80.06 Attachment DL-1 Issued: August 16, 2001
Planning, Development, Approval and Review
of Distance Learning Education Programs
The purpose of this procedure is to provide guidance to individuals wanting to convert existing programs
(or develop new programs) for delivery using some form of distance learning. Distance learning exists
when the majority of the instruction occurs when the student and instructor are not in the same
physical setting. A class is considered a distance education class if students receive more than one-
half of the instruction at a distance. A program is considered a distance education program if the
student may complete more than 50% of the program away from the main campus of the University.
2. General Provisions and Requirements
2.1 Before a program may be presented in any distance mode, the program and the related courses
must be included in the inventory of programs and courses approved by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
2.2 Before a program may be presented in any distance mode, the program must be approved for
distance learning by the Board of Regents of The Texas A&M University System; the THECB
must be notified; and the appropriate filing made with the Southern Association of Colleges and
Schools (SACS) and any other accrediting agencies which are concerned with the particular
degree or program.
2.3 Before a specific course may be presented in any distance mode, the course must be approved
for distance learning by the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.
2.4 The President appoints the University Distance Learning Council. The council has representation
from each academic college or school, each special activity that has a mission of education using
distance-learning technologies, and the Student Government Association. The council is
responsible for assuring that both programs and courses are developed in compliance with the
approved distance learning procedures. [See Administrative Procedure 80.07 for more
information on the University Distance Learning Council.]
2.5 On a schedule to be determined by the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, the
University Distance Learning Council shall review each existing distance learning program and
recommend any needed modifications.
2.6 Nothing in this procedure changes the administrative structure of the academic unit responsible
for administering the degree or program.
3.1 The Provost shall approve a Coordinator for each program to be offered via distance learning.
A Coordinator may supervise the conversion of multiple programs.
3.2 The Coordinator is to determine the sequence of course conversions and identify faculty trained
for distance education that will provide instructional materials for each course.
3.3 The Coordinator will provide assistance to the distance education instructor as needed.
3.4 Upon conversion of an appropriate number of courses, the Coordinator is to request review of
the program by the University Distance Learning Council.
3.5 Upon satisfactory review of the program, the Council will recommend that the Provost certify
compliance with the Principles of Good Practice and request approval from the President and
the Board of Regents to offer the program.
3.6 Upon approval by the Board of Regents, the Provost is to notify the THECB, SACS,and any
interested accrediting agency of the commencement of the program.
3.7 The Coordinator, in cooperation with the academic department, is to file the necessary
documents to meet the requirements of the accrediting agencies.
3.8 At appropriate intervals as determined by the Provost, the Coordinator is to provide the University
Distance Learning Council reports, evaluations, and other information needed for the review of a specific program.
Point of Contact: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
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