U.S. Department of Education Issues Final Rules on Accreditation.
On October 27, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) issued final regulations relating to accreditation, covering key topics such as distance education, transfer of credit, accreditor disclosures to ED, substantive change, accreditors’ monitoring of institutions and programs, and due process. 74 Fed. Reg. 55,414. The final regulations implement Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) provisions pertinent to accreditation and clarify, update, or otherwise modify existing accreditation-related regulations. The final regulations, which are effective July 1, 2010, are the product of negotiated rulemaking. Although the final regulations generally apply to accreditors in the first instance, they nevertheless affect institutions because they create standards and processes that accreditors must impose on, or follow with respect to, institutions or programs that they accredit. This memorandum summarizes selected final accreditation regulations.