EFFECTIVE DATE: August 15, 2016
ISSUE #: 2
PRESIDENT: Michael A. Olivas (Interim)
As part of the requirements for regional accreditation, the University of Houston-Downtown
is obligated to follow the substantive change procedures of the Commission on Colleges of
the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools- Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
and to inform SACSCOC of any changes in its programs and activities in accordance with
those procedures. This PS establishes guidelines to ensure that UHD remains in compliance
with these requirements.
2.1 Academic administrator: Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, Associate
and Assistant Vice Presidents for Academic Affairs, Deans, Associate and Assistant
Deans, Department Chairs, Assistant Department Chairs, Degree Program Coordinators.
2.2 SACSCOC Liaison: SACSCOC Accreditation Liaison. The person, appointed by the
President, who serves as the primary and official intermediary between the university and
2.3 SACSCOC substantive change policy: Substantive Change for Accredited Institutions of the Commission on Colleges.
2.4 Substantive change: According to the SACSCOC substantive change policy, “a
significant modification or expansion of the nature and scope of an accredited
institution.” Examples include but are not limited to the following:
2.4.1 The addition of courses or programs that represent a significant departure, either
in content or method of delivery, from those that were offered when the
institution was last evaluated.
2.4.2 Any change in the established mission or objectives of the institution.
2.4.3 The establishment of an additional location geographically apart from the main
campus at which the institution offers at least 50% of an educational program.
2.4.4 Entering into a collaborative academic arrangement that includes only the
initiation of a duel or joint academic program with another institution.
3.1 All academic administrators and SACSCOC liaison whose responsibilities may involve
them in actions that could constitute substantive changes will maintain a current
understanding of the SACSCOC substantive change policy and of this policy. They
will especially be knowledgeable about the types of actions that constitute substantive
changes, the procedures required for each type, and the time frames for each type
(Types of Substantive Change and Procedures).
3.2 A Compliance Standing Committee of at least 6 academic and non-academic
administrators and faculty, excluding the SACSCOC Liaison will be appointed by the
Provost for 3-year staggered terms with shorter terms as needed upon first appointments.
3.2.1 Conduct regular review of any policies, recommendations or requirements from
SACSCOC and Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB) that are
required for compliance.
3.2.2 Share knowledge of, and information about, actions and proposed actions that
may constitute changes based on the review, with academic and non-academic
administrators and other relevant stakeholders.
4.1 Academic administrators (Deans/Provost/President) will complete UHD Compliance Change form and will:
4.1.1 Review the SACSCOC substantive change policy annually.
4.1.2 Inform the SACSCOC Liaison of actions and proposed actions that may
constitute substantive changes according to the SACSCOC policy and complete
the substantive change form.
4.1.3 Assist the SACSCOC Liaison in preparing and submitting to SACSCOC any
letter of notification, prospectus, application, or other materials that are
required for compliance with the SACSCOC substantive change policy.
4.2 The SACSCOC Liaison will:
4.2.1 Review the SACSCOC substantive change policy annually.
4.2.2 Provide academic administrators with information about the SACS substantive
change policy. This includes, but is not limited to, maintaining a section of the
Office of Institutional Effectiveness web site concerning substantive change and
sending information about substantive change to academic administrators at
4.2.3 Work with academic administrators to determine whether actions or proposed
actions constitute substantive changes;
4.2.4 Determine what interaction with SACSCOC is needed when a change is
4.2.5 Coordinate the preparation and submission to SACSCOC of any letter of
notification, prospectus, application, or other materials that are required for
4.2.6 Coordinate any follow-up actions that may be required in order to remain in
There are no exhibits associated with this policy.
Responsible Party (Reviewer): Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost
Review: Every three years on or before August 1.
Signed original on file in Employment Services and Operations.
Issue #1: 09/28/10
SACSCOC Substantive Change Policy
UHD Compliance Change Form