With the growth in higher education options, particularly online, it is more essential than ever for current and prospective students to ensure that a particular college or university has proper accreditation. Accreditation, which occurs via a review process by one of numerous recognized non-governmental organizations, can give students greater confidence that the selected college or university will be academically sound. In addition, they may be eligible to receive federal grants and loans to help finance their education if the school is accredited by one or more recognized governing bodies.
Accreditation can help ensure that a higher education provider meets specific quality standards around key areas of the educational experience including faculty, student support services, finance and facilities, curricula and student learning outcomes.
Institutional and Programmatic Accreditation and How to Find Them
Institutional accreditation is granted when a college or university is determined to provide quality education to its students and to have a process in place for regular evaluation and improvement. Accreditation can be thought of as a stamp of approval for an institution and its programs. It can provide reassurance to students considering their higher education options that their degree will be both valuable and useful in pursuing their chosen career.
Programmatic accreditation, as the name implies, is granted to specific programs within college or university departments including nursing, education, healthcare, counseling or business programs. Numerous state government bodies require programs to be accredited in order for graduates to be eligible for professional licenses in their fields.
In order to determine whether a school and its programs have been accredited, interested individuals can visit the U.S. Department of Education Office of Postsecondary Education accreditation database or browse the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) database of institutions, programs and accreditors. There are seven primary accrediting organizations recognized by CHEA:
- Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges
- Higher Learning Commission
- Middle States Commission on Higher Education
- New England Commission of Higher Education
- Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
- Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
- WASC Senior College and University Commission
The accrediting process is thorough and includes a self-evaluation by the institution, an onsite visit by experts from the accrediting organization and a review and decision by the accreditors regarding a college or university’s status. This process may be repeated every three to 10 years in order to keep accreditation current.
Long-time Accreditation for University of Phoenix and Its Many Degree Programs
University of Phoenix holds institutional accreditation by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and has been accredited by HLC and its predecessor since 1978 (http://hlcommission.org).
Six of the University’s degree programs are also accredited: Bachelor of Science in Accounting, Bachelor of Science in Business, Master of Science in Counseling, Master of Business Administration, Master of Health Administration and Master of Science Nursing program. In addition, University of Phoenix offers five in-demand degree program tracks that have received programmatic accreditation: business, healthcare, nursing, counseling and education.
Business Degree Programs
The College of Business and Information Technology at University of Phoenix offers a number of degree programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACB P). The following The following programs are ACBSP accredited and actively enrolling new students:
- Associate of Arts with a concentration in Business Fundamentals
- Bachelor of Science in Accounting
- Bachelor of Science in Business
- Master of Business Administration
- Master of Management
- Doctor of Business Administration
- Doctor of Management
Healthcare Degree Programs
Those interested in pursuing a healthcare career can opt for a Master of Health Administration degree from University of Phoenix. The program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Management Education (CAHME) and prepares students for careers leading the business side of patient care. During the program, they develop skills in marketing, IT, policy and economics.
Nursing Degree Programs
It’s crucial for any college or university to have accreditation, but, for nurses, it can determine whether or not they are able to progress in their chosen careers. For a licensed registered nurse, University of Phoenix offers both bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in nursing that are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
Counseling Degree Programs
There is one accredited degree program, the Master of Science in Counseling program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the Phoenix Campus, that is accredited by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP®).
About University of Phoenix
University of Phoenix offers a dynamic, supportive learning environment with numerous accredited programs in fields of study including business, healthcare, counseling and education. These allow students of all backgrounds to advance their education and develop the skills needed to pursue high-demand careers.
Degree programs at University of Phoenix are designed to meet the needs of working adults, offering flexible schedules, courses aligned with high-demand career paths, interactive learning options and Career Services for Life® commitment. Since 1978, University of Phoenix has been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor. For more information, visit www.phoenix.edu.