Associate Degree Pathway

Associate Degree Pathways are defined sets of lower-division courses related to a specific curricular area (e.g., Anthropology pathway in the Associate of Arts degree, Business Administration pathway in the Associate of Science degree). Pathways include required and/or recommended courses in core curriculum areas A through E, along with required and elective courses in area F. Although pathways define particular avenues for attaining an associate degree, they do no not constitute discrete academic programs and are not normally subject to review outside the scope of the annual core curriculum learning outcomes assessment process. Pathways that include a substantial number of courses that are not part of the core curriculum, however, are subject to additional assessment measures.

Related Bachelors Programs: As many associate degree pathways provide the foundation for pursuit of a related bachelors program (e.g., English AA pathway and English BA; Biology AS pathway and Biology BS), any proposal for a new pathway must also include review of any related bachelors programs. Although they are not required to be identical, the associate-level pathway must map onto the bachelors program in a manner that eliminates the need for students transitioning from Perimeter College to the Atlanta campus to take additional Area F courses or carry forward courses that do not count toward the bachelors program.

Proposal Format

Proposals should include the information below, as well as any items required by the originating department or college.

  • Perimeter College contact names and email/phone numbers for associate pathway
  • Department and college for each related bachelors program, with contact names and email/phone numbers
  • Date of submission
  • Implementation term
  • Pathway overview and general rationale for establishment of pathway
  • Complete curriculum (i.e., catalog copy) for both associate pathway and any related bachelors program. This should include for each any recommendations for core curriculum Areas A through E, the complete Area F curriculum, and any additional curricular or admissions requirements relating to the pathway or bachelors program.
  • Evidence of the need for and interest in the pathway, including projected enrollments.
  • Anticipated impact on other pathways/programs within the offering department, the college, or the university. What effect is expected on enrollment in related bachelors programs? What is the expected impact on student progress?
  • Additional resource requirements, if any, and budget implications (e.g., personnel costs, library acquisitions, computing/equipment costs, facilities and other operating costs, graduate student support). Intended method of funding additional costs if any.
  • Administration of the pathway. In particular, provide information about how faculty and administrators worked together across colleges on the development of the proposal and will how they plan to work collaboratively for the betterment of the pathway and related programs in the future.
  • Advisement process and resources for students in the pathway, particularly as they relate to helping students transition successfully from the associate pathway to related bachelors programs.
  • Offices, departments, committees, and individuals consulted during the development of the proposal.
  • Approval path for the proposal, noting all formal department- or college-level votes.

Approval Process

The approval process for proposals consists of the steps below.

  1. Proposals should be considered and approved by the originating academic department affiliated with the pathway. Additionally, if the new pathway has any related bachelors programs, then the proposal must also be approved by the academic unit(s) affiliated with the related program(s). Approval by departments at this stage, including any formal vote, should be noted as specified in the proposal.
  2. Proposals for new pathways require the approval of the dean of Perimeter College and the dean of any related bachelors program. Each dean may elect to require that the proposal first be reviewed or formally considered by college faculty, a college undergraduate committee, or some other college-level body. Approval by at this stage, including any formal votes, should be noted as specified in the proposal.
  3. The deans should send approved proposals to the chair of the University Senate Committee on Academic Programs (CAP) by October 31 for implementations beginning the following fall. Within CAP, the proposal will be deliberated on by the Undergraduate Council subcommittee. The subcommittee chair will include the Associate Provost for Institutional Effectiveness (APIE) in the dissemination of the proposal to committee members. The APIE may request that notable issues be addressed before subcommittee review commences.
  4. The subcommittee may elect to invite the proposing parties to attend a meeting at which the proposal is discussed. The subcommittee will then make a final decision on the proposal, and will report the results of the review as an information item at the next full CAP meeting.
  5. The chair of CAP will notify the APIE in writing of the recommendation of CAP, copying the dean of the colleges submitting the proposal.
  6. The provost, on behalf of the university president, will make the final decision on implementation of the new pathway. If the provost’s recommendation is positive, the new pathway can be officially added to the university curriculum (i.e., added to the associate catalog and other curricular systems). The APIE will notify the deans of the submitting colleges and the chair of CAP of these final results.