Montana State University

Standard 2.A

Standard 2.A - General Requirements

The institution offers collegiate level programs that culminate in identified student competencies and lead to degrees or certificates in recognized fields of study. The achievement and maintenance of high quality programs is the primary responsibility of an accredited institution; hence, the evaluation of educational programs and their continuous improvement is an ongoing responsibility. As conditions and needs change, the institution continually redefines for itself the elements that result in educational programs of high quality.

2.A.1 The institution demonstrates its commitment to high standards of teaching and learning by providing sufficient human, physical, and financial resources to support its educational programs and to facilitate student achievement of program objectives whenever and however they are offered.
2.A.2 The goals of the institution's educational programs, whenever and however offered, including instructional policies, methods, and delivery systems, are compatible with the institution's mission. They are developed, approved, and periodically evaluated under established institutional policies and procedures through a clearly defined process.
2.A.3 Degree and certificate programs demonstrate a coherent design; are characterized by appropriate breadth, depth, sequencing of courses, synthesis of learning, the assessment of learning outcomes; and require the use of library and other information sources.
2.A.4 The institution uses degree designators consistent with program content. In each field of study or technical program, degree objectives are clearly defined: the content to be covered, the intellectual skills, creative capabilities, and methods of inquiry to be acquired; and, if applicable, the specific career-participation competencies to be mastered.
2.A.5 The institution provides evidence that students enrolled in programs offered in concentrated or abbreviated timeframes demonstrate mastery of program goals and course objectives.
2.A.6 The institution is able to equate its learning experiences with semester or quarter credit hours using practices common to institutions of higher education, to justify the lengths of its programs in comparison to similar programs found in regionally accredited programs of higher education, and to justify any program-specific tuition in terms of program costs, program length, and program objectives.
2.A.7 Responsibility for design, approval, and implementation of the curriculum is vested in designated institutional bodies with clearly established channels of communication and control. The faculty has a major role and responsibility in the design, integrity, and implementation of the curriculum.
2.A.8 Faculty, in partnership with library and information resources personnel, ensure that the use of library and information resources are integrated into the learning process.
2.A.9 The institution's curriculum (programs and courses) is planned both for optimal learning and accessible scheduling.
2.A.10 Credit for prior experiential learning is awarded only in accordance with Policy 2.3 - Credit for Prior Experiential Learning, Accreditation Handbook, page 39.
2.A.11 Policies, regulations, and procedures for additions and deletions of courses or programs are systematically and periodically reviewed.
2.A.12 In the event of program elimination or significant change in requirements, institutional policy requires appropriate arrangements to be made for enrolled students to complete their program in a timely manner and with a minimum of disruption.