Program Recognition Application and Renewal

Texas skill standards based program recognition is an initiative to recognize a community or technical college workforce education award (credential) that has skill standards incorporated into the curriculum, classroom instruction, and assessments.  To date, 50 programs at 28 community and technical colleges across the state have received program recognition. Program recognition indicates to employers that a technical program is teaching the competencies, skills, and knowledge as defined by industry in the skill standards. Program recognition is valid for three years, at which time it may be renewed.

ELIGIBILITY
New or existing community and technical college level two certificate or associate's degree programs are eligible for program recognition.

BENEFITS
Recognized programs will be displayed on the employer section of this website.   In addition, colleges will have the option, subject to a user agreement, of affixing a gold, embossed seal to the credential of every graduate of its recognized program(s). The seal will signal to recruiting employers that program graduates have been taught the industry skill and knowledge requirements specified in the skill standards.

SKILL STANDARDS-BASED TECHNICAL CORE CURRICULUM
Program recognition is designed to foster and promote the development of a common, skill standards-based technical core curriculum. The technical core allows both a statewide standard of industry-defined outcomes to be met across colleges, and specialized skill sets required by local or regional employers to be met in additional courses in any individual college’s program. Where one college has already received program recognition, the technical core curriculum that encompasses the skill standards content will be expected to evolve through the collaboration of additional colleges that subsequently seek recognition for the same type of program. Thus, both the college with the original recognized program and institutions that follow are encouraged to collaborate, with the goal of agreement on a technical core that is broadly representative of their college programs.

PROGRAM RECOGNITION APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS
Community and technical colleges are required to submit a complete application for each level two certificate or associate's degree program for which they are seeking program recognition.  The  Application for Program Recognition requires that the college:

1. Document the integration of skill standards into the program's technical education curriculum or technical
    core courses, if there is already a recognized program in the occupational area.
 

2. Sign a statement of assurances indicating the institution's intention to teach to and assess the 
     program's students on the basis of the skill standards.
 

3. Obtain approval of the skill standards-based curriculum by the program's industry advisory committee,
    as indicated by the chair's signature.

Click here  to access the step-by-step program recognition application process and links to related forms.

PROGRAM RECOGNITION INITIAL RENEWAL REQUIREMENTS
Once a college has successfully applied for and received program recognition, the recognition is valid for three years, at which time, the recognition may be renewed. Renewal requires that a college demonstrate that students' mastery of the skill standards content in the program is being assessed. The renewal process provides a quality assurance check that the college program is truly teaching to, and preparing students to perform, the industry-defined standards.

Program recognition initial renewal requires that the college:

1. Submit a copy of the matrix for which the college has developed assessments for all the key activities.
    This should be either the:

    a. Approved matrix - for which the program recognition was granted. (This may also be the common technical
        core matrix.)

    OR

    b. Amended matrix – if the program has been revised since recognition was granted, such that any course on
        the approved matrix has been deleted or replaced by another course. The amended matrix must highlight
        the changes made to the approved matrix, and a revised syllabus must be included for each course that
        has changed. 

2. Sign a statement of assurances indicating that the college has developed and is using assessments to
     evaluate students' mastery of the key activities (or equivalent element) and related criteria, skills, and
     knowledge in the skill standards.

3. Provide sample assessments that evaluate students' mastery of the key activities and related criteria, skills,
     and knowledge.

Click here  to access the step-by-step program recognition initial renewal process and links to related forms.

PROGRAM RECOGNITION SUBSEQUENT RENEWAL REQUIREMENTS
After its initial three-year renewal is approved, a college may submit an abbreviated application for subsequent renewals if certain conditions are met, as indicated below.

If the courses integrated with key activities in the approved program recognition matrix AND the skill standards integrated into the curriculum have not changed:

The application shall consist of a statement of assurances attesting that the college's student assessments evaluate mastery of the skill standards integrated into the curriculum and that neither of the above changes has occurred.  The statement must be signed by a program representative (such as the chair or lead faculty member), the dean overseeing the program, and the college president or vice president of instruction/academic affairs.

If the courses integrated with key activities in the approved program recognition matrix OR the skill standards integrated into the curriculum have changed:

The application must include a revised program recognition matrix, if applicable, and sample assessments, as in initial program recognition renewal.

Click here to access the step-by-step program recognition subsequent renewal process and links to related forms. 
 
RECOGNIZED PROGRAMS

Click here  to see a list of recognized college programs.