NCATE’s Unit Accreditation Board (UAB) is responsible for determining the accreditation status of professional education units. This board makes accreditation decisions at meetings held twice a year. The dates of the meetings of NCATE’s boards are published on the association’s website. In most cases, accreditation decisions are rendered at the UAB meeting in the semester that follows the BOE review.
The UAB conducts its review of accreditation cases through the use of audit teams. Each team is composed of three to four board members who conduct an in-depth review of the documentation for assigned institutions and prepare a recommendation for accreditation. The assigned Institutional Reports, BOE reports, rejoinders, and team chairs' responses to the rejoinders are available to the applicable audit team members for review prior to the UAB meeting.
Generally, the audit team will accept the BOE’s recommendations regarding whether standards are met or not met. However, based on the IR, the BOE report, the rejoinder, and the team chair’s response to the rejoinder, the audit team has the option not to accept the BOE’s recommendation.
Each audit team meets with another audit team to form a joint audit committee. The joint audit team reviews the recommendations of both teams and reaches consensus. The chair of the audit team presents the recommendation to the full UAB as a motion. If the motion fails, the accreditation case is remanded to another audit team.
Notification of Accreditation Action
An institution is notified in writing of its accreditation status within two weeks of the Unit Accreditation Board meeting during which its case was reviewed. The Unit Accreditation Board communicates its actions by a letter and an action report from NCATE’s president to the institution’s chief executive officer. This correspondence conveys NCATE’s decision and the basis for its decision, regarding accreditation of the initial teacher preparation and advanced levels of the unit, including the terms, conditions, rights, and responsibilities conveyed by the accreditation decision that has been rendered. The action report relays one of the decisions outlined below and identifies any areas for improvement related to the standards. If the accreditation decision is appealable, institutions are informed of their right to appeal and the procedures for filing an appeal. The appropriate state agency receives a copy of this correspondence if the institution is located in a partnership state.
NCATE reports all accreditation decisions to the U.S. Department of Education. Accreditation decisions are also indicated in published lists of accredited institutions on NCATE’s website. The listings indicate the semester and year of the on-site visit.