COLLEGE APPROVAL OF 3000 AND 4000 LEVEL COURSES AT FIRELANDS COLLEGE
Guidelines for Department Chairs/School Directors
Firelands College, as a regional campus of Bowling Green State University, awards a number of two-year associate degrees, offers the first two years of many main campus programs, and is capable of providing the site for selected baccalaureate degree programs (offered by main campus departments). Therefore the content of most courses which are taught at Firelands is the same as those taught at the main campus. The departments at Firelands have responsibility for annual evaluation of its faculty. But main campus departments are consulted at critical points regarding the Firelands faculty and upper division course offerings.
First, when a faculty member is hired at Firelands College, the appropriate main campus department chair certifies the Firelands faculty member's qualifications to teach specific upper division courses. If at a later time Firelands proposes that that faculty member teach a 3000 or 4000 level course for which he or she has not been certified, the main campus department is again consulted regarding the Firelands faculty member's credentials to teach that course.
Second, every two years the dean of Firelands College submits lists of upper division courses to the appropriate main campus deans, along with a rationale of the need for that course at Firelands. This list is divided into three parts: a) courses which are parts of degree programs offered at Firelands, b) courses which have been taught previously at Firelands, and c) new listings. The college deans, in turn, consult with main campus department chairs regarding these lists.
In assessing the appropriateness or inappropriateness of having a course offered at Firelands, department chairs should base their decision on the following criteria. If one or more of the following criteria are met, the course would normally be approved.
- The course is part of an associate degree program offered by Firelands College.
- The course is part of a baccalaureate degree program offered at Firelands by a main campus college.
- Freshmen and sophomores enroll in the course at the main campus.
- The course is offered at other 2 year campuses (branch campuses, community colleges, or technical colleges) as a lower division course and is allowed to transfer into Bowling Green as an upper division course.
- The field is an area of expertise of the Firelands faculty member (as certified initially by the main campus department).
- The course fulfills a General Education requirement in one or more colleges of the university.
- The course must be taken by students by the end of their second year if they are to matriculate successfully into the junior year of a program at main campus.
- There is a demand from Firelands College students or by the local community for a specific course.
If criterion #1 or #2 is the basis for the Firelands request, the approval is routine and is essentially a matter of information to chairs. We cannot challenge the offering of courses which have already been approved by the university when the degree program was authorized to be offered at the Firelands campus.
Chairs should focus primarily on courses which have not been offered before at Firelands. If approval to offer a 3000 or 4000 level course is denied, please be specific in your rationale for that denial. If the course to be offered at Firelands is acceptable, but the faculty member listed has never been approved by your department, you may approve the course contingent upon Firelands College finding a faculty member with the appropriate credentials to teach the course. That faculty member must be approved by the main campus department.
As a point of clarification to new chairs, Firelands College does not and cannot offer four year degree programs. Two year campuses are prevented by Ohio law from awarding baccalaureate degrees. And several structural arrangements prevent students from being able to complete their degree programs at Firelands College. First, the Firelands curriculum does not allow more than 20% of its course offerings at the 3000 and 4000 level in any given year. Secondly, unless special arrangements are made, individual Firelands faculty members teach no more than four upper division courses in a two year period. Most teach fewer than that.
Four-year degree programs are available at Firelands only if main campus colleges and departments choose to make their programs available there (in order to reach adult students who are unable to commute.) Firelands College is willing to cooperate with any college, department, or program which would like to expand its clientele.