Applying for 

     Accreditation

Institutions seeking initial accreditation with the American Council on Private School Accreditation Commission should first review the eligibility requirements in the HANDBOOK

 

ACPSAA Education should be the primary method of study for the majority of students and distance education courses should comprise the majority of curricula offerings of the institution. Each step of the accreditation process is described in detail within the HANDBOOK

 

Institutions should anticipate a minimum of two years and often up to five years from the first step through the final decision on granting initial accreditation.

 

Some of the fundamental questions regarding the initial accreditation procedures such as

What are the first critical steps in the accreditation process?

When will the Application for Accreditation receive approval?

What are the costs involved for accreditation?

What is a readiness assessment?

Eligibility Requirements

Before the Accrediting Commission will officially accept an institution's initial Application for Accreditation, the institution must demonstrate it fully meets the eligibility criteria in the ACPSAA HANDBOOK. In brief, the criteria entail the following:

Each program offered by the institution is predominantly distance education or correspondence education (51% or more).

The institution must be properly licensed, authorized, exempted or approved by the applicable state educational institutional authority (or its equivalent for non-U.S. institutions).

At the time of initial application, the institution must have been enrolling students in current programs for two consecutive years under the present ownership.

There is evidence via audited or reviewed financial statements that the institution is financially sound.

The name being used by the institution is free from any association with any activity that could damage the reputation of the Accrediting Commission.

The institution, its owners, governing board members, officials and administrators possess sound reputations and demonstrate a record of integrity and ethical conduct.

The institution agrees that as part of the application process, the owners, officers and managers may be subject to a background check by ACPSAA.

Licensure

ACPSAA -accredited institutions and institutions seeking ACPSAA accreditation must be properly licensed, authorized, exempted or approved by the applicable state educational institutional authority (or its equivalent for non-U.S. institutions). The institution must also be in compliance with all applicable local, state and federal requirements.

State Authorization: It is important to be familiar with state authorization of distance education offered in the United States. Some states enforce their own laws pertaining to institutions that offer distance or correspondence education to students in the state. Institutions are responsible for complying with these state laws and regulations. Important information about state authorization is available on the National Council on State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA) website.

Professional Licensure: Certain professions such as nursing, teaching, law, engineering or veterinary medicine require licensure prior to entry into the profession. Distance education institutions should be familiar with specialized accreditation requirements and whether state authorization is required in order for graduates to be eligible for the licensure examination.

The National Association of State Administrators and Supervisors of Private Schools (NASASPS) offers valuable resources and updates on state regulations.

The ACPSAA Accreditation Handbook is a detailed compilation of the Accrediting Commission's standards, policies and procedures. The responsibility for assuring the quality of an institution rests first with the institution itself. The accreditation process assesses the capacity of an institution to meet all accreditation requirements. ACPSAA expects institutions to produce evidence of compliance with all standards set forth in the Handbook

 

The Accrediting Commission requires its accredited institutions to offer distance education programs that focus on student learning and carefully attend to every aspect of the students' experience at an institution. ACPASS's approach to institutional evaluation follows a multi-dimensional framework that supports

The Accrediting Commission requires its accredited institutions to offer distance education programs that focus on student learning and carefully attend to every aspect of the students' experience at an institution. ACPASS's approach to institutional evaluation follows a multi-dimensional framework that supports

(1) data gathering from multiple sources,

(2) mandatory interim updates and reporting,

(3) documented attestations from the institution,

(4) layered reviewed of documentation by academic, pedagogical, administrative, and financial experts.

(5) a comprehensive review of the entire record by members of the Accrediting Commission.

 

The fairness and integrity of an accreditation process is fundamental to the ability of an accreditor to function usefully and effectively. To this end, the ACPSAA Accreditation Handbook covers all aspects of each functional area of accreditation.

ACPSAA Accreditation Handbook

Part 1: Introduction

Part 2: Processes and Procedures

Part 3: Accreditation Standards

Part 4: Appendices

acpsaa Accreditation Fees

acpsaa Annual Dues and Fees FY 2019-2020

acpsaa Graduation Rate Benchmarks