Standard Century, Volume 4 No. 1

With the end of 2015 and the beginning of 2016, the entrepreneurs, instructors, managers, and beneficiaries of accredited career education confront an occasion to celebrate the strengths of the institutions, the value they provide students, and the contributions they make to their communities. Those strengths and contributions, though sometimes difficult to measure, are invaluable when made with fidelity to quality and integrity.

The New Year affords ACICS the opportunity to enhance its capacity to measure and evaluate those contributions, both in terms that are germane to an accreditation decision and in terms that are meaningful to a broader array of stakeholders. Accountability that is articulate, simple, direct and clear is among the higher value outcomes ACICS can produce. We aspire to make enhancements in that regard in a timely manner.

The intense review of the quality and integrity of post-secondary education also affords ACICS an occasion for direct dialogue with the primary sources of recognition in the U.S., the Department of Education's Accreditation and State Liaison Division and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. The former will provide recommendations to the National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) for its meeting in June; the latter will inform discussion by CHEA's Committee on Recognition earlier in the spring. ACICS senior leadership will be present at both venues to defend the strength of the accreditation program and the quality of member institutions.

Notwithstanding the challenges and demands for greater accountability and stronger student outcomes, ACICS is committed to serving the enterprise of quality and continuous improvement for the benefit of students throughout the year. The Council will accept nothing less, and member institutions have demonstrated a durable ability to deliver on those expectations.

Best to all in 2016!

Albert C. Gray, PhD
President and CEO


Responding to CFPB
Through the courts, ACICS has provided a direct response to the Civil Investigative Demand (CID) issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) earlier last fall. The Council has petitioned the court to consider the tenuous relationship between the accreditation review and any consumer financial products offered directly or indirectly by member institutions. CFPB has filed its response to ACICS's petition, a hearing in federal district court will be conducted, and both entities will await a decision by the court regarding next steps.
Council Leadership 2016

The Council and Board of ACICS have selected its leadership for 2016

Beginning January 1, the chair of the Council is Dr. Larry Leak; chair-elect is Mr. Roger Swartzwelder; Dr. Ed Thomas continues as treasurer; and the other two members of the executive committee are Ms. Julie Blake and Mr. John Euliano.

All Institutions Subject To Additional Placement Verification Beginning in 2016
As part of its on-going effort to assure the integrity of data used to make accreditation decisions, the Council has required that beginning January 1, ACICS will review the placement data of randomly selected member institutions. Those colleges and schools selected will be notified by ACICS and required to submit data regarding the current month's placement activity through the ACICS Placement Verification Program. The spreadsheet used to submit this activity can be viewed by clicking here. Every member institution will be reviewed at least once within a five-year period for verification of its placement data, the integrity of the placement data collection and reporting process, and the qualifications of parties responsible for the placement data.

Enhancements to the IT Infrastructure
The design and functionality of the ACICS Member Center continues to evolve in response to thoughtful feedback and dialogue with end-users. Based on a survey of users of the information technology program in October, ACICS has developed and added an "Applications Template" section to the Member center. You will find the new link half-way down the left side menu; it provides in a single location access to application templates for substantive and non-substantive changes, including new programs, higher credential level programs, new campuses locations, etc. Any questions about how to use the ACICS Member Center or any suggestions should be directed to

Join ACICS in Fort Worth in May
The 2016 ACICS Annual Conference & Business Meeting will be May 11 -13 at the Worthington Renaissance Hotel in Fort Worth, Texas. Watch the ACICS website in coming weeks for information about exhibition space, presentations and registration.