UK's Protocol for CIP Selection and Review
CIP Code Definition
A Classification of Instructional Programs code, or CIP code is a six-digit code in the form of xx.xxxx that identifies instructional program disciplines (CPE, 2011, p. 3). It provides a taxonomic scheme that supports the accurate tracking and reporting of fields of study and program completions activity used for tracking fields of study and program completion for institutional, state (Kentucky Council of Postsecondary Education (CPE)) and federal reporting purposes (NCES website). For this reason it is important to select the CIP code that most closely identifies the content of your program.
CIP Code Consultation, Selection, and Review
It is important to select the CIP code that most closely identifies primary content of the program; this means:
- Consultation with cognate units is essential—multiple units’ use of a single CIP code can complicate questions of academic accountability; and
- Consultation with the UK Office of Planning & Institutional Effectiveness—to know whether a CIP code is already in use at UK, and what the implications are of its multiple use.
- The review of CIP code assignment by the Undergraduate Council and Graduate Council review to ensure academic congruence.
CIP Code Identification
Taking all of the above into consideration, it is nonetheless of primary importance to identify the CIP code that is the best match for the subject area(s) being proposed. For this reason it is important to identify the CIP code that most closely ‘defines’ the content of your program following the general guidelines:
- If two academic programs are combined into one program: The combined program will be considered a new academic program and must follow the policy and procedures related to new academic programs only if it requires a new CIP code (two-, four-, or six-digit level) to describe accurately the discipline of the combined program (CPE, 2011, 14).
- If an existing academic program is separated into two or more academic programs: At least one of the separated programs is considered a new academic program and must follow the policy and procedures related to new academic programs. Note: The other program will not be considered a new academic program if the same CIP code remains the best disciplinary descriptor of the program (CPE, 2011, p. 14).
- When deciding whether to use an existing or a new CIP code, secondary considerations might relate to the following: (1) whether two or more programs should be grouped for purposes of enrollment tracking or not; and (2) whether overlapping use of a single CIP code might create the appearance of duplication of programs (for example, if CPE perceives a duplication).