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Prospective students and their families often have questions about accreditation, certification and the type of program that they should attend (just to name a few).  The most common questions and their answers can be found below.  For a quick overview of what questions potential students should ask, please view this brief presentation (PowerPoint).

 

If you can’t find the answer to your question or need clarification please contact CAAHEP at mail@caahep.org.

The institution I am attending or interested in attending says they are “accredited” but they are not on your list. What does that mean?

What does it mean when a program indicates that they have “applied for accreditation?”

Are the lists of accredited programs on the CAAHEP website current and accurate?

How often should I check the website to see if programs have been added to the profession that I am interested in pursuing?

What are the admissions requirements for CAAHEP accredited programs?

Do I need to attend and graduate from a CAAHEP accredited program?

Can CAAHEP certify me?

Where can I get certified, so that I can get a job?

What happens if the program I am attending loses its accreditation?

I am concerned about the curriculum/practices/policies of the CAAHEP accredited program I am enrolled in, how can I file a complaint?

I want to attend a program that is on CAAHEP’s list of accredited programs but it is on probation, what does that mean?

I want to attend a program that is on CAAHEP’s list of accredited programs but it is inactive, what does that mean?

I am interested in studying on-line. Does CAAHEP accredit distance education programs?

Can I receive continuing education credits through CAAHEP?

Does CAAHEP provide scholarships or financial aid?

The program that I attended is closed.  Where can I find my records?

I graduated several years ago and I am not sure if the program was CAAHEP accredited at the time of graduation? Can you help me?

Does CAAHEP keep lists of graduates from CAAHEP accredited programs?

The institution I am attending or interested in attending says they are “accredited” but they are not on your list. What does that mean?

The list of accredited programs on the CAAHEP website is continuously monitored and updated.  If a program isn’t on the list, it isn’t CAAHEP accredited.

Having said that, when discussing accreditation with an institution it is important to clarify the type of accreditation you are asking about: programmatic or institutional. CAAHEP is a programmatic accreditor. This means that we accredit educational programs in specific professions.

There is also a type of accreditation that is referred to as “institutional” accreditation, which has to do with the accreditation of the institution as a whole, but not the individual programs within the institution. CAAHEP is NOT an institutional accreditor.

Please note that institutions are under no obligation to participate in the programmatic or specialized accreditation process. It is completely voluntary.

What does it mean when a program indicates that they have “applied for accreditation?”

To begin the accreditation process, all programs must complete a CAAHEP request for accreditation services and then participate in a self-study and a comprehensive on-site review. Throughout this process, the program is working with one of CAAHEP’s Committees on Accreditation (CoAs) and receiving feedback about how well they are progressing toward their goals of meeting the CAAHEP Standards and Guidelines.

There is NO status of accreditation during this application process, so the program is NOT accredited while the application is being reviewed. There is also no guarantee that simply because a program has initiated the accreditation process that they will eventually receive accreditation. A program is NOT accredited until the CoA makes that recommendation to the CAAHEP Board of Directors and the Board of Directors votes to approve that recommendation.

Are the lists of accredited programs on the CAAHEP website current and accurate?

The actual lists of CAAHEP accredited programs on the CAAHEP website are always accurate and up to date as the website search is tied directly to the CAAHEP database.  Everytime a program is added to or updated in the CAAHEP database, those changes are reflected in "real time" on the CAAHEP website.  While CAAHEP makes every effort to maintain the integrity of the data on the website it is possible that at any given time a phone number may be incorrect or that the name of an institution has changed without our knowledge. Maintaining accurate contact information for over 2000 programs can be a daunting process.

If the program you are looking for doesn’t appear on our list, it is not CAAHEP accredited.  Access the CAAHEP list of accredited programs.  We have no information about non-CAAHEP accredited programs.

How often should I check the website to see if programs have been added to the profession that I am interested in pursuing?

The CAAHEP Board of Directors reviews accreditation recommendations 6 times per year (January, March, May, July, September and November). Our lists of accredited programs are updated immediately following each of these meetings.

What are the admissions requirements for CAAHEP accredited programs?

Admissions are the prerogative of the individual institution. For admissions information including prerequisites, you should contact the institution directly. That contact information is available on the website as part of the accredited programs list.

Do I need to attend and graduate from a CAAHEP accredited program?

It is important to research the profession in which you are planning a career so as to determine whether or not graduation from a CAAHEP accredited program is required to sit for licensure/certification/registry exams and/or to actually work in your field.

Regardless of the certifying body’s requirements, attending a CAAHEP accredited program is a good choice.  As a student, it provides you with an assurance that the program has been reviewed by an outside source and that it is in compliance with the nationally recognized Standards for the profession.

Can CAAHEP certify me?

CAAHEP is not involved in the certification or licensure of individuals. Our mission is the accreditation of educational programs.

Where can I get certified, so that I can get a job?

As CAAHEP is not involved in the certification or licensure of individuals we cannot provide you with specific information as to how to become certified in your field.

What happens if the program I am attending loses its accreditation?

If a program is accredited by CAAHEP at any time while you are matriculating in the program, CAAHEP considers you a graduate of a CAAHEP accredited program.

It is important to understand that CAAHEP’s definition may not be the same as that of the professional certifying body.  If you find yourself in this situation you will want to contact the certifying body directly to determine if you still meet their eligibility requirements.

I am concerned about the curriculum/practices/policies of the CAAHEP accredited program I am enrolled in, how can I file a complaint?

CAAHEP and the Committees on Accreditation take very seriously concerns raised by enrolled and prospective students. Review CAAHEP’s Complaint Policy.

I want to attend a program that is on CAAHEP’s list of accredited programs but it is on probation, what does that mean?

While a program is on probation it is still an accredited program.  Generally a program is placed on probation because they have failed to improve or satisfy one or more CAAHEP Standards over an extended period of time. A program is placed on probation to help them make the improvements or changes necessary to return them to a status of continuing accreditation. Programs are obligated to let you know that they are on probation and what the stated deficiencies of the program are.

While there is no guarantee that a program that is on probation will return to a continuing status, most programs do correct the noted deficiencies in a timely manner.  In those instances where deficiencies remain unresolved a program will have their accreditation withdrawn.

I want to attend a program that is on CAAHEP’s list of accredited programs but it is inactive, what does that mean?

CAAHEP policy allows a program to maintain its accreditation status for up to two years while “inactive.” Students cannot be enrolled in a program while it is inactive. Programs may choose to become inactive when they are having difficulty recruiting students, when they are searching for new program personnel, revising the curriculum or any other reason that affects the program’s viability.

I am interested in studying on-line. Does CAAHEP accredit distance education programs?

There are a limited number of CAAHEP accredited programs that are offered on-line.

Can I receive continuing education credits through CAAHEP?

CAAHEP does not accredit continuing education courses.

Does CAAHEP provide scholarships or financial aid?

No.

The program that I attended is closed.  Where can I find my records?

When a program voluntarily withdraws from the CAAHEP system of accreditation, they are supposed to provide CAAHEP with record retention information.  To determine if CAAHEP has this information, you should contact CAAHEP at 727-210-2350.  It is also possible that the appropriate Committee on Accreditation may have this information so they would be another potential resource.

If neither CAAHEP nor the Committee on Accreditation has this information, you should contact the agency within your state government that oversees post-secondary education to determine what the state’s record retention policies are, including the storage of past student records.

I graduated several years ago and I am not sure if the program was CAAHEP accredited at the time of graduation?  Can you help me?

CAAHEP maintains records of all programs that have been accredited.  As much of this program information “pre-dates” our current technologies, you will need to contact the CAAHEP office directly at 727-210-2350 to determine a program’s accreditation history.

Does CAAHEP keep lists of graduates from CAAHEP accredited programs?

No.