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February 03, 2017

Missouri Department of Higher Education set to begin statewide review of degree programs
Process will focus on ensuring high-quality, cost-effective programs

The Missouri Department of Higher Education announced this week that it will lead a review of degree programs offered at the state’s public colleges and universities. The purpose of the review is to identify programs that produce few graduates and are not meeting their goals.

State law calls for the Coordinating Board for Higher Education to periodically review the degree programs offered by Missouri’s public college and universities. The last review was conducted in 2010.

“As higher education needs change over time, we must take a close look at the degree programs being offered at our colleges and universities to ensure state resources are being invested wisely,” said Zora Mulligan, Missouri commissioner of higher education. “This process helps our higher education system focus on providing high-quality, cost-effective programs.”

The department will work with Missouri’s 14 two-year colleges and 13 four-year universities to complete the review.

The department will begin work on the new statewide program review immediately. The review should be completed by fall, and a report will be presented to the board in December.

In addition to a periodic review of existing degree programs, the Coordinating Board also approves new programs.

On Thursday, the board approved the first group of new degree programs since adopting a process in 2011 that requires provisional approval for a five-year period. At the end of five years, the department evaluates the quality and effectiveness of each program and recommends full approval, deletion or continued provisional status with a follow-up review in two years.

In addition to giving full approval to three programs, the board deleted two programs and approved a two-year follow-up for three programs.