Program and Curriculum Approval System (PCAS)
The Program and Curriculum
Approval System (PCAS) is a University of Minnesota Web-based
program used for creating and modifying majors and
minors and other degree programs. This
program went live in the spring of 2006. In most cases, disciplines
proposing to change the major or minor requirements
should use the UMM Curriculum Committee's Form
indicate the desired changes. Once
the changes have been approved through the Curriculum
Committee and Campus Assembly, the Division contact
person will enter the approved changes into the PCAS
the PCAS system is being checked by UMM staff for
accuracy with the 2005-07 Catalog, so "proposals" out
in the PCAS system do not reflect changes at this
point, merely an effort to clean up initial entry
of currently approved programs that was done in the Twin Cities.
PCAS was designed to do three things:
- PCAS is a comprehensive database of all
the requirements needed to complete each undergraduate
degree program offered on the four University of
- PCAS is a web-based approval system that automatically
routes all new programs, and any changes to
existing programs, to the correct approvers and approval levels
throughout the University. It replaces the old paper-based
program approval process that was used for creation of new
majors or minors.
- PCAS also is a resource for the Graduation Planner,
the University's program that supports students'
timely progress toward graduation. PCAS includes information
about timing of course-taking (i.e., when students must/should
take each course in order to graduate in four
years). This information is used in Grad Planner to help students
plan degree programs.
All University catalogs, both print and online, use data from PCAS.
Degree requirements for University majors and minors are automatically
generated from PCAS for display in the online catalog and this same
information is downloaded as needed for print catalogs.
A University of Minnesota Internet ID and password is required
the PCAS system to view current approved programs
and proposals awaiting approval. Anyone with a UMM e-mail
account can view PCAS programs. Only those with special authorization
are allowed to create, edit, and/or approve programs.
UMM PCAS Contacts:
||Division (phone; e-mail)
||Division of Education (6404; koehlerj)
||Division of the Humanities (6250; jayneh)
||Division of Science & Math (6300; fordcj)
||Division of the Social Sciences (6199; hawkints)
||UMM PCAS Coordinator (6012; helsper)
PCAS Tips and UMM Rules: the
following are general PCAS tips along with some UMM
conventions that have been adopted:
Questions should be addressed to Nancy Helsper, UMM PCAS Coordinator (ext. 6012 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Do not include General Education Requirements in PCAS.
- Update courses in ECAS before working in PCAS.
- A course must exist in ECAS, but doesn't have to be approved,
in order to be used in PCAS.
- Only one proposal is possible in a major at one time.
- Time-out in PCAS occurs every 1/2 hour--SAVE OFTEN.
- A program can have up to 4 levels of sub-groups.
- Each plan and sub-plan must have one sample plan in order
- View the Executive Summary on the submit page to see proposed
- Hitting the Submit button generates an e-mail to the approver.
- A "plan" can be a major or minor.
- A "subplan" is an option within a major or minor. There
is a box that asks if the subplan is optional or
required (example: an optional subplan is the Honors
- At UMM, the Honors Program subplan should be called "Honors."
- At UMM, the Secondary Education licensure subplan should
be called "Teaching Licensure."
Download the PCAS FAQ sheet.
PCAS Training Manual: A manual for those editing in PCAS is
PCAS Steps: For detailed information about the PCAS steps listed below, download the PCAS
Steps and Information document.
- General Information
- Documentation/Narrative Material
- Admission Requirements
- Program Requirements
- Sub-plan/Concentration Requirements
- Sample Plan
- Checkpoint Chart
Rules Regarding Current and Future Program Requirements: For
information about the fields that are updatable within
the current program requirements and those updatable
for future programs, download the Update
Rules Regarding Current/Future Students document.
Course Group/List Examples: For examples of PCAS course groupings
(and/or relationships) and course lists (courses/credits
in a list -- usually electives), download the Course
Group/List Examples document.