I. Definitions

See Section VI at the end of the policy.

II. Purpose of the Liaison Process

Most curricular proposals require liaison with Academic Units outside of the unit originating the proposal. Liaisons provide valuable input on the academic merit of a proposal as well as provide guidance on curricular structure, format, and student or industry impact. In addition, the liaison process notifies academic units of impending changes that may impact them.

The liaison process serves a crucial role in supporting the University’s strategic plan by fostering collaboration and innovation while also reducing curricular duplication in courses and programs (majors, minors, options and certificates).

The Expedited Proposal Policy lists proposal exceptions for which the liaison process is not required.

III. Liaison Requirements

Selecting a minimum of three Academic Liaisons is required for all proposals. If the originator of the proposal is not the head of the Originating Academic Unit, then the head of the Originating Academic Unit must be a liaison and does not count towards the minimum number of liaisons.

Administrative units may be invited to participate in the liaison process but do not count toward the minimum liaison requirements.

Additional requirements for selecting liaisons are detailed below. For help with identifying liaisons, contact the Registrar's Office.

For new and change program proposals:

  • Academic Units with programs related to or similar to the program referenced in the proposal must be a liaison. For example, a program on business analytics must include Academic Liaisons from the College of Engineering and the Department of Statistics as those Academic Units may have programs and/or courses relevant to analytics.
  • Academic Units that offer courses included in the program must be a liaison. This includes courses that are required for the program, meet an elective requirement, or are prerequisites for courses in the program.
  • A minimum of two Academic Liaisons must be from outside the college associated with the Originating Academic Unit; the remaining liaisons can be from within the college but must be outside the Originating Academic Unit. If the Originating Academic Unit is the college, then all three liaisons must be from outside the college.

For new course proposals:

  • Academic Units with a programmatic level of expertise related to the subject matter in the course proposal should be a liaison. For example, a proposed class on labor ethics should include an Academic Liaison from the School of History, Philosophy, and Religion as that Academic Unit has programmatic expertise in ethics.
  • A minimum of one Academic Liaison must be from outside the college associated with the Originating Academic Unit; the remaining liaisons can be from within the college but must be outside the Originating Academic Unit. If the Originating Academic Unit is the college, then the remaining liaisons may come from within the college.

For change course proposals:

  • Academic Liaisons must be manually added by the proposal originator the first time a course or program goes through the CIM system. In the future, those selections will prepopulate in the proposal but additional liaisons may also be added or existing liaisons removed.
IV. Liaison Process
  • Academic Liaisons are contacted through CIM and have 10 business days to respond.
  • A Reviewer may request an additional Academic Liaison or Subject Matter Liaison if they believe that the additional liaison can provide significant and necessary input on the proposal. 
  • The Graduate Council and/or Curriculum Council may require additional liaisons if the council members feel the proposal has not received sufficient liaison responses or the proposal would benefit from a more comprehensive set of liaisons. Either council may also require the Originating Academic Unit address any concerns voiced by Academic Liaisons before moving the proposal forward in the curricular review process.
V. Liaison Responsibility

Liaison responses are encouraged in order to expedite the processing of proposals. 

A non-response from a liaison will be interpreted as the liaison had no issues with the proposal and the proposal will move forward in the curricular review process.

VI. Definitions

For purposes of this policy, the following definitions apply: 

  • Academic Unit: As per the Office of Academic Programs and Assessments (APA), an Academic Unit may be a college, school, department, or program. For example, the College of Engineering includes six schools and has multiple programs situated within those schools (e.g., mechanical engineering, industrial engineering). The college, schools, and programs may each be considered an academic unit.
  • Originating Academic Unit: The Academic Unit identified in the course or program proposal as having primary oversight and responsibility for the course or program.
  • Academic Liaison: An Academic Unit whose primary function is teaching and research and which may be designated as a liaison in CIM. 
  • Subject Matter Liaison: An individual invited to comment on a proposal and who has subject matter expertise relevant to the subject matter of the proposal.
  • Administrative Unit: The University administrative divisions and offices (e.g., Office of Faculty Affairs, Division of Enrollment Management, Division of Ecampus, and Office of Undergraduate Education); also includes any departments, offices, and units that are nested within the administrative divisions and offices (e.g., Office of the Registrar, Office of Admissions, and Academic Learning Services).
  • Reviewer: An individual in one of the approval roles defined in the curricular review workflow process (e.g., Faculty Senate councils), designated as the liaison representative for an Academic Unit, or invited as a Subject Matter Liaison.
Approved By Date
Faculty Senate Curriculum Council 02/19/2020
Faculty Senate Curriculum Council 05/24/2019
Faculty Senate Curriculum Council 05/15/2018