Why Accreditation

Why is accreditation important to you?

Whether you are planning on furthering your academic or professional career, growing your business or organization, or choosing a quality provider to meet your specific needs, accreditation is important to you and should play a part in your decision making.

What is accreditation?

Accreditation is an assurance of quality. In the field of education, an accredited university must verify that its programs and administrative processes meet standards established by the U. S. Department of Education and regulated by approved accrediting agencies. Beyond an assurance of quality, two major functions of accreditation are “assisting prospective students in identifying acceptable institutions” and “assisting institutions in determining the acceptability of transfer credits” (DOE, 2012, p. 2).

How does accreditation work? 

According to the Department of Education (2012), “the goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality” (p. 1). While the Department of Education (2012) “does not accredit educational institutions and/or programs…the Secretary of Education is required by law to publish a list of nationally recognized accrediting agencies that 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” (p. 1). The accrediting agencies approved by the Secretary of Education “are private educational associations of regional or national scope” that “develop evaluation criteria and conduct peer evaluations to assess whether or not those criteria are met” (DOE, 2012, p. 1). 

It is the responsibility of these accrediting agencies to “conduct a continuous review of standards, policies, procedures, and issues in the area of the Department of Education’s interests and responsibilities relative to accreditation” (DOE, 2012, p. 3) and ensure that these standards are maintained by institutions accredited by that agency. Institutions accredited by the accrediting agencies must verify that their programs meet established standards and that their ongoing assessments are geared toward continuous improvement. Accredited institutions must demonstrate an adherence to the established standards and a dedication to continuous improvement during the periodic re-evaluation process.

OK, but what does accreditation mean for you?

Attending an accredited institution of higher learning ensures that the educational programs and outcomes offered meet the highest standards. Institutions seek accreditation as a means to validate the quality of the programs and services they provide. Accredited universities maintain a high level of transparency in their operations and offer learners a diverse array of student services that protect student rights, advance student success, and result in well educated, qualified graduates.

Why Apollos and the DEAC?

The Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), formally known as the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC) established in 1926, has been a national accrediting agency recognized by the Department of Education since 1955. As a leader in distance education for over eighty years, the DEAC remains dedicated to continuous “institutional self-improvement,” to “excellence in student services,” and furthering “the dynamic, global distance education community” (DETC, 2012, p. 1). If you are considering online learning as a means to achieve your academic and professional goals, then you should spend some time exploring DEAC accredited institutions. As an accredited member of the DEAC, you can be sure that Apollos University adheres to the highest standards and is dedicated to constant institutional improvement. If advancing your career or launching a new career is your intention and online learning is the key to making this dream a reality, then Apollos University is the Gateway to Your Future and Your Future is Accredited, Accessible, Attainable, and Affordable!

Sources

Department of Education (DOE). (2012). Accreditation in the United States. Retrieved from http://www2.ed.gov/admins/finaid/accred/index.html

Distance Education and Training Council (DETC). (2012). About Us. Retrieved from http://www.detc.org/about.html