SACS COC

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  • SACS 101

    The Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools (SACS COC):

    • is a regional accrediting body.
    • is comprised of institutions in 11 states and some international institutions.
    • is for institutions that award associate, baccalaureate, master's or doctoral degrees.
    • awards accreditation for the campus as a whole.
    • accreditation is required for all discipline-specific accreditations.
    • accreditation is required for federally funded grants and student aid.
    • accredits UMMC as a Level VI campus (> 4 doctorate programs).

    SACS COC process - "The Right Thing to Do"

    The SACS principles align with established business practices for improving organizations.

    The documentation that SACS requires is needed to provide a consistent framework for institutional operations. The two main documents required for SACS COC accreditation are 1) compliance certificate; and 2) Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP).

    Timeline

    • Compliance certificate - Summer 2010
    • Off-site review - November 2010
    • On-site review - Spring 2011
    • Reaffirmed - December 2012
    • Five-year review - 2016

    Compliance certificate

    The compliance certificate, formerly known as the self-study, is the narrative and documentation that supports UMMC’s assertion that the institution has met all the SACS Principles of Accreditation.

    There are 82 SACS requirements/principles that center around integrity, core requirements, comprehensive standards and federal requirements.

    Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP)

    The QEP is a campus-wide project to improve student learning/learning environment. It began as UMMC underwent reaccreditation and will continue for several years.

    Most common problems

    Institutional Effectiveness (2.5 /3.3.1) – Data Driven Decision Making

    • No. 1 problem area for off-site review – most frequently cited

    UMMC process for Institutional Effectiveness (Principle 3.3.1)
    Institutional Effectiveness Plans (IEPs) are the primary reporting instruments.

    • Instructional programs (IP) and administrative and educational support units (AES) must annually complete IEPs that include:
      • Identifying outcomes
      • Determining ways to measure success
      • Analyzing the data
      • Describing the changes made based on the data
    • Assessment cycles for AES units are based on the calendar year (Jan.-Dec.).
    • Assessment cycles for IP units are based on the academic year (July-June).

    Faculty Qualifications (Principle 3.7.1)

    • No. 2 problem area for off-site review – second most frequently cited
    • UMMC must document that faculty are qualified to teach what they teach.

    UMMC Process for Faculty Qualifications (Principle 3.7.1)

    • Schools/departments will document that faculty are qualified for courses that they teach.
    • Schools/departments will develop faculty folders with required information (official transcripts, licensure, evaluations, etc.).

    Glossary

    • AES – Academic and Educational Support Units (support assessment unit)
    • Class – UMMC is the Class of 2011 (year of on-site visit and COC approval of reaffirmation).
    • Compliance certificate - narrative and documentation that supports UMMC’s assertion that the institution has met all the SACS requirements (self-study)
    • General education – Core undergraduate requirements such as English, history, etc.
    • IEP – Institutional Effectiveness Plan (assessment plan)
    • IP – Instructional Program (academic assessment unit)
    • QEP - campus-wide project to improve student learning/learning environment
      Principles – 82 statements of compliance
    • SACS - Southern Association of Colleges & Schools
    • SACS COC - Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Commission on Colleges