Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 23.1. Institutions of Higher Education; Other Educational and Cultural Institutions
Chapter 9. Academic Policies
11/28/2022

Article 4. Articulation, Transfer, and Dual Enrollment.

§ 23.1-907. Articulation, dual admissions, and guaranteed admissions agreements; admission of certain comprehensive community college graduates.

A. The board of visitors of each baccalaureate public institution of higher education shall develop, consistent with Council guidelines and the institution's six-year plan as set forth in § 23.1-306, articulation, dual admissions, and guaranteed admissions agreements with each associate-degree-granting public institution of higher education. Such guaranteed admissions agreements may provide for the guaranteed admission of a student who earns an associate degree concurrently with a high school diploma through a dual enrollment program, in addition to any guaranteed admission for a student who earns an associate degree post-high school.

B. The System, in cooperation with the Council and each public institution of higher education, and consistent with the guidelines developed pursuant to subdivision 20 of § 23.1-203, shall establish a one-semester Passport Program and a one-year Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program. The Passport Program shall consist of 15 course credit hours and shall be a component of the 30-credit-hour Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program. Each Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program and Passport Program course shall be transferable and shall satisfy a lower division general education requirement at any public institution of higher education. The Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program and Passport Program shall be available at each comprehensive community college and through the Online Virginia Network.

C. The Council shall establish procedures under which a baccalaureate public institution of higher education may seek a waiver from the Council from accepting the transfer of a Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program or Passport Program course to satisfy the requirements for the completion of a specific pathway or degree. A waiver shall not be granted allowing a baccalaureate public institution to (i) generally reject the transfer of all coursework that is a part of the Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program or Passport Program or (ii) generally reject the transfer of a course from the Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program or Passport Program for all pathway maps and degrees. An application for a waiver shall identify with particularity the course for which the institution is seeking a waiver and the particular pathway or degree to which the waiver would apply. The application shall provide justification for the waiver and shall designate alternative courses offered through the System that may be completed by a student in order to complete a transferable, 30-credit-hour Uniform Certificate or 15-credit-hour Passport. The Council shall adopt guidelines regarding the criteria to be used to review and issue decisions regarding waiver requests. Such waiver requests shall only be granted if the baccalaureate public institution of higher education provides evidence that the specified pathway or degree requires a specialized, lower division course not available through the System. Once approved, notice of a waiver granted by the Council shall be included in the online portal established pursuant to § 23.1-908.

D. The Council shall develop guidelines for associate-degree-granting and baccalaureate public institutions of higher education to use in mapping pathways for the completion of credits in particular programs of study, including the courses recommended to be taken in a dual enrollment, comprehensive community college, and baccalaureate public institution setting in order to pursue a specific degree or career. Such guidelines shall define the elements of a pathway map and identify the pathway maps to be developed. Initial guidelines adopted for mapping such pathways shall establish a multiyear schedule for the development and implementation of pathway maps for all fields of study.

E. Each baccalaureate public institution of higher education, in cooperation and consultation with the System, shall develop pathway maps consistent with the guidelines established pursuant to subsection D. Such pathways maps shall clearly set forth the courses that a student at a comprehensive community college is encouraged to complete prior to transferring to the baccalaureate institution. The goal of the career education pathway maps shall be to assist students in achieving optimal efficiencies in the time and cost of completing a degree program. Such program map shall also clearly identify the courses, if any, for which the baccalaureate institution has received a waiver from transfer pursuant to subsection C.

F. The Council shall prepare a comprehensive annual report on the effectiveness of transferring from comprehensive community colleges to baccalaureate public institutions of higher education, including a review of the effectiveness of the use of pathway maps in achieving efficiencies and cost savings in the completion of a degree program. The report shall include the following elements: completion rates, average time to degree, credit accumulation, post-transfer student academic performance, and comparative efficiency. The Council shall adopt guidelines for data submission from public institutions of higher education necessary for such report, and all institutions shall report such data in accordance with the guidelines. The report shall be made publicly available on the Council website and on the online portal maintained pursuant to § 23.1-908.

G. Each comprehensive community college shall develop agreements for postsecondary attainment with the public high schools in the school divisions that such comprehensive community college serves specifying the options for students to complete an associate degree, the Passport Program, or the Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program concurrent with a high school diploma. Such agreements shall specify the credit available for dual enrollment courses and Advanced Placement courses with qualifying exam scores of three or higher.

H. The provisions of this section shall not apply to any public institution of higher education established pursuant to Chapter 25 (§ 23.1-2500 et seq.).

2005, c. 818, § 23-9.2:3.02; 2006, cc. 379, 531; 2007, c. 46; 2011, cc. 828, 869; 2012, cc. 142, 794; 2014, c. 628; 2016, c. 588; 2017, c. 521; 2018, cc. 593, 832, 845.

§ 23.1-908. State Transfer Tool.

A. The Council shall develop, in cooperation with the System and each public institution of higher education, a State Transfer Tool that designates each general education course, in addition to the courses that comprise the Uniform Certificate of General Studies Program and the Passport Program, that is offered in an associate degree program at an associate-degree-granting public institution of higher education and transferable for course credit to a baccalaureate public institution of higher education. In developing the State Transfer Tool, the Council shall also seek the participation of private institutions of higher education.

B. The Council shall develop guidelines to govern the development and implementation of articulation, dual admissions, and guaranteed admissions agreements between associate-degree-granting public institutions of higher education and baccalaureate public institutions of higher education. Dual admissions agreements shall set forth (i) the obligations of each student accepted to such a program, including grade point average requirements, acceptable associate degree majors, and completion timetables, and (ii) the extent to which each student accepted to such a program may access the privileges of enrollment at both institutions while he is enrolled at either institution. Such agreements are subject to the admissions requirements of the baccalaureate public institutions of higher education.

C. Each baccalaureate public institution of higher education shall update its transfer agreements immediately following any program modifications and shall send a copy of its updated agreement and any other transfer-related documents and resources to the System. The Council shall also send to the System a copy of any transfer-related guidelines and resources that it possesses. The System shall maintain an online portal that allows access to all such agreements, documents, and resources. The online portal shall also include (i) documents and resources related to course equivalency, (ii) pathway maps established pursuant to subsection E of § 23.1-907, (iii) the transfer tool established pursuant to subsection A, (iv) information regarding dual enrollment courses as described in § 23.1-905.1, and (v) any other information required to be included by law or deemed relevant by the System. The online portal shall be available to the public on the websites of the Council, the System, each public institution of higher education, and each school division offering a dual enrollment course.

2004, c. 553, § 23-9.14:2; 2005, c. 818; 2006, c. 379; 2014, c. 628; 2016, c. 588; 2017, c. 521; 2018, cc. 832, 845.

§ 23.1-909. Combined cooperative degree program.

A. The Secretary of Education and the director of the Council, in consultation with each public institution of higher education and nonprofit private institution of higher education, shall develop a plan to establish and advertise a cooperative degree program whereby any undergraduate student enrolled at any public institution of higher education or nonprofit private institution of higher education may complete, through the use of online courses at any such institution, the course credit requirements to receive a degree at a tuition cost not to exceed $4,000, or the lowest cost that is achievable, per academic year.

B. No later than October 1, 2016, the Secretary of Education and the director of the Council shall report to the Chairmen of the House Committee on Appropriations, the House Committee on Education, the Senate Committee on Finance and Appropriations, and the Senate Committee on Education and Health on the progress made toward developing a cooperative degree program plan pursuant to this section.

2015, c. 664, § 23-7.4:7; 2016, c. 588.