ALA Accreditation Committee

ALA Committee on Accreditation Seeks Comments on Change
Link to the PDF

I think that this originally caught my attention via one of my listservs and I was excited to see a possible change in the accreditation process.

Background: My MLS program underwent re-accreditation whilst I was in the program. During that particular semester, two of our full time faculty were headed out the door. Granted, we didn’t find out about this until May, but in retrospect I have a hard time believing they were fully dedicated to a place they were leaving. What made things more interesting, one of the re-accreditors had interviewed one of the professors that was leaving and would be a coworker at her new job. None of the students I spoke with felt like this was appropriate, though we couldn’t really figure out a way around it. We got our re-accreditation and part of me is forever grateful that I got through my last semester and out the door before things really got shaken up. (Also grateful for the math professor who moved over and taught me database design!!!)

I was hopeful, when I saw this come up, that there might be a little more standardization going on or that there were some efforts being made to make some changes. The profession is undergoing a lot of change right now as we move to a century that thrives on computers, multi-sensory everything, all convenience all the time, etc etc. I have spoken with students from various programs and found enormous discrepancies in what is required, what is expected, and what is encouraged. While I know this is true for undergraduate programs too, most liberal arts programs at least have a similar core. Shouldn’t there be a more stringent core for graduate programs?

I was disappointed with the changes that are being suggested– it looks like the only thing they want approval of is that someone went through and edited the piece so it’s readable. While I know approval of such change is necessary (I’m an editor and have worked in publishing), part of me is going “is that it?”

They got my hopes up and then ask me to approve “The Standards should have explicitly numbered paragraphs, as it has in the online version.”