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Sept. 20, 2010—The Board of Trustees of the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools has approved the continued accreditation of North Central College, with the next comprehensive evaluation by the commission scheduled for a decade from now.
The decision by the commission—the College’s accrediting body—follows an intensive, yearlong self-study by College officials and a site visit and comprehensive evaluation by a team of administrators from other colleges and universities.
“There is no better outcome. The visit team came away very impressed with the entire College,” says Peter Barger, North Central College’s director of institutional assessment and accreditation. The report concluded, “North Central College is a strong institution.”
Among other statements, the commission’s report says:
· “The institution makes it clear that it recognizes and rewards excellent teaching.”
· “The institution has established an exemplary faculty development program that encourages faculty to enhance their scholarly expertise.”
· “The institution has established a number of programs that encourage and strengthen a culture of inquiry among students and faculty.”
· “North Central has invested in providing a number of facilities that enhance the effectiveness of its programs.”
· “In addition to critical thinking and communication skills development, the general education program explicitly works to relate knowledge to a diverse and ever-changing world and to draw connections between different fields of knowledge.”
· “There is clear evidence that North Central College has the ability to conduct graduate programs of high quality.”
· “International study programs are available in 36 sites, as a result of sustained efforts by the North Central faculty to make study abroad a distinctive feature of its undergraduate curriculum.”
· “North Central College is deeply engaged in the community it serves. The College shares its expertise and facilities with the greater Naperville community.”
· “The College is committed to the connection between service and learning.”
The Higher Learning Commission review team visited North Central’s campus Jan. 25-27, 2010, and consisted of a college president, three vice presidents, a school of business director and the director of assessment from six different colleges and universities in the region.
The Higher Learning Commission’s Board of Trustees on June 25 validated its Institutional Actions Council’s decision to approve North Central College’s continued accreditation.
The Higher Learning Commission is an independent corporation and one of two commission members of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, which was founded in 1895 as one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. The Higher Learning Commission accredits, and thereby grants membership in the Commission and in the North Central Association, degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions in the North Central region.