UNC Charlotte Academic Procedure: CIP Code Revision

I. Executive Summary

This procedure outlines the steps required to revise a CIP (Classification of Instructional Programs) code of an existing degree program, certificate, or course.

CIP codes are six-digit numbers associated with fields of study; the first two numbers represent the overarching classification, and the full six-digit code explains the instructional content defined for programs in that group. CIP codes affect funding and other decisions, therefore it is important to identify the most appropriate CIP code fit for programs and courses so data are represented correctly internally and externally. All degree programs are categorized individually in the University of North Carolina Academic Program Inventory (API) at the six-digit CIP code level. The University of North Carolina uses the most recent edition of the Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) to classify its programs in the API.

Degree Program CIP Codes

CIP codes for degree programs are selected by the department and college in consultation with Academic Affairs and approved by the UNC Board of Governors when the degree program is established. In proposing a six-digit CIP code for a new degree program, the institution should ensure that the CIP code fits the curriculum content. In cases where no single CIP code encompasses the full breadth of a program, and similar programs exist within the UNC System, a CIP code should be selected that is consistent with other existing programs.

Certificate and Course CIP Codes

CIP codes for certificates and courses should reflect the program the certificate or course is part of. Therefore, certificate and course CIP codes are assigned based on the course designator and the associated CIP code of degree programs within that department.

II. Procedure

Program or Course CIP Code Changes

Requests for CIP code changes that result in a move between funding categories will be closely scrutinized and must be reported to the UNC System Office. In particular, requests for CIP code changes from a non-STEM CIP code to a STEM CIP code as defined by the University of North Carolina System Office require additional levels of justification (see procedure below).

Procedures to revise the CIP code of an existing degree program or certificate:

  1. In consultation with their academic dean, the academic program/department drafts a memo to the Provost, including an explanation of the reason and rationale for the proposed revision. Sample memos can be found on the Faculty Governance resource site.
    1. For program and course-level CIP code changes from a non-STEM CIP code to a STEM CIP code (as defined by the UNC System Office), the following additional justification is required by the UNC System Office:
      1. Detailed explanation of program curriculum and STEM content, including table summarizing STEM content in program core and electives
      2. List of similar programs in UNC System and nation
      3. Course-level STEM mapping of program, including table listing each course by:

        1. Current course CIP code
        2. Proposed course CIP code
        3. Course number
        4. Course title
        5. Credits
        6. STEM content/non-STEM content
    2. For all course-level CIP code changes, the following additional justification is required:
      1. Detailed explanation of how the course title and/or course description aligns with the proposed CIP code category or updated course title/course description (if applicable)
  2. The academic program/department/dean completes the appropriate form in Curriculog and uploads the memo to the Provost:

    1. For program-level CIP code change requests, the CIP Code Revision form is used
    2. For course-level CIP code change requests, the Course Revision form is used
  3. The Provost sends request or notification to the UNC System Office:

    1. For program-level CIP code change requests: a request for permission is sent
    2. For course-level CIP code change requests that result in differences in funding allocations, notification is sent
  4. Upon granting of permission by the UNC System Office, notification will be sent via Curriculog. Banner is updated by the Office of the Registrar following Curriculog notification.
  5. The Office of Assessment and Accreditation provides notification to SACSCOC and the US Department of Education (if applicable)
  6. Revision becomes effective the term following approval from the UNC System Office (for programs) or Academic Affairs (for courses)

III. Definitions

  • Academic Department – A unit within a college representing a discipline. For example, the Department of English is in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.
  • Provost – Reporting to the Chancellor, the Provost is the chief academic officer who oversees all academic affairs activities, including research and faculty. The Deans of each College report to the Provost.

IV. Policy Contact(s)

V. History

  • Established: March 16, 2023

VI. Related Policies, Procedures and Resources

VII. Frequently Asked Questions

  • Where is this procedure referenced?
    The procedure is published on the Academic Policies & Procedures webpage of the Provost website.
  • When is the CIP code change effective?
    The revision is effective the term following approval.