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Departments and Colleges

Academic Departments

Department chairs and faculty begin the sequence of curricular events. Departments are encouraged to propose only changes necessary to improve their curricular program. Departments must finish their committee deliberations by the deadline set by their college. All curricular changes must be presented to, and approved by, the department or program faculty. It is at this time that all consultations with other departments and colleges occur and must be in writing (see Section III. Communication and Consultation).

As a reminder, students have the right to choose the catalog they will use as described in Section 40401 of Title 5. As faculty deliberate curriculum changes, they should remember to make accommodations for students following prior catalogs.

Department Curriculum Chairs and Committees

Ideally, the chair should have previously served on a department curriculum committee and should have extensive knowledge of the department and college/program curricular processes. In addition, it is recommended that the chair possess extensive knowledge of upper and lower division graduation requirements, general education requirements, and graduate program requirements as applicable; and be able to consider the effect curricular modifications might have on other department, college, or program requirements. Close attention to detail, accuracy in proofreading and cross checking skills are recommended.

In some departments, the department chair/head may act as the curriculum chair, and the entire faculty may act as the department curriculum committee.

The chair will work with the department chair/program director to oversee all curricular matters, including the preparation of course proposals or modifications, course deletions and additions, and the department's academic master plan.

The chair will also be responsible for all interdepartmental consultation regarding curricular changes that affect other departments and for keeping his/her own department informed about all curriculum matters.

Department Chair/Heads

Department chairs/heads should inform their college dean of all curriculum committee chair appointments.

Department chairs/heads should assess catalog proposals for impact on department resources, including faculty workload, equipment, supplies, facilities and information technology.

Department chairs/heads should review, edit and update their department’s overview pages in the catalog.

Once the department has completed reviewing and approving proposals for the catalog, the department chair/head (or designee) prepares a memo to the college curriculum chair. The memo should summarize significant changes and confirm approval by the department faculty.

Each college sets its own due date and all of a department’s catalog proposals must be in the hands of the college dean/curriculum chair by the published deadline.

Any new or existing courses being proposed for General Education (GE) certification, and any changes affecting GE courses, must be reviewed by the GE Governance Board. See the GE website for more information.

Any new or existing courses being proposed for U. S. Cultural Pluralism (USCP) certification, and any changes affecting USCP courses, must be reviewed by the USCP Committee. See the USCP website for more information.

College Curriculum Committees

Colleges should appoint a curriculum committee in the fall quarter, with representation from all departments, to review the proposals being forwarded by each department.

College Curriculum Chairs

Each college, in accordance with accepted policy, should select a person experienced in the curricular process to serve as chair of the college curriculum committee. The chair should have previously served on a department or college curriculum committee and should have knowledge of the department and college/program curricular processes.

The chair will work closely with departmental curriculum chairs, the college's member of the Academic Senate Curriculum Committee and the Office of the Registrar. Chairs will be responsible for submitting all curricular changes, revisions, additions, and deletions to their dean for action.

College curriculum chairs are responsible for facilitating final discussions between the curriculum committee and departments to resolve outstanding curricular issues.

The college curriculum committee is responsible for reviewing all proposals from departments within the college for their academic merit and relationship to the undergraduate and graduate programs (where applicable) of other departments and the college as a whole. The committee shall also be responsible for reviewing proposals to avoid duplication across departments in other colleges/programs for maximum utilization of resources. It is recommended that a representative of the college's Advising Center be a member of the college curriculum committee. A member of the college curriculum committee, preferably the chair, is expected to serve on the Academic Senate Curriculum Committee (per Senate resolution AS-636-05 pdf file).

Once the college curriculum committee has completed reviewing and approving a department’s proposals, the chair forwards the department’s memo to the college dean or their designee to request review at the dean’s level.

Any new or existing courses being proposed for General Education (GE) certification, and any changes affecting GE courses, must be reviewed by the GE Governance Board. See the GE website for more information.

Any new or existing courses being proposed for U. S. Cultural Pluralism (USCP) certification, and any changes affecting USCP courses, must be reviewed by the Academic Senate Curriculum Committee. For more information about USCP, please see the USCP website.

College Dean's Office

Deans should send the Office of the Registrar a list of all newly appointed curriculum chairs.

Every curricular proposal shall be submitted to the dean of the college for approval or disapproval. The dean's approval shall be based on the determination that the proposal is consistent with plans for the long-range development of the college, that all resource implications of the proposal (teaching positions, space, equipment, supplies, staff) have been considered carefully, and that resources are available and committed for new courses and/or programs.

The dean shall be ultimately responsible for following up on all consultation activities regarding curriculum matters. The dean should ensure that all necessary consultation documents are in order, requesting action by the department curriculum committees as needed.

The dean should review, edit and update their college’s overview page in the catalog.

Once the dean’s office has completed reviewing and approving a department’s or college’s proposals, the dean or their designee forwards the department’s memo to the Office of the Registrar on behalf of the Academic Senate Curriculum Committee.

Impasse and Resolution

If the affected department has a concern or objection, resolution of the issue should be sought.

Suggested Mechanism for Resolution

A meeting of the department chairs, appropriate curriculum chairs and faculty, and associate deans should be called by the department proposing the change to discuss issues and seek resolution. It is strongly encouraged that an agreement be reached at this stage and the following steps will not be needed.

Impasse

If no resolution is reached, the following steps should be followed:

Each department chair may prepare a position paper and submit it to the chair of the Academic Senate Curriculum Committee for review. Depending on the timing and nature of curricular dispute, the chair will either bring the issue to the attention of the Academic Senate Curriculum Committee or forward the position paper to the Vice Provost for Programs and Planning and the Registrar. Meetings will be convened with the appropriate parties to come to resolution. As a last resort, the issue may be resolved by a vote at the Academic Senate for recommendation to the President.

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