The University of Colorado Boulder has been awarded continuing accreditation without stipulation by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA).
NCA accreditation is a process that universities undergo every 10 years to ensure specified standards are met and to demonstrate to the public and key constituents – namely students and faculty – the quality of the infrastructure that supports academic programs, research and other activities. CU-Boulder has been accredited by the NCA since 1913 and was officially notified of continuing accreditation status Aug. 18.
"With its ambitious plans, its effective leaders and its productive faculty and staff, the university is poised to become an even greater asset for the state of Colorado and the nation," the site team stated in the report.
This year's accreditation was without stipulation or follow-up and is the result of more than two years of preparatory work by the university. The NCA's site team visited the CU-Boulder campus Feb. 22-24 to meet with key campus constituents and review programs and facilities. The visit followed the submission of extensive written and supportive materials by the university to the NCA at various points over 18 months.
"We are extremely gratified by the award of accreditation without stipulation," said CU-Boulder Chancellor Philip P. DiStefano. "It is a testimony to the hard work and ingenuity of our faculty and staff, the overall strength of our academic programs, and the strong vision put forth in our Flagship 2030 Strategic Plan."
The Flagship 2030 Strategic Plan is the university's blueprint for success in the new millennium. It was cited by the site team as a key asset and leverage point for the state of Colorado in the team's report:
"There are many good examples of how CU-Boulder is responding to a future shaped by multiple societal and economic trends. Among them are the following: multiyear residential academic experiences; experiential learning opportunities; collaboration with other regional universities, businesses, government and federal laboratories to establish educational research opportunities; and expansion of student and faculty exchanges around the world."
The overall result of the accreditation efforts, DiStefano said, is that students, parents, taxpayers and CU stakeholders "can have confidence in the resources that CU is applying to teaching, research and service, as well as in our methods, which we are continuing to sharpen to serve new generations of students."
In the report the site team noted, "The reputation of CU-Boulder may be better appreciated outside the state of Colorado than in the state itself. Those with a stake in the future of the state should be encouraged to embrace the university as a significant asset and invest in it."
The site team's report, the notice of accreditation and all materials prepared by CU-Boulder for the review are available for public review at http://www.colorado.edu/accreditation.