UW Graduate School

Memo 41: Graduate Courses in Non-Degree-Offering Units

This memo describes the procedures for faculty members of an academic unit not authorized to offer a graduate degree program to request permission to offer courses numbered 500 to 599. Existing Graduate Certificate programs that are not affiliated with a graduate-degree-offering program or department must follow this procedure to create new courses or a new prefix. Graduate courses to be offered by such non-degree-offering units must first complete the curricular review process in the appropriate school or college, then be reviewed and approved by the Graduate School, and finally be approved by the UW Curriculum Review Committee.

Approved courses may be authorized for periods of five years or less. If reauthorization is desired, it should be requested during the year preceding expiration and must be approved as above.

In requesting initial or renewed authorization from the Graduate School, the unit should provide information showing that each course meets the following criteria:

  1. The academic and budgetary impact of the course has been assessed and approved by appropriate departments, schools, and colleges (see the following Endorsements form).
  2. Instructors should be members of the graduate faculty or meet equivalent standards for scholarship and teaching experience.
  3. Classes should have majority graduate or postdoctoral (as opposed to professional or undergraduate) enrollment.
  4. The course should have clear interdisciplinary value in the following ways:
    • It should extend and integrate knowledge from more than one discipline to the extent that it is not appropriately offered by a graduate-degree-offering unit.
    • Its enrollment is drawn from more than one graduate-degree-offering unit.
  5. The course should not be intended as part of a graduate degree program being developed by the sponsoring unit. Such courses should be offered under the approved prefixes of existing graduate degree programs until the new degree has been established by the Regents. Procedures for authorization of new graduate degrees are described in Graduate School Memorandum No. 6, Authorization of New Graduate Degree Programs.

The Request for Approval form should be used for this purpose. For new courses, the form should be attached to the New Course Application of the UW Curriculum Review Committee. For reauthorization requests, completion of the form is sufficient; a New Course Application is not necessary. In either case, the Graduate School upon approval will forward the request to the UW Curriculum Committee for final action.

Issued: March, 1987; Revised: April, 2007