The process of accreditation and its impact on building public confidence in Higher Education

The process of accreditation and its impact on building public confidence in Higher Education

Posted on 07 Aug 2014 Views ( 2015 )

As many of us know, regional accreditations undoubtedly increase the level of importance for institutes of higher education in the realm of academia. Also reaccreditation, a process of internal reviews followed by an evaluation by an external team of peer educators forces Universities and Colleges to reexamine themselves with a hawk eye about the recent past issues, present status, and also about future prospectives. In a way it gives an opportunity to have a self-check and it also motivates and guides the institutes in the future.

On the other hand, potential students and their parents always look for a model for high-quality education, which constantly evolves with the time as a technology. For them accreditations instill confidence by ensuring that varsities are metering their successes, failures, in their constant improvement process.

Misericordia University successfully completed its own 10-year self-study and evaluation team accreditation review recently. The efforts of the University have been paid off and now the University is feeling great to be a placed along with outstanding array of accredited higher education institutions of northeastern Pennsylvania. The University is confident enough that it keeps the improvement even in the upcoming days.

As a part of the regional accreditation process, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education asked their peers at other institutions to suggest frankly and openly about the points to improve.

Colleges and universities are held to a number of specific standards that assess both our educational effectiveness and institutional context, such as resource allocation, planning, and mission. The institutional context helps in identifying our internal abilities and disabilities as well, and then makes them in line with the external challenges and opportunities. Say, we came to know that in the recent past students who are preparing to go to college especially in northeastern Pennsylvania.

At Misericordia, the staff has tried to design programs in such a way that they are so related to both adults and to traditional students who are completing high school as well.

Over the past decade, the University is spinning in a self-study document and even hosted an external team to do peer reviews. But this is not all. A significant number of the University’s programs, including those in health sciences, education, and business are accredited separately through their own individual professional organizations. All the student body of the University was graduated with an accredited degree certification.

The whole accreditation process takes roughly two years of preparation. Though challenging, the continual efforts bestow the right path to achieve the educational mission and thus get the public confidence.

Thomas J. Botzman, Ph.D., is president of Misericordia University in Dallas. Misericordia University ranks in the top tier of the Best Regional Universities – North category of U.S. News and World Report’s 2014 edition of Best Colleges and was designated a 2014 Best Northeastern College by the Princeton Review.