LOCAL APPROVAL PROCESSES
Oregon community colleges conduct campus specific program approval processes for all AAS degree, AAS degree option, and certificate of completion programs. These local reviews are guided by accreditation requirements, local board policies, and state standards and procedures; the reviews must be completed before submitting applications to the state for new program approval.
Local Community College Responsibilities for Program Approval
Local community college responsibilities for program approval are set out in OAR 589-006-0150 as follows:
- Community college boards will have local processes in place to ensure that local and state program approval standards and criteria are implemented and maintained.
- Community college boards are responsible for approving their college's certificate of completion, associate degree and associate degree option requirements. These requirements must be included in the institution catalog.
- The community college board of education has the responsibility to assure that state-approval standards are achieved for all programs offered by the local community college.
- Community colleges must follow the program approval process as outlined in the Oregon Community Colleges Handbook & Planning Guide.
- Community colleges shall use the term "Certificate" or "Certificate of Completion" in college catalogs and college promotional documents and on transcripts only as an indication of an award by the college that has met the local and state program approval standards and criteria and have been approved by the Higher Education Coordinating Commission and authorized by the Office of Degree Authorization.
- Community college boards of education will submit programs using the Certificate of Completion and Associate Degree Approval Procedures identified by the Department.
- The board of education of a community college district is responsible for obtaining and maintaining the course approval requirements set by the Higher Education Coordinating Commission.
- Community colleges may provide recognition awards to students for the completion of a state-approved course or courses. Recognition awards may not be called "certificates of completion" or "certificates" and may not be included on the official student transcript. Recognition awards may not be provided for coursework meeting the definition of "program" without state approval.
- Upon approval by the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, the Board authorizes the community college board of education, established under ORS 341.005 to 341.950, to issue certificates of completion and associate degrees as an indication of satisfactory completion of state approved programs offered by the community college.
- The type of associate degree, associate degree option or certificate of completion to be awarded for completion of a program shall be clearly stated in the community college's catalog or supplement thereto.
- Only educational programs that have received program approval from the community college board, the Higher Education Coordinating Commission and the Office of Degree Authorization shall be included in a community college catalog or other materials.
- Prerequisites for associate degree, associate degree option, and certificate of completion programs and courses within the programs shall be clearly stated in the community college's catalog or supplement thereto.