Open Pathway Model
The Open Pathways model separates the continued accreditation process into two major components: (1) the Assurance Review and (2) the Quality Initiative.
In Year 10, the institution undergoes a comprehensive evaluation.
A comprehensive evaluation takes place in Year 10 of the Open Pathway accreditation cycle in which peer reviewers analyze the institution's Assurance Filing to determine whether the institution continues to meet the Criteria for Accreditation.
There are four components of the comprehensive evaluation:
All comprehensive evaluations include a review of whether the institution meets the Federal Compliance Requirements.
The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) is one of two commission members of the North Central Association. The North Central Association is one of six regional institutional accreditors in North America. HLC accredits post-secondary, degree-granting institutions. On February 24, 2012, the HLC Commission Board of Trustees adopted new Criteria for Accreditation, Assumed Practices, and Obligations of Affiliation. These new criteria became effective for all institutions as of January 1, 2013.
The criteria for accreditation, in the past, has been reviewed every five years, with this new process, the criteria will be reviewed annually. For 2013, the criteria were reviewed, updated, and shared with member institutions for comment and finalized in June of 2013. These new changes are in effect now and are highlighted in this site. It is important to note that these criteria are the standards of quality the commission uses to determine accreditation or affirmation of accreditation.
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