Accreditation Overview

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Teachers College, Columbia University
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Office of Accreditation and Assessment

Call for Third-Party Comment

Submission Deadline: February 8, 2021

On March 8-9, Teachers College Columbia University will host an accreditation visit by the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP). In preparation for the visit, the AAQEP Quality Review Team is soliciting public comment about the quality of educator preparation provided by Teachers College Columbia University. All comments must be submitted by February 8, 2021 through the AAQEP website: Submit Comment

What is accreditation? 

A mechanism developed to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality, accreditation is both a status and a process. As a status, accreditation provides public notification that an institution or program meets the standards of quality set forth by an accreditation agency. As a process, accreditation reflects the institution's or program's commitment to self-study and external review by its peers—not only to meet standards, but to continuously enhance the quality of education and training provided.

Accreditation agencies are private educational associations that develop evaluation criteria and conduct peer evaluations to assess whether these criteria are met. Institutions or programs must meet an agency's criteria to be accredited by that agency.

Accreditation agencies operate through three different types of organizations: 

  • Regional accreditation agencies perform the accreditation process in six respective regions of the United States: Middle States, New England, North Central, Northwest, Southern, and Western. Regional accreditation is institutional in scope. Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) is the regional accrediting agency for New York, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and several locations internationally. Teachers College has been accredited continuously by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education since 1921. More...

  • National accreditation agencies operate throughout the United States and are limited in scope to specific types of institutions such as those providing teacher education, distance education, or religious instruction.  Professional education programs at Teachers College that prepare personnel for K-12 schools (teachers, principals, psychologists, and counselors) constitute the unit accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). More...

  • Specialized professional accreditation agencies review specific disciplines or professions. A number of programs at Teachers College are accredited by specialized professional accreditation agencies, including programs in psychology, teacher education, and dietetics.  More...

Internal Info

The following sites related to the accreditation and assessment processes are for use by TC staff. Contact Sasha Gribovskaya to request access or if you have any questions about these sites.