Accreditation – In the Fight of its Life? Parts 1, 2, & 3
From the Distance Education and Training Council
For the past 3 years, voluntary accreditation, once widely hailed and credited being one of the most effective forces in shaping American higher education into being the most impressive, enviable and admired in the world, has recently come under some unfair criticism from those who do not have even a passing understanding of its true purposes. Up until recently, accreditation has enjoyed widespread, implicit trust by the public and government as a dependable, reliable indicator of academic quality and ethical practice in an institution or program. It has stood the test of time.
Accreditation remains an enduring American institution, despite the complaints about it, and is a still a pervasive force in higher education. And contrary to what issues forth from its blogging critics, it continues to enjoy the strong support of the academic community, employers, counselors, parents and students looking for an education. There is a debate taking place about the true role of accreditation in the 21st Century: should it be an enforcer of laws or a peer evaluator? Is it a cop or a consultant? Are these two roles mutually exclusive?