Federal Requirement 4.4: Program Length
Program length is appropriate for each of the institution’s educational programs.
According to its Mission Statement, “The University of South Florida Sarasota‐Manatee provides high quality bachelor’s and graduate‐level education and scholarly activity in a personalized learning community that prepares successful leaders and responsible citizens.” To meet the mission, USF Sarasota-Manatee offers eighteen (18) baccalaureate degree programs of 120 semester credit hours each and nine (9) master’s degree programs of at least 30 semester credit hours each (See Degree Inventories 2014-15, 2015-16). Whether a student takes courses toward a degree program in face-to-face format or on-line format, the number of hours required for the degree is identical. The process that the faculty and USF Sarasota-Manatee uses to determine the appropriateness and sequencing of courses is described in Comprehensive Standard 3.4.1. (Academic Program Approval).
Bachelor’s Degree Level
All eighteen (18) of USF Sarasota-Manatee’s baccalaureate degrees meet the minimum semester credit hours cited in Core Requirement 2.7.1 (Program Length) of at least 120 semester credit hours. Note that the Early Childhood Education has no enrollment and is not accepting applications until demand increases; therefore, seventeen (17) programs are active. Florida Statute 1007.25(8) states the following: “A baccalaureate degree program shall require no more than 120 semester hours of college credit . . . unless prior approval has been granted by the Board of Governors.” Consistent with this statute and USF System Regulation 3.007, Section 2a, USF Sarasota-Manatee’s bachelor’s degrees require 120 hours. Minimum requirements for graduation also include 48 semester hours of upper-level work (courses numbered 3000 and above). The USF Sarasota-Manatee Academic Catalog for 2014-15 contains bachelor’s degree graduation requirements and course requirements for each bachelor’s degree.
Master’s Degree Level
USF Sarasota-Manatee offers nine (9) master’s degrees. Minimum requirements for all master’s degrees are 30 semester hours beyond the baccalaureate degree. Of the minimum 30 hours required for a master’s degree, at least sixteen (16) hours must be at the 6000 level. At least twenty (20) hours must be in formal, regularly scheduled course work, ten (10) of which must be at the 6000 level according to the Academic Catalog and in compliance with USF System Regulation 3.009, Graduate Degree Requirements. Seven (7) master’s degrees are active, and two (2) currently have no student enrollment and are not accepting applications until demand increases (MA in Elementary Education and MA in Reading Education). Course requirements for each master’s level program are in the USF Sarasota-Manatee Academic Catalog for 2014-15.
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