ACICS in Trouble Again - CHEA Committee Recomends Association be Denied

Discussion in 'Accreditation Discussions (RA, DETC, state approva' started by Vonnegut, Jan 19, 2020.

  1. Vonnegut

    Vonnegut Active Member

  2. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I'm fine with professional accrediting agencies, even those that offer institutional accreditation. But I would prefer they had a specialty that was better addressed by them rather than the RAs. When ACICS got into accrediting degree-granting schools in a big-time way, they were over their heads. I feel the same way about DEAC, but at least they specialize in distance education. (But is that really necessary now that the RAs are in full swing regarding DL?) It just seems second-rate and pointless.
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    ACICS was on life support until DeVos saved it. It's never been clear to me that it should have been saved. Perhaps with the heat turned up on Trump the motivation is diminished. In any case, DeVos has her own problems at the moment. She taking heat on that whole "fake university" thing.

    In any case, my prediction is that the plug gets pulled on ACICS. Look for the obit here.
    Vonnegut likes this.
  4. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    I'll wait for the U.S. Department of Education's decision. CHEA has no decision-making authority and no one has to follow anything they think, say, or do.
  5. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    The entirety of academia would say you have it backwards.

    USDoE recognition is for one purpose only: determining Title IV eligibility. This function is required by law. But higher education, as a whole, is a self-regulated function in the US. The states provide the legal basis for a school to operate, but the standards applied vary tremendously.

    ACICS was rescued because this administration is extremely against consumer protection and deeply wants to negate anything done by the previous one. This is that. CHEA, on the other hand, knows better.
  6. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    CHEA definitely has no authority to grant or take away anything in the way of accreditation or official recognition of an accreditor, so that part is not backward, it's just accurate.

    To the other part of my previous post: "The final decision whether to follow the SDO’s recommendation seems to rest with Betsy DeVos who must now review the SDO’s decision, and decide whether to grant the agency recognition or not. What remains unclear is the Secretary’s authority to grant another extension of accreditation to an agency that has not yet demonstrated full compliance with the recognition criteria or what the timeframe for her to decide is."


    That's a whole lot of deciding on this matter from the head of the U.S. Department of Education.
  7. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Sorry, but the real world is a lot larger than this forum. "Official recognition" of accreditors has always taken two forms: CHEA and the US Department of Education. But higher education is largely a self-regulating industry, and that goes to CHEA.
  8. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    Always. Hmmm. I thought CHEA has only been around since 1996? I know there were other associations that did a similar job before that, but I thought those only went back to the 70s? Maybe there were others before those even?

    But let's say tomorrow CHEA decides for some reason to no longer recognize the HLC. What direct consequence would that have on the HLC's ability to accredit schools if the USDOE does not decide to follow suit? What impact would it have on the HLC's member schools? I'm not questioning CHEA's status, it's undeniable that they have a strong position and the respect of the education community. For me it's a real world authority vs. status question. I suppose it could be argued that their authority is in their influence and that can't be denied. But if an entity can still operate after CHEA derecognition, what is there for that entity to fear besides a possible public perception hit that may or may not have a major impact? ACICS has withdrawn their application for CHEA recognition and that's while their feet are still dangling over boiling water. ACICS has its problems, but the people running the place are not off their rockers (I hope). If not having CHEA recognition would cost them their ability to remain in operation, I have to believe they would know that, do everything they could to meet what CHEA expects, and not voluntarily withdraw.
  9. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Perhaps you should know this before pontificating on it.

    Have you met them? Have you been to their offices? Have you worked with their accrediting process? I have.

    ACICS really got over their heads and accredited hundreds of schools it simply could not evaluate effectively, nor track. This is demonstrated in the need to pull their Title IV recognition. Then the guy running things--Dr. Gurubatham--died quite unexpectedly, which certainly didn't help ACICS.

    I can't predict the future, but I can--with authority--describe the present. Not being recognized by CHEA is a huge deal. You can deny that, but you have no basis--empirical or experiential--to back it up.
  10. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly

    I was surprised by how much nicer the ACICS office was than the then-DETC office.
  11. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Agencies such as ABET discontinued their DoE recognition as their accreditation of programs is usually but not always of already Institutionally Accredited Colleges and Universities.
    There was no need to hold DoE recognition for Title V. CHEA is the main recognition they maintain. ABET and similar accreditation of academic E&T programs usually required for licensure and professional recognition over the world.

  12. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    So true. I haven't been to now-DEAC in quite awhile, but IIRC they were planning new digs.
  13. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Great point. "Title IV," though.
  14. LearningAddict

    LearningAddict Well-Known Member

    Or, maybe I do know. You said "always", but that's not what the information out there appears to indicate. Rather than being forceful in my response I was attempting to put it in a more gracious way, and because I am always willing to learn I hoped maybe you had more information to add to it. I don't claim to know everything, I'll leave that one for you :)

    I never claimed to have had any meetings with them so the posturing your're doing there is unnecessary. However, I think it's perfectly reasonable to believe the place isn't being run by a group of basket cases who submit filings without knowing what consequence it will have on their ability to remain in operation.

    CHEA recognition may be a huge deal from a perception standpoint both publicly and in the education community, I've already agreed with that, but I posed those rhetorical questions because the answers are obvious and support the main point: the chief concern regarding what will be done with ACICS is with the US DOE, that is undeniable. ACICS will be able to continue to operate even without CHEA's recognition, ACICS obviously knows that as well or they wouldn't have issued a voluntary withdrawal from CHEA. The question really isn't about CHEA's status and influence, it's about who gets to decide in the end if ACICS operates or not and that call is not within CHEA's power to make. They can complain, they can recommend, they can do both until doomsday, and it may have some influence, it may have a lot of influence, but what they don't get to do is decide: "The final decision whether to follow the SDO’s recommendation seems to rest with Betsy DeVos who must now review the SDO’s decision, and decide whether to grant the agency recognition or not. What remains unclear is the Secretary’s authority to grant another extension of accreditation to an agency that has not yet demonstrated full compliance with the recognition criteria or what the timeframe for her to decide is."

  15. Maxwell_Smart

    Maxwell_Smart Active Member

    They could always find a way to operate as an unrecognized bogus accreditor.
  16. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Yes. But that's a crowded field and they'd have to change their price structure to be competitive against the established miscreants..
  17. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    LOL! Some might say they've already been doing that for some time.
  18. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    Uh, huh. That's what I've always called education and experience, "posturing." Yep. You caught me. I'm just a poser. Well, it sure feels better to have that out in the open; I've been keeping it a secret for more than 20 years online now, and it's been taxing on my soul. Even though this was hard, I want to thank you just the same. I'm sure it will feel great not to carry that burden anymore!

    Now, who wants to talk about golf?

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