Florida Senate - 2023                                     SB 750
       By Senator Calatayud
       38-00918-23                                            2023750__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to articulation agreements; amending
    3         s. 1007.23, F.S.; requiring the Articulation
    4         Coordinating Committee to convene a workgroup by a
    5         specified date to develop specified articulation
    6         agreements; providing requirements for the workgroups;
    7         requiring state universities and Florida College
    8         System institutions to adopt specified articulation
    9         agreements by a specified date; amending s. 1007.24,
   10         F.S.; requiring Florida College System institutions to
   11         award transfer credit for certain courses; prohibiting
   12         Florida College System institutions from requiring a
   13         student to repeat certain coursework; revising the
   14         application of transfer course credit; amending s.
   15         1007.25, F.S.; providing requirements for an associate
   16         in arts specialized transfer degree; requiring the
   17         State Board of Education to establish criteria for the
   18         review and approval of new specialized transfer
   19         degrees; requiring the Division of Florida Colleges to
   20         review proposals and, in the event of deficiencies, to
   21         provide certain written notice to the Florida College
   22         System institution; providing requirements for the
   23         approval process; providing that, upon approval of a
   24         new associate in arts specialized transfer degree,
   25         Florida College System institutions may offer the
   26         degree and shall report certain data; requiring the
   27         State Board of Education to adopt rules; conforming a
   28         provision to changes made by the act; providing an
   29         effective date.
   31  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   33         Section 1. Present subsections (8) and (9) of section
   34  1007.23, Florida Statutes, are redesignated as subsections (9)
   35  and (10), a new subsection (8) is added to that section, and
   36  subsection (6) of that section is amended, to read:
   37         1007.23 Statewide articulation agreement.—
   38         (6) The articulation agreement must guarantee the statewide
   39  articulation of appropriate courses within associate in science
   40  degree programs to baccalaureate degree programs. Courses within
   41  an associate in applied science degree program may articulate
   42  into a baccalaureate degree program on an individual or block
   43  basis as authorized in local interinstitutional articulation
   44  agreements.
   45         (a) By September 1, 2023, the Articulation Coordinating
   46  Committee shall convene a workgroup composed of State University
   47  System, Florida College System institution, and district career
   48  center faculty to facilitate the seamless transfer of the
   49  associate in science degree and reduce time to credential
   50  completion. The workgroup shall develop a minimum of eight
   51  statewide “2+2 associate in science programs to baccalaureate
   52  degree articulation agreements in high-demand fields that
   53  articulate the associate in science degree into a related
   54  baccalaureate degree. These agreements must be developed for
   55  programs that are widely offered at Florida College System
   56  institutions and state universities and must guarantee the
   57  transfer, acceptance, and credit application of the full
   58  associate in science degree toward the baccalaureate degree
   59  program requirements. The workgroup shall provide its proposed
   60  articulation agreements to the Articulation Coordinating
   61  Committee by August 1, 2024.
   62         (b) In addition to awarding credit in accordance with the
   63  statewide “2+2” associate in science programs to baccalaureate
   64  degree articulation agreements developed pursuant to paragraph
   65  (a), each state university shall, by the start of the 2023-2024
   66  academic year, adopt a minimum of one local “2+2” associate in
   67  science programs to baccalaureate degree articulation agreement
   68  with one or more Florida College System institutions. The
   69  agreements must guarantee the transfer, acceptance, and credit
   70  application of the full associate in science degree program of
   71  study toward the baccalaureate degree program requirements. By
   72  March 1, 2024, each state university must submit the local 2+2”
   73  associate in science programs to baccalaureate degree
   74  articulation agreement to the Department of Education.
   75         (8) To strengthen educator preparation programs in this
   76  state and provide seamless pathways to continued educational
   77  opportunities, by September 1, 2023, the Articulation
   78  Coordinating Committee shall convene a workgroup responsible for
   79  developing recommendations for seamless student transfer from
   80  one educational level to the next in teacher preparation
   81  programs for education paraprofessionals and individuals who
   82  have earned the child development associate credential. The
   83  workgroup shall also develop recommendations for the seamless
   84  transfer of teacher apprentices for the completion of their
   85  baccalaureate degree.
   86         (a) The workgroup must be composed of State University
   87  System and Florida College System institution faculty and
   88  faculty of career centers established under s. 1001.44.
   89         (b) The workgroup shall review existing statewide,
   90  regional, and intrainstitutional agreements to identify seamless
   91  pathways and course sequences through the attainment of
   92  baccalaureate degree and develop a statewide articulation
   93  agreement that includes articulated postsecondary credit for the
   94  child development associate credential as specified in paragraph
   95  (7)(a) and college-level training, experience, and education
   96  acquired while serving as an education paraprofessional as
   97  defined in s. 1012.01(2)(e), and a teacher apprentice to include
   98  the award of credit toward a baccalaureate degree for experience
   99  acquired in the teacher apprenticeship program.
  100         (c)The workgroup shall provide its recommendation and
  101  proposed articulation agreement to the Articulation Coordinating
  102  Committee by March 1, 2024. State universities and Florida
  103  College System institutions must accept and apply articulated
  104  credit as stipulated in the articulation agreement.
  105         Section 2. Subsections (7) and (8) of section 1007.24,
  106  Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
  107         1007.24 Statewide course numbering system.—
  108         (7) Any student who transfers among postsecondary
  109  institutions that are fully accredited by a regional or national
  110  accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of
  111  Education and that participate in the statewide course numbering
  112  system shall be awarded credit by the receiving institution for
  113  courses satisfactorily completed by the student at the previous
  114  institutions. Credit shall be awarded if the courses are judged
  115  by the appropriate statewide course numbering system faculty
  116  committees representing school districts, public postsecondary
  117  educational institutions, and participating nonpublic
  118  postsecondary educational institutions to be academically
  119  equivalent to courses offered at the receiving institution,
  120  including equivalency of faculty credentials, regardless of the
  121  public or nonpublic control of the previous institution. The
  122  Department of Education shall ensure that credits to be accepted
  123  by a receiving institution are generated in courses for which
  124  the faculty possess credentials that are comparable to those
  125  required by the accrediting association of the receiving
  126  institution. The award of credit may be limited to courses that
  127  are entered in the statewide course numbering system.
  128  Institutions shall award transfer credit toward program
  129  requirements for courses that contain similar learning outcomes
  130  as identified in the statewide course numbering system. Credits
  131  awarded pursuant to this subsection shall satisfy institutional
  132  requirements on the same basis as credits awarded to native
  133  students. Institutions may not require a student to repeat
  134  equivalent coursework as described in this section if the
  135  student earned credit for the coursework at a prior institution.
  136         (8) Participating postsecondary institutions receiving
  137  transfer course credit must accept and apply general education
  138  courses and credit in accordance with this section, s. 1007.25,
  139  and other provisions of law, including credit earned through
  140  dual enrollment, course equivalencies, and other acceleration
  141  mechanisms, as first satisfying general education core course
  142  credit requirements and other general education subject area
  143  course credit requirements, as appropriate before applying the
  144  course credit as elective credit. Transfer course credit not
  145  applied in satisfying general education requirements must be
  146  applied as satisfying institutional and program-specified
  147  requirements before it is applied as elective credit.
  148         Section 3. Subsections (9) and (12) of section 1007.25,
  149  Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
  150         1007.25 General education courses; common prerequisites;
  151  other degree requirements.—
  152         (9)(a) An associate in arts degree must shall require no
  153  more than 60 semester hours of college credit and include 36
  154  semester hours of general education coursework. Beginning with
  155  students initially entering a Florida College System institution
  156  or state university in the 2014-2015 academic year and
  157  thereafter, coursework for an associate in arts degree must
  158  shall include demonstration of competency in a foreign language
  159  pursuant to s. 1007.262. Except for developmental education
  160  required pursuant to s. 1008.30, all required coursework must
  161  shall count toward the associate in arts degree or the
  162  baccalaureate degree.
  163         (b) An associate in arts specialized transfer degree must
  164  include 36 semester hours of general education coursework and
  165  require 60 semester hours or more of college credit. Specialized
  166  transfer degrees are designed for Florida College System
  167  institution students who need supplemental lower-level
  168  coursework in preparation for transfer as provided under
  169  paragraph (7). The State Board of Education shall establish
  170  criteria for the review and approval of new specialized transfer
  171  degrees. The approval process must require:
  172         1. Each Florida College System institution to submit a
  173  notice of its intent to propose a new associate in arts
  174  specialized degree program to the Division of Florida Colleges.
  175  The notice must include the recommended credit hours, rationale
  176  for the specialization, the demand for students entering the
  177  field, and the coursework being proposed to be included beyond
  178  the 60 semester hours required or the general transfer degree,
  179  if applicable. Notices of intent may be submitted by a Florida
  180  College System institution at any time.
  181         2. The Division of Florida Colleges to forward the notice
  182  of intent within 10 business days after receipt to the
  183  Chancellor of the State University System and all Florida
  184  College System institutions. State universities and Florida
  185  College System institutions have 60 days after receipt of the
  186  notice to submit comments on the proposed associate in arts
  187  specialized transfer degree.
  188         3. After the submission of comments pursuant to
  189  subparagraph 2., the requesting Florida College System
  190  institution to submit a proposal that, at a minimum, includes:
  191         a. Evidence that the coursework for the associate in arts
  192  specialized transfer degree includes demonstration of competency
  193  in foreign language as provided in s. 1007.262 and demonstration
  194  of civic literacy competency as provided in subsection (5).
  195         b. Demonstration that all required coursework will count
  196  toward the associate in arts degree or the baccalaureate degree.
  197         c. An analysis of demand and unmet need for students
  198  entering the specialized field of study at the baccalaureate
  199  level.
  200         d. Justification for the program length if it exceeds 60
  201  credit hours, including references to the common prerequisite
  202  manual or other requirements for the baccalaureate degree. This
  203  includes documentation of alignment between the exit
  204  requirements of a Florida College System institution and the
  205  admissions requirements of a baccalaureate degree program at a
  206  state university to which students would typically transfer.
  207         e. Articulation agreements for graduates of the associate
  208  in arts specialized transfer degree.
  209         f. Responses to comments received under subparagraph 2.
  210         (c) The Division of Florida Colleges shall review the
  211  proposal and, within 30 days after receipt, shall provide
  212  written notification to the Florida College System institution
  213  of any deficiencies and provide it with an opportunity to
  214  correct the deficiencies. Within 45 days following receipt of a
  215  completed proposal by the Division of Florida Colleges, the
  216  Commissioner of Education shall recommend approval or
  217  disapproval of the new specialized transfer degree to the State
  218  Board of Education. The State Board of Education shall consider
  219  the recommendation at its next meeting.
  220         (d) Once the State Board of Education approves an associate
  221  in arts specialized transfer degree, a Florida College System
  222  institution may offer the degree and shall report data on
  223  student and program performance in a manner prescribed by the
  224  Department of Education.
  225         (e) The State Board of Education shall adopt rules,
  226  pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54, to prescribe format and
  227  content requirements and submission procedures for notices of
  228  intent, proposals, and compliance reviews under this subsection.
  229         (12) A student who received an associate in arts degree for
  230  successfully completing 60 semester credit hours may continue to
  231  earn additional credits at a Florida College System institution.
  232  The university must provide credit toward the student’s
  233  baccalaureate degree for an additional Florida College System
  234  institution course if, according to the statewide course
  235  numbering, the Florida College System institution course is a
  236  course listed in the university catalog as required for the
  237  degree or as prerequisite to a course required for the degree.
  238  Of the courses required for the degree, at least half of the
  239  credit hours required for the degree must shall be achievable
  240  through courses designated as lower division, except in degree
  241  programs approved by the State Board of Education for programs
  242  offered by Florida College System institutions and by the Board
  243  of Governors for programs offered by state universities.
  244         Section 4. This act shall take effect July 1, 2023.