Carnegie Mellon University

MSCHE & Accreditation Decisions1

After the Peer Evaluation Team Visits CMU

At the close of the Peer Evaluation Team's visit to CMU's campuses and locations in March, the team chair provided a preliminary oral report of the team's findings. In mid-April, a draft of the team's written report was sent to CMU for review and correction of errors of fact and/or clarification of ambiguities. In May, the team's final written report is submitted to the Commission and to CMU. President Farnam Jahanian, on behalf of CMU, will send a written response to that report to provide additional clarification or analyses, if needed. The team chair then prepares and sends a Confidential Brief to the Commission, which includes proposed action on the university's reaffirmation of its accreditation.

Commission Action

In June, the Commission’s Committee on Evaluation Reports reviews the Self-Study Report, the Team Report, the Team Chair’s Confidential Brief (which presents the team’s proposal for Commission action), and the formal CMU Response to the Team Report submitted by President Jahanian. The Team Chair participates in this Committee meeting, where the team's review is discussed fully, and the Committee decides whether to accept or modify the course of action proposed by the Peer Evaluation Team. This Committee then makes a recommendation for final action to the Commission. The action of the Commission will be communicated in writing to President Jahanian (usually on or about June 30), and will be accompanied by an updated Statement of Accreditation Status, which will also be publicly available on MSCHE's website.

The Commission may take the following actions1,2:

Reaffirmation Actions

  • Reaffirm accreditation (without any required follow-up reporting)
  • Reaffirm accreditation and request a follow-up report, without a visit from an MSCHE Vice President or a small team.
  • Reffirm accreditation and request a follow-up report, with a visit from an MSCHE Vice President or a small team.

Deferment Actions

  • Reject the reaccreditation report and request resubmission within a short timeframe.
  • Postponement a decision in order to request a supplemental information.

Adverse Actions

  • Warning, probation or show cause, which indicate that the university did not meet one or more accreditation standards or requirements and may be in jeopardy of losing its accreditation. 

1From MSCHE Self-Study Guide (2015) (pdf)
2From MSCHE Policy on Accreditation Actions (pdf)