Course Proposal: Basic Catalog Information
Most of the time the first term that is listed in the drop down menu should be selected. The action of publishing the creation, changing, or discontinuing of a course occurs 3 times a year at the start of the fall, spring and summer terms. This is commonly referred to as the effective date or effective term.
If a course does not exist or the changes have not been approved for a given effective term it can not be used for curricular requirements in the Guide and will not appear in the Course Guide, Schedule of Classes or the Enrollment App for that term.
By selecting the first term in the drop down menu the proposer is indicating that the new course or the course changes should appear in campus publications and be available for scheduling as soon as possible. It does not mean that the course must be scheduled in the first term that it is available.
It is possible to select a later term if there is a reason why the course should not appear in campus publications or be available for use in the Guide until a later date.
There are deadlines for when changes to an existing course may be made effective based on the publication of the Schedule of Classes. If the proposer has selected an effective term and the deadline has passed for that term, the proposal will be updated administratively for the effective term that is the first available at that point in time. The deadlines for the current academic year are published as part of the University Curriculum Committee meeting calendar.
Should this course have the graduate attribute?
If no is selected: the audience for the course is assumed to be undergraduate students and the course number will be restricted to 1 - 699 and the section of the form for course designations will be available.
If yes is selected the proposer must also indicate whether the course will:
- Enroll undergraduates and graduate or professional students - the course number will be restricted to 300 - 699 and the section of the form for course designations will be available.
- Enroll graduate or professional students only - the course number will be restricted to 300 - 999 and the section of the form for course designations will not be available. If the course is numbered below 700 the course requisites should limit the course to graduate or professional students.
The course requisites must align with the intended audience of the course.
The selection of a subject impacts the approval workflow for the proposal. While anyone can propose a course in any subject listing, all proposals must be approved by the department that owns the subject listing and the school or college that owns that department. The same is true with any cross-list partners that are selected. Additional approvals may be needed depending on responses to other questions in the proposal form.
Must be between 1 and 999.
The course proposal system is programmed to display an error message if a selected course number is not available because it is currently in use or is discontinued but has had enrollment in the past 8 years. An error message will also appear of the course number does not align with the response to the graduate attribute question.
All cross-list partners:
- must have the selected course number available for use
- are considered equal partners in owning and maintaining the course (When a class is offered in a given term a "primary" is designated for scheduling and enrollment management purposes, this is distinct from the overall responsibility for the course which is shared equally.)
Proposers are asked to consider carefully whether it is necessary to cross-list a course. Please recognize that there are very few "good" reasons for cross-listing courses. Cross-listing is an vestige of a time when the class schedule (aka Timetable) and catalog were paper only and it was more difficult for students to search and find courses. Today, students use google and other search tools to locate what they are looking for using key words. Students will be far more likely to find a course if the title and description contain the key words they are using in searches. Cross-listing does not give a subject/department "credit" in the budget allocation or other campus reporting systems. The interdisciplinary nature of many courses and the fact that there are over 180 subject listings also make it difficult to use subjects as an effective tool for categorizing and searching for courses.
This field has a character limit of 100. This is the title that is used in Course Guide, Guide, Canvas and other campus systems and publications where space is not an issue. Titles should be unique in most situations. Exceptions would include independent/directed study and other similar courses where the title simply describes the basic activity of the course (ex. Research and Thesis, Directed Study etc.).
This field has a character limit of 30. This is the title that appears on the student transcript.
This field has a character limit of 1000. The description should briefly and succinctly describe the content, purpose or primary skills developed in the course that will be common across all offerings of the course regardless of instructor.
- Do not repeat the course title, credits, planned offering, or requisites in the course description.
- For succinctness, do not begin with "This course".
- Complete sentences are not necessary.
- Don't describe instructional methods or activities unless it is intrinsic to the course (different instructors may wish to employ different instructional methods).
- Be concise; too much detail may restrict the ability to adapt the course in future years.
- Course descriptions are used in searches, be sure to use words that might be key search terms when describing the content of the course.
This information will appear at the end of the course description. It intended for critical, enrollment related information that does not change unless other catalog-level elements (course title, description, credits, attributes etc.) change. It is not a place to list enforceable requisites, how the course might meet requirements for a specific program or any other information that can be found elsewhere in places such as program requirements, schedule of classes etc. Most of the time this field will say None. It is separated from the course description by Enroll info:
This will be populated in course change proposals only. It is the text that describes the enforced requisite (aka requirement group) as coded in SIS.
Proposers should use this field to describe changes to the existing requisite on a course change proposal or the text for the enforced course requisite on a new proposal. On an edit proposal if the requisite is not changing it is not necessary to enter anything here; the existing requisite will be retained.
Requisites are the required academic preparation necessary to be successful in the course. This should not be used for enrollment management purposes.
This determines what options are available to the course instructor when entering final grades.
Available grading bases include:
Courses numbered 681 or 691 - Contact email@example.com about the creation of or changes to courses with these numbers. There is an additional, small administrative step that is needed.
Component types are used for scheduling and reporting purposes, they are not intended to describe the instructional methods of the course.
Lecture (LEC) - the most typically used component, covers most group instruction
Seminars (SEM) - generally these are small discussion oriented courses
Field Studies (FLD) - takes place in a work setting
Discussion (DIS) - attached to a lecture where the discussion is a subset of the lecture enrollment
Laboratory (LAB) - hands on learning
Independent study (IND) - one-on-one instruction, no group instruction
Course Components that may be used in combination:
A course with a single meeting pattern (ex. MWF 8:50 - 9:40) would likely be either LEC, SEM or LAB etc. depending on the size and purpose. A course where a student needs to enroll in 2 components (ex. MWF 8:50 - 9:40 and one of several 1x/week sessions) would likely be LEC/DIS or LEC/LAB etc.
The sample syllabus must include information about all components selected.
UW-Madison has a credit hour policy that must be observed by all for-credit courses. This policy also applies to courses not just when they are proposed but each time they are offered.
Variable credit courses should be entered as #-# (ex. 3-4).
The syllabus provided must reflect the maximum credit offering.
All versions of a topics course with the same subject/course number combination must have a common set of learning outcomes. Additional learning outcomes may be added on a topic by topic basis.
Can a student successfully complete this course, for credit, more than once?
If a course is repeatable, what is the limit on the number of times it may be repeated for credit? This is represented in the number of times the student enrolls and completes a course (earning at least a D and thus receiving credit). The default is 99, enter this if the student may repeat the course for credit as many times as they choose.
Commonly used with topics courses where each section represents a separate, stand alone course. Answering yes would allow an individual student to enroll in the course more than once in a given term.
This question appears on new course proposals numbered 698 or lower because it is a required part of the course catalog entry in SIS. It is used by the Office of the Registrar and is not governance approved course information. It can be changed at a later date by contacting the Office of the Registrar.