Criteria and Guidelines for the Establishment of Non-credit Certificate and Diploma Programs
Dean’s Office, Lifelong Learning, Simon Fraser University
- All non-credit certificates and diplomas offered by SFU need the approval of the Senate Committee on Continuing Studies. A non-credit certificate or diploma program should be initiated only if the subject matter is such that the University appears to be the most appropriate body to offer the instruction.
- A program must have a clearly defined educational objective and rationale. The rationale should include a statement of required University resources, such as Library resources, an assessment of community needs and a survey of other similar programs at SFU and elsewhere.
- A program must be under the direct and ongoing supervision of an academic unit of the University or an Academic Program Steering Committee.
- The unit or Academic Program Steering Committee will be responsible for ensuring the academic rigor of the curriculum and the quality of instruction. The majority of the members of a steering committee should be appointed from the academic units most closely associated with the program.
- Programs will consist of non-credit courses that may vary in length and format from standard university credit courses but that will include a minimum of 120 instructional hours in total (including face-to-face and/or on-line lectures, labs, seminars, and tutorials) for certificates. Noncredit diploma programs must have a minimum of 350 instructional hours.
- Programs being proposed as suitable for certificate or diploma granting status are to be submitted to the Senate Committee on Continuing Studies for consideration and approval. Program proposals must include: educational objectives and rationale (see #2); and a description of course/s (learning objectives, content, duration, evaluation). Programs must require that students maintain satisfactory performance in each course to remain eligible for a non-credit certificate or diploma.
- The Senate Committee on Continuing Studies will also be responsible for approving changes to programs and for approving discontinuance of programs.
Approved by Senate, December 2, 2013