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Graduate School

General Considerations

Requests for course and program modifications should be signed by your department chair and submitted to your College or Schools' Dean's Office. Requests will be forwarded to the School or College Curriculum Committee for approval.
  • 400-level courses designated for graduate credit are reviewed by the Curriculum Council of the Faculty Senate and the Graduate Course Review Committee. NOTE: 400-level courses intended for graduate credit must include different standards for graduate students
  • 500-level courses are reviewed by the Graduate Courses Committee
You can refer to the guidelines listed in subsequent sections to help you prepare course and program modification. More information is available in the Graduate School publication, "Instruction Manual for Submitting Requests for Adding, Modifying, and Deleting Graduate Courses and Programs," which is available through the Graduate School.
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Form 90A-Request to Add a Course
Download Form 90A

Please fill out requests for new courses carefully to make sure that you are using the most recent version of the Form and that all relevant items are completed.

  • Department/Unit Name
  • Course Designator, Number, Credit Hours and Full Title: List as you want them to appear in the catalog
  • Catalog Description: Limited to 25 words (The 25-word limit is not strictly adhered to, but descriptions in excess of 25 words might be edited in a way that you had not intended)
  • Prerequisites: List the prerequisites for the course and in your rationale statement, please briefly explain why the prerequisites are needed
  • Graduate Credit Information:
    • All 500-level courses should check the YES box
    • All courses 300 or below should check NO
    • 400-level course can be taken for graduate credit. If you check YES, the course must be acceptable for credit in at least one graduate program and the program(s) should be listed on the form.
      • PLEASE NOTE: If you checked YES for a 400-level course, the course must have additional requirements for graduate credit. These additional requirements should be explicitly stated in the proposed syllabus and listed on the Form 90A under item 5
  • Cumulative Credit: Some courses (e.g. thesis, special topics courses, independent study courses) may be taken for credit more than once, with the maximum allowable number of credit hours limited to under 6
  • Non-Traditional Grades: If you are considering the use of non-traditional grades (ABCDE,) you should check with the Office of Admissions and Records [would like to link to this office for more details; however, couldn't find an office with this name - bf] to find out if this type of grading is appropriate for your course
  • General Education Information: Consider whether your course is appropriate for the general education program. See the following examples:
    • If you are adding a senior-level course intended only for you majors, you should check NONE
    • If your course can be taken as part of the general education program, please identify the Level (Intro/Distribution) and Area (Fine Arts & Humanities, FAH; Social Sciences, SS; Natural Sciences and Mathematics, NSM)
    • If the proposed course is intended for the IS program, check the appropriate box on the form
    • If the course is intended to meet the International Issues, International Culture, or Inter-Group Relations please check the appropriate box(es) and provide a brief rationale on the indicated place on the form
  • Course Replacement: If your new course is designed to replace an older course, list the course designator and number for the old courses. If the older course is no longer needed, you should attach a form 90B to remove the old course from the catalog
  • Generic Courses: These are variable content courses (special topics, etc.)
  • Rationale for Offering the Course: Describe the rationale for offering the course on a separate attachment, which includes a bibliography of texts or references that will be used for the course (or in course development)
  • Names of Faculty who will Teach the Course: List the names of faculty who are most likely to teach the course
  • Desired Effective Date: List the target date for effective changes
    • PLEASE NOTE: The approval process can take up to 6 months, depending on the time of year that the request was submitted
  • Coordination with Other Units: Requests for new courses should be coordinated with other units, if appropriate. See the following examples:
    • Courses added by one department at the request of another (i.e. a math course for engineering students, courses that may be similar to those offered by other units, all interdisciplinary studies courses, etc.

Supplemental Materials to the Form 90A.

Rationale Statement and Bibliography

Attach a separate page describing the rationale for adding the course. Describe the need for the course within the program. The rationale statement should describe the reasons for offering the course at the level indicated. It is the responsibility of the department submitting the request to determine if the proposed course duplicates or overlaps existing courses, either inside or outside of the department. The rationale statement might also describe the expected frequency of the course offering and expected enrollment.
For a 500-level course, a statement must be included that clearly justifies the offering as a graduate-level experience for students. The rationale statement also should include a representative bibliography consisting of references deemed appropriate to support the course.

Course Syllabus

A syllabus must accompany every Form 90A and those Forms 90C involving substantial changes (i.e., change in level, change in number of credit hours, extensive changes in catalog description, etc.). A syllabus must include:

  • Clearly stated course description that corresponds to the catalog description on the Form 90A
  • Clearly stated course prerequisites
  • Textbook, assigned readings, and other bibliographic references
  • Clearly stated course objectives
  • Outline of the course content to be covered: Indicate the appropriate number of class sessions, hours or percentage of time to be spent on each major topic. (A mere listing of chapter titles is not sufficient.)
  • Standards for student progress and performance evaluations.
    • PLEASE NOTE that all 400-level courses that can be taken for graduate credit should clearly specify the additional requirements for graduate students.
    • 400-level course that cannot be taken for graduate credit should include the phrase "NOT FOR GRADUATE CREDIT" in the catalog description on the Form 90A.

Form 90B-Request to Drop a Course
Download Form 90B

Most of the information requested on the form is self-explanatory. It is the responsibility of the department to assess the impact that removing the course will have on other academic units (.e.g. dropping a course that may be required by other programs or courses that are prerequisites to course offered by other units). You must include supporting documentation from the units affected by the proposed change along with the Form 90B.
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Form 90C-Request to Modify a Course
Download Form 90C

Requests for course modifications should include the Form 90C, plus a separate rationale statement describing the nature and reasons for the change. Requests for substantive changes to the course also should include a course syllabus that follows the guidelines listed above for the Form 90A .

Section 1

All information under Section 1 is self-explanatory. Make sure that the course title is the same as that listed in the catalog.

Section 2

List only the items changed. EXCEPT - Check the NO boxes under items f and g if there are no changes to the graduate applicability or general education applicability.
  • List the new course title exactly as you want it to appear
  • Change the course designator (e.g. HIST), or course number
    • If the course changes in course number from one level to another (e.g. 200 to 300, 300 to 400, etc.,) a syllabus and rationale statement must be included that explains the change
    • Requests to change the course level to 400- or 500-level also should check YES under item f.
    • Syllabi submitted for 400-level courses should include additional requirements for graduate credit, if applicable
    • Changing courses to 400-level courses that are not applicable to any graduate program should include the phrase "NOT FOR GRADUATE CREDIT" in the revised catalog description (item e)
  • Change in credit hours: Attach a rationale statement that describes the reason for the change
  • Grade types include ABCDE, P/N, S/U, DE (deferred), PR (progress)
    • University policies limit the use of non-traditional grades in most instances
    • Check the guidelines listed in the current undergraduate catalog (p. 25) or graduate catalog (p.27) for applicability of non-traditional grades
  • Enter the new catalog description: Catalog descriptions should be limited to 25 words or less
    • Excessively long catalog descriptions might be edited at the discretion of the review committees or catalog editor
    • Catalog descriptions also should include the list of prerequisites
    • Wording for prerequisite information, along with other information (i.e. "NOT FOR GRADUATE CREDIT") are not included in the 25 word limit
  • Check NO if no change is intended; Check YES if the modified course is applicable to a graduate program and identify the program in the space provided
  • Check NO if there is no change in the general education applicability; Check YES if the course modification changes the applicability to the University's General Education Program
  • All changes to the general education applicability must be reviewed by the University's General Education Committee: All such requests must include a course syllabus
  • Check if the course should be added to or deleted from the University's list of generic courses
    • Requests to add a course to the generic course list should include a representative syllabus
  • It is the department's responsibility to determine if the proposed change affects other units: Changes that affect other units should be coordinated with those units and a statement of support should be attached

Supplemental Material to the Form 90C

Rationale Statement

Attach a separate page describing the rationale for the proposed modifications to the course. In some cases, modifications are sufficiently dramatic that the course should be considered as a new course offering.


Substantive changes to the course should also include a revised course syllabus. Follow the guidelines for preparation of the syllabus described for the Form 90A .

Other Documentation

Include support statements form other academic units, rationale for general education applicability, credit hour justifications, etc., if applicable.
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Form 91A Request for Change in Academic Program or Conditions
Download Form 91A
Download Form 91A

Requests for changes in academic programs should include the Form 91A and all supporting documentation. Most of the information requested on the Form 91A is self-explanatory. Indicate all programmatic changes on Page 1 of the form. You also can include this information as separate attachments. If the information is provided in separate attachments, please indicate this on Page 1 of the form.

Make sure to include a rationale statement under Item 1 on page 2 of the form. Provide all the additional information in items 2-4, if applicable.

The request should include a copy of the old catalog description and a copy of the new catalog description.

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