D01.7 Undergraduate Academic Certificate

I. Definition

According to NYSED, a “Certificate means a credential issued by an institution in recognition of the completion of a curriculum other than one leading to a degree.” Typically, a certificate is comprised of courses that lead to a defined skill set recognized in a specific field or domain. The approval process for a certificate does not require the submission of a program intent document, however, the remainder of the process is the same as that for proposed academic degree programs. Following the university review and approval process, a proposed certificate is sent to NYSED for approval and assignment of a HEGIS code.

II. Institutional parameters

  1. A certificate shall meet the requirements se tforth by NYSED.
  2. A certificate is discipline-based.
  3. A certificate consists of at least three courses and at least nine credit hours.At least fifty percent (50%) of the total credit hours in a certificate and no less than nine credit hours in the certificate shall be completed at RIT.
  4. Each credit-bearing course in a certificate must be an existing course that is applicable to one or more RIT degree programs, either as part of the major, liberal arts and sciences, or as an open elective.
  5. The certificate must be in a discipline or area of focus outside of the student’s academic program or double major. It is the responsibility of the academic unit proposing a certificate to indicate any degree programs, minors or immersions for which the certificate is not appropriate.
  6. A maximum of fifty percent (and no greater than 9) credits explicitly named within the degree program can be used toward the certificate.
  7. Students may pursue multiple certificates.
    1. A minimum of nine credit hours must be unique to each certificate.
  8. Posting of the certificate on the student's academic transcript requires a grade of C (2.0) or better in every course in the certificate.

III. Development / approval / administration processes

  1. Certificates may be developed by faculty at the departmental, inter-departmental, college, or inter-college level. Instructions and the Certificate Program Proposal form are located on the Provost’s curriculum management website.
  2. As part of the certificate development process:
    1. Prerequisites, if any, will be identified.
    2. Students ineligible for the proposed Certificate will be identified.
  3. Certificate proposals shall follow the curriculum review process as identified in Policy D01.0.
  4. The academic unit offering the certificate (in the case of interdisciplinary certificates, the certifying academic unit) is responsible for:
    1. enrolling students in the certificate (as space permits);
    2. monitoring student progress toward completion of the certificate;
    3. certifying students’ successful completion of the certificate;
    4. responding to student requests for removal from the certificate.
  5. As per New York State requirements, courses within the certificate must be offered with sufficient frequency to allow students to complete the certificate within the time frame proposed in the application to NYSED.

IV. Procedures for Certificate Program revision

Once a certificate is approved by NYSED, any change in the certificate requires the approval of the involved academic unit(s), the college curriculum committee(s), and ICC. If there is a change in the total number of credits then once approved at the university, the revised certificate must be sent to NYSED for final approval.

Responsible Office: Faculty Senate and Office of the Provost

Approved: 10/3/2019


Policy History