Middle States revised the Standards for Accreditation to go into effect for all institutions in 2017-2018. The revisions were guided by four principles: the standards should be mission-centric, the standards should focus on the student learning experience, the standards should emphasize the importance of assessment, and the standards should support innovation and continuous institutional improvement.

The Commission wanted to implement the new standards for accreditation in a collaborative manner, working closely with institutions to make sure the standards can be applied fairly, consistently, and in a way that is useful for determining the quality of an institution.

Therefore, the Commission has invited a small cohort of institutions scheduled for self-study visits during 2016-2017 to be part of what they are calling the Collaborative Implementation Project.  As part of this cohort, we will apply the new standards in our self-study review.  We were chosen because we have been successful at earning re-accreditation in the past, and we have demonstrated a commitment to the kinds of principles that underlie the new standards. We are working closely with the Commission in developing our self-study using the new standards, and through our participation we are getting valuable feedback in developing our process. We are also helping to adapt the evaluation process to the new standards and to preparing for full implementation by all member institutions. We attended a training session in November, and have participated in a number of remote meetings and on a wiki where we solicit feedback, hear from other participating institutions about their process, and learn from each other. Part of our commitment is that we will make ourselves available to train other institutions in this new process according to the new standards, as well.


Collaboration for mutual learning

Frequent and regular interaction between project participants

“Train the trainers”

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Institutional Commitments

Base its self-study in preparation for its decennial evaluation in 2016-2017 on the Commission’s revised Standards;

Be visited by an evaluation team in Spring 2017;

Use the Comprehensive Self-Study model;

Identify self-study leaders who agree to frequent and regular communication with Commission staff and other members of the cohort via teleconference and other means, offering feedback and presentations about the application of the revised standards throughout the process;

Enable the self-study steering committee and chairpersons to participate in Commission training events designed specifically for institutions in the Collaborative Implementation Project;

Allow the Commission to use the institution’s self-study materials and team visit report for future training purposes.

CIP Participating Institutions

Bard College

Bryant & Stratton College

Dominican College of Blauvelt

Genesee Community College

LIM College

Montclair State University

Niagara University

Queens College of the City University of New York

Rochester Institute of Technology

School of Visual Arts

St. Thomas Aquinas College

Union County College

University of Maryland College Park

University of the Virgin Islands

Widener University




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