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Guidelines for New Course Prefixes

The following guidelines are developed to assist departments in developing new course prefixes. New prefixes should only be requested when new disciplinary areas are identified and when enough curricula exists or will soon be generated to justify a separate prefix. Therefore, prefixes are developed at the program level, not for individual courses.

When developing a new course prefix, departments should proceed as follows:

  • Ensure that the proposed prefix is consistent with existing naming patterns and curricula within the Department, School, College, and SUNY with attention to system-wide transfer pathways as appropriate.
  • Propose prefixes that would serve to clarify course options for students.
  • Avoid prefixes that would be relevant only for a short period of time.
  • Propose a prefix or prefixes that are four letters in length.

The following steps are to be used to guide the approval process of a new course prefix:

  • When a new course prefix is initially proposed, department chairs will consult with the Registrar to ensure that the prefix is not duplicative and clearly reflects the broad program area it is intended to represent.
  • In cases where prefixes are created by interdisciplinary entities or are intended to represent courses offered across multiple departments or programs, the chairs or directors of these interdisciplinary programs will be consulted early in the planning process.
  • Once approved by the department, the chair will present the proposed prefix for approval by the appropriate school-level governance (e.g., curriculum committee).
  • When approved by the school, the department chair will consult with the dean for approval.
  • The dean will present the proposed prefix to the Provost’s Cabinet for final approval.
  • Once approved, the Provost will notify the Registrar’s Office of the new prefix.