CIP Codes

For more information, see:

The U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) states that the Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) “provides a taxonomic scheme that supports the accurate tracking and reporting of fields of study and program completions activity.” CIP was originally developed by NCES in 1980. CIPs are used at the University of Missouri for:

  • State and federal compliance reporting;
  • State performance funding model;
  • Any new or revised academic program or certificate;
  • Faculty salary comparator studies;
  • Instructional cost and productivity studies (Delaware);
  • STEM degree analysis;
  • Curricular designators.

CIP assignment can also impact federal financial aid availability (e.g., graduate certificates and Gainful Employment) and how long an international student who graduated from MU can legally stay in the United States (DHS STEM Designated Degree Program qualifying fields).

CIP Decision Team

Assigned by the provost, the CIP Decision Team (CDT) consists of four to six members, including one to two members from Faculty Council and three to four members from the provost’s staff in functional areas such as:

  • Academic programs;
  • Institutional research;
  • Faculty affairs & Institutional effectiveness;
  • Faculty Council representative;
  • University registrar-ex officio;
  • University budget office ex officio.

When agreement among the team cannot be reached, the associate provosts for academic programs and institutional effectiveness (in consultation with the provost if necessary), will have final authority in deciding the CIP code.

The CDT has the authority to determine all CIP assignments at MU. This includes Subject CIPs, which are important to the Resource Allocation Model. The CDT may also establish policy guidelines when and, where necessary, review and/or revise current CIP codes depending on internal and external factors (e.g., the new 2020 CIP codes, etc.).


The CDT is responsible for establishing the criteria used in assigning CIP codes. These criteria will evolve, but initially the CDT will pay particular attention to:

  • In what academic department is the program housed?
  • Are comparative data (e.g., faculty salaries, instructional productivity, etc.) available if this CIP is approved?
  • Are the student learning objectives consistent with the learning objectives of similar degree programs likely to be assigned this CIP?
  • Is there consistency among the CIP assignment at different levels (bachelors, masters, etc.)?

Consideration will also be given to the impact of the CIP assignment on: STEM designation, financial aid availability, MU resource allocation model, state performance funding model, federal and state compliance reporting, and so forth.