The accreditation database is brought to you by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Post-secondary Education (OPE). The database is provided as a public service without warranty of any kind. The database does not constitute and endorsement by the U.S. Department of Education of any of the educational institutions or programs.
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The U.S. Department of Education does not accredit educational institutions and/or programs. However, the Department provides oversight over the postsecondary accreditation system through its review of all federally-recognized accrediting agencies. The Department holds accrediting agencies accountable by ensuring that they enforce their accreditation standards effectively. Also, as a part of the Department's oversight roles, the Secretary of Education is required by law to publish a list of nationally recognized accrediting agencies that the Secretary determines to be reliable authorities as to the quality of education or training provided by the institutions of higher education and the higher education programs they accredit. The U.S. Secretary of Education also recognizes State agencies for the approval of public postsecondary vocational education and nurse education.
Please note, the Secretary of Education's recognition of accrediting agencies is limited by statute to accreditation activities within the United States. Although many recognized agencies carry out accrediting activities outside the United States, these actions are not within the legal authority of the Department of Education to recognize, are not reviewed by the Department, and the Department does not exercise any oversight over them. (Consequently, institutions and programs outside the United States that are accredited by recognized agencies are not included in this database.)
The goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality. Accrediting agencies, which are private educational associations of regional or national scope, develop evaluation criteria and conduct peer evaluations to assess whether or not those criteria are met. Institutions and/or programs that request an agency's evaluation and that meet an agency's criteria are then "accredited" by that agency.
The Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs contains information reported to the U.S. Department of Education directly by recognized accrediting agencies and state approval agencies that have been asked to provide information for each institution and/or program accredited by that agency. This reported information is not audited. The database reflects additional information as it is received from recognized accrediting agencies and state approval agencies. The U.S. Department of Education cannot, therefore, guarantee that the information contained in the database is accurate, current, or complete. For the most accurate and current information, contact the appropriate agency.
For additional information related to postsecondary accreditation or this web site please refer to the FAQ links at the top of this screen.
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