NWCCU Accreditation

Accreditation update

OHSU submitted its 2016 Year One Self-Evaluation to NWCCU on September 15, 2016.

On January 28, 2016, President Robertson received OHSU's reaffirmation of accreditation based on the Fall 2015 Year Seven Evaluation. The Commission gave OHSU three commendations:

1. OHSU's contributions in health care and health sciences to the state of Oregon and beyond
2. OHSU's faculty and administrators for their efforts and commitment to the development of Interprofessional Education (IPE) across the institution, including rural sites
3. OHSU's faculty for a culture of collaboration for research and education and the University as a whole for partnerships with other institutions, industries, and rural communities

The OHSU accreditation team wants to thank everyone who participated and supported the process.

About NWCCU:

The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities is one of six regional accreditors in the U.S. NWCCU accreditation is a peer-evaluation process:

  • OHSU submits a self-study report that assesses its fulfillment of its mission and NWCCU standards
  • Peers from like institutions serve on the accreditation team that visits OHSU for the on-site evaluation of what was presented in the self-study report

A successful evaluation is important for ensuring OHSU can continue offering the specialized programs it's known for, federal financial aid for students and a desirable place for students to transfer to. Accreditation is a measure of quality and a demonstration of OHSU's commitment to continuous improvement.

The NWCCU evaluates universities in the region at several points over a seven-year period.

  • Year-one report, but no visit
  • Mid-report in year three; visit but focused on assessment piece of self-study to determine readiness for year seven
  • Year seven includes OHSU doing a self-study to evaluate five accreditation standards and identifying areas of strength and weakness; includes a visit from seven to nine NWCCU evaluators

Accreditation by the NWCCU is not partial but applies to the institution as a whole. As such, it is not a guarantee of every course or program offered, or the competence of individual graduates. Rather, it provides reasonable assurance about the quality of opportunities available to students who attend the institution.

OHSU accreditation cycle

Revised in 2010, NWCCU's accreditation standards require institutions to conduct periodic self-evaluations to address one to five standards over a seven-year cycle. Reports are now required in year one and mid-cycle (year three) with a comprehensive report and site visit required at the end of seven years. OHSU's accreditation status was reaffirmed in January 2016 based on the acceptance of the 2015 Year Seven Self-Evaluation Report. Below is an outline of OHSU's NWCCU seven year accreditation cycle:

September 2016 – Year One Report
                Standard One – Mission, Core Themes and Expectations

September 2018 – Mid-Cycle Report
                Self-Evaluation on Assessment Efforts (NWCCU Site Visit)

Fall 2023 – Year Seven Report
                 Updates to Standards One
                 Standard Two –Resources and Capacity   
                 Standard Three (Planning and Implementation)    
                 Standard Four (Effectiveness and Improvement)    
                 Standard Five (Mission Fulfillment, Adaptation, and Sustainability)    

Fall 2023 – NWCCU site visit

For the Year Seven report and subsequent visit, OHSU will appoint a Steering Committee to ensure that institutional accreditation requirements are met and to oversee the accreditation process.

, Assistant Vice Provost for Accreditation.