CAEP Accreditation’s Importance to Teacher Preparation Programs
Rigorous standards bring excellence to education programs.
“Be a yardstick of quality,” Apple founder Steve Jobs once said. The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) is such a measure of quality, promoting excellence in teacher preparation through quality assurance and continuous improvement. CAEP is the only recognized national accreditor for educator preparation.
If you want to become a teacher or to advance your career as an educator, take the first step by selecting a CAEP-accredited online college. That mark of distinction tells you the institution has rigorous standards ensuring that program graduates can acquire the critical knowledge, skills, and dispositions to be effective educators.
As you explore accredited universities to pursue your teaching degree, here are some key points about CAEP accreditation and its importance to teacher preparation programs:
What Is Accreditation?
“Simply put, accreditation is quality assurance through external peer review,” CAEP explains. “When an institution or specialized program is accredited, it has demonstrated that it meets standards set by organizations representing the academic community, professionals, and other stakeholders. To maintain accreditation the institution or program must undergo a similar review on a regular basis. Typically, reviews are conducted every 7 to 10 years.”1
Why Does Accreditation Matter?
“Accreditation makes sure that educator programs prepare new teachers to know their subjects, their students, and have the clinical training that allows them to enter the classroom ready to teach effectively,” CAEP says. “Accreditation provides a framework that has pushed educator preparation programs to continually self-assess and conduct evidence-based analysis of their programs and their efficacy. These evidence-based shifts, rooted in continuous improvement, are helping to ensure that preparation programs are more likely to produce successful educators.”2
Who Benefits From Accreditation?
CAEP explains how accreditation is important to multiple stakeholders in the education process:2
- P–12 learners: Outcomes-based evidence means all learners are at the center of determining effectiveness of educators.
- Teacher educators: Since the process is infused with research and development, the knowledge base of effective practice will grow.
- State education agencies: Provides a strong partner for quality assurance, helps connect the national consensus on preparation to state-level policy and provide support for a state’s own authorization/accountability system.
- Education professionals: Rigorous standards elevate the profession.
What Does Accreditation Look Like?
To see accreditation in action, look to The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Human Sciences at Walden University, one of the 238 educator preparation providers that have earned CAEP accreditation. Of the approximately 1,200 colleges, schools, and departments of education in the United States,3 only about 20% have achieved this distinction. Walden University’s Riley College of Education and Human Sciences earned CAEP accreditation by meeting rigorous national standards and demonstrating excellence in the areas of content and pedagogy, clinical experiences, selectivity, program impact, and capacity for continuous improvement.
Walden’s programs connect educators with experts, policymakers, and scholar-practitioners who are driving change and influencing the future of education. Program offerings range from teacher preparation to doctoral degree programs, and include a BS in Elementary Education, a Master of Arts in Teaching with a specialization in Special Education, and an MS in Education with a specialization in Educational Leadership and Administration.
A teaching degree from a CAEP-accredited college can help you expand your sphere of excellence and influence in classroom, administrative, or leadership roles. Follow the path to your higher purpose with an advanced degree tailored to your goals and ambitions.
The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Human Sciences is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and offers a full range of online teaching degree programs, including a BS in Elementary Education. Expand your career options and earn your degree in a convenient, flexible format that fits your busy life.
Walden University's The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Human Sciences is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) for a period of seven years, from April 2019 through June 2026. This accreditation covers initial teacher preparation programs and advanced educator preparation programs. CAEP is the only recognized national accreditor for educator preparation, promoting excellence in educator preparation through quality assurance and continuous improvement. The Riley College of Education and Human Sciences earned CAEP accreditation by meeting rigorous national standards and demonstrating excellence in the areas of content and pedagogy, clinical experiences, selectivity, program impact, and capacity for continuous improvement.
Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, www.hlcommission.org.