University of Wyoming questions large number of degrees



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LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — The University of Wyoming is wondering if it needs to cut back on the number of degrees it offers.

The university in Laramie offers 118 degrees, compared with other institutions of higher education such as Colorado State University, which only offers 72.

UW Board of Trustees member John MacPherson has asked UW administrators to review departments and determine their effectiveness. No courses or degrees were identified.

"Wyoming offers about 200 separate courses, whereas CSU offers 150," MacPherson said.

"I think it's something the university administration and the board need to keep in mind and acquire more information about the programs offered and the merit of those programs," he said.

Trustee Mike Massie said any savings could help make up a possible funding cut by the state legislature, the Laramie Boomerang reported (http://tinyurl.com/hhqapzk).

Massie said some departments may not have the most students, but those courses could be vital to the university's reputation.

"Just because a department doesn't offer a lot of degrees in itself doesn't mean it isn't valuable," he said. "A lot of people point to math — nobody's going to cut the math department," Massie said.

Provost David Jones said the university is the only four-year university in the state and it needs to offer a broad range of classes.

Jones said a review of every program is in the early stages. Officials said the review could take several years.

"We'll decide if we need to restructure some of these programs, or if there are some programs or departments that haven't grown at the rate, what's the cost of those programs," he said.

Massie said any future cuts or restructuring of departments would not affect students already enrolled in the programs.

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Information from: Laramie Boomerang, http://www.laramieboomerang.com

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The Associated Press

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