UD Seeking Community Input For Higher Learning Commission Reaccreditation

By: Liz Kyle – News Editor

The University is preparing to be reaccredited by the Higher Learning Commission, an independent corporation that accredits degree-granting post-secondary institutions in the North Central region of the U.S., and it needs your help.

The reaccreditation process occurs every 10 years and focuses on analyzing universities’ quality assurance and institutional improvement potential. The HLC focuses on five areas when reviewing a university: institutional mission, institutional integrity, quality of teaching and learning, assessment of teaching and learning and institutional effectiveness. UD has been accredited by the HLC since 1928, making it almost 90 years since UD has been considered an accredited university. UD’s last reaccreditation was in 2007.

To prepare for the HLC’s reaccreditation process, UD is inviting members of the campus community to participate. Students are encouraged to complete a student opinion survey, expected to be sent out and active in early November, or talk with HLC representatives who plan on visiting the campus Feb. 12-13, 2018.

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The HLC hopes to engage with faculty, staff and students at UD. Conversations will include various aspects of UD’s culture and character, including UD’s mission and behavior in ethical administrative conduct, teaching and learning methods and efforts toward fostering a diverse campus community.

Leading the University’s reaccreditation initiative is Carolyn Phelps, associate provost for faculty and academic affairs. Phelps recognizes the importance of the campus community’s participation, especially students’ participation, in the process.

“We’re doing a lot of things to improve the university, it’s about how we look at things, what we’re going to do next,” said Phelps.

The committee hopes to share initiatives and qualities that makes UD shine, including academic and administrative units moving forward with new programs, partnerships and opportunities that have emerged from president Spina’s visioning process during his first year.

In 2012, the Common Academic Program for students’ curriculum was newly implemented, leaving the HLC curious to see how the program would further develop into what it’s become today.

In hopes of improving the campus environment surrounding diversity, the University established the Office of Diversity and Inclusion in 2016 and diversity focused learning objectives were integrated into the CAP program.

More information will be shared on Porches as the survey cycle and the HLC campus visit approaches.

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