North Carolina State University
SACS Compliance Certification
August 15, 2003

Comprehensive Standards: Educational Programs 3.4.7 (quality of consortia, contract programs)
The institution ensures the quality of educational programs/courses offered through consortia relationships or contractual agreements, ensures ongoing compliance with the comprehensive requirements, and evaluates the agreement against the purpose of the institution.

North Carolina State University is in compliance with this standard.

Participating in consortia is consistent with NC State University’s mission as a land-grant university providing the people of the state with expanded access to higher education.  However, the university also recognizes its responsibility for ensuring that the courses and programs available via consortia are of high quality, comply with comprehensive requirements and mesh well with the university’s own purpose. 

NC State University participates in two consortia: the first includes the other schools in the University of North Carolina System and Duke University; the second is the Cooperating Raleigh Colleges (CRC), a voluntary organization composed of NC State University, Meredith College, Peace College, St. Augustine's College, and Shaw University.  All institutions in both consortia are accredited by the Commission on Colleges, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. 

Further, all policies described below apply equally to on-campus and distance education students.

Participation by Undergraduate Students
NC State University undergraduates who want to take a course via either consortium must meet a number of requirements designed to ensure that the requested course is appropriate for their programs and the university’s mission.

First, if they want to take a course at another institution during the fall or spring semester, they must be degree-seeking students and enrolled in at least eight credit hours on the NC State University campus.  During the summer they must also take at least one course on the NC State University campus during the same session.  Interinstitutional registration is not offered during the summer through the CRC program. 

Further, students can only register for courses not offered by the university during the relevant term.  While such courses taken may apply toward fulfilling graduation requirements, the grades are not used in computing an NC State University student's grade point average.

Moreover, students may only register for one course on a space available basis via the first consortium or two courses via the CRC.  Under extenuating circumstances, exceptions for an additional course registration may be approved by the student's college dean. 

This instance of administrative approval suggests perhaps the most important requirement.  Prospective students must gain the approval of their academic advisors and college deans before the interinstitutional registration is accepted.  Faculty and administrative approval is of highest importance because they know their educational programs best and also know what each student needs to complete their programs.  Interinstitutional registration is approved if the requested course is of sufficient quality and satisfies the student’s educational program. 

Participation by Graduate Students
As with undergraduates, graduate students at NC State University can also take courses through the two consortia as long as program requirements are satisfied and the requested course fits with the requesting student’s curriculum.  Not only can NC State University students take courses at other
institutions, but also graduate faculty from consortium institutions may serve on graduate committees supervising students' research.  Chapter 3, section 3.16F of the Graduate Administrative Handbook summarizes the program requirements. 

On the graduate level, NC State University students can take interinstitutional courses at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and Duke University.  NC State University graduate students may also take courses offered by North Carolina A&T University or by the University of North Carolina at Charlotte over the Microelectronics Center of North Carolina communications system.   

To enroll in any of these courses, prospective students must solicit the approval of their advisory committees.  Further, they can only register for these courses on NC State University’s own campus, using forms obtained from the Department of Registration and Records.  Also, the student must be registered for courses at NC State University during the same session. 

NC State University graduate students can also take courses through the CRC program at Meredith College, the only other CRC institution offering graduate classes.  First, only if the prospective student is enrolled in at least three graduate credit hours at NC State University can he or she take a course at Meredith College during the fall or spring semester.  Second, the course must not be offered by NC State University.  Third, the student’s advisory committee must consider the course educationally desirable. 

Moreover, NC State University students cannot take more than two courses in any semester at Meredith, and not more than six of the required academic credits for a master's degree at NC State University may be accepted from that institution.  Grades from Meredith College are not used in computing a student's NC State University grade point average.  Further, additional fees may be charged by Meredith College and they are the responsibility of the student. 

Joint Program in Biomedical Engineering
In addition to these two consortia, in fall 2003, NC State University is implementing a new graduate program in biomedical engineering (BME) to be offered jointly with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  The program will be administered by the combined BME graduate faculty from both institutions and will be supervised by the respective department head at each institution.  It is expected that NC State University’s participation in this consortium will be fully compliant with the terms of the present standard.  The program is fully consistent with the mission of each university.  Both institutions are committed to ensuring that the program offerings are of the highest quality and that the program is consistent with comprehensive standards.


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