An external review of the proposed program is required if the program falls into any of the following categories:
- The program is a graduate degree program.
- The program’s subject matter represents a new or emerging field.
- An external review is requested by the Department.
The new program proposal must include the submission of:
1) a copy of the original, signed evaluation of the program by a recognized expert in the field who has been approved in advance by the State Education Department.
2) a copy of the email received from the institution’s Department liaison, providing advanced approval of the external evaluator.
3) the institution’s response to the evaluation, including how the proposal was modified in response to the reviewer’s comments.
Who qualifies as an appropriate external reviewer?
It is expected that the proposed external reviewer is a recognized expert in the field of the program, as demonstrated by appropriate educational credentials, professional experience and academic teaching and/or administrative experience in similar programs. The proposed reviewer must not have a conflict of interest or the appearance of a conflict of interest with the institution or program under review. There is a conflict of interest when the potential reviewer:
- is a present or former employee, student, member of the governing board, owner or shareholder of, or consultant to the institution that is seeking institutional accreditation from the Board of Regents;
- this includes those persons who may have consulted or helped develop the proposed program.
- is a spouse, parent, child, or sibling of an individual or persons listed above;
- has expressed an opinion for or against the proposed accreditation;
- is seeking or being sought for employment or other relationship with the institution under review;
- has a personal or professional relationship with the institution under review that might compromise objectivity; and/or
- has a competitive relationship with the institution that might compromise objectivity.
How is approval of an external reviewer obtained?
Approval of an external reviewer must be gained before the review is conducted. To obtain external reviewer approval, submit the names and CVs or biographies of proposed reviewers, usually three, with a brief description of the program to the institution’s OCUE liaison via email. The liaison will review the material and respond to the request for approval.