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Meeting of the Board of Regents | May 2009

Friday, May 1, 2009 - 8:30am

sed seal                                                                                                 






Full Board


Johanna Duncan-Poitier




Master Plan Amendment: Union Graduate College




May 5, 2009




Goals 2 and 4






Issue for Decision (Consent Agenda)


Should the Board of Regents approve an amendment to the master plan of Union Graduate College to allow the College to offer Master of Arts (M.A.) programs in English, History, and English and History?


Reason(s) for Consideration


Required by State regulation.


Proposed Handling


The question will come before the Board of Regents for consideration at its May 2009 meeting, where it will be voted on and action taken.


Procedural History


Union Graduate College submitted a proposal requesting registration of Master of Arts programs in English, History, and English and History. The programs represent the College’s first master’s programs in the humanities and social sciences disciplines.


The Department conducted a canvass of all degree-granting institutions of higher education in the Northeast region. No institutions responded.


Background Information


Union Graduate College, Schenectady, New York, seeks to amend its master plan to offer instruction leading to Master of Arts (M.A.) degrees in English, History, and English and History. Master plan amendment is necessary as the proposed programs will be the College’s first master’s degree programs in the disciplines of social sciences and humanities. The Regents will consider separately a related charter amendment to authorize the College to award the Master of Arts degree.


The proposed programs, which were evaluated by two external reviewers, are designed primarily for professionals seeking a master’s degree as a terminal degree. Program candidates may include museum personnel, librarians, advertising writers, writers, secondary school teachers, local historians, and other professionals. In addition, the programs will serve those seeking a master’s degree in preparation for pursuing a Ph.D. in English, history, or an interdisciplinary program such as American studies or comparative literature.


Each program will consist of 11 courses, for a total of 36.63 semester hours. At least seven of the courses will be in the academic discipline of the degree. In the case of the interdisciplinary program, students will complete at least four courses in each of the disciplines. As a capstone, each student will undertake research in the academic discipline or interdisciplinary concentration by completing either a two-term thesis supervised by an academic faculty member or a one-term MA project on action research. First-year enrollment is expected to be five students (full- and part-time combined), with enrollment growing to 20 by the fifth year.


The Department has determined that the proposed programs meet the standards of registration set forth in the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education.




It is recommended that the Board of Regents approve the amendment to the master plan of Union Graduate College to allow the College to offer programs in English, History, and English and History leading to the Master of Arts degree. The amendment will be effective until May 19, 2010, unless the Department registers the programs prior to that date, in which case master plan amendment shall be without term.


Timetable for Implementation


If the Board of Regents approves the master plan amendment and (under separate action) related charter amendment, the Department will register the programs and the institution will proceed to recruit and enroll students.