1-1           By:  Bivins                                      S.B. No. 148

 1-2           (In the Senate - Filed December 17, 1996; January 14, 1997,

 1-3     read first time and referred to Committee on Education;

 1-4     February 10, 1997, reported adversely, with favorable Committee

 1-5     Substitute by the following vote:  Yeas 11, Nays 0;

 1-6     February 10, 1997, sent to printer.)

 1-7     COMMITTEE SUBSTITUTE FOR S.B. No. 148                   By:  Bivins

 1-8                            A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

 1-9                                   AN ACT

1-10     relating to the recommendation, development, and adoption of

1-11     certain curricula by certain institutions of higher education and

1-12     the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.


1-14           SECTION 1.  Chapter 61, Education Code, is amended by adding

1-15     Subchapter S to read as follows:

1-16                      SUBCHAPTER S.  TRANSFER OF CREDIT

1-17           Sec. 61.821.  DEFINITIONS.  In this subchapter:

1-18                 (1)  "Core curriculum" means the curriculum in liberal

1-19     arts, humanities, and sciences and political, social, and cultural

1-20     history that all undergraduate students of an institution of higher

1-21     education are required to complete before receiving an academic

1-22     undergraduate degree.

1-23                 (2)  "Field of study curriculum" means a set of courses

1-24     that will satisfy the lower division requirements for a bachelor's

1-25     degree in a specific academic area at a general academic teaching

1-26     institution.

1-27           Sec. 61.822.  CORE CURRICULUM.  (a)  The board, with the

1-28     assistance of advisory committees composed of representatives of

1-29     institutions of higher education, shall develop a recommended core

1-30     curriculum of at least 42 semester credit hours, including a

1-31     statement of the content, component areas, and objectives of the

1-32     core curriculum.

1-33           (b)  Each institution of higher education shall adopt a core

1-34     curriculum of no less than 42 semester credit hours, including

1-35     specific courses comprising the curriculum.  The core curriculum

1-36     shall be consistent with the common course-numbering system and

1-37     with the statement, recommendations, and rules issued by the board.

1-38     An institution may have a core curriculum of other than 42 semester

1-39     credit hours only if approved by the board.

1-40           (c)  If a student successfully completes the 42-hour core

1-41     curriculum at an institution of higher education, that block of

1-42     courses may be transferred to any other institution of higher

1-43     education and must be substituted for the receiving institution's

1-44     core curriculum.  A student shall receive academic credit for each

1-45     of the courses transferred and may not be required to take

1-46     additional core curriculum courses at the receiving institution

1-47     unless the board has approved a larger core curriculum at the

1-48     institution.

1-49           (d)  A student who transfers from one institution of higher

1-50     education to another without completing the core curriculum of the

1-51     sending institution shall receive academic credit from the

1-52     receiving institution for each of the courses that the student has

1-53     successfully completed in the core curriculum of the sending

1-54     institution.  Following receipt of credit for these courses, the

1-55     student may be required to satisfy further course requirements in

1-56     the core curriculum of the receiving institution.

1-57           Sec. 61.823.  FIELD OF STUDY CURRICULUM.  (a)  The board,

1-58     with the assistance of advisory committees composed of

1-59     representatives of institutions of higher education, shall develop

1-60     field of study curricula.  Each advisory committee shall be

1-61     equitably composed of representatives of institutions of higher

1-62     education.  Each university system or institution of higher

1-63     education which offers a degree program for which a field of study

1-64     curriculum is proposed shall be offered participation on the

 2-1     advisory committee for that particular field of study.

 2-2           (b)  If a student successfully completes a field of study

 2-3     curriculum developed by the board, that block of courses may be

 2-4     transferred to a general academic teaching institution and must be

 2-5     substituted for that institution's lower division requirements for

 2-6     the degree program for the field of study into which the student

 2-7     transfers, and the student shall receive full academic credit

 2-8     toward the degree program for the block of courses transferred.

 2-9           Sec. 61.824.  INSTITUTIONAL EVALUATIONS.  Each institution

2-10     shall review and evaluate the institution's core curriculum and

2-11     applicable field of study curricula at intervals specified by the

2-12     board and shall report the results of that review to the board.

2-13           Sec. 61.825.  BOARD EVALUATIONS.  The board shall develop

2-14     criteria to evaluate the transfer practices of each institution of

2-15     higher education and shall evaluate the transfer practices of each

2-16     institution based on those criteria.

2-17           Sec. 61.826.  DISPUTE RESOLUTION.  (a)  The board by rule

2-18     shall adopt policies that provide for the free transferability of

2-19     lower division course credit among institutions of higher

2-20     education, including procedures to be followed by:

2-21                 (1)  the institutions of higher education in resolving

2-22     disputes concerning the transfer of lower division course credit;

2-23     and

2-24                 (2)  the commissioner of higher education or the

2-25     commissioner's designee in making a final determination concerning

2-26     transfer of the course credit if the transfer is in dispute.

2-27           (b)  Each institution of higher education shall publish in

2-28     its course catalogs the procedures adopted by the board under

2-29     Subsection (a) of this section.

2-30           (c)  If an institution of higher education does not accept

2-31     course credit earned by a student at another institution of higher

2-32     education, that institution shall give written notice to the

2-33     student and the other institution that the transfer of the course

2-34     credit is denied.  The two institutions and the student shall

2-35     attempt to resolve the transfer of the course credit in accordance

2-36     with board rules.  If the transfer dispute is not resolved to the

2-37     satisfaction of the student or the institution at which the credit

2-38     was earned within 45 days after the date the student received

2-39     written notice of the denial, the institution that denies the

2-40     transfer of the course credit shall notify the commissioner of its

2-41     denial and the reasons for the denial.

2-42           (d)  The commissioner of higher education or the

2-43     commissioner's designee shall make the final determination about a

2-44     dispute concerning the transfer of course credit and give written

2-45     notice of the determination to the involved student and

2-46     institutions.

2-47           (e)  The board shall collect data on the types of transfer

2-48     disputes that are reported and the disposition of each case that is

2-49     considered by the commissioner or the commissioner's designee.

2-50           Sec. 61.827.  RULES.  The board is authorized to adopt rules

2-51     implementing the provisions of this subchapter.

2-52           SECTION 2.  Sections 51.305 and 61.078, Education Code, are

2-53     repealed.

2-54           SECTION 3.  Not later than September 1, 1998, the Texas

2-55     Higher Education Coordinating Board shall adopt rules implementing

2-56     the provisions of this Act.

2-57           SECTION 4.  The importance of this legislation and the

2-58     crowded condition of the calendars in both houses create an

2-59     emergency and an imperative public necessity that the

2-60     constitutional rule requiring bills to be read on three several

2-61     days in each house be suspended, and this rule is hereby suspended,

2-62     and that this Act take effect and be in force from and after its

2-63     passage, and it is so enacted.

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