SOC DNS Course Category Circulation Information for Core Member Institutions

From SOC Degree Network System Handbooks
Chapter 2: SOC Degree Network System Institutional Requirements

Purpose of SOC DNS Course Category Circulations

SOC Degree Network System Core member institutions will periodically receive course descriptions to review for guaranteed-transfer approval for courses when:

  • A degree is newly proposed for inclusion in a Guaranteed-Transfer Network;
  • SOC has developed new SOC DNS Course Categories for a new or existing Guaranteed-Transfer Network;
  • SOC has reviewed and ⁄ or refined the content of existing SOC DNS Course Categories; or
  • SOC has identified additional courses for possible inclusion in the Transferability Tables due to the addition, revision, or review of college degrees.

From the reviewing institution’s perspective, the purpose of the review is the same in all of the cases listed above: to evaluate courses in a given SOC DNS Course Category as comparable (or not comparable) to the reviewing institution’s specific course(s) in that same Category. Courses deemed comparable to the reviewing college’s course(s) in the Category are to be accepted—courses deemed not comparable are not accepted. For a new course to be added to a SOC DNS Course Category and listed in the SOC Degree Network System Transferability Tables, it must be accepted for guaranteed transfer by all Core member institutions with courses in that same Category.

SOC DNS Course Category Circulation Process

  1. The SOC Degree Network System main contact person at the institution receives via e-mail a Course Category Circulation materials including courses proposed for integration in the Transferability Tables. If this point-of-contact will be on leave for an extended period of time, he or she indicates in an “Out of Office Reply” an alternate person to conduct the review.
  2. The institution’s contact person evaluates the courses by the deadline and reports the results to SOC, even if all courses have been accepted. If he or she does not have the authority to make course articulation decisions, the contact must forward the materials (including instructions, Transferability Table listings, and “Guidelines for Evaluating Courses for Guaranteed Transfer”) to the appropriate faculty member(s) or academic administrator for review. The institution’s contact person, however, is ultimately responsible for collecting the course evaluations and reporting them to SOC by the deadline.
  3. If the courses cannot be reviewed by the deadline, the contact notifies SOC and requests a deadline extension. SOC staff will work with institutions as much as possible, but lengthy extensions may not be granted due to SOC Degree Network System Handbook publication deadlines. In this case, if an institution has late course submissions, its courses will be removed from any SOC DNS Course Category where there is a conflict.
  4. An institutional reply to the Course Category Circulation is mandatory and may be an e-mail, Fax, or letter. If SOC does not receive a response by the deadline, SOC will be forced to assume that the institution deems all courses comparable, and the proposed courses will be added to the Transferability Tables (when approved by other member institutions as well).

Repeated failure to respond to Course Circulations may lead to an institution’s removal from the SOC Degree Network System. SOC tracks college response patterns to Course Category Circulations and will make every effort to resolve institutional conflicts that limit the acceptance of courses for guaranteed transferability.

SOC DNS Course Category Circulation Features

Courses reviewed in a specific SOC DNS Course Category must be evaluated in relation to the reviewing institution’s existing or proposed courses in that same Category to validate the legitimacy of the Transferability Tables as a student degree-planning tool. SOC Degree Network System Core institutions must review the content of courses mapped to the same Category to ensure that they are comparable. (Refer to “Guidelines for Evaluating Courses for Guaranteed Transfer for Core Member Institutions” later in this chapter.)

All SOC DNS Course Category circulations are “targeted” mailings, meaning that colleges only receive courses to review in Categories in which they currently list an active course or have a course proposed for inclusion. A college should review all courses listed in the Course Circulation spreadsheet it receives. Based on the reviewing college’s academic judgment, the college should deem these courses as comparable or not comparable to the courses offered by the reviewing institution in the same SOC DNS Course Category. In the course circulation process, it is important to understand that a reviewing institution’s course(s) in a SOC DNS Course Category may be pre-existing (i.e., already listed in the Transferability Tables), newly-proposed for inclusion in a Course Category (and listed on the Course Circulation spreadsheet), or both.

The main DNS point-of-contact must read the letter and instructions received with each mailing for more detailed information about how to respond to the request and how to annotate its decisions on the Course Circulation spreadsheet. It remains the contact’s responsibility to return the completed and consolidated review material to SOC by the stated deadline.