Accreditation Policies and Procedures

 Table of Contents

1.      Eligibility Requirements for Programs Seeking TAPAC Accreditation

1.1. Definition of Program

1.2. Multiple Programs in an Institution

1.3. Eligibility Requirements

1.4. Special Affiliation Status

2.      The Accreditation Process

2.1. Application for Accreditation

2.2. Preparation for Accreditation

2.3. Accreditation Review Site Visit

2.4. Accreditation Review Report

2.5. Accreditation Decision

2.6. Accreditation Timeline

3.      Accredited Programs

3.1. Maintaining Accreditation

3.2. Annual Update Policy

3.3. Procedures for Annual Update Review

3.4. Instructions for Completing and Submitting Annual Updates

3.5. TAPAC Annual Update Form

4.      Appeal Procedure

4.1. Filing Appeal

4.2. Appointment of Appeal Hearing Panel

4.3. Appeal Hearing

4.4. Decision of the Appeal Hearing Panel

4.5. Appeal Closure

4.6. Accreditation Status During Appeal

4.7. Expenses of the Appeal Hearing

5.      Accreditation Documents

5.1. Maintaining Records and Retention of Documents

5.2. Conflict of Interest

5.3. Example of Accreditation Visit Schedule

1.     Eligibility Requirements for Programs Seeking TAPAC Accreditation

1.1. Definition of Program

A program offers a sequenced curriculum of apparel, textile and related area coursework that results in a baccalaureate degree. The curriculum may include more than one option, concentration or other sub-specialization.

1.2. Multiple Programs in an Institution

The TAPAC Board of Commissioners (BOC) reserves the right to determine whether an institution has multiple textile, apparel, and related area programs that potentially require separate applications and fees for eligibility status and accreditation. This determination guides how the programs should proceed with the eligibility application and review process. The decision will be based on how similar or different the program’s curricula, faculty, facilities and resources (how big is the overlap between the programs).

1.2.1.      If an institution has more than one apparel, textile or related-area program located in different academic units (i.e., departments, colleges, schools), programs should apply for eligibility status and will be reviewed for accreditation separately.

1.2.2.      If an institution has more than one apparel, textile or related-area program, and these programs are located within the same academic department, then the TAPAC BOC will determine procedure for eligibility and accreditation applications.

1.3.Eligibility Requirements

Each program applying for TAPAC accreditation must demonstrate that it satisfies each of the requirements listed below. Taken together, these requirements define eligibility for the TAPAC review process and remain part of the eligibility criteria throughout the accreditation period.  Thus, institutions should note that upon notification of a deficiency in one of the items below, the Board of Commissioners may withdraw accreditation at any time.

    The program:

1.      Must be part of an educational institution accredited by a regional or national accrediting body recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

2.   Has published a mission statement and objectives/goals, and program competencies that align with the institution’s mission and objectives/goals, (on the program website).

3.   Offers postsecondary educational instruction leading to a baccalaureate degree in the textiles and apparel-related field.

4.   Must have institutional approval for courses and degree(s) offered.

5.   Has a formally designated program coordinator or director.

6.      Has operated continually for at least five (5) years by the time of review.

7.      Has a minimum of two full-time teaching faculty assigned to the program with at least two FTEs assigned to teaching textile and apparel-related courses. All teaching faculty shall hold a masters degree or higher, and a bachelors degree or higher in apparel or textiles or a related field.

1.4. Affiliate Program Status

Affiliate program membership is recommended for programs that are preparing for or considering applying for the TAPAC accreditation. Refer to current TAPAC Fees for affiliation annual fee (http://itaaonline.org/mpage/TAPAC13 ). Affiliate program member status grants the following privileges for participating programs:

-          Participating in special accreditation information and training sessions

-          Consultation(s) with TAPAC Executive Director

-          Attending annual Assembly of Delegates

-          Voting rights at the Assembly of Delegates (e.g., election of members of the Board of Commissioners)

2.     The Accreditation Process:

        The accreditation process consists of these major components: 

1.      Submission of Accreditation Application Form and Eligibility Application Fee.

2.      Preparation and submission of a programmatic self-analysis (Self-Study Report) along with the Self-Study Administration Fee and the Accreditation Review Visit Expenses. See TAPAC Accreditation and Membership Fees (http://itaaonline.org/mpage/TAPAC13) or contact TAPAC Executive Director for current fees and multiple program costs.

3.      Evaluation by professional colleagues (accreditation review team site visit)

4.      Review and decision by the TAPAC Board of Commissioners, conducted at semiannual meetings.

2.1 Application for Accreditation

A.    The program   seeking TAPAC accreditation should send the completed Application for Accreditation form to the TAPAC office with the initial nonrefundable Eligibility Application Fee (refer to TAPAC Accreditation Fees   http:// itaaonline.org/mpage/TAPAC13).

The program should appoint an accreditation liaison to communicate with the TAPAC office, typically the administrator of the unit seeking accreditation. 

B.     The TAPAC Executive Director reviews the program’s Application for Accreditation and decides whether the program is eligible to be considered for accreditation. In a special circumstance, the Board of Commissioners may be consulted to determine eligibility. Program eligibility will be determined no later than four (4) weeks after receipt of the application and fee.

C.     The program will receive a letter from the TAPAC office indicating its eligibility for the accreditation process.

2.2. Preparation for Accreditation

A.    In consultation with the TAPAC Executive Director, the eligible program decides on the date for submission of the Self-Study Report and the semester for the Accreditation Review Visit. The Self-Study Report must be submitted within one year after the program’s Application for Accreditation is reviewed and program eligibility is determined. After one year, the program will have to reapply for accreditation and pay the Eligibility Application Fee.

B.    The program completes and submits its Self-Study Report to the TAPAC office. One (1) hard copy and an electronic copy of the Self-Study Report must be submitted no later than one year after the program’s eligibility is established. A non-refundable Self-Study Administrative Fee and the Accreditation Review Visit Travel Expenses Fee must be submitted with the Self-Study Report (refer to TAPAC Accreditation Fees http://itaaonline.org/mpage/TAPAC13). The number of reviewers for the site visit is determined based on the number of majors/concentrations in the program and complexity of the unit/department. Three is a typical number of reviewers, but the number can be increased for programs with multiple majors/concentrations.

-          For Fall semester accreditation review site visit (September - December), the program must submit the Self-Study Report to the TAPAC office no later than June 1.

-          For Spring semester, accreditation review site visit (January - April), the program must submit the Self-Study Report to the TAPAC office no later than October 1.

C.    Upon receiving the program’s Self-Study Report and associated fees, the TAPAC office selects the accreditation review team and appoints the chair within 30 calendar days.

D.     Accreditation reviewers are textile and apparel professionals trained by the TAPAC. The accreditation review site visit team typically consists of three (3) members, including the chair. The number of reviewers for a site visit can be increased based on the number of majors/concentrations in the program and complexity of the unit/department (e.g., multiple programs at the same institution). The chair of the accreditation review team must have experience with accreditation and/or program reviews. When appointing accreditation reviewers, TAPAC takes into account specialization(s) of the program seeking accreditation (e.g., design, product development, merchandising) so the composition of the accreditation review team matches the focus of the program, whenever possible.

E.    In consultation with the accreditation review team chair, the program determines dates for the accreditation review site visit and develops the schedule for the accreditation review visit. The program is responsible for all expenses when the review team arrives, including but not limited to transportation, lodging, meals (wheels down to wheels up). Accreditation review site visit members receive no honorarium for serving on the review team.

F.     The accreditation review team receives and reviews the program’s Self-Study Report including Appendices, prior to the site visit.

2.3. Accreditation Review Site Visit

Accreditation review site visit is scheduled for two (2) full days. The accreditation team arrives on site the night before the accreditation visit. The program must be in session during the visit. The accreditation review team must have an opportunity to meet with the program faculty, staff, students, administrators, and other appropriate stakeholders. 

2.4. Accreditation Review Report

A.    Following the accreditation review site visit, the accreditation review team submits its Accreditation Review Report to the TAPAC office and to the program within 30 days of the visit. The program seeking accreditation will have two weeks to read the Accreditation Review Report and submit any factual corrections only to the TAPAC office.  The TAPAC Executive Director forwards the program’s response with any factual corrections to the chair of the accreditation review team.

B.     Within two (2) weeks after receiving any factual corrections from the program, the chair of the accreditation review team submits an electronic copy of the final Accreditation Review Report to the TAPAC office. The Executive Director shares the final Accreditation Review Report with the program.

C.     The program receives the final Accreditation Review Report from the TAPAC office and submits an official response to the Report within 30 days of receipt of the electronic copy of the Report.  The response should include a follow-up plan with a timeline to address any concerns and/or deficiencies indicated in the Report.  This response should be sent to the TAPAC office.

D.    After the program receives the final Accreditation Review Report from the TAPAC office, all questions and communications should be directed to the TAPAC Executive Director, not the accreditation review team. The program response becomes part of the official record, along with the Self-Study Report and the Accreditation Review Report. All the documents are presented to the TAPAC Board of Commissioners to make the final accreditation decision.

2.5. Accreditation Decision

A.    The TAPAC Board of Commissioners meets twice each year, once in the Fall and once in the Spring. The TAPAC Board of Commissioners makes final accreditation decisions as follows:

-Accreditation awarded when a program meets all standards;

-Provisional status is granted when a program meets most of the standards and shows evidence that all standards can be met within a specific period of time defined by the Board of Commissioners.

- Accreditation denied when a program fails to comply with the standards.

Programs that are denied accreditation must wait one (1) year before reapplying.

B.    The program will receive an action letter with the accreditation decision within two (2) weeks after the TAPAC Board of Commissioners meeting. The letter may include recommendations that need attention but do not interfere with the accreditation. An Accreditation Certificate will be mailed to programs approved for accreditation, following the action letter.

1.2. Accreditation Timeline

The accreditation process typically takes 12 months after the program seeking accreditation submits a Self-Study Report to the TAPAC office. 

Application for accreditation (or re-accreditation)

Eligibility Application Fee

Any time

 

Program submits Application for Accreditation (or re-accreditation) with the Eligibility Application Fee to the TAPAC office.

Review of Application for Accreditation

 

Eligibility for Accreditation (eligibility confirmation letter)

4 weeks

 

TAPAC Executive Director reviews program’s Application for Accreditation and determines program eligibility. In a special circumstance, the Board of Commissioners may be consulted to make the eligibility decision.

Date for Self-Study Report submission.

 

Semester for Accreditation review site visit

 

In consultation with the Executive Director, an eligible program decides on the date of submission of the Self-Study Report and the semester for the accreditation review team site visit.

Self-Study Report must be submitted within one year after the program’s eligibility is determined. After one year, the program will have to reapply for accreditation and pay the Eligibility Application Fee.

Program submits the Self-Study Report, the Self Study Administrative Fee and the Accreditation Team Visit Expenses to the TAPAC office

 

By June 1

(October 1)

Program completes and submits Self-Study Report to the TAPAC office along with the Self-Study Administrative Fee and the Accreditation Team Visit Expenses. The Self-Study Report and associated fees must be submitted by June 1 for Fall semester accreditation review team visits; and by October 1 for Spring semester accreditation review team visits.

Selection of accreditation review team

Appointment of accreditation review team chair

30 days

Upon receipt of the Self-Study Report, TAPAC office selects accreditation review team members and appoints a chair.

Dates for the accreditation review team site visit

 

In consultation with the accreditation review team chair, the program determines dates for the accreditation review team visit and develops a schedule.

Accreditation review team visits the program

September - December

(January - April)

The length of the accreditation review team visit should be at least two (2) full days.

Accreditation review report shared with the program

30 days

 

Accreditation review team prepares report and shares the report with the program and TAPAC office no later than 30 days after the accreditation team visit.

Factual correction(s) to the Accreditation Review Report

2 weeks

Program reviews the report and has an opportunity to make factual corrections.

Final Accreditation Review Report submitted

2 weeks

 

Chair of the accreditation review team submits an electronic copy of the final Accreditation Review Report to the TAPAC office. The Executive Director forwards the final Accreditation Review Report to the program.

Program submits official response to the Report

30 days

Official response is submitted to the TAPAC office and included in the accreditation materials.

TAPAC Board of Commissioners review and decision

 

TAPAC Board of Commissioners reviews Self-Study Report, the Accreditation Review Report, program’s response, and other relevant accreditation materials and makes accreditation decision.

TAPAC Board of Commissioners meets semiannually to review accreditation materials and make accreditation decisions.

Program notified about accreditation decision

1 week

TAPAC Executive Director notifies program about the accreditation decision within one week after the Board of Commissioners meeting.

Appeal process

30 days

If accreditation is not granted, program may appeal the Board of Commissioners’ decision within 30 days of the official notification.

3.     Accredited Programs

3.1. Maintaining Accreditation

A.    TAPAC accreditation is awarded for seven (7) years. The accreditation is designed to be a continuous process through re-accreditation every seven (7) years.

B.    Accredited programs are required to submit an annual update of student enrollment, graduation rates, number of faculty, salaries, program budget, etc. Hard copy and electronic updates should be submitted to the TAPAC office by September 30 along with annual dues (refer to TAPAC Accreditation Fees).

C.    Accredited programs are required to submit a midterm report about program status, which is due in the fourth year after accreditation. The midterm report should be in the form of a Self-Study Report, but does not include site visit.  The TAPAC Board of Commissioners reviews the midterm reports.

D.     At any time, if an accredited program has a substantive change (e.g., scope, size, merger, etc.), the program must inform the TAPAC office with an official notice. 

3.2.Annual Update Policy

A.    Every TAPAC accredited program is required to submit an Annual Update to the TAPAC office by September 30, covering the prior academic year.  This report should follow the Annual Update Form. The Accredited Program Annual Fee should be submitted with the Annual Update to maintain accreditation.

B.    Failure to submit a complete Annual Update and/or Accredited Program Annual Fee by the deadline may result in loss of the program’s accreditation status. A letter from the Executive Director will inform the program that its accreditation will be voided if the update and dues are not received within 30 days (i.e., by October 30).

C.     The Annual Update should demonstrate that the accredited program continues to:

-          Maintain the quality of its educational offerings

-          Achieve its objectives

-          Improve student learning

D.     Educational programs are constantly changing. Most changes have no effect on program accreditation status. Some changes might significantly affect the nature of the program, its mission and objectives, and the allocation of its resources. TAPAC supports and encourages innovation and also is obligated to determine the effect of any substantive changes on the program's accreditation.

3.3. Procedures for Annual Update Review

A.    The TAPAC Executive Director reviews Annual Updates and provides a summary of the reports to the Board of Commissioners at its semiannual meeting. The Board of Commissioners will take any necessary actions based on annual updates.

B.     If, in the review of an Annual Update, the Executive Director notes any significant issue or change within the program, the Director will immediately contact the TAPAC President. The President will assign two members of the Board of Commissioners to review the report and make a recommendation to the Board of Commissioners at its semiannual meeting. If, in the course of reviewing the report, more information is needed to make a recommendation, the Executive Director will request specific information from the program after the Director consults with the TAPAC President.

C.     The Board of Commissioners may request that a program address specific issues above and beyond those areas regularly addressed by the Annual Update Form. These issues may have been identified when the program was originally granted accreditation or they may have arisen subsequent to accreditation. All specific issues of concern will follow a specific accreditation standard. The request for additional information will indicate which standard the information impacts. In cases where the Board of Commissioners requests additional program information, two members of the Board will review the Annual Update, focusing on the auxiliary material requested.

3.4. Instructions for Completing and Submitting Annual Update

A.    Indicate any substantive program changes in the areas defined. Include explanations that may help the Board of Commissioners understand the ramifications of these changes. If no substantive changes have occurred, write "None.”

B.     If substantive changes are being considered, planned, or about to be implemented, please describe and discuss their anticipated effect on the program and the program’s ability to achieve its objectives.

C.     If the Board of Commissioners has set any conditions on the program in its final action letter granting accredited status, e.g., progress reports, visits, etc., these must be addressed in the report.

D.    Submit an electronic copy and one hard copy of the Annual Update, and any attachments, no later than September 30 to the TAPAC Executive Director.

E.     A link to the most recent program curriculum and description of courses and any program brochures must be enclosed with the report.

A.    The Accredited Programs Annual Fee required of all accredited programs must accompany the Update.

 

3.5      TAPAC Accredited Program Annual Update Form

Year:

Name of Institution:

Name of Program:

Program Director/Chair:

Mailing Address:

City/State/Zip:

Telephone:                                          Fax:

Email:

Date of TAPAC Accreditation:                          Expiration Date:

The TAPAC Board of Commissioners needs to know how your program is continuing to achieve its objectives. Please indicate any substantive changes in the following areas that have occurred since the last program Annual Update. Include any explanations that may help the Board of Commissioners understand the ramifications of these changes and use additional pages as necessary. If no changes have occurred, indicate by writing "NONE."

If the Board of Commissioners set any conditions for your program’s accreditation status, be sure to address them in the appropriate section of the Annual Update Report.

1.  MISSION, OBJECTIVES, and OUTCOMES

(Indicate if the mission, objectives or outcomes of your program have changed.)

 

2.  ADMINISTRATION AND GOVERNANCE

(Indicate any change in operational independence or leadership.)

 

3.  PLANNING

(List any change in program documents, e.g., strategic plans, or formation or composition of the Advisory Board or program planning documents.)

 

4..  ASSURANCE OF STUDENT LEARNING

(Indicate any change in the program’s assessment plan or instruments used for assessment of program learning outcomes.)

 

5.  CURRICULUM

(Describe any new courses, delivery formats, innovative approaches to learning, etc. Include website link to the program’s most recent curriculum and description of courses.)

 

6.  INSTRUCTIONAL RESOURCES

(List any new faculty/instructional staff and attach for each a Faculty Vitae. Also, list faculty who no longer teach in the program and any variation in the balance of full-time and part-time personnel. List professional development activities in which the faculty have participated during the past year, itemized by faculty name.)

 

7.  STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES

(Indicate any changes in admission policies, retention, dismissal, or graduation requirements. Attach completed Student Profile.)

 

8. PHYSICAL AND LEARNING RESOURCES

(Describe changes in learning resources that have been added or deleted.)

 

9.  FINANCIAL RESOURCES

Budget Year 20____to 20 _____ includes a Program Budget of $          , which is a _____% increase/decrease from the previous year. Note any significant changes in salaries or funding for instructional supplies, equipment, and professional development.

All statistics are as of ______________(Date).

Include average salaries for the program:

-          Assistant professor: ______

-          Associate professor:______

-          Full professor:______

-          Lecturer / Instructor:______

-          Adjunct (per 3-credit course): ______

 

 

Current Year: 20__

Prior Year: 20__

Prior Year: 20__

Source of Funds:

$

$

$

Auxiliary Services

 

 

 

Grants

 

 

 

Gifts/Donations

 

 

 

Other Allocated Revenue

 

 

 

Total Source of Funds

 

 

 

Use of Funds:

$

$

$

Full-Time Faculty Salaries

 

 

 

Extra Service Pay - FT Faculty

 

 

 

Part-Time Faculty Wages

 

 

 

Administrative & Staff Salaries & Wages

 

 

 

Contracted Services

 

 

 

Operating Expenses

 

 

 

Supplies/Materials

 

 

Equipment

Other

Total Use of Funds

$

$

$

Net Surplus or (Loss) of Funds

$

$

$

Notes:

1.       For programs located in departments/units with more than one academic program, provide the percentage of the funds in each of these categories that are available to/used for the textiles and apparel programs.

2.       Salaries and Wages should not include benefits.

3.       Contracted Services are services such as maintenance contracts, guest lecturers, contract labor, etc.

4.       Operating Expenses are expenses such as travel, professional development, repairs, printing, reproduction, etc.

5.       Supplies and Materials are items such as food, utensils, instructional aids, books, booklets, and subscriptions.

 

 

REPORT SUBMITTED BY:

TITLE:

EMAIL CONTACT:

Please enclose a copy and an electronic link of your program’s most recent academic catalog/bulletin.

 

4.     Appeal Procedure

4.1. Filing Appeal

A.    Appealable actions include denial of accreditation or termination of accreditation.

B.     The program administrator and the chief executive officer of the institution must submit a written appeal to the Executive Director within 30 calendar days of the date of receipt of notification of the accreditation decision. Specific reasons for the appeal must be set forth. There will be no change in the previous accreditation status of the appellant program pending disposition of an appeal.

4.2. Appointment of Appeal Hearing Panel

A.     The TAPAC President shall prepare a roster of 10 persons selected from a pool of potential Appeal Hearing Panel candidates as established by the Board of Commissioners.  These candidates will have knowledge of accrediting purposes and procedures, and may include faculty, educational administrators, or industry members. To the extent possible, the Appeal Hearing Panel candidates will be selected from institutions of a size and mission similar to that of the appellant program. The roster will normally be sent to the appellant program within 21 days of appeal receipt. The program may, within 10 days of receipt of the list, strike up to two (2) persons from the list. The TAPAC President will then appoint a minimum of three (3) members from this revised list to serve as the Appeal Hearing Panel.  The TAPAC President shall appoint one member of the Appeal Hearing Panel to serve as chair of the panel.

B.     No member of the Appeals Hearing Panel shall be a current member of the Board of Commissioners.  Neither will any member of the Appeal Hearing Panel have attended, worked at, or consulted for the appellant program or institution within the past 10 years.

4.3. Appeal Hearing

A.    The Appeal Hearing Panel shall determine its schedule. Every effort will be made to schedule a hearing within 90 days of the receipt of the appeal. The appellant program and the TAPAC President shall receive at least 21 days advance written notice of the date, time, and location of the hearing.

B.     Appeal Hearing Panel members will be provided with a copy of the Self-Study Report, the Accreditation Review Report with appended program response, the letter of notification of the Board of Commissioners’ action, and the request for a hearing, which states the grounds for the appeal. In addition, the panel shall have full access to all documents and records filed with the TAPAC by the appellant program during the accreditation process. If the program waives personal appearance, the matter will be handled solely on briefs submitted.

C.     Appeals are administrative, not judicial, hearings. Hearings on appeals are closed to the public. The parties to an appeal shall not have the right to cross-examine individuals such as the staff, members of the accreditation review team, or members of the Board of Commissioners.

D.    The Appeal Hearing Panel may request testimony from representatives of the appellant unit, the accreditation review team, the Board of Commissioners, and/or other witnesses whose statements the panel deems to be potentially useful. Witnesses may present oral and written statements as authorized by the panel. The chair of the Appeal Hearing Panel may set a time limit on oral presentations and shall notify all affected parties of any time limit prior to the hearing.

E.    During the hearing, the appellant unit and the Board of Commissioners shall have the following rights:

-          To present written or oral testimony in keeping with any time limitations on oral presentations that may be established by the panel.

 

-          To be present during the entire hearing. The panel's deliberations following conclusion of the hearing and its subsequent decision process will be conducted in private.

4.4. Decision of the Appeal Hearing Panel

A.    The recommendations of the Appeal Hearing Panel shall be based on all evidence presented related to conditions existing in the appellant program at the time of the Board of Commissioners’ decision. Changes that may have occurred following the accreditation review team visit or the Board of Commissioners’ decision will not be accepted as evidence.

B.     Within ten (10) days following the appeal hearing, the Appeal Hearing Panel shall, by majority vote, recommend: (a) that the Board of Commissioners’ decision be affirmed OR (b) remand the case to the Board of Commissioners with recommendations for further consideration if it finds the appeal to have been well founded or justified.

C.     Within 21 calendar days following the appeal hearing, the Appeal Hearing Panel shall prepare a report that provides the rationale for its recommendation. The report should be sent to the TAPAC President, the Executive Director, and the administrator of the appellant program.

4.5. Appeal Closure

A.    The appeal shall be closed when the Board of Commissioners’ original decision is affirmed by the Appeal Hearing Panel, or when the original decision has been remanded and reconsidered by the Board of Commissioners.

B.    In cases in which the Board of Commissioners’ decision was recommended for further consideration, the Board of Commissioners shall reconsider the earlier decision at its next scheduled meeting and inform in writing the Appeal Hearing Panel and the appellant program of the results of the reconsideration.

4.6. Accreditation Status During Appeal

An appellant program retains its accreditation status until the appeal process is completed.

4.7. Expenses of the Appeal Hearing

All costs and expenses incurred by the TAPAC in providing for the Appeal Hearing Panel, the expenses incurred by the panel members, the expenses incurred in the conduct of the hearing, and all other expenses in support of the completion of the appeals procedure shall be borne by the appellant program. An initial deposit of $3,000.00 to defray costs shall be provided by the appellant program at the time of the appeal notice. If expenses incurred exceed $3,000.00, the appellant program will be assessed the additional amount. If expenses are less than $3,000.00, the difference will be refunded to the appellant program.

5.     Accreditation Documents

5.1. Maintaining Accreditation Records and Retention of Documents

The TAPAC Executive Director will maintain accreditation records and retain all related documentation for 3 years in hard copies and 10 years in electronic copies.

The records must be easy to track and accessible. The Board of Commissioners may request review of the records and documents.

5.2. Conflict of Interest

Conflict of interest is defined as “a circumstance in which an individual’s capacity to make an impartial or unbiased accreditation decision may be affected because of prior, current, or anticipated institutional affiliation(s), other significant relationship(s), or association(s) with the institution under review.” (Source: Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, Conflict of Interest Policy, Revised 2013).

Conflict of interest and ethical practice applies to the entire accrediting process from the review of the application through the final deliberations of the TAPAC Board of Commissioners; and includes members of the Board of Commissioners, staff, reviewers, and volunteers. Every precaution shall be taken to ensure that all participants in the accreditation process develop and express objective opinions and make decisions free from self-interest and personal bias. They shall avoid conflicts of interest or any appearance of a conflict of interest between personal interests and the interests of TAPAC accreditation.

The primary responsibility for determining potential conflict of interest rests with each participant in the accreditation process. Participants who question whether they have a conflict of interest should consult with the TAPAC President. Members of the Board of Commissioners must excuse themselves on matters where their objectivity would be compromised, such as being involved in a discussion or vote related to their institution.

Examples of actual or apparent conflict of interest include the following:

1.      Commissioner(s) whose unit is being considered for accreditation or was employed by the institution within the last 10 years

2.      A member of the accreditation review site visit team who within the last 10 years attended or graduated from an institution being considered

3.      A commissioner or accreditation reviewer who within the last 10 years has served as a consultant or was employed by an institution being considered for accreditation

4.      Other activities in the recent past or planned in the near future where there is the expectation of a financial or governance role within the unit

5.      Other considerations that commissioners or accreditation reviewers deem pertinent.

The Board of Commissioners operates in an open and transparent manner in accordance with applicable legal requirements and with the Code of Ethics.  TAPAC accreditation earns and sustains trust with individuals, institutions, and government entities through honest, truthful, and responsible transactions. In the event a commissioner, accreditation review team member, or TAPAC staff does not voluntarily excuse himself/herself, the Board of Commissioners may take such action as it deems appropriate.

5.3. Example of Accreditation Visit Schedule

Example of Accreditation Visit Schedule

 

Time

Activity

Personnel to Meet with from the Institution

TAPAC Review Team

Location

Sunday

VariesVaries

Arrival and Dinner & Accreditation Review Team Meeting

N/A

All reviewers

Reviewers Decide

Monday – Day 1

8:00 –98:00 am

Meet and Greet Breakfast

Program Director/Chair/Dean

Program Faculty/Staff

All reviewers

TBD

9:30 - 19:30 am

Tour of Facilities

Program representative to give a tour of program facilities

 

All reviewers

TBD

110:30

11:00 a

Overview

Accreditation team workroom orientation

All reviewers

TBD

1 – 11:00

Class Visit

Visit a junior-senior course. Reviewers should observe the course for approximately 30 minutes, and then ask the professor to leave so the reviewers can seek students’ candid feedback about the program.

All reviewers

TBD

12:00

Lunch Meeting with Current Students

The program should select a few freshmen-sophomores and a few juniors-seniors to have lunch with the review team.

All reviewers

TBD

1:00 – 1:00pm1:00

 

Mission and Outcomes;

Administration and Governance

Individuals from the institution and program that are involved in the mission and learning outcomes as well as those that affect administration and governance

TAPAC reviewer charged with writing this section

TBD

1:00 – 1:00 pm

 

Learning Resources

Individuals such as the library and multimedia contacts, any other individual who supports learning resources of any type at the institution

TAPAC reviewer charged with writing this section

TBD

1:00 – 1:00 pm

 

Curriculum

 

 

Individuals from the institution and program who are involved in curriculum planning and development

TAPAC reviewer charged with writing this section

TBD

2:00 – 2:00 pm

Overview

Provost/university administration

All reviewers

TBD

3:15 – 3:15 pm

Planning

 

Individuals from the institution and program that are involved in planning

All reviewers

TBD

3:40 3:45

Accreditation Review Report Development

The accreditation review team will begin to develop their report in the workroom at the institution.

All reviewers

TBD

Tuesday – Day 2

8:30 – 8:30 am

Student Support Services

 

Student Affairs, Internship Coordinator, Career Planning Services, Advising, and other key individuals involved with students’ services for the program

TAPAC reviewer charged with writing this section

TBD

8:30 – 8:30 am

Student Learning Outcomes

Individuals from the institution and program that are involved in outcomes assessment

TAPAC reviewer charged with writing this section

TBD

8:30 – 8:30 am

Instructional Resources/General

 

Individuals from the institution and program that are involved in faculty hiring, promotion, tenure, scheduling, development, etc.

TAPAC reviewer charged with writing this section

TBD

9:30 99 9:30 – 10:30 am

Class Visit

Visit a freshman-sophomore course. The reviewers will observe the course for approximately 30 minutes, and then ask the professor to leave so the reviewers can seek candid student feedback regarding the program.

TAPAC reviewers

TBD

 

10:45 –11:30110:45

Financial Resources

Program Director/Chair/Dean and Institutional Finance Person

All reviewers

TBD

11:45 -11:45 pm

Lunch Meeting with

Program Advisory Board and Alumni

The program should select two to three members from its advisory board to have lunch with the team. Alumni, if not members of the board, should also be invited.

All reviewers

TBD

1:30

Instructional Resources/Staff Meeting 1

If the program is small with few faculty, the team can meet with everyone. If the program is large, then a random group of faculty (approximately 4-6) should be selected to meet with the review team. Both newer faculty as well as more senior faculty should be selected.

All reviewers

TBD

2:00

Instructional Resources/Staff Meeting 2

As discussed previously

All reviewers

TBD

2:30

Other Meetings (as needed)

 

TAPAC reviewer

TBD

3:00 303:00

Accreditation Review Report Development

The team will finalize its draft report in the workroom at the institution.

All reviewers

TBD

4:00

Debriefing

The team will meet with the Program/Chair/Director/Dean to provide a brief overview of the team’s findings.

All reviewers

TBD

 

 

 

Updated April 23, 2018