NACIQI Meets in Alexandria, Virginia

Publication Number 88 March 5, 2020

National Advisory Committee On Institutional Quality And Integrity Meets In Alexandria, Virginia 


The National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI) met in Alexandria, Virginia on February 27, 2020. NACIQI is the advisory body that provides recommendations to the Secretary of Education on recognition of accrediting organizations. Recognition by the U.S. Department of Education (USDE) affirms that the standards and processes of accrediting organizations and state accreditation approval agencies demonstrate compliance with USDE's criteria. In advance of the meeting, USDE issued staff reports for all of the organizations scheduled for review.

NACIQI recommended:

  • Expansion of scope for the Association for Biblical Higher Education, with a compliance report due in one year
  • Renewal of recognition for four years for the Kansas State Board of Nursing
  • Continued recognition for one year for the Maryland Board of Nursing, with a compliance report due in one year
  • Recognition for five years for the National Nurse Practitioner Residency and Fellowship Training Consortium
  • Continued recognition for the New York State Board of Regents (Public Postsecondary Vocational Ed) and require the agency to come into compliance within 12 months, with a compliance report due 30 days thereafter
  • Continued recognition for four years for the Oklahoma Department of Careers and Technology Education and the Pennsylvania State Board for Career and Technical Education

The Committee was briefed by Diane Auer Jones, USDE’s Principal Deputy Under Secretary, on USDE’s final regulations for accreditation, innovation and other issues, which become effective on July 1, 2020. Jones also noted the importance of NACIQI only addressing issues for which the committee has statutory authority.

USDE Sends Letter to State Higher Education Leaders on Final Accreditation and State Authorization Regulations

On February 26, 2020, USDE Principal Deputy Under Secretary Diane Auer Jones sent a letter to state higher education leaders concerning the final accreditation and state authorization for distance education regulations. The letter highlighted that the new regulations have removed geography from an accrediting agency's scope, meaning USDE will no longer distinguish between regional and national accrediting agencies but will classify accrediting organizations as institutional and programmatic accreditors.

The letter also noted that the final regulations make changes to state authorization requirements. States must have a process in place to receive and review student complaints. The regulations also require an institution to tell students whether a program will or will not meet licensure requirements in a particular state, or where a student would go to find that information. The regulations continue to recognize state reciprocity agreements. USDE clarified that, while states participating in a state authorization reciprocity agreement may enforce their own general-purpose state laws and regulations outside of the state authorization of distance education, it may not impose additional distance education regulations upon institutions that participate in such agreements. For additional information contact the USDE Accreditation Group at [email protected].