Easing Accreditation Preparation with an FMS

The US Department of Education states "Accreditation is the recognition that an institution maintains standards requisite for its graduates to gain admission to other reputable institutions of higher learning or to achieve credentials for professional practice. The goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality." Accreditation status is granted by accrediting bodies who develop criteria that are used to evaluate whether an institution meets the quality standards. Maintaining accreditation is important to colleges and universities because federal financial aid and employer tuition reimbursement are directly tied to an institution's accreditation status. Additionally, accreditation is vital in attracting and retaining students and faculty alike.

The process of preparing for an accreditation review can be stressful, especially if your institution is working with paper files or manually entering data into spreadsheets. A Faculty Management Solution (FMS) can help ease the process of preparing for accreditation in 3 key ways:

Centralizing Data

If your institution is already using an FMS, you are familiar with the many benefits of having all your faculty data in one centralized location. Collecting faculty data is a burdensome task for busy deans and department chairs as well as faculty who are being asked to provide the same data multiple times. An FMS provides tools for all stakeholders involved with the collection and maintenance of faculty data to have access to all faculty data in a single sign-on platform. Having this data at your fingertips will save time, money and frustration.


Once you have a central repository of all your faculty data, reporting becomes an easy task. An FMS should provide a number of standardized reports that will fulfill requirements from your regional or professional accreditors. This set of reports may include faculty activity reports, evaluation and promotion reports, professional development reports, course assignment reports, and more. As accreditation standards evolve, your FMS should continually update and add reports to satisfy new requirements. 


If your institution requires reports that are not included in the standard capabilities of your FMS, consider speaking to your FMS provider about report customization. Often an FMS can provide highly customized reports or an ad hoc reporting solution to satisfy any remaining needs your institution has. Custom or ad hoc reports allow you to build reports on demand as needed.

APL nextED is a single sign-on solution for managing all tenure and non-tenure faculty data. APL's Faculty Management Solution provides all stakeholders involved in the faculty lifecycle with a solution to manage and report on recruiting, appointment, evaluation, promotion, and professional development data. Learn more here: www.aplnexted.com