Setting Course Enrollment Maximums: Process, Roles, and Principles

Curriculum Committee

Appropriate course enrollment maximums are an essential aspect of guaranteeing the quality of instructional programs. Colleges must consider many factors in establishing these enrollment limits, including legal codes, student and instructor safety, instructor workload, and the fiscal viability of the institution. However, the primary basis of any determination regarding enrollment maximums should be the pedagogical factors that influence the success of the students in the course. Many different college constituencies have roles to play in establishing appropriate enrollment limits, including discipline faculty, curriculum committees, academic senates, bargaining units, and administration. This paper outlines the proper roles for each of these constituencies and offers suggestions for establishing clear processes through which decisions regarding enrollment maximums may be made.