Programming for the
in the University of Wisconsin System
This document has been prepared as an administrative
guideline to assist in the implementation of regent policy
on integration between UW‑Extension and UW System
institutions. These guidelines, which supersede ACIS 3,
provide a format for a uniform definition of the nature
and purpose of credit outreach, provide a general framework
for credit outreach, and designate responsibility for credit
outreach within the University of Wisconsin System.
Supercedes ACIS 5.4 dated May 1994
Other Relevant Documents:
Regent Policy, April 1982
Regent Policy, April 1985
Regent Policy, April 1988
ACIS 5.0, 5.1, 5.2, 5.3
Academic Credit for the Non-Traditional Market
(Other Than Correspondence Courses)
Regardless of Funding Source
This document provides the broad parameters for
credit courses that are offered through the University
of Wisconsin System and intended to serve working adults
and the non-traditional market. It sets forth the principles
that guide the determination of funding, and describes budget
policy. A glossary of terms is included.
The University of Wisconsin System has had a long history of
providing off-campus credit courses, usually through Fund 104-2,
for adults unable to reach the campus sites during the typical
teaching day. Fund 104-2 has provided UW institutions an option
for supporting credit-granting programs for adult learners. The
purpose of Fund 104-2 has been defined as service to a particular
Student Client Group (SCG). By segmenting these course offerings
into a self-supporting program revenue fund, the use of Fund 104-2
has allowed the institutions to provide service to adult learners
without diluting the support for the traditional campus based
student clientele. Service to this client group has been managed
within the missions, resources, and academic policy framework of
the University of Wisconsin System and each of its institutions.
In the late 1980's the University System began a deliberate plan
to limit enrollments to improve the quality of education provided to
all students. During the 1990s, when budgets were tight and sometimes
reduced, the System remained committed to maintaining a high level of
access for immediate Wisconsin high school graduates (4th highest access
nationally) by reducing undergraduate and graduate enrollment of continuing adults, working adults and nontraditional students.
In the 1999-2001 biennial budget (1999 Wisconsin Act 9) the state of Wisconsin provided the University of Wisconsin System with the ability to expend all revenues on the Academic Tuition appropriation as received. The continuing appropriation authority for Academic Tuition allows the University to begin to recognize as part of its core mission the education of non-traditional students at alternative times and locations. Consequently, programs developed for the non-traditional market can be offered in Funds 101-103 as well as in Fund 104.
Enrollment Management 21 (EM21) is the University of Wisconsin
System plan for enrollment targets from 2001 to 2007. EM21 is a
comprehensive policy designed to meet the needs of a dynamic
Wisconsin economy and to offer high quality educational services
to Wisconsin citizens. Among its goals is service to the adult
market with programs designed to equip students to compete in an
increasingly technological economy. As a part of EM21, campuses
will provide opportunities for working adults to earn degrees
and/or credit-bearing certificates that will enhance their
earning power, therefore improving the Wisconsin economy. EM21
includes a plan to maintain the access rate to immediate Wisconsin
high school graduates, one of the highest access rates in the
country, while better serving minority and disadvantaged students
and reaching out to more working adult students. The changes are
intended to accommodate regional and state needs while taking
advantage of institutional uniqueness.
EM 21 includes 5 basic elements: maintaining core
undergraduate access, expanding service to adult students,
fitting graduate and professional needs to the state, expanding
global experiences of students, and maintaining credits to degree.
To help assure the success of EM21, the Board of Regents directed
the UW System to review policies and procedures to remove
operational constraints to creating new and innovative programming
for non-traditional students. This policy paper is a response to
that directive. In this policy, outreach to non-traditional
students is defined both as outreach to high school students
wishing to take college courses for credit and programming
directed at working adults. This paper provides a broad
description of the types of programming and funding sources
that should be associated with those programs.
Enrollment Management 21 encouraged the development of polices
that would be flexible enough to allow institutions to be
innovative in providing services to new markets. Under EM21,
authority was sought, and achieved, to allow the President of
the System the authority to approve institutions' requests to
charge service-based tuition and fees in response to demand for
customized graduate, certificate, and other adult programs.
Service based tuition/fees enable institutions to implement
programs for the non-traditional market without significantly
reducing support per student and therefore quality. This policy
seeks to remove constraints to creating new programs.
As new programs are developed, regardless of fund, there
must be a balancing of limited resources with the goal of
increasing access. Programming developed for the non-traditional
market should factor in the opportunity cost foregone for the
traditional market. In reviewing new programs, campuses, and
System Administration will evaluate their impact on overall
support per student and other measures of quality. As programming
for the non-traditional markets grows, institutions may meet with
the President of the System and re-establish enrollment targets
as long as indicators demonstrate that quality is being maintained.
Each institution has a Continuing Education Extension Committee
(CEEC) representative who has been integral to developing the outreach
to non-traditional students. As institutions increasingly incorporate
non-traditional education into their core operation, it is important
to utilize the expertise of those who have a rich history and knowledge
of the non-traditional market. The UW System must coordinate the EM-21
plan and the statewide continuing education plan to provide a
comprehensive approach to serving adult/non-traditional students.
I. TYPES OF PROGRAMMING AND FUNDING SOURCES TO BE USED
The following guidelines should be used when making decisions
about funding source. Exceptions may be made in special
circumstances with the approval of the Senior Vice President for
Academic Affairs and the Dean of Continuing Education Extension.
The fundamental difference in the purposes of Funds 101-103 and
104 is that Funds 101-103 should be used for established degree and
credit-bearing programs and certificates offered to working adults
and non-traditional students. Fund 104 may be used for innovative
start-up programs; experimental programs (including certificates
that are experimental, untested in the market); high school students
obtaining college credit; and individual, periodic courses (including
professional development for teachers).
- ADULT PROGRAMMING.
Institutions are encouraged to develop innovative
programs to serve adult learners unable to attend
on-campus during the week. A program is a series of
courses linked together that lead to a certificate or
- New programs, when there is a known market,
should be incorporated into the institution's main
mission on Fund sources 101-103.
- Programming that is more experimental in nature
should be offered through Continuing Education
Extension on Fund 104-2. Experimental programs/efforts
(as defined above) must be specifically approved by
the offering institution(s)' Provost/Vice Chancellor(s),
UW-Extension's Provost/Vice Chancellor, and, where
required by ACIS 1.0 (pdf), by the UW System Administration
Office of Academic Affairs.
- Individual, periodic courses provided by continuing
education extension (as distinguished from
credit-bearing certificates and degrees) should
continue to be offered on Fund 104-2.
- Innovative or experimental programs without a
known market will be evaluated periodically by the
offering institution's Provost/Vice Chancellor and
UW-Extension to determine whether the programs should
retain their experimental status. See Appendix A for
more detail on University Extension.
- HIGH SCHOOL PROGRAMMING.
UW System institutions should, where possible, provide
services to high school students wishing to obtain college
credit while enrolled in high school. These programs should
be funded on 104-2 and will be under the oversight of the
Provost/Vice Chancellor of the institution providing the
programming, University of Wisconsin Extension and the
Continuing Education representative of the institution.
See Appendix A for more detail.
- Existing credit programs (as described in A. above) in
Fund 104 should transition to Funds 101-103 as soon as
possible, but no later than 2004. In order to accomplish
this goal each institution's CEEC representative will work
with the Provost in developing institutional continuing
education plans. The plans may include movement of some
of the costs associated with adult/non-traditional student
programming from Fund 104 to Funds 101-103.
II. PRICING POLICIES RELATED TO NON-TRADITIONAL MARKETS
Service-Based Pricing. Programs that are offered, in whole or in part through a face- to-face delivery mode and are specifically designed for adults should use the service-based pricing guidelines. These programs must incorporate additional services designed for these students such as flexible scheduling packages, flexible course delivery options, evening and weekend academic advising, registration, financial aid, free or special parking rates, etc., and can be priced to reflect the additional resources provided. Service-Based Pricing guidelines are attached as Appendix B. Service-Based Pricing is intended to simplify and shorten the process for developing and implementing new programs for the adult non-traditional market. Requests are approved by the President of the UW System within one month of submission. Service-Based Pricing is distinguished from Differential tuition because service-based pricing is for programming directed at the adult market, not traditional undergraduate programs.
Distance Education. Programming that is provided exclusively
by distance education, (whether to traditional or non-traditional students)
falls under the distance education pricing guidelines. See Appendix C for the distance education guidelines.
Contract Instruction. Institutions are encouraged to work with
businesses to develop programming specifically designed to meet the needs
of their employees. This programming may occur on site at the business,
at the institution or another alternative site. Contract instruction,
regardless of fund, must cover the cost of the program being offered and
will not be delivered at a cost lower than the regent-approved cost per
credit of traditional programs. Policies related to contract instruction
can be found in FAP 44.
Institutions are also encouraged to increase the number of adult
students who attend during traditional core hours. This type of
additional enrollment would be accommodated within the institution's
traditional enrollment capacity and at regular tuition levels. Care
must be taken to ensure that the instructional support per student
is not diminished by enrolling additional students at less than the
full cost of instruction.
III. RESPONSIBILITY FOR CREDIT COURSES
The institution's Provost/Vice Chancellor has final approval
for all course offerings of the institutions, including those
offered through Fund 104. In addition to reviewing the courses
for compliance with this policy, the Provost/Vice Chancellors
also assure that their institution will meet its Fund 101-103
enrollment and tuition revenue targets.
Fund 104-2 is specifically reserved for use in developing
programs of an innovative or experimental nature (pilot programs
without a tested market) and for courses targeted toward high
school students seeking college credit. Institutions may also
offer individual courses on Fund 104 that are not part of a
program but are part of the institution's regular array of
credit courses and meet the needs of working adults and
non-traditional students (including teacher education courses).
Programming in 104-2 is not targeted towards the traditional
on-campus student. Because of this, UW-Extension, in collaboration
with UW System institutions, evaluates enrollments in all
Fund 104-2 sections annually to assure that there are not
substantial numbers of continuing on-campus students from the
academic year enrolled in the courses. Where there are substantial
numbers of such students, UW-Extension seeks resolution of this
situation with the institution's Provost/Vice Chancellor and
designated institutional CEEC representative.
This collaborative effort assigns to each party distinct and
identifiable roles and responsibilities which can be found in
It should be noted that this is a dynamic period of time for
the UW System and additional policy changes may be required to
accommodate new programs and opportunities. Flexibility that
has been granted by the Board of Regents will supercede this
Programming for the Non-Traditional Market in the UW System
APPENDIX A: Roles and Responsibilities
APPENDIX B: Service-Based Pricing Guidelines and Procedures
APPENDIX C: Principles for Pricing Distance Education Credit Courses, Degree and Certificate Programs