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From: Ray Beere Johnson II <>
Subject: Re: [APG] Accreditation
Date: Fri, 7 Dec 2007 20:58:54 -0800 (PST)
In-Reply-To: <778789.82567.qm@web63407.mail.re1.yahoo.com>


--- "LaWanna Blount, Ph.D." <>
wrote:

>
> ACCREDITATION, WHAT IT IS, HOW IT WORKS, AND
> AKAMAI
> UNIVERSITY IN THE MILLIEU
>
> Accreditation in higher education is a
> complex, and a
> confusing activity that most people do not
> clearly
> understand. My goal in this short paper is to
> shed
> some light on this concept and discuss Akamai
> University in the milieu of unaccredited
> colleges.
>
> In a nutshell, Accreditation is verification
> or a
> confirmation that a college or school provides
> an
> education that meets standards. Accreditation
> legitimizes an institution to the public
> Students
> that are enrolled in an accredited University
> are
> eligible to receive Federal Financial aid,
> receive
> credit transfers and upon graduation are more
> likely
> to obtain jobs and advancement in jobs. (www,
> worldwidelearn.com)
>
> The purpose of accreditation is to evaluate the
> operations of an educational institution with
> standards to ensure that quality education is
> being
> provided in higher education. It is a yardstick
> with
> which to measure our many universities and
> colleges.
> Many unaccredited colleges and universities may
> be
> operating with high standards, but may be too
> new to
> be ready for an accreditation review. It
> usually takes
> about 5-6 years before a college/university has
> their
> infrastructure built up enough to apply to an
> accrediting agency for an accreditation review.
> Also,
> the financial outlay involved in an
> accreditation
> review can be overwhelming.
>
> An accreditation review is voluntary, stressful
> and an
> expensive process, which is performed by
> private
> accrediting agencies, which have been
> established for
> the very purpose of reviewing and evaluating
> schools,
> colleges and universities and some departments
> within
> a college or university. The United States is
> unique
> in this regard for private accreditation
> agencies are
> responsible to maintain this accountability of
> colleges and universities and the government
> and the
> public relies on these agencies to provide this
> service in the United States. Other countries
> depend
> on their governments to provide the quality
> control
> standards that U. S. accreditation agencies
> provide
> in the U.S. In the early 20th century, before
> accrediting agencies came into existence, the
> large
> philanthropic foundations (Carnegie and
> Rockefeller
> Foundations) served this function and if
> standards
> were down, the funds were held up until things
> were
> brought up to standard.
>
> The Recognized Accreditors
>
> When schools, colleges or universities are
> ready and
> want to undergo an accreditation review they
> apply to
> a particular accrediting agency of their
> choice. This
> investigation can take up to 6 months or to
> several
> years. There are many accrediting agencies.
> However,
> not all of them are approved by the United
> States
> Department of Education (USDE) and the Council
> on
> Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). The
> accreditation agencies that are approved by
> CHEA or
> the USDE are listed on the website of CHEA
> which can
> be found at www.chea.org.
>
> Since the advent of distance learning
> universities
> many fake accrediting agencies have sprung up
> to
> accredit the fake universities. Thus, these
> fake
> universities can write on their brochures.
> fully
> accredited and they state the fake
> accreditation
> agency. They do this because they know that
> most
> people do not understand about accreditation
> and the
> recognized accreditation agencies. People
> should pay
> attention by whom the institution is
> accredited. When
> an institution claims accreditation the most
> important
> aspect is by whom are they are accredited? As
> I will
> explain below, there are recognized accredited
> agencies and you should be familiar with those
> recognized agencies.
>
> The application fee for an accreditation review
> or
> evaluation can run up over $10,000, There is an
> application fee, an evaluation fee for each
> committee
> member, a readiness assessment fee, which is
> done by
> an independent agency evaluator to assist an
> application institution in preparing the
> on-site
> evaluation. In addition, there are subject
> specialist
> fees for each course. The institution also is
> expected to pay the travel and lodging fees for
> all
> the accreditation committee. There are also
> other
> incidental fees.
>
> Some, not all, recognized accrediting agencies
> perform
> a preliminary review to ensure that the
> institution
> has legitimate operations and then may be given
> a
> provisional status. This may take months and
> sometimes years. (Bear and Bear, 2003, 41)
>
> After making application, an institution
> receives the
> visitation team on site for an evaluation of
> the
> institutions operations and mission The
> accreditation
> team thoroughly evaluates an institution’s
> operations
> and mission, philosophy and total
> infrastructure. It
> reviews all its documents; legal, financial,
> operating
> policies, its long term and short term
> planning,
> curriculum, student policies, theses, syllabi,
> student
> files and has meetings with administrators,
> faculty,
> students, staff and alumni.
>
> These accreditation reviews may take months
> and
> sometimes as long as several years. Some
> agencies
> confer a school or college with a candidacy for
> accreditation.These schools then are policed
> for
> another year or so and if they fulfill the
> requirements that are needed are granted full
> accreditation. Some agencies do not include a
> candidacy step and declare a school accredited
> or not
> accredited (Bear and Bear 2003, 41).
>
> After an institution is accredited there will
> be
> inspections, about every five years in order
> to
> determine that it is still maintaining the
> accreditation standards in its operations.
> When an
> accreditation team makes further visits to
> accredited
> institutions new programs or changes in
> programs since
> the prior accreditation review are also up for
> review.
> In addition, if the institution has changed
> management, or changed a site location for a
> particular aspect of its programs, these
> aspects will
> also be reviewed.
>
> Accreditation by the recognized agencies that I
> will
> specifically identify later in this paper is
> the only
> way we currently have to identify those
> institutions
> that are operating with quality standards.
> However,
> currently, with the advent of distance
> education,
> there are new accrediting agencies that are
> requesting
> the approval of the USDE and CHEA.
>
> However, it should be noted that the Carnegie
> Commission on Higher Education (a non profit
> group
> concerned with accountability in higher
> education at
> the national level) in the early 1990s in
> speaking of
> the future of accrediting agencies stated,
> accrediting
> organizations will lose their usefulness and
> slowly
> disappear. How can this happen? Already
> competency
> tests are being developed at major corporations
> hiring
> university graduates, soon major employers will
> be
> following suit. In addition, the whole idea of
> regional accreditation was developed in an era
> when
> students flowed from a particular region to
> obtain
> education; regional high schools serviced a
> community college In that context the semester
> system
> was the standard delivery system for higher
> education. With distance education we have
> broken the
> boundaries of these time and space parameters
> (Dunn,
> 2000, 35). Currently students access the same
> courses
> and programs from anywhere in the world at
> anytime.
> Distance education instructors work evenings
> and
> weekends and through the year. Open admissions
> is
> already the norm.
>
> There are some colleges and universities that
> are new
> and their operations are meeting the standards.
> However, it takes about 5-7 years for a college
> or
> university to develop its infrastructure and
> have
> students graduate through its programs. Today
> it is
> difficult for unaccredited colleges to obtain
> students
> without accreditation. It is the catch 22
> situations,
> you cannot apply for an accreditation review
> unless
> you have students and to obtain students you
> almost
> need to be accredited. There are many quality
> institutions that are not accredited. Every
> college
> and university must start out not accredited.
>
> With the advent of new technologies and the
> Internet
> for distance learning, fake institutions are
> becoming
> ever more prevalent on the eduscape, which
> brings many
> problems and issues for higher education.
> However,
> these have been with us for a long time. John
> Bear
> (2003), who is considered the authority on
> distance
> education and was part of the dip scam
> operation in
> 1970 -1990s, started to track and study
> distance
> learning institutions since the 1970s and his
> consecutive publication, Directory of Degrees
> by
> Distance Learning is published every few years.
> He has
> until the 15th edition listed the institutions
> of
> which the fake owners were prosecuted.
> However, the
> problem is that fake owners surface again after
> their
> penalties are carried out and reestablish the
> schools
> some place else and start all over again. Many
> of
> these fake schools stated in their brochures
> that they
> “are ready for accreditation” and other kinds
> of
> statements such as they “are candidates for
> accreditation” Some of these schools also set
> up their
> own accreditation agencies. Thus, claiming they
> are
> “fully accredited.” Apparently, there is a
> lucrative
> market out there for people to keep on
> enrolling in
> fake schools or there wouldn’t be so many of
> them.
> States are tightening up their laws to drive
> these
> diploma mills and fake schools out. Some states
> have
> very tight laws. The state of Oregon is one
> state that
> has strict laws governing the institutions of
> that
> state.
>
> Recognized Accreditation agencies are very
> clear to
> applicants for accreditation that they do not
> allow
> them to make statements to students about their
> activities and events preparing for an
> accreditation
> review. A college or university is either
> accredited
> or not accredited.
>
> It is also important to understand that
> specialized
> schools within a University often seek
> accreditation
> by professional accrediting agencies. For
> example, the
> American Bar Association, in the School of Law
> in
> universities, or the American Medical
> Association
> within a medical school. A university could
> be
> accredited, as well as specific specialized
> schools by
> professional accrediting agencies. These
> recognized
> professional agencies are all listed with CHEA
> and are
> on its website.
>
> The Accreditation Agencies
>
> All of the regional accreditation agencies, six
> national accreditation agencies including DETC
> (Distance Education and Training Council) and
> all of
> the approximately 50 specialized and
> professional
> accreditors are recognized and overseen by the
> CHEA
> (Council on Higher Education Accreditation”)
>
> The recognition by CHEA of regional,
> specialized and
> professional accrediting organizations, affirms
> that
> standards and processes of accrediting
> organizations
> are consistent with quality, improvement, and
> accountability expectations that CHEA has
> established.
>
> To determine if an accreditor is recognized by
> CHEA go
> to CHEA'S
> website at
> www.chea.org/Institutions/search.cgm)) If
> the college or accreditor isn’t listed then it
> is
> likely that the school is not accredited by a
> recognized agency (Bear 2003 p. 43).
>
> The six regional associations that are approved
> by
> CHEA have responsibility to accredit schools
> in one
> region of the United States and its
> territories.
>
> These six accrediting agencies are: North
> Central
> Association of Colleges and Schools, Northwest
> Association of Schools and Colleges, Middle
> States
> Association of Colleges and Schools, New
> England
> Association of Schools and Colleges, Southern
> Association of Colleges and Schools, and the
> Western
> Association Schools and Colleges, The postal
> and email
> addresses and websites of these regional
> accrediting
> agencies are all in Bears’ Guide to Earning
> Degrees
> by Distance Learning (2003, 45).
>
> There are two National Accrediting Agencies
> that are
> recognized:
>
> These are:
> Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges
> and
> Schools (ACISS)
>
> Distance Education and Training Council (DETC)
>
> There are also Recognized Professional
> Accrediting
> Agencies in specialized areas, which I referred
> to
> previously, in the Arts, Dance, Landscape
> Architecture, Continuing Education, Dentistry,
> Law,
> Health and other specialized fields. All
> fifty of
> these recognized specialized accrediting
> associations
> are listed in Bear and Bear, 2003, 45-50 with
> addresses, websites and phone numbers. However,
> there
> are many accrediting agencies that are not
> recognized
> under GAAP, the General Accrediting Principles.
> GAAP
> means the Generally Accepted Accrediting
> Principles.
> These are the policies that are accepted and
> followed by the important people in
> accreditation such
> as university registrars, admissions officers,
> corporate human resources officers and
> government
> agencies. These policies form the GAAP
> principles
> (Bear and Bear, (2003, 45-50. )
>
> The agencies not recognized by either the
> Council on
> Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) or the
> U.S.
> Department of Education (USDE) nor by
> ministries of
> other countries are listed in Bear and Bear
> (2003 on
> pages 51 to 61.
>
>
> Akamai University, an Unaccredited University
> in the
> State of Hawaii
>
> In the 1990s unaccredited colleges and
> universities
> and distance learning universities were not
> regulated
> at all in the state of Hawaii (Bear and Bear,
> 2003,
> 36) Thus, hordes of many fly-by- night fake
> distance
> learning and post office box colleges flocked
> to the
> state of Hawaii. There were many complaints and
> international inquiries before the Hawaii
> Office of
> Consumer Protection. In 1999 the legislature
> passed a
> law, which called for the regulation of
> unaccredited
> college and universities. Subsequently, the
> University of Hawaii and other agencies
> submitted
> legislation that resulted in a revised 446E.
> (Bear and
> Bear, 2003,36), Among other requirements, any
> unaccredited college needed at least 25
> full-time
> students during the year and one employee
> living in
> Hawaii in order to remain in business. The
> state of
> Hawaii oversees its unaccredited schools using
> Hawaii
> Revised Statute HRS 446E- 2. Dr. Douglass
> Capogrossi,
> The President of Akamai University, played an
> instrumental role in the revision of the
> Statute, with
> the disclosure disclaimer, as the state of
> Hawaii
> wanted to throw out all unaccredited higher
> education
> institutions. The law states that all
> unaccredited
> colleges or universities must issue the
> following
> disclaimer on all published advertising, print
> and
> electronic:
>
> The statute HRS 446E-2 Disclosures…
> a. Any unaccredited institution shall disclose
> in all
> catalogs, promotional materials and contracts
> for
> instruction, the fact that the institution is
> not
> accredited by any nationally recognized
> accrediting
> agency listed by the United States Secretary of
> Education. The disclosure shall be made in a
> type size
> as large or larger than any other text in the
> catalog,
> promotional material, or contract for
> instruction,
> excluding the name of the unaccredited
> institution,
> and shall be presented in a manner reasonably
> calculated to draw the attention of the reader.
> If the
> unaccredited institution includes in its
> catalogs,
> promotional materials, or contracts for
> instruction
> any other information relating in any manner to
> accreditation, or to accreditation by an agency
> not
> nationally recognized by the United State
> Secretary of
> Education, the disclosure required by this
> subsection
> shall be repeated on every page on which the
> information appear. Where the information is
> presented
> electronically, the disclosure shall be made
> directly
> preceding or following the information. The
> disclosure shall read as follows: (Name of
> Degree
> Granting Institution) IS NOT ACCREDITED BY AN
> ACCREDITING AGENCY recognized by the United
> States
> Department of Education.
>
>
> b. Where promotional material for an
> unaccredited
> institution consists of an advertisement in a
> periodical published by a person or entity that
> is not
> affiliated with the unaccredited institution,
> the
> disclosure required in subsection (a) may be
> abbreviated to state as follows: NOT ACCREDITED
> BY AN
> AGENCY RECOGNIZED BY THE U.S. SECRETARY OF
> EDUCATION. The disclosure required under this
> subsection shall be made in a type size as
> large or
> larger than any other text in the
> advertisement.
>
> Without the revised statute unaccredited
> Universities
> in Hawai would not exist.
>
> Conclusion.
> In the paper I have set out some information
> to you
> as members of the APG e-list, which should add
> to your
> knowledge about accreditation. Further
> information
> can be found in Bears’ guides. Their chapter
> on
> accreditation is the best that I have ever
> read.
>
> LaWanna Lease Blount, Ph.D.
>
> References
> Bear, John B., Ph.D. & Bear, Mariah, P.,
> M.A.,
> Bears’ Guide to Earning a Degree by Distance
> Learning.
> 15th ed. Berkeley: Ten Speed Press, 2003.
> Dunn, "The Virtualizing of Education", The
> Futurist.
> Maarch-April, 2000, 34-38.
>
>
>
>
>
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