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Part A: Instructions



All courses and degree programs must reside in an existing academic unit.  All curriculum proposals must be approved by the curriculum committee of the sponsoring academic unit before they are received by the Senate Office.  As per Article XI, Section 2 of Charter for a Governance of Hunter College, policy committees approve curriculum changes in the absence of a curriculum committee.  Interdisciplinary proposals must be approved by all departments, programs, and schools affiliated with the proposal.  All curriculum proposals must be approved by the Hunter College Senate before they move on to CUNY and State approval.  



1. Academic Unit (department, program, or school) where the course or program will reside.

a) Approval by the curriculum committee.

2. Approval by the school or division as defined in Article IV, Section 1.Bii of the Hunter College Charter.

3. The Dean's Office of the School or Division will forward the proposal to the Senate Office by email.

4. Senate Level:

a) A proposal for routine change sometimes requires verification by the respective Senate curriculum committee chair. Once confirmed that the change is routine, the proposal will be assigned a Senate number. The proposal will be considered approved and will be added to the next Approved Curriculum Report of the Senate.

b) A proposal for substantive change will be assigned a Senate number and will be sent out for a 10 day challenge period. Information and procedures for challenging a proposal are in Part B. A proposal that is unchallenged, or that has had its challenge resolved, will be reviewed by the respective Senate curriculum committee. Once approved by the Senate curriculum committee, the proposal will be added to the next Approved Curriculum Report of the Senate. 

5. CUNY Approval:

a) Chancellor's University Report (CUR)

  • After approval by the Hunter College Senate, the Senate office staff is responsible for submitting proposals in the CUR.
  • Most curriculum proposals will be added to the Academic Matters portion of the CUR.
  • The CUR will be approved by the CUNY Board of Trustees at one of their scheduled meetings and will be available for viewing through CUNY Portal. At this point, the proposal has been approved by CUNY.


b) CAPPR:  Some new degrees go to the Committee on Academic Program, Policy, and Research (CAPPR) of the CUNY Board of Trustees (BoT), instead of the CUR.  The Senate office will advise departments if their proposals for new degrees must be approved by CAPPR and will put them in contact with the Office of Academic Affairs at CUNY to ensure CAPPR approval.

c) Courses being proposed for the Hunter Core Requirements (HCR) will also be reviewed by the CUNY Common Core Committees before they are included in the CUR.  The Senate Office Staff is responsible for submitting the courses to the CUNY Common Core Committees for review and for including them in the CUR once the committees have approved them.


6. New York State:

New degree programs and some changes to degree programs need State approval before the College can advertise or offer them.  The CUNY Office of Academic Affairs will forward the proposal to the State.  On average, State approval takes 3-6 months.  However, some programs may take longer.


Approval of Curriculum Proposals (How will you know?)

When a proposal is at the Senate level, the Senate office will notify the department, or academic unit sponsoring the proposal, of any problems with the proposal, the date it goes to the Senate, and the expected Chancellor's University Report or CAPPR meetin.  At this point, the department, or academic entity sponsoring the proposal, is responsible for following-up and tracking its proposals.

Changes approved by the Senate are listed in the Senate Minutes, which are posted on the Senate web site.

The CUR can be viewed by logging into CUNY Portal:  Approval by CAPPR and the BoT can be confirmed by reviewing their meeting minutes posted on the CUNY website.

The President's Office will be notified by the State in writing when proposal has been approved by them.  


Timeline for Proposals at the Senate Level

The following timeline is intended to help academic programs plan for curricular changes. It provides a general overview of the process after a curriculum proposal has been received by the Senate Office. Because proposals may encounter delays along the way, the timeline is strictly to emphasize that advance planning is necessary; there is no guarantee that proposals will be approved within the time frame suggested below.  Please also see your school for a divisional timeline.  


Week 1 Proposal received and assigned a Senate number. (1)

Week 2-3 Proposal out for a 10 day challenge period.

Week 3-5 Senate curriculum committee review. (2)

Week 5-9  The proposal will go to the Senate under Approved Curriculum Report.

Week 9-16 Senate Office cut-off deadline for submitting materials in the CUR.

Week 20 CUNY Board of Trustees approves the CUR.  The CUR is published and available through the CUNY portal.

Week 20-32 Registrar's Office is notified of the approved actions and updates college systems.

(1) Routine proposals go straight to the next Senate meeting after assigned a Senate number, skipping weeks 2-5.

(2) Proposals are sometimes sent back to departments for revision.  Depending on the nature of the recommended revisions and the time the department takes to submit a revised proposal, the proposal can be delayed for a longer period of time.


The effective term depends on the nature of the proposal and the publishing date of the next academic catalog.  The term will be determined in consultation with the Senate curriculum committee and the Registrar's office.  Note that the effective term is also affected by the State approval date (if the proposal needs State approval) and CUNY Central processing.

Most proposals take at least one year from the time they are received by the Senate Office to the effective term.

Proposals requiring review by the CUNY Common Core Committee, CAPPR, or New York State will probably take more time than other proposals.



Substantive Changes

Proposals that change the essential nature of a course or program are considered substantive.  


Routine Changes

Proposals for routine changes consist of changes in courses or programs that leave unaltered the essential nature of the course or program in question. We encourage departments and schools to consult with the Senate office whether a proposal can be considered routine.  Routine curriculum proposals must be prepared by the originating department/program in accordance with the format described in this document (Part C, Section III).  



Changes in course include change in name, prefix, number, pre- or co-requisites, hours, credits, or description.  The header should specify the type of change.  If the proposal requires a new course number or a change in number, please check with the Registrar's office if the new course number is available.  All departments and programs affected by the change should be consulted before the proposal is received by the Senate.

In the course form also indicate any special designations, such as inclusion into the Hunter Common Core, P&D, W, and the mode of instruction.  Note that courses approved for P&D or W may have sections without these designations.  Also, courses may have sections with a different mode of instruction.  However, courses with different modes of instructions must have the same learning outcomes (A new course proposal is required if the learning outcomes change).  The department should inform their students when a section of a course does not meet the approved requirements or if the mode of instruction has changed.  This information is provided when a course is scheduled on CUNYfirst, advising, and in the syllabus.  

A proposal for a substantive change in course must include a course syllabus.  A proposal for a routine change does not need a syllabus.   See Appendix D for the syllabus checklist.


1. General Education Requirements:  Adding or Removing Designations for Hunter Core Requirement, STEM Variant, Pluralism & Diversity, or Writing Intensive

Hunter Core Requirement (HCR):

Proposals for designating a new course in a HCR category must include a new course form, a completed CUNY Common Core Submission Form, and a sample syllabus.  Proposals for modifying an existing course and adding it to the HCR should include a change in existing course form, a CUNY Common Core Form, and a sample syllabus.  If an existing course is being added to the HCR without any changes to the course, the proposal should only consist of the CUNY Common Core Form and the syllabus.  Note that HCR courses are subject to additional CUNY rules:  they cannot have prerequisites other than ENGL 12000, they must be 3 credits and 3 hours, they cannot be designated in more than one HCR category, and they must be the liberal arts.  Courses in the HCR must meet the CUNY Learning Outcomes.  Although very few courses in the HCR are at the 200 level or above, course levels are not restricted. 

A Change in Existing Course proposal and a sample syllabus must be submitted to remove a course from a HCR category.  Be sure to mark Core Requirements accordingly. 

Word copies of the CUNY Common Core Submission Forms are available to download from the Senate website:


STEM Variant:

STEM Variant courses are permitted in the areas of Life & Physical Sciences, Scientific World, and Quantitative Reasoning. These courses must be required for a STEM major.  STEM Variant courses do not follow the same rules as regular HCR courses.  STEM Variant courses may be more than three credits.  Only three credits will be applied to the students' Core requirements and the remaining credits are electives or satisfy program requirements.  These courses may also satisfy more than one bucket. 

Proposals for designating a course STEM Variant must include the STEM Variant Form and a sample syllabus.  The description of the Hunter Core Requirement is stated in Appendix A. There is no need to also submit the CUNY Common Core Submission Form.  However, courses being proposed as STEM Variant must still meet the CUNY Learning Outcomes in the relevant area.


Pluralism & Diversity:

Proposals for designating a course in one of the Pluralism & Diversity groups must include the Pluralism & Diversity Form and a sample syllabus. 


Writing Intensive: 

Proposals for designating a course as Writing Intensive must include a Writing Intensive Form and a sample syllabus. 

Writing Intensive courses must meet the Senate-approved guidelines listed below. 

1. ENGL 12000 must be a pre- or co-requisite.

2. The course must be offered at least every two years.

3. The syllabus must state that over 50% of the course grade is based on written work.  The 50% can be achieved in a number of ways, but cannot be limited to in-class essay exams.  Writing due dates must allow faculty feedback prior to the final exam date.

4. Experimental courses and 400-level courses cannot be proposed for a "W" designation.


2. Cross-Listing Courses:

Cross-listing can be done either permanently or temporarily.  Proposals for permanently cross-listing or uncross-listing courses need to be submitted through the curriculum process using the Cross-Listing or Discontinuing the Cross-Listing of Courses form.  Department can also request that courses be temporarily cross-listed for two terms through the Registrar's Office.


3.  Inactivating and Reactivating Courses: 

Schools are responsible for requesting the inactivation of a course at the Registrar's Office. Departments and the relevant dean's offices must make decisions regarding inactivation and reactivation of courses cooperatively. In case of conflict, appeals may be made to the Course of Study Committee. Inactivation and reactivation as such do not require a course proposal. However, when reactivating a course, if the course is to change (name, credits, description, etc.) a proposal to change the course will need to be submitted in accordance with these Procedures for Preparing and Submitting Curriculum Proposals.  A new syllabus may be requested depending on how long ago the course was offered.


IV. Change in Degree Program and Minor (Including New Minors)

Includes modification of majors, certificates, and minors; new minors; changes in admission requirements; changes in graduation requirements; change in name of degree program; addition or deletion of a track or concentration.  Proposals that are interdisciplinary in nature must be approved by all departments and schools sponsoring the proposal.  All departments and programs affected by the change should be consulted before the proposal is received by the Senate. 

The proposal should show the complete text of existing requirements and of proposed requirements.  The State Education department requires that programs list ALL courses required for the major, including courses which serve as pre-requisites for required courses.

Proposal for new minors follow the same procedure as changes in degree programs.  


V. Advance Notice

CUNY calls for annual submissions of a comprehensive Prospectus for Program Development and Review via the Provost's Office (details below). To facilitate planning for those submissions, scheduling, and the availability of assistance and guidance to the sponsoring academic units, the Senate requests Advance Notice of anticipated major programmatic changes (e.g., creation of new degree programs or majors). Proposals submitted for consideration as a Final Prospectus (below) in the absence of a prior Advance Notice might be delayed.

The Advance Notice serves as a prospectus for many of the details that will be required for the fully developed and final proposal, including:

A. purpose and goals of the proposed change,

B. need and justification for the change,

C. student interest and enrollment,

D. curriculum,

E. faculty and staff, and

F. cost assessment.

There is no specific form or format required for the Advance Notice, and it is not expected that all issues will have been resolved by the time the Advance Notice is submitted. This is intended to serve as a planning document to facilitate the most efficient and effective final proposal. Advance Notices may be submitted at any time to the appropriate dean's office and forwarded to the Senate Office, however, in order to receive the full benefit of consultation and advisement by the relevant Senate curriculum committee, Advance Notices should be received by February 1 of each year. All units submitting notices by this date will receive feedback and guidance no later than April about how to proceed with submitting a Final Prospectus for proposals that are expected to move forward in the following academic year.

Final Prospectus for Program Development and Review.  No later than September 1, proposing entities (schools, departments, working groups of faculty), working through the appropriate deans' offices, shall submit to the Office of the Provost in a Final Prospectus details about major programmatic changes.  A comprehensive overview of all Final Prospectus submissions is due in the Senate Office, via the Provost, no later than September 1, for final review by the chairs of the Senate Undergraduate Course of Study and Graduate Course of Study Committees and the Administrative Committee. The Senate will attempt to process all submissions in as timely a manner as possible but will prioritize those programmatic proposals for which Advance Notices were received in accordance with its procedure and timeline above. The Senate Office will provide a response to the Provost, with advisories about any anticipated concerns and scheduling matters, no later than September 15.  Note: Items submitted for consideration as a Final Prospectus in the absence of a prior Advance Notice (above) might be delayed.

VI. New Degree Program

New Academic Programs include a new Degree Program, Certificate or Advanced Certificate Program, and establishing a Dual Degree Program from Existing Programs.

Proposal for a new Degree Program, please see the Faculty Handbook for the Preparation of New Academic Programs (Spring 2016) by the CUNY Office of Academic Affairs.  The Handbook is linked through the Senate website ( The recently revised procedure for developing new academic programs, as outlined in the handbook, must be carefully followed.  A single proposal must address all issues required for a full review. 

Proposals for a new Certificate, Advanced Certificate, Dual Degree Program, or a new degree program based on existing programs follow the same procedures as a substantive proposal.  See their forms in Part C. 

Note that before the proposal is received by the Senate Office, consultation with the College Administration is required and all participating units must have approved the proposal.

VII.  Non-Permanent Course (Experimental Course)

For rules on non-permanent courses, please refer to Appendix E.  To offer a non-permanent course, the department, school, or program offering the course must submit a form and syllabus to the Senate Office.  The Senate Office will forward the form to the Registrar's Office after it has been signed by the Senate chair.  Note that non-permanent courses can be offered for only two terms and cannot satisfy any requirements.  

VIII. Non-Curricular Action

Non-Curricular Actions refer to actions that affect academic units but do not necessarily change the curriculum.  These actions include changing, establishing, abolishing or reorganizing departments, schools, or programs; creation of centers or institutes; and, new exchange agreements. 

While these actions may be initiated by an academic department, these actions are generally initiated and introduced by the College administration.  If initiated by an academic department, it is essential that the College administration be consulted.

Non-Curricular Actions are submitted in the form of a proposal to the Senate office for review by the Senate Administrative Committee.  Depending on the proposal, review and approval by a Senate curriculum committee may be required as well.  Once reviewed by the Administrative Committee, a resolution stating the change will be added to the next Senate agenda for approval.

For a new exchange agreement, the agreement and a resolution establishing the exchange program must be received by the Senate office.  The agreement is reviewed by the Senate Administrative Committee and the resolution added to the Special Actions section of the Academic Matters of the Chancellor's University Report.  The Administrative Committee reviews the agreement to ensure it does not contradict any current Hunter College academic policy and that any relevant Hunter academic departments are consulted.

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