Senate Document Number    7311S


Date of Senate Approval      04/28/11


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Statement of Faculty Senate Action:


FWDC 10:  Reporting Substantive Curricular Changes to SACS (Faculty Handbook 5.4.2)

Effective date:  Immediate

This document places language in the handbook reminding all departments and members of the faculty that substantive curricular changes must be reported to SACS prior to implementation.

This document does not propose a change in policy, as substantive changes have always needed to be reported to SACS for notification and/or approval.  However, the policy should be placed in the handbook so that all faculty members and departments who propose new degree programs or concentrations are aware of the requirement and build this step into the timeline of approval and implementation of substantive curricular proposals. 


Revised Faculty Handbook 5.4.2:

5.4.2 Program Changes

UNC System Procedures
Information on planning new academic degrees is available at:

Information on planning new distance education is available at:

UNC Asheville Internal procedures (SD0281)
New degree programs are to receive approval from the Faculty Senate prior to submission to the Board of Trustees and the UNC General Administration. As described below this approval process requires a minimum of two considerations by the Faculty Senate.

1. At the time of submitting a request to plan a degree program such request should receive approval of IDC and the Faculty Senate. This review is to consider the concept, purpose, feasibility, and appropriateness of the request.

2. If the institution is granted approval to plan a new degree program the curriculum details are to be reviewed by the APC and their recommendation is sent to the Faculty Senate. The plan should then receive approval of the Faculty Senate prior to submission to the UNC General Administration. This second review is to consider program structure, catalog description, number of required hours in the major, correlate requirements, resource requirements and impact on other departments. Resource requirements include faculty positions, course offerings, library, computer, laboratory, budget and those matters pertaining directly to the academic program. This review of resource requirements is to guarantee consideration has been given to these matters.

Should the proposed program be returned by the UNC General Administration for substantive revision, these revisions are to be considered by APC and the Faculty Senate prior to resubmission of the proposal. The Chair of APC will monitor a proposal from the time it is first approved for planning by the UNC General Administration.

Statement of IDC's Role in the Development of Academic Programs (SD3982)

1. IDC reaffirms its responsibility established by 1982 Senate Document #2 (revision three), to give a first review to new academic programs.
2. IDC represents the UPC in its academic program review function.
3. IDC will review proposals with the UPC for advice and comment. The recommendations of the IDC will be sent to the Senate.

[Substantive Change Notification Required for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS)

UNC Asheville is required to notify the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) of any proposed programs and/or major changes to current programs. 

Any department considering substantive program additions or modifications, including significant online delivery, new degree programs, and program closure, should discuss the necessary notification requirements with the Provost and VCAA who serves as SACS accreditation liaison. Depending on the scope of the program addition and/or modification, SACS requires between 3 and 6 months notification before implementation of the program or courses.

For further information, faculty members should consult with the Provost and VCAA and see the SACS Substantive Change Policy at]