course of this type may be offered otherwise. It shall be incumbent upon the postsecondary to fully inform enrolled students of the type and applicability of such credit. The postsecondary institution shall include the college course, credit attempted, credit earned, and course grade on the student’s permanent postsecondary education transcript.
State Oversight. Postsecondary institutions shall annually report to the Board of Regents dual enrollment courses offered, where offered, the numbers of students enrolled in each, and the course credit awarded in each.
2. Cross Enrollment
Student Admission. Both the home postsecondary institution (receiving the cross enrollment course credit) and the host postsecondary institution (offering the cross enrollment course) shall ensure that the student meet their admission requirements. Postsecondary institutions shall be guided by requirements of Academic Affairs Policy 2.18 – Minimum Requirements for Placement into Entry-Level, College-Level Mathematics and English. The home postsecondary institution may impose a reasonable limit as to the amount and date of completion for course credit earned at host postsecondary institutions.
Student Mix. N/A.
Course Content. The host postsecondary institution offering the cross enrollment course shall determine the appropriate level of course content.
Faculty. The host postsecondary institution offering the cross enrollment course shall decide upon faculty appointment. Both the home and host postsecondary institutions shall ensure that faculty possess necessary qualifications and meet appropriate regional and program accreditation requirements for instruction.
Course Setting and Learning Support (Facilities, Equipment, Access to Appropriate Supporting Learning Resources, etc.). The host postsecondary institution offering the cross enrollment course shall decide the location of course offering. This institution shall ensure the appropriateness of the location, access to physical facilities, access to appropriate equipment, and access to appropriate learning resources.
Awarding of Course Credit. Cross enrollment courses shall be accepted for appropriate credit by both the home and host postsecondary institution. No cross enrollment course of this type may be offered otherwise. It shall be incumbent upon both postsecondary institutions to fully inform enrolled students of the type and applicability of such credit.
State Oversight. The host postsecondary institution offering the cross enrollment course shall annually report to the Board of Regents cross enrollment courses offered, where offered, the numbers of students enrolled in each, and the course credit awarded in each.
3. Concurrent Enrollment
Students simultaneously taking coursework at varied postsecondary institutions without designation of a home institution shall be governed by appropriate policies and procedures of each postsecondary institution offering courses in which they are enrolled. Postsecondary institutions shall work together to synchronize such policies and procedures to the greatest extent possible. It is incumbent upon all postsecondary institutions to eliminate undue barriers which inhibit/prohibit the applicability of credit earned across varied institutions.
2.20 Assessment and Certificate of Faculty English Proficiency
Assessment and Certification of Faculty English Proficiency
Pursuant to fulfillment of mandates of Act 745 of the 1991 Louisiana Legislature, the Louisiana Board of Regents does hereby establish the following policy for all public postsecondary systems and campuses:
B. DEFINITION OF TERMS
1. “Postsecondary Systems and Institutions” (hereinafter referred to as “systems” and institutions”) shall mean: the Louisiana State University System and its member institutions; the Southern University System and its member institutions; the University of Louisiana System and its member institutions; and the Louisiana Community and Technical College System and its member institutions, as defined by state law.
2. “Faculty” shall mean all full-time and part-time instructional personnel (excepting visiting faculty, but including graduate assistants) employed by affected systems and institutions and who teach undergraduate-level courses.
3. “Instruction(al)” shall mean the delivery of pedagogical content required of course fulfillment, not including: foreign language courses designed to be taught primarily in a foreign language; student participatory/activity courses such as clinics, studios, seminars, and/or laboratories; special arrangement courses such as individualized instruction and/or independent study; and non-credit (i.e. continuing education) courses.
C. POLICY STATEMENT
1. Prior to employment of new instructional faculty (as defined above), each affected system/institution shall assess and certify faculty English proficiency.
2. The method of assessment shall be at the discretion of affected systems/ institutions, but may include (although not limited to): written and oral English testing using standardized, recognized measurements graded by appropriate assessors; analysis of written examples with a related oral question/answer session with an appropriate audience of assessors; sample classroom instruction with related exchange involving an appropriate audience of assessors; sample research presentation with related exchange with an appropriate audience of assessors, etc. It is again up to the discretion of the affected system/institutions to decide the position and qualifications of assessors, but should include an appropriate mix of administrators, faculty, and/or students.
3. Annually, in a manner and format prescribed and on a date certain, affected institutions shall submit to their associated system relevant materials certifying English proficiency of all new instructional faculty members. These materials shall be submitted in a fashion that ensures the maintenance, availability, and preservation of such materials as required by state law.
4. Affected systems shall develop and promulgate necessary, permanent, system-wide directives to their affected institutions ensuring submission of required materials in fulfillment of policy mandates. Based on these materials, each affected system shall make sure that each associated institution is fully policy compliant. Materials related to the requirements/fulfillment of this policy shall be maintained, made available, and preserved as required by state law.
5. Annual statements of policy compliance shall be required from each system office. These statements shall be forwarded to the Deputy or Associate Commissioner for Academic Affairs and Research by September 1 of each year. At any time, the Louisiana Board of Regents may require any and all affected systems/institutions to submit relevant materials and /or documentation related to fulfillment of mandates of this policy. If the Regents determine that any system/institution is not in full policy compliance, it may insist on necessary remediating action and/or impose a penalty as deemed appropriate.
2.21 Uniformed Service Mobilization
Uniformed Service Mobilization
Louisiana public higher education recognizes that many students serve our country in the reserve forces of the U.S. Armed Services and in the Louisiana National Guard, and that these students are subject to unforeseen mobilization/activation in response to local, regional, national, or international emergency situations. It is the policy of Louisiana public higher education to minimize the effects of this disruption as much as possible.
In order to qualify under the provisions of this policy, students must present to the registrar or other appropriate college/university official a copy of military orders indicating their mobilization or activation. Students should contact the office of the dean of their college as soon as they are notified of the call up. The dean’s office will inform them of the procedures to be followed. If, due to time constraints between the time of notification and the time of actual mobilization or activation, the students cannot present their orders as required, the parents, guardians, or spouse of the student may do so.
I. Awarding of Academic Credit/Grades
A. Students in the uniformed services who are mobilized/activated during a semester or term will be given the option of either: (1) complete withdrawal from the college or university for the semester; or (2) withdrawal from or continuation in individual courses within the college or university upon a determination that institution guidelines are met and that it is educationally sound to allow such continuation. Students who choose to remain enrolled in some or all courses should be provided reasonable support to ensure that the pursuit of education is disrupted to the minimum extent possible and that no undue penalties are assessed due to a military call to service.
B. Course Withdrawals. When mobilization/activation occurs prior to the college or university census date, mobilized students who withdraw will incur no penalty or grade in any course. Those who withdraw from all courses will be given a complete withdrawal from the college or university (with 100 percent refund of tuition and fees which have been paid, including student insurance and other non-refundable fees). After the census date, mobilized students who withdraw from a course shall receive a grade of “W” in the course and 100 percent refund of course-related tuition and fees which have been paid, excluding student insurance fees and other non-refundable fees. When possible, transcripts should be annotated to reflect that the resignation is the result of activation for military duty. Room and board payments will be refunded on a prorated basis, regardless of the date of involuntary mobilization/activation.
C. Continued Enrollment After Involuntary Mobilization/Activation. Students may choose to remain enrolled in individual courses upon a determination that it is educationally sound to allow such continuation and with the concurrence of the instructor and dean (or equivalent), as required by college or university guidelines. For courses in which enrollment is continued, institution policies should address, at a minimum, and dependent upon the date of involuntary mobilization, provisions for students to request: (a) a grade of incomplete; (b) a final grade based upon course work prior to the date of mobilization; or (c) an early final examination in order that the instructor can determine a final course grade. Those students who receive incomplete grades shall have no longer than one year after conclusion of the involuntary term of active duty to meet with university officials and work out a timetable for removing the incomplete grades.
II. Academic Status Upon Re-enrollment. When students whose enrollment was interrupted by mobilization/activation re-enroll in the same institution within one year of completion of their involuntary term of active service, the college or university will make every possible effort to place the students back into their academic studies track as close as possible to the same place they occupied when mobilized/activated. The normal readmission application fee will be waived for these students.
A. Reasonable attempts should be made to give preferential enrollment into high demand courses necessary for these students to continue their studies with as little interruption as possible.
B. Time spent on active duty should not be counted in determining the catalog under which the student must meet curricular or degree requirements; involuntary mobilization/activation will not be considered a break in continuous attendance, for catalog purposes. A person who, upon being offered separation from involuntary active duty, reenlists or otherwise voluntarily extends active duty, may be considered to have broken continuous attendance.
C. In instances of substantial change to curricula or course inventory during the period of involuntary military service, the institution shall make reasonable accommodations with substitute courses, independent study or other appropriate means. If a student’s curriculum no longer exists at the time of re-enrollment, the institution shall reasonably assist the student in changing to a new curriculum or transferring to an institution where the desired curriculum is available.
D. For law students, waivers will be granted as necessary for the requirements of the American Bar Association Standards.
III. Scholarships. A student who is mobilized/activated while holding a scholarship under the control of the college or university in which the student is enrolled shall have the scholarship, or an equivalent scholarship, reinstated upon re-enrolling at the college or university after the period of involuntary active duty so long as he/she remains otherwise eligible. This provision shall lapse if the student does not re-enroll in the same college or university within one year from the time of separation from the involuntary active duty.
IV. Books. If course textbooks are to continue being used in subsequent semesters or terms for courses from which a mobilized/activated student withdraws, colleges and universities should arrange for the purchase of these textbooks by the campus bookstore, when possible.
V. Student Grants and Loans. Students who have been awarded grants or loans and are mobilized/activated at any time during the semester or term should be advised to consult with the Financial Aid Office of the college or university they are attending in order to obtain clarification and/or further information on the status or repayment requirements of any existing grants and loans for attending college. Students on any State aid (e.g., TOPS, GO) should be urged to contact the
Louisiana Office of Student Financial Assistance before leaving the campus (www.osfa.state.la.us).
VI. Spouses and Dependents of Mobilized/Activated Students.
A. Insurance Coverage. When applicable, colleges and universities should work closely with spouses of students who are mobilized/activated to ensure maximum medical insurance coverage to the extent allowed by the insurer for the spouse and dependents of the student.
B. Housing. Spouses and dependents of students who are mobilized/activated and who live in college/university married student housing shall be allowed to continue renting or leasing these quarters. If the student does not re-enroll in the college or university within six months after the completion of the involuntary mobilization/activation period, then the spouse and dependents may be required to vacate the college/university housing.
- 2.22 Dual Enrollment
2.23 Prior Learning Assessment
Prior Learning Assessment
The Board of Regents seeks to establish guidelines to be used by Louisiana’s public postsecondary institutions for the evaluation and awarding of undergraduate credit for college-level learning that has occurred outside of the traditional academic learning environment. Regents aims to ensure students receive appropriate and tangible recognition for college-level learning acquired outside an institution to accelerate degree completion at a reduced cost to the student. A statewide policy governing the evaluation and transfer of PLA credits awarded enables institutions to provide a fair and transparent process for students.
The Board of Regents Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) policy will be used to grant undergraduate college credit, certification, or advanced standing representative of those non-traditional educational experiences toward further education or training.
This policy allows the institution to determine how PLA credit is earned and recorded while placing appropriate and measurable accountability. In every case in which PLA credit is awarded, the institution should ensure that the student’s learning matches the learning outcomes of courses and is assessed based on the expectations of equivalent courses found in standard articulation tables such as the Louisiana Common Course Catalog and the Statewide Course Articulation Matrix. Whenever possible, credit equivalent to courses on the Articulation Matrix should be awarded.
Transparency of Policy:
It is incumbent upon institutions to ensure that this policy and all institutional policies governing the awarding of credit for PLA are clearly stated and publicized. Each institution must provide ease of access to and transparency of PLA policy and procedures for prospective and current students.
Institutional policies must:
- Guarantee timely and efficient evaluation of all student requests for PLA.
- Ensure that PLA policies and procedures are incorporated into admissions and other advising practices.
- Ensure that faculty who conduct prior learning assessments are appropriately credentialed and have adequate resources and training to conduct those assessments.
- Include a procedure for removal of excessive credits from a student’s transcript that will negatively affect financial aid eligibility.
- When awarding credit to students who are veterans or military service members, the institution will reference the Joint Services Transcript (JST), DD-214 and/or transcripts from the Army/American Council on Education Registry Transcript System (AARTS), Community College of Air Force (CCAF), and Coast Guard Institute (CGI).
Acceptable forms of PLA:
- Standardized: Credit is awarded based on objective measures that have a uniform or standardized instrument designed to measure specific learning outcomes of the subject matter. Examples include, but are not limited to: AP, CLEP, IBC, DSST, and military exams or training.
- Non-standardized: Credit is awarded based on the evaluation of a portfolio of professional or life experience or based on a faculty-developed institutional challenge exam.
Evaluation and Transcription/Recording of PLA Credit:
The institution making the initial determination to award PLA credit (both standardized and non-standardized) is responsible for implementing the process for the evaluation and transcription of credit. Institutions may require additional information from the student, such as course descriptions and syllabi, official test scores, or evidence of work, to make the determination.
- Institutions must abide by the standards outlined in approved articulation tables governing the acceptance of standardized tests, such as ACE military guide and Regents AP/CLEP table.
- Institutional exam
- Student learning outcomes assessed by the exam should align with common course catalog learning outcomes.
- Exams should be developed and evaluated by appropriately credentialed faculty with expertise in the field.
- Portfolio evaluation should be conducted by an appropriately credentialed faculty member or content expert in the field/discipline in which the credit is to be awarded.
- The portfolio review process should align with the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning’s (CAEL’s) “Ten Standards for Assessing Learning”.
- Credit or competencies are awarded only for evidence of learning, not for experience or time spent.
- Assessment is integral to learning because it leads to and enables future learning.
- Assessment is based on criteria for outcomes that are clearly articulated and shared among constituencies.
- The determination of credit awards and competence levels are made by appropriate subject matter and credentialing experts.
- Assessment advances the broader purpose of equity and access for diverse individuals and groups.
- Institutions proactively provide guidance and support for learners’ full engagement in the assessment processes.
- Assessment policies and procedures are the result of inclusive deliberation and are shared with all constituencies.
- Fees charged for assessment are based on the services performed in the process rather than the credit awarded.
- All practitioners involved in the assessment process pursue and receive adequate training and continuing professional development for the functions they perform.
- Assessment programs are regularly monitored, evaluated, and revised to respond to institutional and learner needs.
- Institutional exam
Each institution shall maintain a clear policy or policies for evaluating and awarding PLA credit. Where credit will be awarded for courses offered by the institution, a student’s prior learning must be evaluated according to the course description and learning outcomes based on the institution’s course catalog and the Louisiana Common Course Catalog where appropriate. This credit should be transcripted according to previously established standards by the institution.
Transfer of PLA Credit:
Credit awarded for courses identified on the Master Course Articulation Matrix via PLA – both standardized and non-standardized – must be accepted by the receiving institution according to course equivalencies on the Matrix. Institutions may also accept credit for courses not on the Matrix.
Institutions receiving previously transcripted PLA credit cannot require duplicate documentation to award credit for PLA. Once PLA credit has been evaluated and posted on the college transcript according to the Louisiana Common Course Catalog, the Statewide Course Articulation Matrix, or other standing tables, it must be treated as transfer work.
Fees for Students Seeking PLA Credit:
The Management Boards should establish policies to limit the fees connected with credit for prior learning. Fees associated with the evaluation and transcription of a portfolio of prior learning should not exceed tuition for one credit hour per portfolio that is assessed. Fees for transcription of PLA credit should not exceed institutional fees for transcription of transfer credit. There should be no PLA fees for veterans, active military personnel, and their spouses and dependents. Costs associated with the awarding of PLA credit should be clearly posted.
Institutions shall annually submit data to the Board of Regents relating to the use of PLA at the institution in the manner prescribed by the Board. The Board shall annually analyze and report on the data to ensure compliance with the policy and inform continuous improvement efforts.
2.24 Reverse Transfer
a. Institutional “last hour” policies (policies that require a student be enrolled for the final hours completed toward the degree) should be waived for Reverse Transfer degree candidates.b. Upper division courses completed at a four-year institution may be considered for lower division course substitution on a case-by-case basis and in accordance with current policy at the associate degree-granting institution.c. It is the student’s responsibility to clear any “holds” to be considered for a Reverse Transfer degree.d. Student transcript information provided by the Board of Regents should be considered as an official transcript. Diploma and transcript delivery directly to students with financial obligations to the institution are handled according to state law and institutional policy.
Act 205 of the 2022 Louisiana Legislature Regular Session requires a statewide articulation agreement for the reverse articulation or reverse transfer of academic credits earned by a student while enrolled in a four-year postsecondary institution back to a community college for the purpose of enabling a student to complete the requirements for an associate degree from the community college. This policy, governed by the Board of Regents in collaboration with the Statewide Articulation and Transfer Council (SATC), establishes the guidelines and procedures for statewide reverse transfer and aims to facilitate reasonable flexibility to institutions in awarding degrees through reverse transfer.
- Reverse Transfer Definition
Reverse Transfer is the transfer of college credit from a bachelor’s degree granting institution to an associate degree granting institution where the student was previously enrolled that results in an associate degree awarded by the appropriate associate degree granting institution as a result ofcollege credits transferred from a public four-year institution that fulfill those degree requirements after the student has transferred to said university.
- Reverse Transfer Degree Candidates
Potential Reverse Transfer degree candidates are those students who meet all of the following criteria:
- Were previously enrolled as degree seeking students at a Louisiana community college or other Louisiana associate degree-granting institution.
- Have earned a minimum of 15 college credits towards an associate degree at the associate degree-granting institution.
- Have earned a combined minimum of 60 total college-level credits.
- Have not previously earned a college degree.The Board of Regents maintains the statewide repository of postsecondary student data and will conduct regular evaluations to identify potential reverse transfer candidates for all public postsecondary institutions in the state. Regents screening degree audit will be run to identify those students who are potential reverse transfer degree candidates based on the definition above.The list of potential candidates will be provided to institutions at least once per year.
- Granting Degrees
Institutions must evaluate the academic records of students identified by the Regents as potential Reverse Transfer candidates at least once per year, and must take action to offer and award the appropriate associate degree to those candidates who consent.
It is incumbent upon institutions to ensure that this policy and all institutional policies governing Reverse Transfer are clearly stated and publicized. Information about Reverse Transfer should be incorporated into the advising process for all students who withdraw from an institution before completing a degree.5. Governance and Compliancea. The Statewide Articulation and Transfer Council (SATC) will have oversight of the Reverse Transfer policy and will review the policy and its impact annually. Oversight responsibilities include, but are not limited to, assessment and evaluation of the process, reporting to the Legislature, and modifications in the process/policies as needed.b. Policies/procedures must be in compliance with the standards of accreditation set forth by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)including but not limited to:a. Reverse Transfer candidates must complete “…at least 25 percent of the credit hours required for the degree” at the Louisiana institution awarding the associate degree. (SACSCOC Section 9.4)b. Reverse Transfer candidates must adhere to the Catalog requirements established by the degree-granting institution. (SACSCOC Section 9.7)c. All student information shared between and among institutions to facilitate Reverse Transfer awards must be in compliance with FERPA guidelines and applicable State of Louisiana statutes.6. Fees
Institutions may not charge student fees for the degree audit process nor graduation fees at the associate degree-granting institution.7. Data
Institutions shall annually submit data to the Board of Regents relating to Reverse Transfer at the institution in the manner prescribed by the Board. The Board shall annually analyze and report on the data to ensure compliance with the policy and inform continuous improvement efforts.
2.25 Universal Transfer Pathways
Universal Transfer Pathways
Act 308 of the Louisiana Legislature 2022 Regular Session, which provides the requirements for student transfer at the state’s public postsecondary institutions, requires the creation and implementation of statewide transfer pathways from two-year associate degree programs into four-year baccalaureate degree programs. This policy, governed by the Board of Regents in collaboration with the Statewide Articulation and Transfer Council (SATC), outlines the requirements for the establishment and implementation of these pathways.
- Creation and Maintenance of Statewide Transfer Pathways
All transfer pathways shall be established by a committee of faculty that includes one representative from every institution in the state that will offer either the first half or second half of the pathway and approved by each institution according to the standard curriculum review and approval process. Representatives may be selected by each institution. These committees will be facilitated by Board of Regents staff. All institutions shall honor the first 60 hours of the transfer pathway as agreed upon by the faculty committee. All four-year institutions shall provide the remaining degree requirements for transfer pathway students. Transfer pathway agreements must include:
- Standardized statewide 60-hour curriculum for the first two years including course-specific grade requirements where applicable.
- Remaining curriculum required to complete the bachelor’s degree from each participating institution.
- Common course name and description of major courses included in the pathway that are added to the course articulation matrix.
Changes to existing transfer pathways requires the approval of a committee of faculty that includes one representative from every institution in the state that will offer either the first half or second half of the pathway. Each pathway must be reviewed by the appropriate faculty committee at least every five years.
- Pathway Structure and Curriculum
Statewide transfer pathways will include 60 credit hours of coursework that will directly transfer into a specified bachelor’s degree program at a four-year college or university. These 60 hours may be awarded according to Regents Policy AA 2.23 Prior Learning Assessment. Four-year institutions will provide the remaining courses required for pathway students to complete the bachelor’s degree. The total number of hours required for transfer pathway students to complete the bachelor’s degree shall not exceed the total number of hours required for the degree minus the 60 hours completed in the pathway. All pathways must include:
- 39 hours General Education: All transfer pathways must include the complete 39-hour Board of Regents General Education curriculum. These courses must appear on the statewide transfer articulation matrix. General education course requirements may be prescribed or flexible as defined by the faculty transfer pathway committee. Course requirements should remain flexible whenever possible. Prescribed courses must clearly align with the degree subject area. All transfer pathways must align with statewide math pathways standards.
- 21 hours Major Requirements: All transfer pathways must include 21 hours of courses that will fulfill that number of required major courses at the receiving four-year institution. These courses will appear on the statewide transfer articulation matrix and must be honored according to the statewide common course identified in the matrix. Major course requirements may be prescribed or flexible as defined by the faculty transfer pathway committee.
- Remaining Major Requirements: The remaining major course requirements to complete the bachelor’s degree shall not exceed the total number of hours required for the degree minus the 60 hours completed in the pathway. Four-year institutions may determine these requirements independently, but they must be clearly stated as part of the pathway.
Students who complete the full 60-hour pathway curriculum and meet all pathway requirements and institutional residency requirements shall be awarded the Associate of Science Louisiana Transfer (ASLT) or Associate of Arts Louisiana Transfer (AALT) in the transfer pathway subject area.
- Student Transfer
Students may complete all or part of the first 60 hours of a transfer pathway and may or may not have been awarded an associate degree. Regardless, four-year institutions must honor all courses in partially and fully completed pathways for transfer into the pathway’s corresponding bachelor’s degree program.
- Additional Institutional Requirements
Institutions may not require substitutions for the agreed upon curriculum in the first 60 hours of the transfer pathway. Institutions may not establish requirements for transfer pathway students that exceed those required of current students. Students must be able to complete the bachelor’s degree on time with no extra course requirements. Specific general education and major course requirements, and requirements imposed by national accreditors must be built into the transfer pathway curriculum by the transfer pathway committee.
All institutions participating in a transfer pathway must have a designated advisor on campus for that pathway. This person may be a faculty or staff advisor. Institutions must ensure that the advisor contact information is clearly posted on relevant institutional websites and materials. It is the responsibility of each institution to maintain current pathway contact lists. Degree audits, curriculum maps, and other documents relating to the pathway must clearly identify program requirements and ensure students clearly understand the processes and procedures for completion and transfer of the pathway.
Institutions may not charge transfer pathway students fees that exceed standard application fees for all admitted students.
Institutions shall annually submit data to the Board of Regents relating to transfer pathways at the institution in the manner prescribed by the Board. The Board shall annually analyze and report on the data to ensure compliance with the policy and inform continuous improvement efforts.
The Master Plan
To move Louisiana aggressively forward, the Board of Regents has embraced a robust new attainment goal that calls for 60% of all working-age adults (ages 25-64) in Louisiana to hold a degree or high-value credential by 2030. As we stand on the brink of a new decade, this Master Plan, born of the Board of Regents’ unique charge to guide postsecondary education across the state, will set the foundation to increase opportunity. Our Talent Imperative is to Educate, Innovate, and Collaborate.