MTSU Board of Trustees OK's Academic Program Changes, Policy Updates

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Middle Tennessee State University's Board of Trustees reviewed or approved several academic program changes at its quarterly meeting Tuesday (Dec. 5), including new names of departments and additional degree concentrations and minors.

Trustees also approved reports of various committees, which included news that MTSU's requests for state funding of two new campus buildings are No. 1 and No. 7 on the priority list of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission (THEC).

The board approved a recommendation from the Academic Affairs, Student Life, and Athletics Committee to elevate the existing concentration in Insurance within the B.B.A. in Finance to a free-standing B.B.A. degree in Risk Management and Insurance, effective Fall 2018.

Provost Mark Byrnes also updated the committee on academic program changes effective July 1, 2018, which included:


  • Department name changes: Department of Communication Studies and Organizational Communication to Department of Communication Studies; Department of Computer Information Systems to Department of Information Systems and Analytics; Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures to Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Cultures; and School of Journalism to School of Journalism and Strategic Media.
  • Program name changes: B.S. in Mass Communication becomes B.S. in Media and Entertainment; B.S. in Art, Art Practices Concentration becomes B.S. in Art, Visual Arts Concentration; and B.A. in Art, Art Practices Concentration becomes B.A. in Art, Visual Arts Concentration.
  • Program termination: Labor Relations concentration within the B.B.A. in Economics.
  • New Concentrations: Interdisciplinary Media within the B.S. in Media and Entertainment; Professional Selling within the B.B.A. in Marketing; and Supply Chain Management with the B.B.A. in Management.
  • New minors: Criminal Investigation in the Department of Criminal Justice Administration; and Professional French in the Department of World Languages, Literatures, and Culture.
  • Program Consolidation: B.S. in Liberal Studies and B.S. in Integrated Studies into B.S. in Integrated Studies.

In other actions, the board:

  • Learned that Athletic Director Chris Massaro gave a presentation on development of a master plan for improvement of athletics facilities to the Academic Affairs, Student Life, and Athletics Committee;
  • Voted on a policy that requires all trustees, except the student and faculty representative, to reimburse the university for travel when attending out-of-town athletic events;
  • Learned that THEC ranked the proposed Academic Classroom Building No. 1 and the Applied Engineering Building, housing the mechatronics program, No. 7 for capital project funding in preparation of the governor's 2018-19 budget.
  • Approved a measure to hire outside consultation to provide compensation evaluation services in regard to President Sidney A. McPhee's annual performance appraisal.
  • Passed a resolution honoring Patti Miller for her more than 25 years of dedicated and valuable years of service as MTSU's assistant vice president for campus planning and architect. Miller this week joined THEC in a systemwide facilities planning role.

McPhee, in his report to the trustees, thanked campus and area law enforcement, County Mayor Ernest Burgess and Murfreesboro Mayor Shane McFarland, as well as Rutherford County Sheriff Mike Fitzhugh and Murfreesboro Police Chief Michael Bowen, for their leadership in preparing for the planned October downtown protest rally that failed to materialize.

The president also said the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges Board reaffirmed MTSU's accreditation after reviewing its change of governance from the Tennessee Board of Regents to the new Board of Trustees.

For more information about the MTSU Board of Trustees, go to


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