Linda Suskie

 A Common Sense Appr​oach to Assessment in Higher Education


How to tick off your accreditor

Posted on November 24, 2013 at 8:10 AM

Here are six ways:

1. Ignore what your accreditor says. Ignore the accreditor's requests for specific information, and don't bother reading the accreditor's standards, and guidelines. 

2. Fill your report with platitudes and sweeping generalizations... and no supporting evidence. Include statements such as "Faculty are dedicated to teaching" and "Students thrive here both academically and in terms of personal development" without any documentation that these are indeed true.

3. Use rose-colored glasses for everything. Don't even hint that anything is less than perfect. Make your only recommendations for "improvement" to stay the course or maybe do a few minor tweaks around the edges.

4. Share everything. Throw into the appendices everything but the kitchen sink--anything that remotely looks like it's related to, say, assessment...including surveysof student satisfaction from eight years ago.

5. Or share just one or two "examples." Never mind that they aren't really a representative sample--they're your best examples or maybe the only things you're doing.

6. Make it as hard as possible for the reviewer to find evidence of compliance with the accreditor's standards. Never mind that the reviewer is probably a volunteer with a day job. Provide only basic documents with no summaries or analyses of what the documents are telling you. Attach every faculty member's resume, for example, and leave it to the reviewer to read them all and decide if the faculty are appropriately qualified. 

Categories: Accreditation