Accreditation is a review of the quality of higher education institutions and programs. In the United States, accreditation is a major way that students, families, government officials, and the press know that an institution or program provides a quality education and it provides credibility with other institutions and employers (https://www.chea.org/about-accreditation). There are two types of accreditation–institutional (regional or national) and specialized (programmatic).
Institutional (Regional) Accreditation
Regional accreditation is the most widely used and recognized type of institutional accreditation for colleges and universities in the United States and is typically focused on academic institutions that are state, public, or non-profit colleges or universities. There are six regional accrediting agencies for higher education institutions in the U.S.. The University of Minnesota campuses are all accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The Twin Cities campus has been accredited continuously since 1913. The Duluth campus has been accredited since 1968, while the Morris and Crookston campuses were first accredited in 1970 and 1971. The Rochester and Twin Cities campuses are accredited jointly. Each campus is accredited to offer the bachelor's degree; the Twin Cities and Duluth campuses are accredited to offer the master's degree; and the Twin Cities campus is accredited to grant doctoral and professional degrees.
Specialized (programmatic) Accreditation
Specialized accreditation refers to organizations that establish standards related to a specific profession and normally applies to programs, departments, or schools that are parts of an institution.The accredited unit may be as large as a college or school within a university or as small as a curriculum within a discipline.
Many degrees are in fields that do not have specialized accrediting bodies. Some degrees that prepare students for specific professions (for example, counseling, nursing, business, music, etc.) do have accrediting bodies. Academic programs seek specialized accreditation for a variety of reasons, including a desire to meet professional standards, to ensure that students are eligible for licensure and certification, and to assure students, graduates, and employers of program quality. Programs with specialized accreditation have been determined to meet the professional standards of their field through rigorous self-study and evaluation by the accrediting body.
Note-This list is reviewed annually, but timely updates are appreciated. Please contact Bri Rosen, if revisions or additions need to be made.