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New Undergraduate & Graduate Program Proposal Preparation

Review RIT’s Academic Portfolio Blueprint

  • Parameters and Criteria for New Programs
  • Concept Paper Process: Undergraduate Degree
  • Concept Paper Process: Masters Degree
  • Concept Paper Process: Doctoral Degree
  • Concept Paper Template for New Degree Program Proposals
    • Include contact name and e-mail address for proposer with the Title/Department/College information so reviewers can address questions to the appropriate individual
  • Concept Paper Budget Template
  • Concept Paper Resubmission Guidance:
    • Proposers wishing to resubmit a concept paper not approved to move to a full program proposal, should prepare a new concept paper submission and submit it for posting according to the vetting process outlined on the "Getting Started: Concept Paper" section of the Academic Program and Curriculum Management website.  The revised concept paper should clearly reflect the feedback provided by the Provost during the first review cycle. No resubmitted concept paper is likely to be approved unless significant changes are made.
  • From Concept Paper to Full Program Development Guidance:
    • It can be expected that new program development will undergo some change as faculty move from concept paper to full proposal development. If significant changes are made to the intent, scope, or direction of the new program as expressed in the original concept paper, faculty are advised to highlight what these changes are and address the rationale for the changes in the final program proposal.


  • Complete the RIT New Academic Program Proposal for all new undergraduate and graduate level program proposals.
  • Download this proposal form as a word document and complete all information required on the form.
  • Be sure to use the exact numbering system on the proposal materials.
  • Use this same proposal form for modification to a currently registered program which represents 33 1/3 % or more revision of a total program, i.e., a substantially modified proposal).
    NOTE: Programs will need to use judgment with respect to what constitutes a change of 1/3 or more revision of a total program. Substantial change may mean a significant change to 1/3 of the credit hour content in the program. Such change may also alter the programmatic focus and expected outcomes.
  • Obtain required cost information for inclusion on Program Financial Viability (Section 4) as part of the proposal. 
  • Consultation with RIT’s Finance and Administration Division is necessary in order to prepare this revenue and cost analysis information.
  • For consultation, schedule a meeting with Jackie Taylor, Director of Partnerships,
  • Prior to this meeting review the Checklist for Preparation of New Academic Program Costing of the New Program Proposal Form, which focuses on resource information needed for this meeting.
  • External review of proposal by a recognized expert(s) in the field (who has been approved in advance by the New York State Education Department through the Office of the Senior Associate Provost) is required for certain types of proposals.  Such proposals include:
    • All graduate programs below the doctoral level
    • Undergraduate degree program in an allied health area, unless the program is accredited by an accrediting body for college-level programs in the field
    • Undergraduate programs which represent a new or emerging field
  •  When an external review is required:
    • It is expected that the proposed external reviewer be a recognized expert in the field of the program, as demonstrated by appropriate educational credentials, professional   experience and academic teaching and/or administrative experience in similar programs.
    • The proposed reviewer must not have a conflict of interest or the appearance of a conflict of interest with the institution or program under review. There is a conflict of interest when the potential reviewer:
      • Is a present or former employee, student, member of the governing board, owner or shareholder of, or consultant to the institution that is seeking institutional accreditation from the Board of Regents; this includes those persons who may have consulted or helped develop the proposed program.
      • Is a spouse, parent, child or sibling of an individual or person listed above;
      • Has expressed an opinion for or against the proposed degree program;
      • Is seeking or being sought for employment or other relationship with the institution under review;
      • Has a personal or professional relationship with the institution under review that might compromise objectivity; and/or
      • Has a competitive relationship with the institution that might compromise objectivity.
      • The Sr. Associate Provost will vet these names and seek approval from NYSED.
    • Each peer reviewer must sign the “Conflict of Interest Guidelines” form. The Institution must keep a signed copy in their files.
    • Proposer should contact the Office of the Senior Associate Provost as early as possible to begin the process to identify the external reviewer.  The program proposer should send the Sr. Associate Provost suggested names and CV’s of at least three (3) recognized experts who meet the external reviewer criteria.
    • Proposer should include a brief description of the proposed program with the recommended reviewers’ materials.
    • The Sr. Associate Provost will vet these names and seek approval from NYSED.
  •  External evaluators are required to use the Evaluator Report Form in preparing their response.

  • Don’t forget that the program proposer is required to provide a response to the external evaluation including information on how the program proposal was modified in response to the reviewer’s comments.

  • The reviewer’s report and RIT’s response should be included in the proposal package sent to ICC or Grad Council for review.

Application for Registration of a New Degree Program (non-doctoral)

NOTE: Different form and procedures used for New Program in a Licensed Profession including:

  • Architecture
  • Athletic Training
  • Certified Public Accountants
  • Dietetics/Nutrition
  • Engineering                                  
  • Interior Design                                   
  • Physician Assistant
  • Public Accountants

See form and procedures directly following procedures for Registration of a New Degree Program (non-doctoral).

When all internal RIT curriculum approval procedures are completed, program proposals must be registered with the New York State Education Department. Complete the NYSED Application for Registration of a New Degree Program as a WORD document (do not send PDF to our office) as described below:

1. The NYSED Application for Registration of a New Degree Program (non-doctoral) contains six (6) task areas.

  • Task 1: Institution and Program Information
  • Task 2: Proposed Program Information
  • Task 3: Sample Program Schedule
    • Please provide the catalog descriptions for existing courses in Task 3d.
    • Please provide syllabi for all new courses in Task 3e as a separate, single PDF document
  • Task 4: Faculty
  • Task 5: Financial Resources and Instructional Facilities
  • Task 6: Library Resources

2. If the new program proposal is for any programs listed below, please use the Application for Registration of a New Program in a Licensed Profession

  • Architecture
  • Dietetics/Nutrition
  • Engineering
  • Interior Design
  • Physician Assistant
  • Certified Public Accountants
  • Public Accountants

3. GOOD NEWS! You already have ALL of the required information needed for these 6 Task Areas in your RIT Program Proposal. You should be  able to easily cut and paste information to the NYSED Registration Application.

4. If the new program will be offered in Distance Education format, you must also complete the Application to Add the Distance Education Format to a New or Registered Program Form

5. Prepare a word document using the chart below to assist in transferring information from the RIT New Program Proposal Form (New Academic Program Proposal for RIT Review) to the NYSED application form (New York State Application for Registration of a New Program).




Task #1: Institution and Program Information


Complete all information

Regents Region: Finger Lakes Region (2)

Do not enter anything in Contact Information Field


Task #2: Proposed Program Information

  1. Format

Check all that apply

  1. Diploma Programs

Complete information, if applicable

  1. Program Description
    and Purpose
  1. Catalog Description
  2. Education/Career Objectives
  3. Relationship to Mission/Master Plan
  4. Documented Need for Program
  5. Role of Faculty in Program Development
  6. External Partner Input
  7. Anticipated 5-year Enrollment

Use 1a, b, c, d, g, h, i and selected information as appropriate from Appendix B and D

  1. Use 1a
  2. Use 1b
  3. Use 1c
  4. Use 1d
  5. Use 1g
  6. Use 1h
  7. Use 1i
  1. Admissions

Use #6a, b, c

  1. Academic Support Services

Use #7

  1. Credit for Experience

Use #9

  1. Program Assessment and Improvement

Use #10 a, b and c

  1. Transfer to Baccalaureate Programs

Use #12


Task #3:  Sample Program Schedule

  1. Sample Schedule

Use Table 1a (for undergraduate) or 1b (for graduate)

  1. Nontraditional Schedule

Use #2d

  1. Master’s degree research or comparable occupational
    or professional experience

Indicate how requirement is met, including
course number, if applicable

  1. Existing Course Descriptions

Use #2e

  1. New Course Syllabi

Use Course Outlines from Appendix A

Note: Submit new course syllabi as a single, separate WORD document


Task #4:  Faculty

  1. Faculty Tables

Use Tables 2, 3, 4

(Note: Do NOT include Appendix F: Faculty CV)

  1. Definition of Full-time Faculty

Use this definition:  “Persons who have received and accepted a contract for 100% of a full-time load - - typically 15 credit hours per term.”


Task #5:  Financial Resources and Instructional Facilities

  1. Facilities/Equipment

Use #4a

(Note: Do NOT include Appendices C, E, G)

  1. New Resources

Use #4b (Table 5)


Task #6:  Library Resources

  1. Analysis of Existing Resources

Use #5a

  1. Response to needs and Plan for Development

Use #4b (Table 5)

Additional task: all Graduate Programs and certain other degree areas:

External Review of Graduate Programs and Programs whose Subject Matter Represents a New or Emerging Field            


  • Must include External Review Report


  • Also include copy of e-mail from Sr. Associate Provost indicating advance approval from NYSED for the External evaluator chosen.


Response to External Review


Include Institution’s response to External Review Report including  how proposal was modified in response to reviewer’s comments, as appropriate


Application for Distance Education 


Use the separate NYSED Application for Distance Education and attach to the Program Application

Use #13 if appropriate

Complete #1, 2 and all Questions in Part B

CEO (or designee) Signature

Leave blank

6. When you have inputted all of the information for the above areas, save as a Word document(s) and e-mail the word document(s) to the office of the Senior Associate Provost in care of Karel Shapiro, or Stephanie Rankin,

7. The Office of the Senior Associate Provost will review your documents, and advise if any additional information is required.

8. Once ready for submission, The Office of the Senior Associate Provost will obtain the necessary approvals and signatures and submit the Application for Registration of a New Program Form to NYSED for processing.

9. The Office of the Senior Associate Provost will advise the initiator of the Proposal once it has been submitted to NYSED.

If you have any questions or require assistance, please contact Karel Shapiro,, Ext. 52527 or Stephanie Rankin,, Ext. 54988 in the Office of the Sr. Associate Provost.

NOTE: The proposed program may not be advertised or admitted to students until approval has been granted and formal authorization received from NYSED.

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