Volume 3 No.2, Spring 1999

ISSN# 1523-9926

Guest Editorial

The Impact of Accreditation on Faculty

Wesley L. Baldwin
Ball State University

Obtaining ABET accreditation for a technology program is a complex procedure.  Before a decision is made to accredit a program, the faculty and the administration must discuss the faculty qualifications required to meet standards.  Without an explanation from the administration on how the changes will affect the faculty and a commitment from the faculty to accept change, it is difficult to implement successfully the curriculum revisions needed for ABET accreditation.   

The requirements for basic credentials can have a negative impact on the accreditation process unless both the administration and faculty have a clear agreement on how these changes are to come about.  There are only a limited number of ways that a program that does not have a sufficient number of faculty with basic credentials can meet this requirement.  The following three methods or a combination of these methods are the only options available. 

A.      Terminate a faculty member’s participation in the program.

a.       Terminate their employment

b.       Assign them to another program 

B.       Upgrade the credentials of participating faculty.

a.       Industrial work experience.

b.       Technical course work

c.       PE license 

C.       Hire new faculty with basic credentials. (full or part time)

a.       Fill new positions.

b.       Fill positions made empty by retirement or resignation. 

Before a decision is made to seek ABET accreditation for a technology program, the faculty and administration must understand the impact of the accreditation on a faculty members’ status in the program.  In most cases this can be a win-win situation.  Lack of discussion and planning are usually at the root of any problems.    

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