Proposals for New Undergraduate Programs, Program Revisions, and New Undergraduate Minors

In accordance with Binghamton University Faculty Senate bylaws, proposals for new degree programs and modifications of existing programs are the responsibility of academic units. Proposals for new degree programs are then reviewed by the Faculty Senate, which makes recommendations to the President. In addition, the Senate must also review proposals to discontinue or deactivate a degree-granting program. Proposals for modifications of existing programs may need to be reviewed by the Faculty Senate's Educational Policy and Priorities Committee (EPPC); please see below for details.

New SUNY Planning Guide and Forms

In November 2013, SUNY launched the new Guide to Academic Program Planning and associated new Academic Program Planning forms. They are asking that we begin submitting proposals electronically on the new forms as soon as possible, but no later than February 2014. 

  • SUNY Guide to Academic Program Planning - Please review this document before submitting any new program announcements, new program proposals, revisions of existing programs, or requests for discontinuance or deactivation.
  • SUNY academic program planning forms - The new required forms can be found on this website.  Forms are now required for program revisions and requests for discontinuance and deactivation, as well as for new program announcements and proposals. 

Quick Links

How to Submit New Program Proposals

Proposals for new undergraduate degree programs must first be approved by the department, then the school/college, then the Faculty Senate.

After campus approvals have been secured, SUNY System's review of proposals for new undergraduate programs involves two steps: the submission of a Program Announcement and a Program Proposal. The Program Announcement is designed to inform other SUNY campuses and to allow those campuses and SUNY Administration to comment on the proposal. New baccalaureate programs typically require external review by two experts in the discipline, chosen from a list of THree to five proposed reviewers.  The Program Proposal is the formal request for a new undergraduate academic program.  New programs must be approved and registered by the New York State Education Department before they may be advertised or before students may be admitted.

Following are the steps in the approval process for new undergraduate degree programs:

  1. Creation of an Academic Business Plan, including a plan for an external evaluation, should it be required.
  2. Department approval of the proposed new program.
  3. Draft of SUNY System's 1A Program Announcement (PA) prepared by the department in conjunction with the Dean's Office.
  4. School/college approval of the proposed new program. 
  5. Faculty Senate approval of the proposed new program: please see the Faculty Senate Bylaws section on the EPPC for more details on the Senate approval process for new degree programs.
  6. Provost's Office reviews the Academic Business Plan and finalizes the Program Announcement prepared by the department/school and sends it to the President for his approval.
  7. Provost's Office transmits the Program Announcement to SUNY System. 
  8. SUNY System sends out the Program Announcement statewide for comments. SUNY System's guidelines for submission of a new program indicate that the proposing campus will receive feedback from other campuses and System within approximately 30 days from the circulation of the proposal.
  9. Preparation of Program Proposal by the school/department in conjunction with the Provost's Office. The Program Proposal must address any concerns raised by other SUNY campuses or SUNY System. Please note that the completed Program Proposal must be accompanied by reports from at least two SUNY-approved external evaluators, which campuses select in consultation with the SUNY Provost's Office, and an institutional response to those reports.The Program Proposal may be submitted no later than one year from the date that SUNY System circulated the Program Announcement to other campuses.  The following forms must be submitted:
  10. The Provost's Office transmits the Program Proposal Form and other relevant forms to SUNY System.
  11. If SUNY System approves the proposed degree program, they then send it to the State Education Department for approval.
  12. The State Education Department must approve and register new degree programs before they may be advertised or before students may be admitted.

How to Submit Revisions of Existing Programs

The procedures for changes to existing undergraduate programs differ depending on the extent of the changes.

Significant Changes to a Degree Program

SUNY and the State Education Department must approve and re-register a program in which significant changes are made. Please see the SUNY document Guide to Academic Program Planning for information on what constitutes a significant change.

Proposals to significantly modify existing undergraduate degree programs or to change the name of existing undergraduate degree programs must first be approved by the department, then the school/college, then the Faculty Senate.  The request must then be transmitted to SUNY System for approval.

Following are the steps in the approval process for a request to change an existing undergraduate program:

  1. Department approval of the proposed change.
  2. Draft proposal explaining the requested change is prepared by the department in conjunction with the Dean's Office.  SUNY now has two different Program Revision Proposal Forms:
  3. School/college approval of the proposed revision.
  4. Faculty Senate approval of the proposed revision: the EPPC must be notified of any changes, such as a significant change to a degree program, that require State Education Department approval.
  5. Provost's Office reviews and finalizes the document prepared by the department/school and sends it to the President for his approval.
  6. Provost's Office transmits the request to SUNY System.
  7. If SUNY System approves the proposed change, they then send it to the State Education Department for approval.
  8. The State Education Department must approve changes to programs before changes may be advertised.

Minor Changes to a Degree Program

Minor changes (i.e., changes that do not meet the guidelines in the document linked above) are approved by the school/college. Routine changes to existing degree programs do not require notification of or review by the Faculty Senate EPPC. However, if an undergraduate program's changes over time involve one-third or more of the minimum credits required for the degree program, we are required to submit a Program Revision Proposal to SUNY (see above) for those aggregated changes.

In order to enable the Provost's Office and the deans' offices to track minor changes over time and monitor the total credits involved, we ask that any department which makes any changes to their undergraduate programs please submit the form Record of Changes to the Undergraduate Major, either in hard copy or via e-mail.

How to Submit a Request to Deactivate or Discontinue an Existing Program

Deactivation is the decision not to admit any more students to a program but to maintain the program registration with SUNY System and the New York State Education Department. The date of deactivation is the first regular admission date as of which new students will not be permitted to enroll in the program.

Discontinuance is the decision to remove a program from the list of registered programs so that a degree will no longer be granted at completion. The date of discontinuance is the last date for which a degree will be awarded.

Proposals to deactivate or discontinue existing undergraduate degree programs must first be approved by the department, then the school/college, then the Faculty Senate.  The request must then be transmitted to SUNY System using form 5 Deactivation and/or Discontinuance Proposal

Following are the steps in the approval process for a request to deactivate or discontinue an existing undergraduate program:

      1. Department approval of the proposal to deactivate or discontinue the program.
      2. Proposal form explaining the request is prepared by the department in conjunction with the Dean's Office. 
      3. School/college approval of the proposed request.
      4. Faculty Senate approval of the proposed deactivation or discontinuance: the EPPC must be notified of any changes, such as a request for discontinuance or deactivation, that require State Education Department approval.
      5. Provost's Office reviews and finalizes the form prepared by the department/school and sends it to the President for his approval.
      6. Provost's Office transmits the form to SUNY System.
      7. If SUNY System approves the request, they then send it to the State Education Department for approval.
      8. The State Education Department must approve the request to deactivate or discontinue an existing program before it may be removed from the University Bulletin, departmental websites, etc.

How to Submit a Proposal for a New Minor or Changes to an Existing Minor

For information on procedures for creating a new undergraduate minor or modifying an existing minor in one of the schools (Harpur College, Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, the School of Management, the Graduate School of Education, the Decker School of Nursing, the College of Community and Public Affairs, and the Graduate School), please contact your dean's office.

How to Submit a Proposal for a New Degree Program or Minor Not Approved at the School Level

All proposals for majors, minors or any other form of curricular program that do not go through curricular review at the school level (Harpur College, the Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, the School of Management, the Graduate School of Education, the Decker School of Nursing, the College of Community and Public Affairs, the Graduate School) must be reviewed by the Faculty Senate EPPC. This EPPC review may apply to interdisciplinary programs or programs under the auspices of the Provost's Office when there is no review by the appropriate school or college listed above. In these cases, the EPPC will act as the curriculum committee reviewing and approving these proposals.

With regard to new program proposals, please see the section How to submit new program proposals above for information on the additional steps required to submit a new program proposal.

Last Updated: 3/25/14