What is the difference between AACSB Business Accreditation and AACSB Accounting Accreditation?
A collegiate institution offering business degrees may apply for AACSB Business Accreditation. AACSB Business Accreditation is a review of any business-related degree offered by the school. An accounting academic unit may seek an additional programmatic accreditation in accounting from AACSB as an extension of the business accreditation process. The two sets of standards are closely aligned.
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How much does it cost to pursue AACSB Accreditation?
When a school applies for AACSB Accreditation, it is assessed a non-refundable fee of 1,000 USD. Once accepted into the initial accreditation process, the school will pay an annual accreditation fee of 5,400 USD. When a school is invited to apply for an initial accreditation visit, it is assessed a one-time fee of 14,000 USD. After initial accreditation is granted and a school enters the continuous improvement review stage, it is assessed an annual accreditation fee of 5,400 USD. The fee increases to 8,700 USD for schools that hold both business and accounting accreditation. To view additional information on accreditation fees, visit: www.aacsb.edu/accreditation/fees.
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How do I determine if my school is eligible for accreditation?
To enter the initial accreditation process, the school must first establish its eligibility by responding to the AACSB’s eligibility criteria. This criteria serves two purposes: for the school to demonstrate its commitment to AACSB’s core values and to provide a foundation for accreditation by defining the scope of review. The school responds to this criteria by completing an Eligibility Application, the first step in the accreditation process. The criteria address the following:
A. The school must encourage and support ethical behavior by students, faculty, administrators, and professional staff. [ETHICAL BEHAVIOR]
B. The school maintains a collegiate environment in which students, faculty, administrators, professional staff, and practitioners interact and collaborate in support of learning, scholarship, and community engagement. [COLLEGIATE ENVIRONMENT]
C. The school must demonstrate a commitment to address, engage, and respond to current and emerging corporate social responsibility issues (e.g., diversity, sustainable development, environmental sustainability, and globalization of economic activity across cultures) through its policies, procedures, curricula, research, and/or outreach activities. [COMMITMENT TO CORPORATE AND SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY]
D. An applicant for AACSB accreditation must be a well-defined, established entity and a member of AACSB International in good standing. The entity seeking AACSB accreditation may be an institution authorized to award bachelor’s degrees or higher (in business) or under certain circumstances a business academic unit within a larger institution. [ACCREDITATION SCOPE AND AACSB MEMBERSHIP]
E. The school must be structured to ensure proper oversight, accountability, and responsibility for the school’s operations; must be supported by continuing resources (human, financial, infrastructure, and physical); and must have policies and processes for continuous improvement. [OVERSIGHT, SUSTAINABILITY, AND CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT]
F. All degree programs included in the AACSB accreditation review must demonstrate continuing adherence to AACSB accreditation standards. Schools are expected to maintain and provide timely, accurate information in support of each accreditation review. [POLICY ON CONTINUED ADHERENCE TO STANDARDS AND INTEGRITY OF SUBMISSIONS TO AACSB]
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How do I locate my school's AACSB staff liaison?
Schools that are accredited or in the accreditation process are assigned an AACSB staff liaison. The name of the liaison and contact details can be found in the myAACSB system, under ‘My Organization Information.’
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What is the process of accreditation?
1. Join AACSB and explore how membership enhances the quality of your institution.
2. The eligibility application (for business or accounting accreditation) is completed by the school to enter the accreditation process, and can be submitted at any point throughout the year via AACSB’s myAccreditation system. The application is reviewed by the Initial Accreditation Committee (IAC) or Accounting Accreditation Committee (AAC).
3. If the application is approved, a business school administrator serving as an AACSB volunteer will be proposed to the school as a mentor, and work with the school to develop the Initial Self Evaluation Report (iSER). The school will also be assigned an AACSB Accreditation Staff Liaison – the primary point of contact at AACSB for all accreditation-related questions. In instances when an application is not approved, the committee will provide supporting advice.
4. The school and their mentor work together to determine how closely aligned the school currently is with the 15 business accreditation standards (and/or 9 accounting standards). The school assesses the degree of their alignment with each standard, identifying additional actions and resources required to achieve alignment and a timeline for completion. This process results in the creation of the iSER which is generally completed in one year, however it may take a maximum of two years.
5. The IAC/AAC reviews the iSER, which results in one of the following outcomes:
a. If the school is fully aligned with the standards, the iSER is accepted, and a final Self-Evaluation Report (SER) is developed. The school will then receive an invitation to apply for an initial accreditation visit.
b. If the school is not fully aligned, the iSER may still be accepted – but with a recommendation that the school begin taking action to align closer with the standards within a three-year period. During that time, the school must report on its progress and provide updates on its progress. The mentor continues to work with the school throughout this process, until it is invited to submit an application for initial accreditation (for business and/or accounting).
c. The iSER may be accepted, but further clarification as to how the school will align with the standards is needed. A revise and resubmit recommendation is made to the school.
d. The iSER is not accepted, based on the grounds that the school is not able to align itself with the AACSB accreditation standards within the maximum time allowed to complete the accreditation process. Initial accreditation must be achieved five years following the acceptance of the iSER by the IAC/AAC.
6. Approximately two years in advance of the accreditation review visit, a peer review team (PRT) chair is appointed, and will help guide the school as it develops its final SER. The chair will also assist in developing a schedule for the PRT visit.
7. The IAC/AAC appoints the additional two to three members of the PRT. Together, the team reviews the SER, and upon approval by the IAC/AAC, they send a pre-visit letter to the school.
8. The PRT visits the school and spends time with key stakeholders. After careful consideration, the team then provides a recommendation to the IAC/AAC for accreditation, deferral, or no accreditation. Recommendations are then forwarded to the AACSB Board of Directors for ratification.
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Where can I find AACSB's accreditation standards?
AACSB’s accreditation standards can be found on the following webpage: http://www.aacsb.edu/accreditation/standards.
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