AACSB Accreditation Process Steps: (Source: www.aacsb.edu)
The accreditation process will follow a continuous process. Transitions from one step of the process to the next step and from one committee's oversight to the next committee's oversight will flow smoothly without disruption of the school's progress. The series of integrated steps follow in this order:
1. The applicant school establishes AACSB International membership.
2. The applicant submits it's completed Eligibility Application to begin the process. The applicant is encouraged to submit a draft of the application for staff review. Staff review will check for completeness. Applications will be accepted at any time.
3. The PreAccreditation Committee assigns a mentor, and based on the PreAccreditation Committee review of the Eligibility Application, the PreAccreditation Committee provides input to the mentor regarding areas of potential concern. Mentor appointments must avoid any appearance of conflict of interest.
4. The mentor visits the applicant and (a) assists the school to respond to any concerns raised by the Eligibility Application and (b) reviews how the applicant satisfies each standard to assist in preparation of a gap analysis that the applicant will perform and use as the basis for the Accreditation Plan. If the mentor finds that there is no reasonable expectation that the applicant can develop a successful Accreditation Plan, she/he will so advise the applicant.
5. The Accreditation Coordinating Committee reviews the Eligibility Application as revised to meet any concerns raised by the PreAccreditation Committee and rules on eligibility issues such as diversity and excluded programs. Changes in existing conditions during the implementation period may delay or expedite initial accreditation.
6. With the mentor's assistance, the applicant prepares and submits an Accreditation Plan and a Strategic Plan. The Accreditation Plan is presented as part of the school's Strategic Plan. The Strategic Plan extends beyond the achievement of accreditation.
7. The PreAccreditation Committee reviews the Accreditation Plan and approves it, or iterates suggestions for modification and review until approval is possible. If the PreAccreditation Committee finds that there is no reasonable expectation that the applicant will meet the business accreditation standards, it will so advise the applicant. Changes in existing conditions during the implementation period may delay or expedite initial accreditation.
8. Once the PreAccreditation Committee has accepted the accreditation plan, the plan is forwarded to the initial accreditation plan.
9. The Initial Accreditation Committee reviews the Strategic Plan and approves it, or iterates suggestions for modification and review until approval is possible. Changes in existing conditions during the implementation period may delay or expedite initial accreditation.
10. The applicant submits annual reports on progress made and any delays in achieving its Accreditation Plan. Any changes to the Accreditation Plan are described in the annual reports.
11. The mentor continues to work with the applicant for up to three years as the applicant implements its Accreditation Plan. Initial accreditation must be achieved within five years of the Initial Accreditation Committee acceptance of the Accreditation Plan.
12. Two years in advance of the anticipated accreditation review visit, a Peer Review Team chair (but not the full team) is appointed. The team chair monitors the applicant's progress through the final two years of the accomplishment of the Accreditation Plan. Team Chair appointments must avoid any appearance of conflict of interest.
13. The applicant prepares its Self-Evaluation Report while working with the team chair.
14. The Initial Accreditation Committee appoints the other members of the Peer Review Team. The team reviews the Self-Evaluation Report, and it prepares and sends a pre-visit letter that is approved by the Initial Accreditation Committee.
15. The visit takes place, and the team delivers to the applicant and to the Initial Accreditation Committee a visit report that includes an accreditation decision recommendation. The Initial Accreditation Committee ratifies or remands the recommendation.
16. Recommendations for accreditation or denial that are ratified by the Initial Accreditation Committee are then sent to the Board for ratification or remand.