Requests for new baccalaureate and master's degree programs
must provide information and documentation demonstrating that the
proposed degree programs meet all of the following criteria:
(1) Role and mission. The proposed program must be
within the existing role and mission of the institution as indicated
by its Program Inventory or the Board must make the determination
that the program is appropriate for the mission of the institution.
(2) Unnecessary duplication. The proposed program must
not unnecessarily duplicate an existing program at another institution
serving the same regional population. The offering of basic liberal
arts and sciences courses and degree programs in public senior institutions
is not considered unnecessary duplication. A proposed program to be
offered through distance education must demonstrate that there is
unmet workforce need and student demand for the program that cannot
be met by existing online programs offered by Texas public institutions.
(3) Faculty resources.
(A) Faculty resources must be adequate to provide high
program quality. With few exceptions, the master's degree should be
the minimum educational attainment for faculty teaching in baccalaureate
programs. In most disciplines, the doctorate should be the minimum
educational attainment for faculty teaching in graduate programs.
Faculty should meet the qualitative and quantitative criteria of the
Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges,
and the appropriate accrediting body. There should be sufficient numbers
of qualified faculty dedicated to a new program. This number shall
vary depending on the discipline, the nature of the program, and the
anticipated number of students; however, there must be at least one
full time equivalent faculty already in place in order for the program
to begin enrolling students.
(B) In evaluating faculty resources for proposed degree
programs, the Board shall consider only those degrees held by faculty
that were issued by:
(i) United States institutions accredited by accrediting
agencies recognized by the Board or,
(ii) institutions located outside the United States
that have demonstrated that their degrees are equivalent to degrees
issued from an institution in the United States accredited by accrediting
agencies recognized by the Board. The procedures for establishing
that equivalency shall be consistent with the guidelines of the National
Council on the Evaluation of Foreign Education Credentials, or its
(4) Library and IT resources. Library and information
technology resources must be adequate for the proposed program and
meet the standards of the appropriate accrediting agencies.
(5) Facilities, equipment, and clinical placements.
Facilities and clinical placements must be adequate to initiate the
program. Adequate classroom and laboratory space, equipment, and office
space should be available for the proposed program. Arrangements for
any essential clinical placements should be made before program approval.
(6) Curriculum design. The curriculum should be up-to-date
and consistent with current educational theory. Professional programs
and those resulting in licensure must be designed to meet the standards
of appropriate regulatory bodies. Student time-to-degree must be considered
in the curricular structure and policy of the proposed program, including
but not limited to policies for transfer of credit, course credit
by examination, credit for professional experience, placing out of
courses, and any alternative learning strategies, such as competency-based
education, that may increase efficiency in student progress in the
(7) Program administration. Administration of the proposed
program should not be unduly cumbersome or costly. Ideally, the proposed
program should fit into the current administrative structure of the
institution. If administrative changes are required, they should be
consonant with the organization of the institution as a whole and
should necessitate a minimum of additional expense in terms of personnel
and office space.
(8) Workforce need. There should be a demonstrated
or well-documented need for the program in terms of meeting present
and future workforce needs of the state and nation. There should be
a ready job market for graduates of the program, or alternatively,
it should produce students for master's or doctoral-level programs
in fields in which there is a demonstrated need for professionals.
(9) Critical mass of students. In addition to a demonstrated
workforce need, a critical mass of qualified students must be available
to enter the proposed program and there must be evidence that the
program is likely to have sufficient enrollments to support the program
into the future. The size of an institution, the characteristics of
its existing student body, and enrollments in existing programs should
be taken into account when determining whether a critical mass of
students shall be available for a proposed new program.
(10) Adequate financing. There should be adequate financing
available to initiate the proposed program without reducing funds
for existing programs or weakening them in any way. After the start-up
period, the program must be able to generate sufficient semester credit
hours under funding formulas and student tuition and fees to pay faculty
salaries, departmental operating costs, and instructional administration
costs for the program. Five years should be sufficient time for the
program to meet these costs through semester credit hour production.
If the state funding formulas and student tuition and fees are not
meeting these costs for the program after five years, the institution
and the Board should review the program with a view to discontinuance.
(11) Marketable Skills. There must be a list of the
marketable skills associated with the proposed program in keeping
with the state strategic plan, 60x30TX, and
a plan for how students will be informed of the marketable skills.
(12) Strong Related Programs. There must be high-quality
programs in other related and supporting disciplines at the bachelor's
and master's levels, as evidenced by enrollments, numbers of graduates,
and completion rates in those related and supporting programs, as
|Source Note: The provisions of this §5.45 adopted to be effective May 28, 2003, 28 TexReg 4125; amended to be effective February 22, 2005, 30 TexReg 835; amended to be effective November 24, 2013, 38 TexReg 8427; amended to be effective May 29, 2018, 43 TexReg 3347