Addition of a New Field to a Graduate Program

Fields in graduate programs must be related to a new or existing parent program. They are typically an area of specialization or concentration within a graduate program, and as such do not constitute stand-alone programs. Fields should reflect the broad foci of the parent graduate program and give specificity to a program. The fields offered must, therefore, be congruent with the broad expertise of the core faculty members, and justification should be given for the fields used to describe the program. New fields must truly be areas of strength with a viable capacity to sustain the associated teaching and supervision, and the creation of the field should not adversely affect other existing fields or the parent graduate program as a whole. Fields allow programs to indicate their strengths within reasonable boundaries, to underscore their distinctiveness and to respond to the needs of and changes in the discipline over time. Care must be taken, though, to ensure that new fields are not in fact, new programs. This is true of single fields but especially so in the creation of more than one field at a point in time or over subsequent years; and in such cases the university may choose to go through the Expedited Protocol to confirm this, or indeed, go through the New Program Protocol. For example, the creation of a Computer Engineering Field would not typically be considered a specialization or concentration within a Civil Engineering Graduate program, but rather, a new program; and similarly, a field in Finance would be unlikely to be associated with a Graduate program in Marketing.