Transformation of curriculum and academic program management


Jocelyn Milner
director, Academic Planning and
Institutional Research
vice provost for academic affairs

Scott Owczarek
registrar, Office of the Registrar

Transformative changes are coming to campus, in the areas of:

  • catalog content production
  • curriculum management
  • course scheduling
  • documentation of academic policy
  • academic program management.

Lumen will be the single access point for all tasks related to curricular and degree program changes—all through a MyUW portal. Read more about Lumen on the Office of the Registrar’s site.

Lumen’s first functions are launching now. As the current update cycle for the University of Wisconsin–Madison undergraduate academic catalog (now, the Guide) kicks off, editors will use Lumen to do their work. Lumen will also provide access to the Online Course Proposal System (OCP). Other tools will be added as they become available.

When the newly named Guide is published in June 2017, it will combine both undergraduate and graduate material, include all academic programs and courses, have an academic policy library, be fully searchable, and will be integrated with the Student Information System.

Within the next few days, editors across campus will be invited to our October training sessions to get familiar with Lumen and the streamlined update/edit/review process.

The Guide will include some description content provided by editors, and will draw on a databank of course and academic program information called the Madison Academic Repository for Curriculum (MARC). MARC is integrated with the Student Information System and includes only courses and programs that have passed through formal governance approval processes. MARC will serve as the single, master record of the University’s governance-approved academic programs and curriculum.

Later in 2017, Lumen will be the access point for an enhanced course proposal system, for course scheduling, and academic program proposals, changes and review, and other tools connected with curriculum delivery. Faculty, staff, and governance bodies will use Lumen to update, track, and approve functions related to courses and programs.

This launch is the culmination of a multi-year planning project to develop a “single source” for curricular and academic information to better serve students and the University community. Steve Cramer, vice provost for teaching and learning, and Wren Singer, associate vice provost and director of the office of undergraduate advising, provided leadership to the “single source force” that envisioned the project and established the project requirements.

Provost Sarah C. Mangelsdorf provided essential support, encouragement, and vision as the executive project sponsor of this campus-wide initiative.

The main governance body is the Academic and Curricular Policy Repository Advisory Committee (ACPRAC), which we co-chair. There is a specific committee of school/college experts working on the Guide. This model of planning committees comprised of school/college experts will be used for each additional tool set added to Lumen. We have been energized by the professional knowledge and enthusiasm shared by participants; their efforts will ensure that Lumen is the gateway to responsive, adaptable tools that this campus needs. Read more about the committees.

We’re here to help
Both of us ( and are available to answer your questions, make presentations, and supply your team with more information.

Beth Warner, associate registrar, is the leader of the Lumen development and advisory teams, and the expert on the scope, impacts, and benefits on all parts of the project. We encourage you or your colleagues to get in touch with Beth for detailed questions and concerns:, 262-3711.

On Wisconsin,

Jocelyn and Scott