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3033 - College Certificate Structure Policy

Basic Policy Statement

An important component of Washtenaw Community College's mission is to provide students with occupational skills for entry-level jobs as well as job advancement. To this end the College will maintain four levels of certificates that will provide a framework for developing and maintaining clearly defined, short-term programs that are focused on preparing students for specific jobs in as few credits as possible. This certificate structure is designed to permit the combining of certificates with other certificates and/or general education courses to create multiple career options for the College's wide range of student populations. Certificates can also meet the major/area requirements for students who choose to pursue a general studies Associate in Applied Science degree program.

The College will adopt the following four certificates effective with the start of the 2000-2001 academic year:

  1. Post-Associate Certificate. This certificate is for post-associate's degree programs for students who are pursuing advanced study in an occupational area. These may be short-term or longer with the focus on study beyond the degree level.
  2. Advanced Certificate. This type of certificate is for students who are pursuing advanced study in an occupational area. These may be short term or longer programs with the focus on study beyond the certificate level. The Advanced Certificate may be added to a standard Certificate to form the basis for an associate's degree.
  3. Certificate. The Certificate is for standard credit programs that are normally set up for one or two semesters. Primarily used to prepare students for entry level occupations, this type of certificate may be used as a discrete program or combined with other certificate programs to form the basis for an associate's degree.
  4. Certificate of Completion. The Certificate of Completion should represent a discrete body of skills and/or knowledge that is intended to prepare students for a specific occupation or basic literacy attainment. It can be credit, noncredit, or a combination of both.

Policy Criteria
Post-Associate Certificate

  1. Limited to a minimum of 6 credits and a maximum of 36 credits.
  2. Requires that a minimum of 75% of the total credits required for the certificate be completed as "residence credit" (WCC credit).
  3. Courses numbered below 200 may not be used toward post-associate certificate completion.
  4. Requires completion of an associate degree or higher degree, or its equivalent for admission.
  5. In combining certificate programs in the same subject area, there must be at least a 9 credit difference between certificates.

Advanced Certificate:

  1. Limited to a minimum of 9 credits and a maximum of 36 credits.
  2. Requires that a minimum of 50% of the total credits required for the certificate be completed as "residence credit" (WCC credit).
  3. Courses numbered below 100 may not be used toward advanced certificate completion.
  4. Requires completion of a certificate, an associate degree or higher degree, or its equivalent for admission.
  5. In combining certificate programs in the same subject area, there must be at least a 9 credit difference between certificates.

Certificate:

  1. Is limited to a minimum of 9 credits and a maximum of 36 credits.
  2. Requires that a minimum of 50% of the total credits be completed as "residence credit" (WCC credit).
  3. An exception to the residence credit requirement will be made for the Liberal Arts MACRAO and the Liberal Arts MTA certificates. In order to meet the spirit of these agreements the Liberal Arts MACRAO certificate will require eight (8) WCC credits and the Liberal Arts MTA certificate will require one (1) credit-bearing college-level course at WCC.
  4. Courses numbered below 100 may not be used toward certificate completion.
  5. In combining certificate programs in the same subject area, there must be at least a 9 credit difference between certificates.

Certificate of Completion:

  1. Limited to a maximum of 8 credits.
  2. Requires that all work be completed at WCC.
  3. Courses numbered 051 and below cannot be used toward completion of this certificate.
  4. Certificates of completion may not be listed in the college catalog.

Outcomes

Through a clearly defined certificate structure, WCC will maintain a strong match between student and community needs and the college's curriculum. The structure recognizes and supports both lifelong learning and the flexible configuration of curricula so that students can easily combine degrees and certificates to meet evolving life circumstances requiring college credentials.

Adopted: February 24, 1998
Revised: May 23, 2000
Administrative Review: May 2002
Revised: September 23, 2003
Revised: June 26, 2012
Revised: June 24, 2014
(3033)

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