Saturday, July 30, 2011

CHEA.ORG/Credit Banks Who Is CHEA? CHEA-CIQG Logo 20th Year A national advocate and institutional voice for promoting academic quality through accreditation, CHEA is an association of 3,000 degree-granting colleges and universities and recognizes approximately 60 institutional and programmatic accrediting organizations

The Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) has produced four short videos posted on YouTube. They address:

Q. Does the Department of Education accredit any postsecondary institutions or programs?
No, the Department of Education does not accredit any postsecondary institutions or programs. However, the U.S. Secretary of Education (Secretary) is required by law to publish a list of nationally recognized accrediting agenciesthat the Secretary determines to be reliable authorities as to the quality of education or training provided by the institutions of higher education and the higher education programs they accredit. The Secretary also recognizes State agencies for the approval of public postsecondary vocational education and nurse education.
Q. May the U.S. Department of Education interfere with an institution’s decision concerning a student or faculty matter?
A. No, The Department of Education’s Organization Act does not permit the Department to have any control over an institution’s academic, student, or personnel administration. Section 103(b) of that Act reads:
"No provision of a program administered by the Secretary or by any other officer of the Department shall be construed to authorize the Secretary or any other such officer to exercise any direction, supervision of control over the curriculum, program of instruction, administration, or personnel of any educational institution, school, or school system, over any accrediting agency or association, or over the selection or content of library resources, textbooks, or other instructional materials by any educational institution or schools system, except to the extent authorized by law."
Q. How do I file a complaint about a school or accrediting body?
A. Matters concerning disputes between a student and a faculty member or an administrator over such issues as billing, grading, financial aid, or employment is considered an individual dispute between the parties at an institution. Such disputes are best resolved by the parties involved, through an institution’s Ombudsman, or through the legal system.
Contact an institution’s accrediting body if there is evidence that appears to support the institution’s non-compliance with one or more of its accrediting body’s standards. Clearly identify the standard and how the institution allegedly does not comply. Accrediting agencies should not be contacted in regard to admission information or issues involving application of an institution’s academic policies.

What’s the difference between regional vs. national accreditation?

This gets a bit complicated. The U.S. Department of Education says: “The U.S. Department of Education does not have the authority to accredit private or public elementary or secondary schools, and the Department does not recognize accrediting bodies for the accreditation of private or public elementary and secondary schools. However, the U.S. Department of Education does recognize accrediting bodies for the accreditation of institutions of higher (postsecondary) education.”
Translation: The U.S. Department of Education doesn’t accredit schools directly. It does, however, recognize organizations that provide accreditation to individual schools. And it gets even more complicated, because there are lots of different USDE-approved accrediting agencies. Some are regional, while others accredit specific types of schools. Here’s a partial list.

Accreditation bodies with nationwide reach . . .

  • Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools – Web address:
  • Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges - Web address:
  • Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training - Web address:
  • Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training – Web address:
  • Council on Occupational Education –Web address:
  • Distance Education and Training Council - Web address:

Regional college accrediting bodies (partial list) . . .

  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education (DE, DC, MD, NJ, NY, PA, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) - Web address:
  • New England Association of Schools and Colleges (CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT) - Web address:
  • North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, (AZ, MI, MN, MO, NE, NM, ND, OH, OK, SD, WV, WI, WY) - Web address:
  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (AL, ID, MT, NV, OR, UT, WA) – Web address:
  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (AL, FL, GA, KY, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX, VA) - Web address:

Chat with student Advisor or Education Specialists
here's one source

The videos provide helpful information to anyone with an interest in knowing more about accreditation. Each directs viewers to the CHEA Website for more in-depth information.

Council for Higher
Education Accreditation

One Dupont Circle NW
Suite 510
Washington, DC 20036
(tel) 202-955-6126
(fax) 202-955-6129


Instant Transcripts from a Credit Bank

Excelsior College
7 Columbia Circle, Albany, NY 12203-5159
International Phone: 518-464-8500
Thomas Edison State College
101 W. State St.
Trenton, NJ 08608-1176
(888) 442-8372 (toll free)
Fax: (609) 777-2956
Charter Oak State College
55 Paul J. Manafort Drive
New Britain, CT 06053-2150
(860) 832-3800


Self-Acquired Competency Credit
As a student in the General Studies Degree program, you may be able to earn academic credits for professional experiences. These self-aquired competency (SAC) credits are awarded based on documentation you provide.
In general, self-acquired competency credit is awarded based on the following guidelines:
  • You must be admitted to the School of Continuing Studies, have completed 12 credit hours at Indiana University subsequent to admission, and be in good academic standing before we can evaluate credit for self-acquired competency.
  • You can apply a maximum of 30 credit hours toward the B.G.S.
  • If you plan to seek SAC credits, you must consult with your general studies academic advisor as early as possible. SAC credit must be carefully integrated with your total degree plan.
  • Learning must parallel courses in the Indiana University curriculum in order to be recognized as specific-course credit. Learning of college-level caliber that cannot be equated to specific course content might be awarded as general-elective credit.
  • The general studies director or advisor arranges to have your SAC portfolio assessed by faculty of the appropriate school or department.
  • The fee you will be charged per credit hour for SAC credit is generally the per-credit-hour fee charged for undergraduate Independent Study Program courses at the time the SAC credit is transcribed to your official student record.
Read more about self-acquired competency credits - including a list of steps you will need to take in order to complete a SAC portfolio

Recognition vs. Accreditation
Recognition of accreditation agencies is often thought of as equivalent of accreditation of institutions,
the difference being that agencies are “recognized” while institutions are accredited. Yet the two are quite
distinct, despite similarities in vocabulary and process.
Accreditation is a nongovernmental peer process designed both to assure minimum standards and to
help institutions assess and improve themselves. All accrediting of U.S. higher education institutions is
done by nongovernmental accreditors. Institutions that are not accredited by ED- recognized accreditation associations may not receive public funds. Accreditation also is used for state oversight purposes,
both as a substitute for state review of accredited institutions’ quality (in some states) and in relation to
professional school licensing examinations. Institutions themselves use accreditation status as a means of
determining whether credits students have earned elsewhere will be accepted for admissions or transfer
purposes. (Accreditation is not the sole criterion for such determinations, but it typically does play a
role.) Finally, being accredited has public value and benefit; it confirms to parents, students, and employers that the institution meets minimum educational standards.
As stated earlier, recognition is both governmental and nongovernmental. Governmental recognition is a regulatory process conducted by the U.S. Department of Education on behalf of the Secretary
of Education. The federal regulatory process is directed primarily toward ensuring that associations meet
minimum standards for structure, governance, procedures, and academic standards. The benefits of recognition are real: associations that fail the federal process are not eligible to be “gatekeepers” for student
financial aid or other federal funding.
Nongovernmental recognition, on the other hand, is a review process for membership in a private
organization. It is a form of self-regulation, through the development and promotion of community

standards of best practice in accrediting associations, enforced through the review of application for
membership. As a form of self-regulation, the “sanction” for an association that does not meet recognition standards is loss of membership in the organization. The meaning of nongovernmental recognition is
somewhat obscure; there is no easy way for the public to tell whether an association without recognition
failed to meet the standard or simply chose not to apply for recognition. Thus, nongovernmental recognition is much less prescriptive than federal recognition; it is oriented more toward improvement than to
assurance of meeting minimum standards.
The public demands considerable information about recognition status. Knowing that an institution is accredited by an association recognized by ED or COPA/CORPA helps ensure that standards of
quality assessment and control are in place. Unfortunately, the ambiguity of “recognition” compromises
the effectiveness of the consumer information role because the public typically cannot distinguish between agencies that are “approved” (ED) or “recognized” (COPA/CORPA) and those that claim to be
“licensed” or “certified” by a fictitious entity.
Analysis of the range of options for the future role of accreditation recognition should be grounded
in a thorough understanding of the current structure and of how the governmental and nongovernmental
process are organized. A brief history of the evolution of those two processes and a synopsis of the major
differences between them follow.


No comprehensive mandatory
system covers all accreditors.
(3) Not all things required by the public must be performed by government. For example, a private
entity can obtain information about and publish an institution’s accreditation status.
(4) The template set in current federal law, with the Department of Education as the primary regulator of accreditation, is not inviolate. The Higher Education Act is reauthorized periodically, and
amendments to it are possible. Also, it is not self-evident that all things that might be regulated
by government must be regulated by government, or within the federal government by the Department of Education. A clear demarcation within government of the roles and responsibilities
of the states and the federal government on one hand, and of federal agencies on the other, would
seem to be preferable to the current cobbled system.
 The Higher Education Act is being amended in 1998, and CHEA and others have requested
amendments that would improve the accreditation section of the law by clarifying roles and responsibilities and by limiting federal authority over academic standards. A fundamental recasting
of the recognition role, including a possible shifting of oversight away from ED or to a system
that relies explicitly on a public/private partnership, is not requested at this time. Through such a
shift is unlikely, it should be discussed....


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home