ERIC Number: ED374845
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Evaluating the Evaluators: How Participants View Accreditation Standards, Practices, and Results.
Beno, Barbara A.; And Others
In 1993, the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges initiated a comprehensive evaluation of the standards and procedures it uses to accredit colleges. The Commission asked the Research and Planning Group for California Community Colleges to carry out the survey. A total of 1,361 questionnaires were mailed to representative members of visiting teams and staff members from colleges which had been accredited using the 1990 standards. Study findings, based on a 70% response rate, included the following: (1) both team members and staff members who prepared self-studies were supportive of the overall accreditation process, including the Commission handbooks, orientation, team composition, and clarity of communications; (2) evaluation standards were judged to be appropriate; (3) the process was perceived to be useful in promoting self-evaluation, planning, and program review; clarifying college mission and goals; and monitoring college processes; (4) a majority the respondents felt that accreditation stimulates institutional improvement, certifies that colleges are meeting their goals, provides broad assurance of quality to the public, and helps develop consensus on standards of good practice; and (5) respondents were critical of the accreditation process with respect to its helpfulness in complex budgetary, staffing, and leadership areas; clarity of standards; the Commission's willingness to take negative actions when warranted; and colleges' lack of speed in taking action on accreditation recommendations. The survey report includes data on procedures and outcomes; a comparison of findings with a 1987 survey; and policy questions raised by survey findings. (KP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Aptos, CA. Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.