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Curriculum Services

Guidelines for Proposals

New Center or Institute

This document is designed to provide (1) an overview of the procedure, (2) guidelines for the proposal, and (3) signature page (PDF). If the guidelines are unclear, or if your program has some unique characteristics that require special input, please contact the Vice Provost for Academic Programs or the Dean of Graduate Studies.


Because a new center or institute may be local or affect several constituents, departments and colleges on campus, the review process will differ depending on the scope of the center. The Vice Provost for Academic Programs and the Chair of the Educational Policies and Programs Committee of the Academic Senate will jointly determine the extent of the required review for each proposal based on its perceived impact. The review will then be conducted by the Educational Policies and Programs Committee of the Academic Senate to determine its impact on the educational programs and resources of the university, resulting in a recommendation to the President.

New Institutes or Centers

The procedures outlined here reflect the policy on Centers and Institutes, EM 02-07, and the Cal State - Academic and Student Affairs(opens in new window) on Centers/Institutes/Similar Entities. All new centers, institutes and similar entities must be approved as stipulated in EM (02-07); most must be reported to the Chancellor’s office (see #8 under “Proposal Format”).

Proposals with Curricular Effect

Proposals that will impact curriculum and are initiated through a faculty member or academic unit are normally discussed within the originating Department by its designated consultation structures, such as the Department Curriculum Committee, and then referred by the Department Chair to the College Undergraduate or Graduate Curriculum Committee (or equivalent). Proposals that originate in an academic unit higher than a departmental level, need to demonstrate appropriate consultation with the affected department(s) and faculty.

The Signature Form outlines the process, and should be attached to the proposal prior to submission to the Department Curriculum Committee. Proposers may meet with the Vice Provost for Academic Programs, or, for graduate programs, the Dean of Graduate Studies, to review the procedures appropriate to their proposal.

Proposals without Direct Curricular Effect

A center or institute might not impact curriculum through the development of programs, degrees, or coursework, etc. Proposals for such centers/institutes may bypass Departmental and College Curriculum Committees, but must be signed by departments and deans of the academic units affected by the proposal. They should also demonstrate that the affected faculty members have had an opportunity to comment on the proposal.

Proposal Format:

New Center/Institute

The proposal must follow the format below.

  1. Name of the Proposed Center/Institute.
  2. Names:
    1. Name of the unit overseeing the Center/Institute.
    2. Name, title, and rank of the individual(s) primarily responsible for drafting the proposal.
  3. Description of Center/Institute.
    1. Contact person or office (with phone, email, web address) responsible for the Center/Institute.
    2. Goals and purpose of Center/Institute and its relationship to University’s organizational and policy structures.
    3. Need for the Center/Institute and its relationship to the University’s Strategic Plan.
    4. Governing structure for the Center/Institute.
  4. Expected impact on curriculum development/delivery and professional development opportunities.
  5. Place in Strategic Plan of unit having authority over center or institute and expected impact on resources, curriculum development and professional development.
  6. Funding:
    1. How much funding will be necessary?
    2. How will funding be obtained and sustained?
    3. How will funding serve to provide:
      1. Equipment (list new equipment needed, and amount and source of funds)
      2. Supplies (List new supplies needed, and amount and source of funds.
      3. Staff (List faculty and staff members who will be involved and how the time needed for Staff will be made available.
      4. Library needs (List periodicals and books required to support Institute or Center and estimate costs.
  7. List all other university entities that cover any significant part of the goals and objectives of the planned Center/Institute. If there is any duplication, explain why it is necessary. Include statements from areas of duplication.
  8. Explain how the new Center/Institute meets the CSU Coded Memo AA-2014-18 definition of a center, institute, or similar entity. If it does not meet the definition, then state why the new Center/Institute does not need to be reported to the Chancellor’s Office.

This document is the property of Academic Affairs and maintained by Curriculum Services