Study Abroad: Identify Academic Programmes With Professional Accreditation

Study Abroad: Identify Academic Programmes With Professional Accreditation - Sakshi Post

Accreditation to legitimise programmes in the United States of America

The Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology is the professional accrediting body for the area of engineering (

In our special subject series on US higher education, we started talking about "accreditation" last week. We learned that accreditation is a method for recognising educational institutions and professional programmes based on their level of quality, performance, and integrity and that it aids students in choosing appropriate colleges for their applications. The post also directed readers to the US Department of Education's database of authorised programmes and institutions, which they may use to narrow down their selection of US schools and universities.

In addition to finding an accredited university, students should look for academic programmes that have received professional accreditation. Commissions sponsored by professional organisations in certain disciplines usually offer such programmatic or professional certification. Today, we're going to discuss with our readers the programmatic accrediting agencies for some of the most popular subjects of study in the United States among Indian students.

Engineering: The Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology is the professional accrediting body for the subject of engineering ( The accreditation procedure at ABET is carried out by four separate accrediting commissions, depending on the engineering discipline's sub-fields of study. Students can use to find approved engineering programmes.

Business: The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (, the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (, the MBA Association (, and the Executive MBA Council are professional accrediting organisations for business administration (

Nursing: Students interested in baccalaureate nursing programmes should visit the websites of the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education ( and the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) (, which are recognised accreditation agencies in the United States. Students should also check with the State Board of Nursing to see if the nursing school is accredited.

Education: Finding academic programmes with professional accreditation in the subject of education is especially important since, after completing an education school, students typically seek a licence or certification from the state in which they wish to practise. The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, or CAEP, is the professional accrediting organisation for the area of education (

Journalism and Mass Communication: The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC) is the professional accrediting body for the area of journalism and mass communication (

Public Health: The Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH) is an independent organisation recognised by the US Department of Education to accredit public health programmes and offer information about certified public health institutions and programmes. For more information on CEPH accreditation, visit

Law: The Law School Admission Council (LSAC) maintains a list of authorised law programmes and schools ( Students may learn more about public policy and administration by visiting the website of the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (, which is the professional accrediting organisation for programmes in the subject.

Students should refer to #Nationally Recognised for a complete list of accrediting bodies recognised by the US Department of Education. Choosing an authorised academic programme and institution of study for higher education in the United States is an important part of the admission process for US universities. Students should, however, consider all elements of a school's programmes before deciding to join.

Monika Setia is a Regional Officer and EducationUSA Adviser at the United States-India Educational Foundation, situated in Hyderabad. For additional information, click on

Questions and Answers

Q. I am applying for master’s programmes at US universities. How can I identify the cost of attendance for the programme? (– Ravi Kumar

A. Websites of universities under consideration are good sources to check the tuition fee, cost of living, and other expenses to ascertain the cost of attendance at a US university. This information can be found on the admissions page of the university or on the bursar's webpage (the bursar is the office of budget and finance at a university). Make sure to take note of both the tuition fee and other additional costs, including the cost of housing, books and supplies, transportation, health insurance, personal expenses, etc. In addition, make note of whether the tuition is for residents or non-residents (as an international student, you will be paying the non-resident fee). These costs vary based on the type of institution, location, and programme of study.

Q. If one is applying to undergraduate programmes in the United States, from whom should we take the letter of recommendation?

A. Letters of recommendation, sometimes also called letters of support or reference letters, are a critical piece of undergraduate applications to US universities. In general, higher education institutions in the United States require letters from one school counsellor and sometimes one or two school teachers. Some institutions also accept additional recommendations from coaches or other recommenders. In cases where a school counsellor is not available, students may request either the principal or another teacher nominated by the principal to write the letter. Recommendations should not be written by direct family members.

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