The IIRP is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (267-284-5000). The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
Current Self-Study Updates
We are thrilled to announce that the IIRP has just received notice that our accreditation has been reaffirmed by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).
The reaffirmation of accreditation is acknowledgement of the work of our faculty, trustees, staff and student body to provide a quality graduate program that is advancing the emerging field of restorative practices. With more than 60 individuals contributing to our self-study, not only did we successfully complete a rigorous peer-review, we also did it with great engagement, transparency and participation that proves we practice what we teach and live our mission.
Thank you to each and every one of you who has worked so hard to serve our mission, provided honest feedback, pulled years of data and asked and helped answer difficult questions. As part of the accreditation process we will complete a Follow Up Report in 2018 to MSCHE. We will continue to work towards the recommendations that we recognize will help us continually improve and manage our growth. Together we model that the world's first graduate school wholly devoted to restorative practices serves our students well and can positively impact civil society.
On February 8, 2016, at the conclusion of its site visit and review of the IIRP's Self-Study Report, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education evaluation team reported that the IIRP appeared to meet all Middle States Commission accreditation standards.
Final action on re-accreditation by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education is pending following its June 2016 Commission meeting.
This Fall our Commission Team Chair came to the IIRP for his preliminary site visit and met with trustees, faculty and members of the steering committee. Having reviewed the draft document, he shared feedback to help us clarify our Self-Study Report. We incorporated many of his suggestions, honed our writing and compiled the additional documentation to demonstrate our compliance with the Commission’s Characteristics of Excellence as well as federal regulations.
This month we have submitted IIRP’s Self-Study Report. We are grateful for the participation of faculty, trustees, staff and students that helped us with research, insights, writing and feedback the past two years and are proud of the culmination of our work in this report.
With this milestone completed we now look ahead to our site visit scheduled February 6-9, 2016. During this site visit, we will host six team members from the Commission as part of the peer review process and provide them with the opportunity to meet with our trustees, faculty, staff and students to learn more about the Graduate School.
The Steering Committee has spent the summer assembling all of the reports from the Working Groups into a single document. Our writing team has met regularly and has been grateful for the feedback and encouragement from the entire committee, the President, Founding President and the Chair of the Board of Trustees. Within this draft we have presented evidence of upholding the fundamental elements and analyzed how we can continue to improve and best serve our students and our mission. The IIRP now has a draft of a Self-Study Report that it will be sharing with our Commission Team Chair. We are looking forward receiving his feedback when he visits the IIRP this October.
Working Groups guided by the MSCHE’s Characteristics of Excellence have dived deeply into evidence to assess our Graduate School. Faculty, administration, trustees, staff, alumni and students have all remarked how much they enjoy working and learning with one another and analyzing our program from various perspectives. Working Groups have met consistently since last summer to gain an understanding of our assessment process and comb through data. Working Group Chairs have presented written reports to the Steering Committee, and we have all mastered Google Docs so that we are literally “all on the same page” when we review submissions. The Steering Committee is appreciative of all the members of Working Groups who have done a phenomenal job providing a thorough and thoughtful review.
The Steering Committee has met bi-weekly reviewing reports from the Working Groups and considering strengths, weaknesses and recommendations for continual improvement. Conversations have been lively and continue beyond the Steering Committee’s meetings at Faculty Meetings, Committee of the Whole meetings, Assessment meetings, Planning & Budgeting meetings, student discussions and staff meetings for further feedback. It is a collective conversation throughout the Graduate School.
Each of our four Working Groups has selected one standard to focus their energies and to provide a thorough collection of evidence that demonstrates how we are meeting the MSCHE Characteristics of Excellence. This analysis in our Self-Study will provide feedback to ensure our continual improvement.
The Steering Committee received the first round of these submissions in October. Each working group will now move on to study another standard.
The Working Groups are fueled by 30 individuals, which is an impressive showing for such a small graduate school. Trustees, students, faculty and staff are all working collaboratively to assess each standard and the supporting fundamental elements. True to our belief that more engagement will lead to better results, we are pleased that our approach to our Self-Study is modeling a participatory model that maintains high expectations and abundant support.
Dr. Christy Faison, Vice President, MSCHE, has approved the IIRP's Self-Study Design. Dr. Faison praised our approach to the design as being very thorough and focused on the issues and initiatives directly related to the continual improvement of the IIRP.
Chairs of our Working Groups will now convene the faculty, students, trustees and staff who have volunteered for Self-Study. Members of the Working Groups are charged with analyzing the evidence that demonstrates our compliance with MSCHE Characteristics of Excellence, and they will suggest recommendations to enhance our graduate school. We anticipate these groups will remain active through fall 2015.
The Steering Committee will then compile the comments and recommendations from each of the Working Groups to craft our Self-Study Report. A draft of the Self-Study Report will be posted here, and we will ask for feedback from you, our stakeholders.
The IIRP has begun its Self-Study process for reaccreditation by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE) in 2016. The Self-Study process supports the IIRP’s mission while providing opportunities to learn and grow as a higher education institution.
IIRP President Ted Wachtel has appointed Assistant Professor Craig Adamson, Ph.D., and Vice President for Advancement Linda Kligman to co-chair the Self-Study for reaccreditation. A Self-Study Steering Committee comprised of 13 members representing faculty, staff and trustees has been formed and is responsible for developing a Self-Study Design, a document that outlines research questions for the institution to evaluate its compliance, assessment and areas of improvement regarding the 14 standards noted in the MSCHE’s Characteristics of Excellence in Higher Education. The Committee represents a wide range of skills, expertise and knowledge that will help guide the Self-Study process.
All constituents, including students, trustees, faculty, staff and alumni, will be represented in the Self-Study process. The IIRP’s stakeholders will be engaged in the process and invited to participate in Self-Study working groups charged with evaluating the research questions. Together we will create a comprehensive perspective in the final Self-Study Report that reflects our institutional learning. All constituents will have access to the Self-Study progress through this webpage.
Our first visit in the reaccreditation process is scheduled for Tuesday, May 6, 2014, with Dr. Christy Faison, Vice President, MSCHE. The purpose of that visit is to attain MSCHE feedback of our draft Self-Study Design so that we may finalize the draft and attain MSCHE approval of the design in order to begin the actual Self-Study.
Our aim is that by fall 2015 we will submit a Self-Study Report to a team of peer reviewers who will recommend to the MSCHE the reaccreditation of the IIRP.