Degree Planning and Academic Review

Quick Guide to Writing Your Degree Plan Rationale

Section: Introduction

  • Overall introduction
  • Your goals
  • Your research on academic and professional expectations
  • Your choice of degree

How to Think about the Introduction

  • Outline your own educational and professional experience, goals or learning needs.
  • Discuss how your proposed degree program reflects your background and purposes.
  • Explain the research you did on academic and professional expectations for your degree and how this research influenced your choices in designing your degree.
  • Discuss how your learning reflects your awareness of external professional expectations, if applicable.

Section: Area of Study and Concentration Guidelines

  • Overall degree program design
  • Your learning and the guidelines
  • Breadth, depth and progression of learning
  • Meeting degree requirements

How to Think about the Area of Study and Concentration Guidelines

  • Explain the structure or framework of your degree program.
  • Explain how your learning addresses the area of study and concentration guidelines for the degree. If your learning departs from the guidelines, explain why and how your proposed plan still addresses the academic expectations of the area of study and is an appropriate title to represent your learning.
  • Explain how you have met the various SUNY and college degree requirements (SUNY General Education, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Advanced Level Studies) as integrated into your concentration.
  • Associate degree programs are expected to include a variety of foundational studies, including ones that develop and strengthen academic skills.
  • Bachelor’s degree programs are expected to show progression from introductory level to more advanced level studies and a broad sampling of different academic topics balanced by studies in the concentration.

Section: General Learning

  • Learning supporting the concentration, but not in it
  • Breadth, depth and progression of learning
  • Meeting degree requirements

How to Think about General Learning

  • Explain how your general learning supports your concentration and provides depth to your degree program.
  • Explain how you have met the various SUNY and college degree requirements (SUNY General Education, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Advanced Level Studies) and have these integrated into your general learning.

Section: Conclusion

How to Think about the Conclusion

  • Provide concluding remarks.
  • Include how you plan to use this degree in the future.