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Section:300
Section Title:Academic Affairs
Policy Number:300-KK
Policy Name:Integrity of Degree Programs
Approval Authority:Provost/VPAA
College Policy Executive:Chief Planning Officer
Responsible Executive:Provost/VPAA
Responsible Unit:Office of the Provost/VPAA
Date Adopted:May 2013
Date Revised:February 2018, November 2019, April 2021

Policy

Ramapo College will offer degree programs that meet appropriate standards of content, rigor, coherence, and length; conform to its mission; and are regularly evaluated in the spirit of continuous improvement.

Reason for Policy

To meet the curricular standards of the federal government, the State of New Jersey, and the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and to provide an excellent education for all Ramapo College students.

To Whom Does The Policy Apply

Ramapo College faculty, staff, and students

Related Documents

Procedure 300-KK, College Catalog, Academic Review Committee (ARC) Manual,

NJPC Academic Issues Committee Manual, Middle States Commission on Higher

Education policies, Policy 300-S – Minimum Graduation Requirements.

 Contacts

Office of the Provost/VPAA

201-684-7515

 

Procedure

 

INTEGRITY OF DEGREE PROGRAMS

 

  • All proposed academic programs will follow the internal approval procedures outlined in the ARC Manual, and external procedures specified by the state.
  • All existing academic programs that alter courses and/or requirements will follow the approval procedures outlined in the ARC Manual.
  • All existing undergraduate academic programs will undergo a regularly scheduled cycle of program review and student-learning assessment including, but not limited to, the review and use of assessment data to improve student learning.
  • All existing graduate programs will undergo an annual review of enrollment, revenue, and expenses as well as an annual cycle of student-learning assessment.
  • All academic programs will meet the following definitions and/or stipulations:

 

Undergraduate Degree Programs

An undergraduate degree program consists of a major, the corresponding School core, if such exists, the general education program, optionally a minor and/or second major, and/or free electives.

Major:  A requirement of all undergraduate degree programs, a major focuses on a  particular discipline or an interdisciplinary area. The major requirements, inclusive of any concentration requirements, plus the School core requirements must total at least 40 credits.

A student may not declare two majors if both are within ASB.

For students with two majors, no more than half the courses can double-count in both majors.  All writing-intensive courses required for the second major must be completed as well.

Minor (moved from bottom to immediately below Major) An opportunity to add depth and breadth to a student’s undergraduate degree program, a minor must include between 16 and 24 credits (including all non-general education prerequisites and excluding all lab science course credits). Courses fulfilling the requirements for the primary or secondary major may count towards the requirements of the minor, but may not exceed one-half of the credits required in the minor. A School core does not need to be completed for a minor.

Concentration: A concentration is a focused area of study within a major. The following criteria apply:

  • A concentration is typically employed in a major that has distinctive sub-disciplines.
  • Multiple concentrations are possible, but each must follow the 50% rule.  That is, no more than half the courses may double count in both concentrations.   (For example, if a student pursues two concentrations each of which requires five courses, no more than two courses can be shared by/double counted in the two concentrations)

The concentration appears on the transcript.

Track: A track is an advising path of courses through a major, which is intended to prepare students for graduate school or a professional career.  A track is typically utilized in a major that serves populations of students with distinctly different post-graduation plans (e.g., teaching or some health professions). Multiple tracks within a major are possible.

A track does not appear on the transcript.

School Core: Most Schools requires students who declare one of its the majors they offer to complete a core program for the majors it offers, which emphasizes the School’s theme and provides a context for later work in the major. The core programs vary in the number of credits required. Required School core courses also may fulfill general education requirements.

Students completing a minor outside of the School of their major are not required to complete the core of the School of their minor.

A student who declares two majors in different Schools must complete the School core requirements of both Schools, unless the second major is housed within offered by HGS or SSHS in which case the School core for the second major is not required.

Because the School core complements the major, together they the School core and major requirements typically constitute approximately half a degree program. Thus, unless otherwise required by accreditation standards, the major (including any concentration or track) and the School core combined should not exceed 68 credits.

 

General Education: The hallmark of a liberal-arts education, the general-education program must provide the student the opportunity to acquire competency in at least communication (both written and oral), reasoning (both scientific and quantitative), critical thinking and analysis, and technology. The general-education curriculum should not exceed 41 credits.

In certain cases, a student may double count courses in the major with courses in the School core or in the general education curriculum, but a student may not triple count a course in the major, School core, and general education. A single course may not fulfill two separate General Education categories, and no more than two general education courses may double count in the School core or major.

 

Graduate Degree Programs

Master’s Degree Program: A disciplinary, interdisciplinary, or professional program, a Master’s program must consist of at least 30 credits.

Students may not enroll concurrently in two Master’s degree program at Ramapo; however, it may be possible to apply up to 15 credits or 25% of the total credits required to complete the graduate degree, whichever is greater, of Master’s-level coursework completed at Ramapo College to two different Ramapo Master’s programs, as long as this aligns with the criteria of the subsequent Master’s degree program and permission to do so is granted by the Program Director.