Frequently Asked Questions

Here you will find answers to some of the commonly asked questions about the Academic Approval Tracking application.

What is Academic Approval Tracking?

Approval Tracking is an online tracking system for requests associated with specific academic processes. It is currently used for requests regarding new courses, updates to existing courses, programs and degrees, and other academic processes. Note that this application does not replace Sunshine Statute requirements. It is not the authoritative record of approval.

What courses and programs require approval?

All college credit courses, certificates, and degree programs require approval, though graduate, undergraduate, and professional programs often have different approval steps. Please see the Policies page for more specific information.

How long does the approval process take?

The length of the approval process depends on the number of required approvals and whether the required forms were correctly filled out when the request was first submitted. While the approval process could be quite fast from department approval to college approval, the University Curriculum Committee, the Graduate Curriculum Committee, and the Board of Governors only meet a few times each year. No academic approval process can be completed without approval from at least one of these groups.

How do I get a new course or program started?

Go to the Start New Request page of this site and select the appropriate request type for your request, then select the applicable process and follow the displayed instructions.

Who can make changes to requests?

The original submitter can make changes to the documents attached to a request at any time.

Approvers may make changes to the documents only when the request is pending in their area of authority. For example, a College of Education Approver may only upload documents when a request is pending at the College of Education. In general, it is assumed that Approvers will only upload new documents for minor changes, such as typos. For substantive changes, the original submitter should upload the new documents.

Information in the body of the request (anything not contained in the associated documents) may not be changed after the request has been submitted, unless the request is returned (recycled) back to the original submitter.

Is there a list of all the College and Department level approvers?

You can see a list of all College and Department level approvers on the Groups & Approvers page. If an approver needs to be added or removed from the Approver list, the department chair or appropriate college administrator should email approval@ufl.edu with the approver's name and UFID.

Why am I getting all of these emails?

There are three different email notifications sent out by the Academic Approval Tracking system. They are "Decision needed on a request," "Change to a request," and "Request has been approved." Notice the different subject lines (highlighted in yellow below). Each of these email types are briefly discussed below.

The "Decision needed" email (see image below) is for a new request or a change to a request that is now at your level of approval. Someone from your Approval Group will need to act on this request. You can see who is in your Approval Group by going to the Group/Approver listing here.

 

The "Change to a request" email notification (see image below) is sent only to those approvers that have previously acted on the request. Any other approvers that may belong to your Approver Group will not receive emails for requests you have previously acted on. Note the text: "There has been a change to a request you acted on previously. There is no further action required on your part." is in the body area of the email. This type of email is only a notification to you that an Approver Group at a higher level than your level has acted on the request.

 

The last type of email notification (see image below) is sent to all Approvers who have previously acted on the request. It is a general notification that the request has gone through all the Approval steps for its particular process and has been approved. Notice the text: "To see the request history, visit:" has replaced the usual "To see the most recent status, visit:" text.

 

Request has been approved email example

 

If you are a submitter of a request, you will receive "there was a change" email notifications. You can change your email settings any time you are logged into the Approval Tracking system. Between your name and the Logout button in the upper right corner, you will see "Email options" as shown in the image below.

Email options

 

Click on the "Email options" to see the settings for your account. You can change these settings as needed. See image below.

 

Settings for Email options

How do I add requests to my "Watch list"?

You can choose to watch (receive email notifications) requests that you are not involved with. The procedure on how to get these updates is explained below.

After logging into the Approval system, go to the Reports page. You will see a screen that looks like the image shown below.

Once you are on the Reports page you can search for any Request by title, submitter name, description, process, groups, status, etc. Once you have set your search parameters click on the "Generate report" button. This will return a list of the requests that match your search parameters.

In the column labeled "Title" click on the Request name you would like to watch. It will open a window showing the Request. To add this Request to your "Watch list" click on the "Get updates" button as shown in the sample below.

 

Once you click on the "Get updates" button, you will start receiving email notifications whenever someone acts on this Request.

There are two ways to stop receiving email updates for the Requests on your "Watch list".

  1. Go to the Request and click on the "Stop updates" button, as shown in the image below.
  2. Or you can go to your "Watch list" and remove the Requests you want to stop watching.

To see your "Watch list" click on the email options link located next to your name in the upper right hand corner of the page. You should see a screen that looks like the image shown below.

Click on the check box next to the Request(s) you would like to stop watching and then click on the "Stop updates for selected requests" button. The selected Requests will be removed from your "Watch list" and you will no longer receive email updates from those Requests.

Whom do I contact for help?

Please see the Contact page for whom to contact with questions about the Approval Tracking system.
 

How do I get a new course or program started?

Go to the Start New Request menu on this site, select "Course" then "Create a new course", select the appropriate academic level for your request, then select the applicable process and follow the displayed instructions.

I am trying to input approvals but the department isn’t on the drop down list. How do I get my department added?

Departments can be added by sending an email to approval@ufl.edu with the name of the department, its college, and the names and UFIDs of the department Approvers.

What data formats are supported for electronic data submission?

PDFs and Word documents are the supported file types, though some of the forms required for specific approval processes are only provided in PDF format.

How do I see the status of my request(s)?

Click on the tab "Your Requests," sign in with your GatorLink account, and the requests that you have submitted will be automatically displayed.

Who can make changes to requests?

The original submitter can make changes to the documents attached to a request at any time.

Approvers may make changes to the documents only when the request is pending in their area of authority. For example, a College of Education Approver may only upload documents when a request is pending at the College of Education. In general, it is assumed that Approvers will only upload new documents for minor changes, such as typos. For substantive changes, the original submitter should upload the new documents.

Information in the body of the request (anything not contained in the associated documents) may not be changed after the request has been submitted, unless the request is returned (recycled) back to the original submitter.

My copy of the submitted application has data missing, or is incorrectly filled in, what should I do?

An option is to create a new version of the document with the correct information. Use the "add document" link to upload the new version and use the "Replaces" feature to indicate that the new version replaces the incorrect one.

If the request has already made its way through part of the system and the changes are in the body of the request, it must be recycled to the original submitter, at which point the attached document can also be replaced. If the original submitter is no longer available, contact approval@ufl.edu for assistance.

What happened to the file I attached in the system?

There is no way for a user to remove a document in this system, only replace documents. If the original upload/attachment did not complete processing, the document may have never been added to the system. Otherwise, if a document has been attached, it will remain in the system.

How do I go about deleting duplicate requests that have been sitting in the system?

Requests cannot be deleted because a record needs to be kept of all requests for tracking and historical purposes. In this instance, have the request denied, notify everyone which version is the correct one, and make sure they disregard the duplicates.

How can I get a "denied" request re-activated so that changes can be made to it?

The status of "denied" is an end status. It is not possible to re-activate the request to a different status. The recommended course of action is to resubmit the request with corrected information (based on whatever reasoning used to deny the original request). The new request will then need to progress through the Approval process again.

Whom do I contact for help?

Please see the Contact page for whom to contact with questions about the Approval Tracking system.
 

Who is able to approve new or changed courses in my department?

You can view the list of Approvers by college, department, or administrative unit on the Groups & Approvers page. You may also call the UF Help Desk at 392-HELP or email approval@ufl.edu for more information.

How does my department make changes to who can approve courses, certificates, or programs?

Send an email to approval@ufl.edu, with all additions and deletions to the Approver list. Please include the UFIDs of any individuals to be added. The current list of Approvers is available on the Groups & Approver page.

I'm a College level approver, what can I approve?

As a College level approver, you are able to approve any request for any process pending at the College level for the college that you are associated with. For example, if you are a College Approver for the College of Engineering, you will be able to approve (act on) any request pending at the College level for Engineering.

I'm a Department level approver, what can I approve?

As a Department level approver, you can approve any request for any process that might be pending at the department level for the department you are associated with. For example, if you are a Department Approver for the Department of Chemical Engineering, all requests pending for that department you would be able to act on (approve). You may have more than one department you are responsible for.

Who can make changes to requests?

The original submitter can make changes to the documents attached to a request at any time.

Approvers may make changes to the documents only when the request is pending in their area of authority. For example, a College of Education Approver may only upload documents when a request is pending at the College of Education. In general, it is assumed that Approvers will only upload new documents for minor changes, such as typos. For substantive changes, the original submitter should upload the new documents.

Information in the body of the request (anything not contained in the associated documents) may not be changed after the request has been submitted, unless the request is returned (recycled) back to the original submitter.

Who is able to set the status for pending requests?

An Approver (department, college, or curriculum committee official) may only set or change a status when a request is within their area of responsibility.

Whom do I contact for help?

Please see the Contact page for whom to contact with questions about the Approval Tracking system.