Q: Why do we have a Curriculum and Instruction process?
A: It is mandated by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV). The process at JMU is outlined in the Faculty Handbook.
Q: There are a lot of acronyms in this process. What do they stand for?
A: C&I = Curriculum and Instruction
SCHEV = State Council of Higher Education for Virginia
CAP = Committee on Academic Programs
CCCC = Cross College Curriculum Committee
Q: How is the new on-line process different from the old, paper process?
A: You'll find that the forms, terminology, and process flow are the same. The primary difference is that you'll be submitting forms online for electronic approval.
Q: Why are there waiting periods during each step of the process?
A: The waiting periods provide an opportunity for faculty to weigh in on each decision and vote for or against curricular changes. They are mandated by the university as part of the faculty handbook.
Q: Do undergraduate and graduate proposals follow the same process?
A: Most of the steps in modifying courses and programs are the same at undergraduate and graduate levels. However, The Graduate School has Graduate Governance Committees instead of College C&I Committees. Also, graduate-level proposals must go to The Graduate Council as part of their C&I process.
Q: How many Curriculum and Instruction Committees are there, and how are they organized?
A: Each academic unit has its own C&I Committee, which includes faculty from that unit. The chair of each unit's C&I Committee serves on the College C&I Committee and acts as a liaison between the two groups. The College C&I Chair heads the College C&I Committee.
Each college also has a representative on the Committee for Academic Programs, a university-wide review board. Faculty members can work on a C&I Committee as part of their service requirement.
Q: I am interested in developing a new program. How do I get started?
A: After you discuss your idea with your academic unit head, you should set up an appointment with Associate Vice Provost AJ Morey to go over your idea. She will work with you to gather the information that the upper administration needs to review during a preview with the provost's office. Because these individuals interact directly with the JMU Board of Visitors and SCHEV, they have a sense of the climate in which your proposal will be received. They can provide suggestions of how to frame your proposal or when it is most likely to go through at the university and state levels. If your proposal moves past the preview phase, you'll follow the regular program development cycle.
Q: How far in advance should I begin developing my proposal?
A: The best way to approach the process is to decide which semester you would like to activate the new program or begin teaching the new course, then count backwards. Generally speaking, if you want your course to start in Fall of 2015, you would need for it to be approved by the catalog deadline the previous spring (which generally falls the first week of March). Most units set their own deadlines for when new proposals should be submitted to their C&I committee. Talk with your academic unit head or dean to find out your unit's schedule.
Q: Is there a single published schedule or calendar of due dates for proposals for this academic year?
A: No, but most of the colleges develop their own schedule of due dates for the curriculum development process. The only date that all units have as a common due date is the catalog cut-off date, which generally falls the first week of March.